Birchtree
By Matt Birchler
I've been writing here since 2010! Back when personal blogs were all the rage. Kids, ask your parents.

The Mac is Exciting Again

On Thanksgiving 2018 I bought the 12.9” iPad Pro and sold my MacBook Pro to pay for it. I was all in on the iPad because I loved it and in retrospect, because it was where all the excitement was in new Apple computers.

The iPad Pro was where Apple was flexing its design prowess in a way we just weren’t seeing in their MacBooks of the time. It was also where they were showing off when it came to performance with the A Series of chips. Jokes around “so much hardware and so little to do with it” aside, it was incredible stuff. Even fast forwarding to early this year when the M1 iPad Pros came out, and that XDR display in the 12.9” model just blew the doors off of what you could get in a Mac.

The Beginning of the Turn

In late 2020 Apple released the first batch of Macs powered by their own silicon; the now-legendary M1. Major highlights of these devices were:

  • Super fast performance with very little heat
  • Instant wake
  • Ability to run iPhone and iPad apps
  • Massive battery life

Those of course were all things that us iPad users just consider table stakes at this point, but they made the Mac a much better experience, even in the same old hardware Apple used for the MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, and Mac mini. These devices were faster and had some software improvements, but they were very clearly lower effort updates. More was to come.

A Colorful Interlude

Early 2021 saw the release of the new iMacs, built from the ground up for M1, and they were impossibly thin devices that pushed the iMac forward a ton. The iMac has always been a design-centric device, and this new look was impossible with Intel chips, and while it was a fantastic update, it was still just an interlude before the big reveal.

The Big Reveal

Which brings us to last week and the unveiling of the new MacBook Pros, and oh boy, these are some fucking Macs. Take everything you love about the M1 Macs we’ve already seen, now add way more power, a 120Hz ProMotion XDR display, and a couple ports for good measure.

What I like about these devices is that they are unapologetically Mac laptops. Yes, the display tech looks a lot like a top-of-the-line iPad, but in a way I don’t think I’ve seen in years, these don’t look like computer that are just getting more and more iPad-like. You may prefer something like an iPad, maybe you even want to run macOS on your current iPad, and that’s totally valid, but these machines are not filling those needs, nor are they trying to. You want a Mac laptop with a ton of power, killer battery life, and a gorgeous display? These are the devices for you.

I have no need for one of these devices in my life, but I really want one anyway. It’s great to feel that way about a Mac again.

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Hey there, I'm Matt!

I'm a UI/UX designer at NMI and I make videos over on A Better Computer, which I think you'll love.

Hey there, I'm Matt!

I'm a UI/UX designer at NMI and I make videos over on A Better Computer, which I think you'll love. You can also check out my side projects, Quick Reviews and Quick BIN Lookup.