After six years of faithful service, I decided to retire my ageing 2012 MacBook Pro (the last non-retina model). It was still running smoothly since I upgraded the RAM and switched to two SSDs by removing the optical drive, but it felt like it was time for a change. So after weeks of research and contemplation, I decided to buy a new one. There were a lot of factors to consider like size, performance, and price, but I finally settled for a 2018 MacBook Pro with Touch Bar.
The portability was a huge deciding factor for me since I want to be able to carry it around without adding a significant bulk or weight to my bag. I went to the Apple Store to see how big and heavy the 2018 models are, an I was pleasantly satisfied with what I found. The 13-inch one has the perfect size (very compact–ultra-thin and light). I always wanted to get a 15-inch machine for the bigger screen size, but since I just bought a new 4K iMac less than four months ago, I thought I didn’t need it after all.
The 2018 models also saw significant changes in performance. The switch from Kaby Lake to Coffee Lake processors is a welcome refresh. I won’t get into detail about the benchmark scores as this is not a tech blog, but the speed on these are amazing. It would have been nice to see the new 13-inch models get dedicated graphics instead of integrated ones, but since I’m mostly going to use this laptop for word processing, light photo and video editing, and regular computer activities, I shouldn’t see any slowdowns.
As for the price, what can I say? Apple products are never cheap. I got the baseline model for $2399 before taxes (~$2710). That makes it only $21 more expensive than my custom-built iMac (with better specs and a bigger screen). It’s a very pricey investment, but I’ve been using Apple products for more than half my life. I’m way in too deep in the ecosystem. I love macOS a lot. I’ve never really been a Windows guy other than those times when I’m forced to use it at work. Continuity and Handoff and features that I can’t live without after using them.
So, after a few weeks of using it, is it worth it? For me, it is. There are a couple of things that I miss about my old MacBook, but I rather like the portability, the new form factor, and the speed. I can definitely see myself keeping this for the next six years or so.