The new 14-inch MacBook Pro 2021, along with its larger sibling, was finally revealed at the Apple event on October 18. Both devices offer many upgrades, including improved displays and more ports. The new M1 Pro chips and M1 Max chips promise exceptional power.
We have a comparison of the two models in our MacBook Pro14-inch and MacBook Pro16-inch faceoff. The 14-inch model, however, is more exciting since it is Apple’s very first ever 14′′ MacBook Pro.
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After months and months of rumors, we were finally able to confirm that most of what we believed was true. This new 14-inch MacBook Pro has the same amazing mini-LED screen as the iPad Pro 2020 (12.9-inch) and can be configured with two additional powerful variants of Apple’s M1 Chip: the M1 Pro (or M1 Max) two strong pieces of Apple silicon.
We already gave high praise to the 13-inch MacBook Pro, but this 14-inch MacBook Pro appears even better. It is certain to take the top spot on our best notebook list if it performs as Apple promised.
MacBook Pro 14″ 2021 cheat sheet: What’s new
All-new, 100% recycled aluminum enclosure featuring improved cooling
Touch Bar replaced by physical function keys
MagSafe charging has been restored, although you can still charge via Thunderbolt ports
Screen bezels are now over 20% thinner and have a 60% thinner top border. This is not counting the cutout notch, which houses the new 1080p FaceTime cam.
14.2-inch Liquid Retina XDR (3224 x 1984 pixels), mini-LED screen with ProMotion adaptive rate up to 120 Hz.
New 6 speaker sound system with 4 tweeters and 2 speakers, supports spatial audio
New M1Pro/M1Max chips deliver 2x the CPU performance of older Core i9 16-inch PROs
Apple promises 17 hours of battery life during video playback
The price of the 14-inch MacBook Pro-2021 starts at $1,999. Pre-orders can be made today (in silver and space gray) to ensure availability next week.
MacBook Pro 14-inch 2021: Specs
|14-inch MacBook Pro 2021||16-inch MacBook Pro 2021|
|Screen||14.2-inch Liquid Retina XDR display (3024×1964 pixels, 254ppi)||16.2-inch Liquid Retina XDR display (3456×2244 pixels, 254ppi)|
|Processor||M1 Pro (8-core CPU, 14-core GPU or 10-core CPU, 16-core GPU), with optional M1 Max with up to 10-core CPU and 32-core GPU||M1 Pro (10-core CPU, 16-core GPU) | M1 Max (10-core CPU, 32-core GPU)|
|Battery life (claimed)||Up to 11 hours of web surfing over Wi-Fi||Up to 14 hours of web surfing over Wi-Fi|
|Storage||512GB to 8TB||512GB to 8TB|
|Memory||16GB to 64GB||16GB to 64GB|
|Ports||Thunderbolt 4 (x3), HDMI, MagSafe 3, headphone jack, SD memory card slot||Thunderbolt 4 (x3), HDMI, MagSafe 3, headphone jack, SD memory card slot|
|Webcam||1080p FaceTime HD camera||1080p FaceTime HD camera|
|Wi-Fi||802.11ax Wi-Fi 6||802.11ax Wi-Fi 6|
|Bluetooth||Bluetooth 5.0||Bluetooth 5.0|
|Dimensions||12.3 x 8.7 x 0.6 inches||14 x 9.8 x 0.7 inches|
|Weight||3.5 pounds||4.7 pounds (M1 Pro) | 4.8 pounds (M1 Max)|
MacBook Pro 14 inch 2021: Prices and release dates
The 14-inch MacBook Pro 2021 can be ordered now at Apple’s website, starting at $1999 It will start shipping on October 25th in Silver or Space Grey.
The entry-level model is priced at $1,999. It includes an M1 Pro CPU with an 8 core CPU, a GPU with a 14-core GPU, and 16 GBs of unified memory.
For $2,499, upgrade to an M1 Pro model. This upgraded model comes with a 10-core processor, a 16GB-core GPU, and 16GB of unified memory.
The 14-inch MacBook Pro can be upgraded to include an M1 Max chip that has a 10-core GPU, 32-core GPU, and 64 GB of unified memory. It also includes 8 TB of storage. The full-featured model will cost you $5,899.
MacBook Pro 14-inch 2021: Design
The new 14-inch MacBook Pro is built with a 100% recycled aluminum frame that delivers better airflow. It measures 12.31 inches by 8.71 inches by 0.61 inches thin and weighs only 3.5 pounds. This is quite light considering the heavyweight it is.
Apple claims that the surrounding bezels of the 14-inch display have a 20% reduction in thickness along the sides, and a 60% reduction along the top when compared to the previous generation MacBook Pros. Apple has however left a small hole in the top bezel, where the webcam sits. This is a new 1080p FaceTime cam with image processing power from Apple silicon.
As Apple has removed the Touch Bar entirely on its latest MacBook Pros, you will find a standard row with physical function keys.
On the left side, you’ll see a MagSafe3 charging port. This is the return MagSafe charging to MacBook Pro models. Apple claims the new MagSafe 3 charging port can be fast-charged and can charge 50% of your battery in as little as 30 minutes.
MacBook Pro 14-inch 2021: Display
Apple has integrated one of its Liquid Retina XDR displays within the 14-inch MacBook Pro-2021. This mini-LED display technology is identical to the one we saw in the 12.9″ iPad Pro 2021. Now it’s on a MacBook.
It is a mini-LED monitor that measures 14.2 inches in size. The resolution is 3024 x 344, and it has 254 pixels per square inch. It also includes Apple’s ProMotion adaptive LCD tech which allows it up to 120Hz refresh rates. Apple claims the display of the 14-inch MacBook Pro can achieve 1,600 nits peak brightness and 1,000 nits sustain brightness, similar to the iPad Pro 2021.
Early unboxing of MacBook Pro 14 shows how much thinner the bezels are than those on the MacBook Pro 13
MacBook Pro 14-inch 2021: Ports
Apple has integrated a number of ports into its 14-inch Pro, much like its larger sibling. It has 3 Thunderbolt 4/USB4 ports that also support DisplayPort, 1 HDMI port, and an SDXC slot.
Apple has also reintroduced MagSafe charging and a MagSafe 3 charging connector on the left. Although it is a welcome return of form, the Pro 14-inch can still be charged via its Thunderbolt ports.
MacBook Pro 14-inch 2021: Performance
Apple expected to release the new MacBook Pro together with a new piece of Apple silicon. However, they only revealed one: the M1 Pro or the M1 Max.
The M1 Pro replaces Apple’s powerful M1 chip. It features more CPU cores, GPU cores, and a superior Media Engine. Additionally, it has greater memory bandwidth and more CPU cores than the M1 chip. Apple’s M1 Max, 16-inch Macbook Pros that are equipped with M1 Max is more powerful than its predecessor.
The M1 Pro’s specs include a 10-core CPU (8 efficiency cores, 2 performance cores) and a 16core GPU. The M1 Max (which will cost extra for your new 14″ MacBook Pro 2021) has the same 10-core CPU. However, it has a 32 -core GPU and doubles the memory bandwidth. It also features 2 video encoders and 2 proRes encode/decode machines, which should make the device a true beast in the video editing room.
For more information, we have a detailed comparison between the two chips inside our Apple M1 Pro Face-off and M1 Max Face-Off.
MacBook Pro 14-inch 2021: Webcam
At the top of the 14-inch MacBook, Pro screen is a new 1080p FaceTime cam. It has the same Apple silicon-powered advanced image processing as a 1080p camera embedded in the Apple iMac (2021) (24-inch), so it should deliver crisp, vibrant images.
It may also be visible because Apple has reduced the top edge of its webcam housing. This leaves a small notch that obscures some screen areas. The notch gives the MacBook Pro 2021 a more iPhone look, but it won’t cause any significant usability problems.
MacBook Pro 14 inch 2021: Battery lifetime
The new MacBook Pro 14″ 2021 claims it can run for 17 hours on a single battery while streaming video. That is quite bold. Apple has been more transparent than other laptop manufacturers regarding battery life claims. You’ll likely get well over 10hrs of use from this laptop when it is new.
Apple claims it can fast charge your device up to 50% in under 30 minutes. The Pro’s entry-level 14-inch model comes standard with a USB-C power adapter of 67W. However, you can buy a 96W adapter at $20 more. Apple will default give the more powerful 96W charger to MacBook Pros that are equipped with an M1 Pro chip. This chip must have at least a 10-core CPU or 14-core GPU.
MacBook Pro 14-inch 2021: Outlook
Apple’s first 14-inch MacBook Pro is also looking like it could be one the most powerful 14-inch laptops on the market. This MacBook Pro is likely to be one of the brightest and most visually appealing MacBooks we have ever seen.
We are very excited about the M1 Pro/M1 Max chip and mini-LED display, but don’t overlook the many small but appreciated changes Apple has made in the design to make these MacBooks easier to use. Touch Bars are no more. Instead, you will find more useful (albeit more standardized) functions keys. There are now more ports to make it easier for media professionals and users to transfer files and other assets between their devices. The battery life is impressive. It lasts for 17 hours. Apple is more realistic than most about battery life.
But we’ll still need to test these new MacBook Pros before we can make Apple’s claim and certify them as the best MacBooks. Stay tuned!
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