15″ MacBook Pro with Touch Bar (Late 2016)

With the Late 2016 refresh, Apple has dropped the words “with Retina Display” from the names of its MacBook Pro models. Retina displays are standard across the board on all MacBooks. What’s new is the Touch Bar, which replaces the dedicated row of function keys that have been present on Mac notebooks since the 68040 era.

Touch Bar on 15 inch MacBook Pro (Late 2016)

The Late 2016 15-incher is the thinnest 15″ MacBook Pro yet at 0.61″ (15.5 mm). This is due in part to moving away from legacy ports to the newer, smaller USB-C port, which is used for charging, video, 40 Gbps Thunderbolt, and 10 Gbps USB 3.1 Gen 2. The 15″ MacBook Pro now has four USB-C ports, two on each side of the machine.

ports on 15" MacBook Pro (Late 2016)

There’s less range of CPU speeds than ever before. The base model runs its quad-core i7 at 2.6 GHz (Turbo Boost to 3.5 GHz), the step-up model at 2.7 GHz (Turbo Boost to 3.6 GHz), and the top-end build-to-order version at 2.9 GHz (Turbo Boost to 3.8 GHz). At this time we don’t yet have Geekbench results measuring the performance difference between these three Skylake CPUs.

15 inch MacBook Pro (Late 2016)As with other recent 15″ models, 16 GB of memory is standard – and there is no option for more than that.

There’s a built-in 720p FaceTime HD webcam that supports today’s widescreen displays.

The base 2.6 GHz model has a 256 GB PCIe-based SSD and a $2,399 price tag, up $400 from the low-end Mid 2015 model, while the 2.7 GHz version includes a 512 GB SSD at $2,799 retail, up $300 from last year’s “better” model. 512 GB, 1 TB, and 2 TB SSDs are available for both models.

In its ongoing back-and-forth on graphics processors, this time Apple has left behind Nvidia and gone with Radeon Pro 450 or 455 graphics with 2 GB of video memory and automatic graphics switching between it and Intel HD Graphics 530. Radeon Pro 460 with 4 GB of video memory is a build-to-order option.

The new model is rated at 10 hours of battery power and includes Bluetooth 4.2 along with 802.11ac WiFi for wireless connectivity.

The Late 2016 MacBook Pros ship with macOS 10.12.1 Sierra and can run all later versions of OS X, which are free upgrades.

Closed Lid Mode: All Intel ‘Books support “lid closed” (or clamshell) mode, which leaves the built-in display off and dedicates all video RAM to an external display. To used closed lid mode, your ‘Book must be plugged into the AC adapter and connected to an external display and a USB or Bluetooth mouse and keyboard (you might also want to consider external speakers). Power up your ‘Book until the desktop appears on the external display and then close the lid. Your ‘Book will go to sleep, but you can wake it by moving the mouse or using the keyboard. The built-in display will remain off, and the external monitor will become your only display.

To resume use of the internal display, you need to disconnect the external display, put the computer to sleep, and then open the lid. This will wake up your ‘Book and restore use of the built-in display.

Battery life is claimed to be 10 hours of wireless productivity.

Details

  • introduced 2016.10.27 at US$2,399 (2.6 GHz quad-core i7, 256 GB SSD) and US$2,799 (2.7 GHz, 512 GB SSD). 2.9 GHz build-to-order option.
  • Identifier: MacBookPro
  • Model no.:
  • Part no.:

Mac OS

Core System

  • CPU: 2.6/2.7/2.9 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 Skylake
  • Level 2 cache: 6/8 MB shared cache
  • Bus: 2133 MHz
  • RAM: 16 GB
  • Performance, Geekbench 4
    • 2.6 GHz: unknown
    • 2.7 GHz: unknown
    • 2.9 GHz: unknown

Video

  • GPU: Radeon Pro 450 or 455 graphics with automatic graphics switching to Intel HD Graphics 530. Radeon Pro 460 with 4 GB available as a build-to-order option.
    • VRAM, Intel HD: uses 384 MB of system memory
    • VRAM, Nvidia: 2 GB
  • Video out: Thunderbolt 3 (VGA, HDMI, and ThunderBolt 2 supported with optional adapters)
    • supports up to two displays to 5120 x 2880 resolution and billions of colors
    • supports up to four displays to 4096 x 2304 resolution and billions of colors
  • display: 15.4″ (38 cm) 2880 x 1800 220 ppi color active matrix and “millions of colors”
    • supports 1920 x 1200, 1650 x 1050, 1280 x 800, and 1024 x 640 pixels at 16:10 aspect ratio
    • allows mirroring to external display or extended desktop mode

Drives

  • Hard drive: 256/512 GB solid state drive (SSD) standard on PCIe bus, 1 and 2 TB available
  • optical drive: external only

Expansion

  • Thunderbolt 3: 4 USB-C ports, up to 40 Gbps
  • USB: 4 USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports, up to 10 Gbps
  • FireWire 400: optional via Thunderbolt adapter
  • FireWire 800: optional via Thunderbolt adapter
  • Ethernet: optional via Thunderbolt adapter
  • WiFi: 802.11ac AirPort Extreme built in
  • Modem: No longer offered by Apple
  • Bluetooth: BT 4.2 built in
  • ExpressCard/34: none
  • SD Card Slot: none
  • expansions bays: none
  • IR receiver: none
  • webcam: FaceTime 720p HD camera

Power

  • battery: 76 Watt-hours, 10 hours of wireless productivity
  • AC adapter: 87W USB-C Power Adapter

Physical

  • size: 9.48 x 13.75 x 0.61″ (240.7 x 349.3 x 15.5 mm)
  • Weight: 4.02 pounds (1.83 kg)

Online Resources

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