Especially with the 14-inch model
A new MacBook Pro isn't necessarily better
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Stiftung Warentest is testing what the new M3 chips bring to Apple's MacBook Pro series. The result is surprising because the expensive laptops are more efficient, but hardly or not at all more powerful than their predecessors. Whether it is worth buying depends, among other things, on the size.
Apple's MacBook Pro laptops are at the top of Stiftung Warentest's current Ultrabooks best list. But these are not the latest models; the recently released devices with new M3 chips no longer made it into the most recent test series. Stiftung Warentest caught up with this and took a close look at two of the new Apple cars with 14 and 16 inch displays.
Significantly more persistent
The large model hardly differs from its predecessor except for the new M3 Pro processor. The tested variant with 18 gigabytes (GB) of RAM costs around 3,000 euros. In the laboratory, the testers found that the current MacBook Pro 16 M3 Pro does not work consistently faster. However, the new chip has proven to be significantly more efficient. In the comparison test when playing videos with the same display brightness, it lasted more than 16 hours – “100 minutes longer than the already very good 14.5 hours of the predecessor,” praised the product testers.
Otherwise, the new large MacBook Pro has the same advantages as its predecessor. Stiftung Warentest highlights the low volume even with high processor loads as well as the very bright and high-resolution display, which is “above any suspicion”. Overall, Apple has carried out solid model improvements for the 16-inch MacBook Pro.
The cheapest new 14-incher is hardly worth it
The inspectors are more critical of the 14-inch models. They are now the smallest MacBook Pros, Apple no longer offers devices with 13-inch screens. The new 14-inchers are available with M3, M3 Pro or M3 Max chips. Stiftung Warentest examined the variant with an M3 processor and 16 GB of RAM. At a price of 2230 euros, it is almost as expensive as the comparable predecessor model with M2 Pro, but only has two instead of three USB-C ports.
The runtime of the smaller MacBook Pro has also improved from 12.5 to just over 13 hours. However, with the M3 chip, it calculates slower than the older device with the M2 Pro. In addition, the M3 can only work with an external monitor. If you need more, you'll have to buy an even more expensive model with M3 Pro or Max, which also has a third USB-C port.
Accordingly, Stiftung Warentest comes to the conclusion that the 14-inch MacBook Pro might be worth buying a predecessor model with an M2 Pro chip. Or you should wait for the new and slimmer MacBook Air with M3 processor, which is expected in the spring.