Apple MacBook 12-inch: Unboxing & Review

by birtanpublished on April 1, 2021

What's up guys Mike here the Detroit Borg with a long-awaited MacBook which returns with a razor thin all-metal design stunning Retina display all new keyboard and force touch trackpad along with a fanless system which makes the MacBook completely silent in the first fanless MacBook the new MacBook also launches with a single USB type-c connector combining charging data display output and more which eliminates all other i/o except for a headphone jack it's also available in multiple colors from classic silver to Space Gray or gold and we're going to take a look at all three colors in this video

Pricing starts off at $12.99 for the base configuration which gets you the core M Intel processor collected 1.1 gigahertz they also get you eight gigs of ram 8 gigs of ram is standard across the board no matter what configuration you again of course you can upgrade that yourself we also have a standard 256 gig SSD which is a step up from the 128 gig SSD which is standard in the 13-inch MacBook Pro Retina and the MacBook Airs we also get another upgraded configuration starting at $15.99 they get you a 1.2 gigahertz dual-core processor 8 gigs of RAM and a 512 gig

SSD so doubles the SSD space and for 1749 you can bump up the processor to 1.3 gigahertz alright first up let's get to the silver version here we have to cut our plastic on the back so let's go ahead and get a razor out next up let's lift the lid here inside is our silver macbook first thing right away you see is that we no longer have a backlit white Apple logo we have this polished aluminum so no more lighted Apple logo on the back so that's kind of a distinctive change here boys soon as you pick it up right away you can see that it is all metal you can

See the metal hinge on the back really thin lightweight feels really nice feels a lot like a 11 inch MacBook Air when you handling it but it's much thinner alright I can see we have some plastic covering in here incidentally this plastic is actually kind of this looks more like wax paper so more of a frosted plastic that's a detail important to you so let's go ahead and slide it out there we go very sharp now if like all other MacBooks you lift the lip we should see a piece of paper and there we go now the piece of paper here protecting the

Display from the keyboard or vice versa and there you go you can see that keyboard right away it goes edge to edge really large keys and we have that new keyboard technology and of course we're going to explore that we also have a very large trackpad glass trackpad with force touch next up is the gold MacBook and this is again I'll stock configuration here so let's go and slice into the packaging once again the packaging reveals the coloring of the MacBook on the outside come fill this off and lift the lid there you go that is a lot of gold

Wow that is sharp though very nice so it's going to pull up the tab so if you like your gold iPad or your gold iPhone this is going to be a nice companion device for you so let me go and peel off the plastic once again slide it right out that's really sharp it's got a nice subtle gold coating and of course you have that polished Apple logo which is a separate component here so just like on the iPad looks a lot like the back of an iPad but again if we lift the lid here we'll see a piece of paper again protecting the glass from the keyboard so as you can see we have our black

Keyboard our color matched trackpad so this kind of a gold and black combination as opposed to the white and gold you see on iOS devices so it's a little different here but I think it looks really sharp next up is the configuration I've been waiting for which is Space Gray and this is the step up configuration which gets us a 1.2 gigahertz processor and 512 gigs of stores of course this will give me a chance to compare them to the stock or base configuration so let's go ahead and slice into our packaging here lift the lid here we have our space grey and it's

Nice plastic wrapper let's go and peel and it looks really really sharp wow that is nice that is really nice perfect really like that look again polished Apple logo it's a separate component tinted to the color of space great just like on the iPad let's go ahead and lift the lid here to find the piece of paper protecting the keyboard from the glass looks like it's stuck to the glass here come on there we go very nice combination the black keyboard come on get off the black keyboard color match trackpad the black glass display I think it looks perfect in space grape of

Course that's why they give you options so if you like a different color you can go for it now before I get to the accessories let's do our first boot here just going to tap the power key in the upper right next up are all the accessories and they have also been completely redesigned in there and unlike anything you've seen before on a macbook so we have our new USBC cable here this is USB c2 USB C so let's go and pop this out so again a really long cable not sure how long this is let's go and stretch that out but anyway you can see two USB C ports one for connecting

To the computer the other for connecting to the power adapter which you'll find under our literature packet so of course designed by Apple in California let's go and pop this open so inside we have our Quick Start Guide very small Quick Start Guide it shows you some OS 10 features of course all the ports from facing camera and that sort of thing we'll explore all that we have our macbook info and then of course we have our Apple stickers that's the one thing that hasn't really changed here ok and here we have our new power adapter so it's going to pull this out here this is a 29

Watt USB C power adapter so the cable is not permanently attached here you can remove it you can see that really tiny USB C port on the back let's go ahead and connect that up the great thing about USB C again is that it is reversible so you can plug it in in either direction very nice so of course we also have our folding prongs and you can pop this off to swap out the plug so if you are traveling and need to use a different plug you can snap that on or add an extension cable which is not included on this MacBook now taking a closer look at the design of the new

MacBook it's kind of a combination of a MacBook Air and a MacBook Pro with Retina display so we have this wedge shape to the macbook which gives you this nice angle to the keyboard which feels very comfortable but we also have the finishing details of the MacBook Pro with this anti-glare edge to edge glass panel which I think looks a lot better than the chunkier metal surround on the displays of the MacBook err now in terms of our display this is 12 inches 16 by 10 aspect ratio with a resolution of 23:04 by 1440 good for 226 pixels per inch so nice high quality

Display very similar to that on the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display now like the MacBook Pro with Retina display we have good off access viewing angles certainly much better than the MacBook Air as you can see there's a lot of distortion here when you change the angle of the display on the MacBook Air because that is not an IPS panel we also have an anti-reflective coating very much similar to the MacBook Pro display so it's a bit better than that on the MacBook Air now with a Retina display just like the 13-inch MacBook Pro we have 226 PPI so everything looks really

Sharp and clear especially compared to the MacBook Air so if you look at the 11 inch MacBook Air that has a pixel density of 135 and it becomes very noticeable right away especially when you compare them side-by-side 13 inches even lower at 127 PPI so this is a really sharp display and certainly looks a lot better thanks to better off X's few angles and anti glare properties now along the right side you'll find your headphone jack which is a combination input jack for a microphone we also have our dual microphones on the right side now along the left side you'll find your

Single USB type-c connector which is used for everything from charging to data input or output to display output and more so basically everything passes through this single USB port which means you will likely need adapters and Apple doesn't include them with your macbook purchase so you will have to purchase them separately so keep those costs in mind when purchasing them but they have three accessories a USB C 2 USB adapter this is what you'll need for standard USB cables such as the lightning cable for your iPhone we also have a USB C 2

Digital AV multi port adapter this allows you to connect power while also outputting HDMI and gives you another standard USB type a port we also have a USB C vga multi port adapter so if you need a VGA output you have that in addition to charging and standard USB port now unlike a MagSafe connector the connection here with USB C is pretty strong so it's pretty easy to yank this off a table if somebody trips over the cord so keep that in mind also worth pointing out is when you connect your charging cable to the MacBook you actually get a tone indicating that it's

Charging which is very similar to the iPhone and the iPad this is not you hear on other MacBooks now us PC can handle data transfer speeds up to 10 gigs 4k video at 60 Hertz as well as Universal charging so basically you can connect an external battery to recharge your macbook just like you would for a phone or a tablet now the top of the display will find a front-facing camera which is only 480p that's probably due to the ultra-thin design which is a huge disappointment especially for a lot of people but we will test out this camera to see how it looks we also have an LED

Indicator which lets us know when the camera is active now have an ambient light sensor which adapts the brightness of the keyboard and the display we also have this all new metal hinge which is integrated into the top lid of a computer so no plastic here because they've been able to integrate the antenna into the middle chassis which was part of the reason they have the plastic hinge before we also have no real ventilation hidden behind the hinge like you see with other mac books so everything is basically sealed up here on the front edge just like every other

Macbook we have a little thumbnail port for lifting up the lid of the display and the hinge is perfectly weighted so you can lift up the display without lifting up the very lightweight computer so again nice precise mechanism which feels really smooth on the bottom just like other mac books we have a single panel held on with penta lobular screws this is not meant to be removed by the user of course nothing is upgradeable in this computer basically everything is soldered or glued to the computer now take a look at our keyboard and trackpad this is where a lot of innovation and

Changes have happened in order to enable this ultra-thin design so one of them is this all-new keyboard which features a double switch a stainless steel dome switch plus a butterfly mechanism the idea here is that because the keys are so shallow you need larger keys to strike so you don't miss them because you can't feel them as well as you could with previous Mac books so that means no matter where you strike these keys they feel nice and even as opposed to other larger keys which kind of wobble when you hit them now I can type really fast on this

Keyboard because the size of the keys are pretty forgiving and that mechanism makes the keys feel really even no matter how you strike them so IQ really liked this keyboard but they are pretty shallow keys you can't feel the keys as well as you can with other Mac books and when you strike the keys they bottom out pretty short so they feel a little more stiff a little more rigid and sometimes you don't quite hit the keys right uh so you'll miss the keys of I found myself doing that a few times here but otherwise actually really like this keyword because for whatever reason

It's so fast possibly because there's less mechanical action here to delay your typing speed now the keyboard layout is a little different from other MacBooks the Escape key is larger we also have larger directional keys and you can see some of the iconography on the keys at the top the function keys have been changed or updated a little bit the other big story here is that each key has an individual LED light so the lighting looks a little crisper a little sharper maybe a little brighter and there's less leaking around the keys so if you compare this to the MacBook

Pro with Retina display you can see there's a lot of light leaking around the edges and the lighting on the keys are a lot softer with the MacBook it looks a lot more precise a lot clearer although there is still some leaking around the keys but otherwise it looks definitely a lot better the new MacBook also integrates the new force touch trackpad we've already seen with the 2015 MacBook Pro now the trackpad on the MacBook is relatively large compared to other Mac books which takes up a significant portion of the palm wrists but never seems to get in

The way now the force touch trackpad eliminates the physical click of a traditional trackpad and instead replicates the click with a vibration motor they call this the taptic engine the effect is completely indistinguishable from a physical click it's really kind of amazing it creates the sensation that the trackpad is physically moving even though it's completely stationary now because the trackpad is stationary that means you can press anywhere on the surface and receive the same feedback this is unlike a traditional trackpad which is hinged

Toward the top so it's stiffer when you try to press at the top now the new trackpad also integrates force sensors which allows you to detect different levels of force which adds a new dimension to the interface in OS 10 so for example we have a new gesture in OS 10 called force clicking meaning if you press harder on the trackpad you'll get a secondary click so for example if you force click on the thumbnail a preview of the document or video will pop out first clicking on a word in the document will bring up a definition you can also force click on media controls to speed

Up scrubbing and you'll actually receive some haptic feedback as you press harder on the trackpad so it feels like you're clicking through the various speeds and it also slows down as you release pressure so it feels really mechanical even though it's completely digital one of my favorite uses right now allows you to force click on the link on the web page in Safari so you can pop out separate window to preview that page you can navigate through it read it that sort of thing without having to open up a separate tab or window now there are countless ways you can use force touch

And I'm sure more will be added in time but I'm going to link a video from Dom at MEC mixing which did a really good job exploring some of the other uses of force touching so please check the description below for that link now toward the top at the thickest point of the computer you'll find your front-facing speakers so again we have stereo speakers this is a different arrangement from other mac books which place the speaker either behind the keyboard or at the edges like in the MacBook Pro 13 inch model now these speakers sound amazing they're loud

Extremely clear with good stereo range definitely one of the best sounding speakers I've ever heard on the MacBook and that's really surprising especially considering the small size of this computer so let's go and take a listen to these speakers versus the other macbook speakers we've designed the force sensing multi-touch trackpad this adds a new dimension of interaction touch sensors make the entire glass surface active force sensors measure a wide range of pressure from the lightest tap to the deepest press the pressure you apply exhibits an electromagnet that

Responds with total feedback so now instead of just seeing what's happening on the screen you feed it to now to my ears the MacBook sounds a lot clearer a lot louder because the speakers are facing directly toward the user so you hear every single detail in your audio now if you compare that to the others they're more muffled sounding although the bass sounds a little deeper but generally speaking I definitely prefer the speakers on the new MacBook so what does a 480p camera look like well that's what I'm recording with

Right now now if you have plenty of light like I have right now I have two light boxes shining on me right now so really good frame rates pretty good detail and pretty good exposure the only problem I've run into is if you're using this camera in low-light conditions it does a pretty job sort of compensating for that and it gets really grainy and it also reduces framerate but otherwise it's actually not as bad as I was expecting but of course you're gonna have to tell me what you think so what I'm going to do next is go to a FaceTime HD camera on the MacBook Pro 13-inch to

See how that looks so this is the FaceTime HD camera on the 13-inch MacBook Pros honestly much better results here but generally speaking the exposure and color are about the same just get a lot more resolution in detail now in terms of performance I'm going to run some benchmarks again the idea of the system performance for both the MacBook the upgraded MacBook and the MacBook Air as well as the MacBook Pro not just so you know the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro I'm looking at here are the base configuration I previously reviewed them these are the most current models

So if you want to know the specs of these I will post them in the description below but let's get to our Geekbench scores so in terms of Geekbench the standard macbook scored 24 53 on the single core score and 4560 one on the multi-core score now compared to the upgraded model we do see modest gains here 25 39 on the single core and 50 92 on the multi-core score so the multi-core score sees a bigger gain here almost 500 points now compared to the 11 inch and 13-inch MacBook Air standard configuration those scored 28 60 on the single core and 57 35 on the multi-core

So that's a lot more power in those MacBook Airs of course they're running full core i5 processors we also have our new 2015 MacBook Pro with Retina display which again on the geek bench score scored significantly higher and 3283 on the single core and almost 7000 on the multi-core score so keep in mind the MacBook Pro is priced like the MacBook so that's a lot of perform for the same 1299 now in terms of graphics performance remember both computers have the same integrated Intel HD graphics 5300 GPU so no matter what configuration MacBook you get you get

The same GPU so in this case the Cinebench scores reveal about the same performance 19 frames per second about 19 frames per second for both configurations and the little north of 200 on the cpu score so 208 on the upgraded model and 201 on the base configuration so very minor differences here now both MacBook Airs see 25 frames per second and 250 on the CPU score so pretty significant gain over the MacBook and the 13-inch MacBook Pro increases that score even further with a 6100 GPU so that gets us a twenty six point eight four frames per second

Result and a 282 score on the CPU test now in terms of our disk speeds both MacBooks perform almost the same although the read speed seems to be higher on the larger 512 gig SSD so the write speed is at about 460 Meg's per second while the read speed on the standard MacBook is around 780 versus 850 on the upgraded model now the read and write speed of the 11 inch MacBook Air is about the same as the MacBook but the 13-inch MacBook Air has a faster SSD so that one sees a write speed of 650 and a read speed of 1400 which almost doubles the performance of the standard

MacBook now the MacBook proceeds about the same read and write speed of the 13-inch MacBook Air but if you get the larger 256 or 512 gig you will see faster speeds now I'm actually really impressed by the performance of this processor especially when it consumes such little power runs about 5 watts is completely fanless and I know a lot of people are concerned about overheating with this MacBook because the design is completely fanless I was able to do some stress testing here so I did some 4k exporting through Final Cut Pro and I was able to heat up the back of the

Computer to about 112 degrees at maximum so that's not too bad you certainly can get computers pretty hot even if they have fans running in them and performance was still pretty stable at those high temperatures now one of the more extreme real-world tests we can throw at the MacBook is to edit and export 4k video now this is not its intended purpose here but it actually can be done so with Final Cut Pro I have a three minute and 20 second project here and while editing it I can see that there is some frame dropping here some skipping but otherwise performance

Is certainly much better than I expected and it can be done at least with smaller projects like this so the next text I want to do is run a export test to see how long it takes for each macbook to export the same project so the base macbook completed the export in about eleven minutes while the upgraded model did it in 10 minutes so one minute shaved off that's a small gain here but it does make a difference now compare this to the MacBook Pro 13-inch the same project exports in about eight minutes so not a significant gain here considering just how much more

Processing power the MacBook Pro has now the standard MacBook can play back the 4k video just fine of course it's scaled to the resolution of the display but otherwise playback is excellent in terms of dimensions the MacBook is by far apple's smallest lightest and thinnest macbook on the market today even besting the MacBook Airs by a significant margin in fact the MacBook is only 2.0 three pounds that's almost a pound lighter than the 11.6 inch MacBook Air which has a smaller display now compared to the 11 inch MacBook Air you can see just how much

Thinner the new MacBook is so the MacBook Air is at about 0.6 to 8 inches versus 0.5 to inches at its maximum thickness for the MacBook in terms of with the 11 inch MacBook Air is 11.8 inches while the MacBook is only 11 point all 4 inches now in terms of depth the 11 inch MacBook Air does have an edge over the MacBook at seven point five six inches versus seven point seven four inches now for such a thin and light laptop we have a pretty large battery thirty nine point seven watt hours that's bigger than the 31 hour battery in the 11 inch MacBook Air

Certainly smaller than the 54 one hour or the seventy four point nine watt hour battery in the 13-inch MacBook Pro terms of performance that means about nine hours on the MacBook which is the same as the 11 inch MacBook Air now as good that is the twelve hours in the 13-inch MacBook Air or the ten hours in the 13-inch MacBook Pro so in conclusion the MacBook is a stunning piece of design and technology they basically redesigned everything and made some major innovations but ultimately the MacBook is kind of hard to intellectually just define this is really an emotional

Purchase because at $12.99 you can get the excellent 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display which gives you better battery life gives you a Retina display Allah more performance and a lot more i/o including an SD card slot Thunderbolt 2 ports and more but the MacBook is undeniably attractive with a beautiful design that's available in multiple colors and it's a very capable computer so for day-to-day operation this is an excellent computer it's great for web browsing for posting to social media looking at photographs and even some

Light video editing it's certainly not a computer you want to purchase for gaming well ultimately I think this computer is a lot more capable than people think based on the specs alone but it certainly isn't going to meet the needs of everybody so this remains a tough decision to make now in the end I think this is the perfect macbook for me it's the perfect size a great display a great keyboard and trackpad it's nice thin lightweight and easy to carry around and handle in your lap and that's generally what I use it for I use it for responding to email writing

Documents browsing the web watching video stuff like that if I want to do any heavy-duty production or use any heavy-duty apps like Final Cut Pro or a photo editor I'll do that on my main machine and that's where I think it becomes a difficult decision if this is your main machine I would probably steer you toward the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina but if this is a secondary ultra portable I think this is a great computer for just about everybody so that's going to do for me in this video hope you guys enjoyed it thanks for watching and I'll see you again in the

Next one

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