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New Base Model 13″ MacBook Pro First Impressions

Over the weekend, I had the chance to try the new base model MacBook Pro, featuring a thinner design, much less I/O, and a new space gray color.

When the new MacBook Pro was announced, I was unhappy with many of the changes that were made, and thought that some of them were dumb. After having a chance to play with the new model, my thoughts have shifted and I think I want one.

The new model is incredibly thin and light. It’s impressive that Apple was able to decrease the dimensions and make the notebook faster with similar battery life to the previous models. The bezels around the display are much smaller now, not quite Dell XPS small, but a definite improvement over the older models. While that doesn’t make a huge difference in any other areas, it helps with the aesthetics of the new model.

The new butterfly keyboard feels nice, and is definitely a change that I feel I could adapt to relatively quickly. I wasn’t able to type too much on it, since I was using a demo unit in the store, but from typing a few URLs and just pressing the keys for the sake of trying them, the new keyboard feels nicer than that of the 12″ MacBook.

One of the things that I thought looked kind of silly on the new MacBook Pro was the oversized trackpad, that now takes up the majority of the space underneath the keyboard. After experiencing the larger trackpad, it’s clear that Apple was correct that it’s helpful to have an extra large area to use for multi-touch gestures and navigating around the operating system.

Coming from an array of five to eight ports on the previous models, it was a bit strange to see just three ports on the 13″ MacBook Pro,

Space gray looks amazing on the MacBook Pro, especially when paired with the black Apple logo on the back. Even though I will miss the glowing logo from previous models, Apple made a good¬†decision going with a similar design to that of the 12″ MacBook.

While I don’t think I’m ready to give up my MagSafe, USB-A, and HDMI ports on my main machine that’s used for video editing weekly, I wouldn’t mind picking up a base model 13″ MacBook Pro to use as a secondary machine, even though that isn’t likely to happen until prices come down a bit, or refurbished units become available, since the new thinner design will cost $1499 and up.

Have you had a chance to try the new MacBook Pro models yet? What are your thoughts? Will you be picking one up, or are you sitting out this round?

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