Don’t buy the 16 inch MacBook Pro unless you have to | Buying advice | Mark Ellis Reviews



Since publishing my 16” MacBook Pro review, I’ve received lots of questions about it’s suitability as a general business computer. Is it too big, too powerful, or just too much? It may not be, but there are a few things to consider… and there might even be an alternative you haven’t considered!

CHAPTERS
00:00 – Intro
01:13 – Too much power?
02:05 – Movers and shakers
03:19 – Screen size
04:37 – An alternative…
05:58 – Wrapping up

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33 comments

  1. Mark Ellis Reviews

    I'm curious… have you bought a 16-inch MacBook Pro for 'normal' computing duties only? If so, what was your main reasons for opting for the big one?

  2. I currently use a 17.3” MSI laptop. It’s huge and I love the large screen size. I do video editing, web design, paid advertising like google AdWords and stuff like that. I also have it hooked up to an ultra wide monitor on my desk. But away from the desk I love the large monitor size.

    I’m considering swapping over to the 16” MacBook Pro. I am actually concerned the screen will be too small compared to what I’m used to.

    Are there any people who have made a similar switch over?

  3. M1 pro 16" 1 Tb 32G here, being used, mainly, as a business machine. Haven't used it in full stream of consciousness mode yet, but with a windows 11 VM running on 8G and a screed of stuff open, as I normally work, htop is telling me I'm using 20G of RAM without any swapping. Which is pretty good and the sort of place I want to be starting off with on a new Mac Book. Unless you change you machine every couple of years, and are like me looking for longevity, well that only comes with ample system headroom from the get go. My 6 previous Mac Books averaged 4 years a piece, which is not bad as I always plan on getting 5 years out of one. And but for the 2014 graphics card unpleasantness and pitching too low, went 250G base model, during the solid state apple imposed capacity back step, I'd have had 5 years from all of them. Size? Its the same size as the 15" it replaced all be it thicker, yet a good bit thinner than some of its predecessors 🙃

  4. It’s never too big~ always go for the biggest you can afford; you won’t regret it later.

  5. More than enough power for what you need, now. Will future apps be more CPU and RAM hungry?

  6. I find this talk about the size of the 16 inch MacBook Pro somewhat strange. I've been using a 17 inch MacBook Pro for well over a decade, and I'm finally about to get a new 16 inch. (I never upgraded because Apple just kept making things worse and worse—getting rid of large screens, getting rid of most of the ports, putting in an bad keyboard, and so on.) The 17 inch was a about 1.5 inches wider, a third of an inch thicker, and 1.8 pounds heavier than the new MacBook Pro M1 Max 16 inch. And it's never been any trouble at all—not when carrying it around in a backpack, not in airplanes, not on a desk nor in my lap. And I'm in my fifties. Meanwhile, my 4'11" tall wife uses a 17" Windows laptop, and even though she's small, she has never found it the slightest trouble, either. I mean, come on, seriously? The MacBook Pro 16" is a bit more than a foot wide, and well under 5 pounds. Let's not act like you're lugging around a refrigerator or a piano. Even a child can easily handle the size and weight. I know this, because I've let my grandkids and my goddaughter use my 17 inch.

  7. Hey 👋
    I’m from India 🇮🇳 . From long time your loyal subscriber.
    I am a masters of computers science student
    You know probably what type work we doing in masters degree
    And my work doing reactjs , nodejs, sone android projects , and I want to learn iOS development, and also I have a small YouTube channel editing some videos , should I go for MacBook 14 inch base model or 16 inch base model.
    ( I don’t have external monitor )
    Please help me to choose a good MacBook 💻.
    Also I want to use it for 3-4 years should I go for binned version of 14 inch or base model 16 inch ?

  8. Funny thing is that my 2012 mbp 15 that I'm upgrading from is heavier and larger than the new mbp 16 m1.

  9. Terrible headline.

  10. I have the base 16 inch M1 Pro, that I got on a discount through an Apple friend. It was an expensive purchase, but the fantastic battery, no overheating, copious power, made it worth it for me. It’s big enough that I don’t need a monitor. I can do all my productivity tasks on it. Its not for everyone though…

  11. Michael Wagenman

    I bought the base 16 inch MBP for the combined portability and video editing power. But my biggest question for you, Mark, now that I've had it for about 5 months, is what would be a great external display to connect it to. I tried an LG 27inch 4K display but I hate that the MBP only outputs 60Hz. Any suggestions? Maybe I just need to adapt to the display size and better window management.

  12. Of course 16" is amazing for real-estate… but I opted for the 14". I value portability and I'm docked with a large monitor 75% of the time. Always trade-offs with these things… though tbf the 14" is still glorious. I think it's a big improvement over the 13" as that extra inch makes things feel a lot less "cramped".
    M1 Air is absolutely fine for most things unless you really need graphics power or lots of ram. The CPU on the M1 Air is still outstanding.

  13. My 16 inch will be my main workstation for a year of travel so I want a big screen and the bigger touchpad. I don't mind that it is heavier because as soon as I sit somewhere to start working I will be thankful for carrying that extra screen size 🙂

  14. I had the M1 Air and the M1 13 Pro but have to say, if you are working on the go, the brightness was the deciding factor to move to the 13, just to keep that in mind.

  15. As a coder I'm happy with the Macbook Pro 16 inch. M1 Air was a good introduction to Macbooks for me, but it was not enough for my needs. The MBP suits me perfectly, though the light weight/portability of the Air. I think if you spend most of your time coding, and not necessarily on the go, MBP makes more sense.

  16. I made a Dell Latitude E6420 with a core i7 last me 11 years, recently upgraded to the 2020 M1 MacBook Air and wow.. this one (base) is even overkill. Apple is really doing great with this whole lineup. You can't go wrong but he's right.. most of us could get away with the Air.

  17. Did all the YouTubers secretly got together and banned the M1 13inch MBP? Does everyone hate the Touch Bar that much? Jesus Christ

  18. nice advice, i bough 14" macbook pro m1 base model … i don't do much video editing … I work a lot with excel spreadsheet … bigger screen is better … so in my office I use external monitor 27"

  19. When you come from the PC world the macbook 16inch is light weight. Compared to my 15.6 inch windows laptop the macbook weighs practically nothing.

  20. I still have my 2011 17 Core i7 2.5ghz with the matte display. It cost me $4,895 new in 2011 😭

  21. I am really tempted by the 13” MacBook Pro because I like the touchbar. I think Apple could easily have kept the touchbar AND had hardware function keys also. I really hope they keep it around at maybe a $200-300 premium over the air. Keep the same base M1 chip but give it the new screen, keep the touchbar, and maybe give it at least a couple ‘pro’ connections like SD card slot.

    It’s really frustrating you have to jump all the way to the $2500 price point from $1200 with the current lineup

  22. I genuinely fail to see how the 13" macbook air can be offered up as an alternative to someone looking for a 16" laptop. If they'd wanted a smaller screen size they'd have been looking at the 14" macbook pro to begin with, wouldn't they?

  23. I bought the base model 16” M1Pro with 512gb as my main office job work laptop and absolutely love it .. Still massive over kill for what I use it for but it manages my daily work load without any stutters so actually helps my work out put. Yes I’m not video or music editing but the additional power really is welcome

  24. its amazing for work, and learning.

    i use lots of excel at work, and was enrolled in a software engineering bootcamp.

    the large screen is perfect for navigating multiple windows, and for coding.

    no more excel for me though. going to be an SE full time 😀

  25. For editing documents, I’d definitely go for the 16” – the extra screen size especially vertically makes a big difference: so much easier to type or edit a document like an article when you can see more of it. The 14” is too tight. I have both of them, and while I often grab the 14” if heading to a coffee shop and fiddling, for serious writing I’d always use the 16”. I also use both of them for video editing, and the 16” is really needed for that unless you’re using an external monitor. I do love the 14” for many purposes, and super happy to have both, but not for typing documents or video editing.

  26. I also bought the macbook pro 16 recently and onky use it for studying and browsing the web atm 😂 but I'm gonna use it more for other more demanding things down the line. And yes it's a bit heavier but there is so many things that is way better on the 16 inch vs the 14 inch so for its a non brainer. Expensive yes worth it he'll yes.
    Also owned the air before and yes it's fine and works flawless but the screen is way to small for my taste. It the new air would come in that newer formfactor with 15inch and 120hz pro motion i would consider to change. Until then I'll stay on my macbook pro 16 inch.

  27. rule 1 buy for what you are using itt for, and put the rest in SPY stock for the next 4 years …`
    bigger is more fun, 16'' is the best …. but if you only use it for email and some fb a basic m1 air will do just fine …you dont even need a 14
    if you do use it for design work or other profesional uses and plan to use it for 4y plus buy a 16 inch….a 14 inch is good for if you have a full set of deskscreen and a docking station…
    the only thing i like from the M1 air and up is battery life time, and nooo heat or fan noise …. i have had them all -and its amazing
    exept if your an OG mac user and want a dual boot mac with windows or linux ….it sucks you can go rent a server online and depend on wifi to connect to it …
    ohh and spend an extra on ssd space …running around with a usb dongle hanging out of your laptop or forgetting it at home or work sucks …
    or get an synology nas and put data in your own cloud…..that costs the same and you have more space for a longggg time .

  28. I got 16inch M1pro 32GB 1TB, and I think this is the best customize !

  29. Got a question for you Mac book users i will be getting one of the models not sure which still, but how warm will a Mac book get if its plugged in and being used in medium use not heavy tasks like Video editing for 6-8 hours a day 7 days a week

  30. Esmond Msimango

    Buy a 16inch Macbook Pro. You have to

  31. Lol, I carry my 17 inch 9 pound laptop everywhere almost every day. A 5 pound laptop is nothing , go to the gym and do some weights. Regarding size, no 16 inch is NOT too big, It depends of what you are incline to do based on a set of criteria. Clearly the Reviewer prefers a light and smallish for factor. A base M1 should suffice of the 14 pro. But blank statements aren't really necessary.

  32. Daniel Rodriguez

    Nice video, but oh man that greasy shiny Macbook Air keyboard looks scary! at 5:23… in fact I often find myself preferring the 15" Macbook Pro say 2019, because you get 4 years of keyboard replacement and I personally cannot tolerate greasy keyboards.

  33. William F Stratton

    I already made the purchase and you are so right on with this review. I ended up gifting it to my granddaughter who uses it largely as a desktop.