Apple 12" MacBook (Early 2016, Space Gray)

Apple 12" MacBook (Early 2016, Space Gray)

Apple 12" MacBook (Early 2016, Space Gray)

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Product Highlights

  • 1.3 GHz Intel Core m7 Dual-Core
  • 8GB of 1866 MHz LPDDR3 RAM
  • 12" LED-Backlit IPS Retina Display
  • 2304 x 1440 Screen Resolution
  • Integrated Intel HD Graphics 515
  • 512GB PCIe-Based Flash Storage
  • USB 3.0 Type-C Port
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
  • Force Touch Trackpad
  • Mac OS X El Capitan or macOS Sierra
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Apple MacBook overview

  • 1Description

With a Retina display and a thin, lightweight design, the space gray Apple 12" MacBook (Early 2016) provides both portability and performance. Measuring just 0.5" (13.1mm) thin and weighing only 2 pounds, the MacBook is compact yet still has a premium feel, thanks to its unibody design.

The MacBook features a 12" Retina display with 16:10 aspect ratio and 2304 x 1440 native resolution, which results in 226 pixels per inch (ppi). The display also has 178°-wide viewing angles. To deliver the total Retina experience on the MacBook, Apple redesigned the pixels to create a larger aperture, allowing more light to pass through. This enabled Apple to use LED backlighting that's 30 percent more energy efficient than the displays on other Mac notebooks with no loss in brightness.

Inside the MacBook you'll find the 6th-Gen (Skylake) Intel Core m7 processor, which is designed with 14-nanometer process technology. This means that the chip is packed with more transistors than the previous generation, for higher density and more efficient performance. Since the Intel Core m7 only draws 5 watts of power and generates less heat than its predecessors, Apple is able to omit the fan. Instead, the logic board, which is 67% smaller than the one in the 11" MacBook Air, is seated on top of an anisotropic graphite sheet, which helps disperse any heat that is generated out, to the sides. No fan also means the MacBook will be virtually silent. Even with its miniaturized internal components, the MacBook has an impressive capacity, featuring 8GB of fast, power-efficient 1866 MHz LPDDR3 onboard RAM and 512GB of PCIe-based flash storage.

Since the logic board is much smaller and there is no fan, Apple decided to use the remaining space in the MacBook to install a custom battery. The result is 35 percent more battery capacity than before, which adds up to 10 hours of web browsing and up to 11 hours of iTunes movie playback (battery life may vary depending on usage).

In order to maintain its thin and light design, the MacBook features a universal connectivity standard that combines the essential functions you need every day in one dynamic port. The USB Type-C port offers charging, quick USB 3.0 data transfer for connecting to external devices and peripherals, and video output that supports HDMI, VGA, and Mini DisplayPort connections. It is all in a reversible design that's one-third the size of the current USB port.

The Force Touch trackpad features Taptic Engine, which provides a click sensation when you press anywhere on the surface. The sensory capabilities of the Force Touch trackpad allow you to tell your MacBook what you want it to do, based on subtle differences in the amount of pressure you apply as well as providing haptic feedback.

The MacBook also embraces 802.11ac Wi-Fi for fast wireless Internet access. It also has Bluetooth 4.0 technology, which allows you to connect wirelessly to supported peripherals and accessories.

Design

12" LED-Backlit IPS Retina Display
The 12" Retina display on the MacBook doesn't just have a high resolution, but it's also paper thin. In fact, it is just 0.03" (0.88mm). A specially developed automated manufacturing process forms the edge-to-edge glass that's only 0.02" (0.5mm) thick. And Apple reduced the space between display components for a tighter, more integrated design. The Retina display has a 2304 x 1440 native resolution and a 16:10 aspect ratio. It also has 178° viewing angles, thanks to its IPS panel.

To deliver the Macbook's Retina experience, Apple redesigned the pixels to create a larger aperture, allowing more light to pass through. This enabled them to use LED backlighting that's 30 percent more energy efficient than the Retina display on previous models while still achieving the same level of brightness.
Force Touch Trackpad
The Force Touch trackpad may look like other trackpads on the surface, but it's what is underneath that makes it distinct. Force sensors detect how much pressure you're applying, and the Taptic Engine provides a click sensation when you press anywhere on the surface. Now, the click that once was a single, mechanical function is just the start of what you can do with Force Touch. The sensory capabilities of the Force Touch trackpad allow you to tell your MacBook what you want it to do based on subtle differences in the amount of pressure you apply. This makes it possible to perform a variety of different actions in different apps, all on the same surface. And it can respond with haptic feedback you can actually feel, making your MacBook more usable and personal.

Traditional trackpads use a "diving board" mechanism, which requires room underneath for the downward motion of a click and makes it harder to click the part of the surface closest to the keyboard. With the Force Touch trackpad, force sensors detect your click anywhere on the surface and move the trackpad laterally toward you, although the feel is the same familiar downward motion you're accustomed to in a trackpad. The Taptic Engine also provides haptic feedback, so instead of just seeing what's happening on the screen, you can feel it, too. The trackpad sends a tangible response to your fingertip when you perform certain tasks, like aligning annotations on a PDF.

In addition to the intuitive Multi-Touch gestures you may be familiar with – like scrolling, swiping, pinching, and rotating – Force Touch brings an added dimension to the Mac experience. The sensitivity is customizable, allowing you to adjust how much pressure is needed to register a click. And the trackpad can even tell whether you're clicking with your thumb or another finger and automatically adjusts the sensitivity level.
Redesigned Keyboard
Traditional keyboards use a scissor mechanism, which tends to wobble around the edges. This creates a lack of precision when you strike anywhere except the center of the key. Apple needed to reduce key wobbling for a keyboard this thin; otherwise, striking a key off-center could result in the keycap hitting bottom before a keystroke registers. So Apple designed a butterfly mechanism, which is wider than the scissor mechanism and has a single assembly made from a stiffer material – allowing for a more stable, responsive key that takes up less vertical space.

The redesigned keys on the MacBook feature a larger surface area, a thinner construction, and a deeper curvature, creating a more defined space for your fingertip to naturally find and press the keys. These refinements may be subtle, but the feel is distinct and intuitive. Combined with the butterfly mechanism, this innovative design allows for much greater control when typing.

Since the keyboard is thin, Apple had to address how to backlight the keys in a way that took up less space while delivering an even cleaner and more refined look and feel. To do that, Apple removed the row of LEDs and the light guide panel that distributed light throughout the keyboard and instead placed an individual LED under each key. These LEDs are calibrated for uniform brightness, so every key and character looks clear and sharp with minimal light around the keycap. All while being engineered for as much energy efficiency as possible.

Performance

Dual-Core 6th-Gen (Skylake) Intel Core m7 Performance
The 6th-Gen (Skylake) Intel Core m7 processor with 14nm process technology provides fast dual-core performance. The dual cores can run at a stock speed of 1.3 GHz and can boost up to 3.1 GHz as needed, thanks to Intel Turbo Boost 2.0 technology. With a 4MB L3 cache and 8GB of onboard 1866 MHz LPDDR3 RAM, the MacBook provides fast and energy efficient performance.
USB 3.0 Type-C
To create a notebook as thin and light as the MacBook, Apple had to strive for efficiency in every detail, right down to how it connects to peripherals and power. So Apple contributed to a growing universal connectivity standard that combines the essential functions you need every day in one dynamic port. The USB Type-C port offers charging, quick USB 3.0 data transfer for connecting to external devices and peripherals, and video output that supports HDMI, VGA, and Mini DisplayPort connections. All in a small, reversible design that's one-third the size of a USB Type-A port.
Fast Flash Storage
Part of what makes MacBook so responsive is that it's designed entirely around flash storage. Not only does this make the MacBook much lighter and more portable than traditional notebooks, it also provides faster access to data. The flash storage is up to 9 times faster than a traditional 5400 rpm notebook hard drive.
Fast Memory
The MacBook features 8GB of onboard 1866 MHz LPDDR3 RAM. Combine that with powerful processors and faster flash storage and you get a notebook that can run more memory-intensive applications at the same time – without compromising performance.
802.11ac Wi-Fi: Three Times Faster
With an emphasis on mobile, the MacBook is equipped with 802.11ac Wi‑Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 wireless technology. With AirPlay and Apple TV, you can wirelessly play video, show off photos, and enjoy music from your MacBook on your widescreen TV. And when your MacBook connects to an 802.11ac Wi‑Fi base station, such as AirPort Extreme or AirPort Time Capsule, your wireless performance is up to three times faster.

Operating System & Built-in Apps

Built-in Apps
The MacBook also comes with several built-in apps. You'll be able to take full advantage of iPhoto, iMovie, GarageBand, Maps, iBooks, Safari, Mail, FaceTime, Messages, Calendar, Contacts, Time Machine, Photo Booth, Mac App Store, iTunes, Game Center, Preview, Notes, and Reminders. Pages, Numbers, and Keynote are also free, but you'll have to download them from the Mac App Store. You'll need an Apple ID as well.

The Mac Experience

Environmentally Friendly Design
Apple worked to create a computer that is energy efficient, free of many toxins, and highly recyclable. Because Apple designs both hardware and software, the MacBook is able to use a highly efficient power supply that reduces wasted power. The computer is free of mercury and arsenic, and its internal components are free of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and brominated flame retardants (BFRs). When the computer reaches the end of its long life, you can rest assured that it can be recycled. It is constructed from materials that are highly desirable to recyclers. The MacBook has been awarded EPEAT Gold status for responsible manufacture, energy efficiency, and recyclability.
Tech Support
Have a problem with your Mac? Get support and advice at the Genius Bar, located at every Apple Retail Store. Apple also provides online tutorials, troubleshooting forums, and 90 days of phone support for users who aren't able to make it to an Apple store.
Optional AppleCare
Apple provides 90 days of free phone support and a 1-year limited hardware warranty on the computer. You can opt to add an AppleCare Protection Plan, at additional cost, which covers support and repairs for 3 years from the date of purchase. AppleCare can be purchased at any time within the first year of ownership of the computer.
In the Box
Apple 12" MacBook (Early 2016, Space Gray)
  • 29W USB Type-C Power Adapter
  • 6.56' (2m) USB Type-C Charge Cable
  • Limited 1-Year Warranty with 90 Days of Free Telephone Support
  • Table of Contents
    • 1Description

    Apple MacBook specs

    Performance
    Processor Intel Core m7 Dual-Core
    Base Clock Speed 1.3 GHz
    Maximum Boost Speed 3.1 GHz
    Total Installed Memory 8 GB
    Maximum Memory Capacity 8 GB
    Memory Type LPDDR3 SDRAM
    Memory Speed 1866 MHz
    Onboard Memory 8 GB
    Available Memory Slots None
    Graphics Type Integrated
    GPU Intel HD Graphics 515
    Display
    Panel Type IPS
    Size 12"
    Aspect Ratio 16:10
    Native Resolution 2304 x 1440
    Finish Glossy
    Viewing Angle 178° Horizontal, 178° Vertical
    External Resolution Up to 3840 x 2160
    Drives
    Total Capacity 512 GB
    Solid State Storage 1 x 512 GB Integrated PCIe
    Optical Drive None
    Input/Output Connectors
    Ports 1 x USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C
    Display 1 x DisplayPort 1.2 via Optional Cable
    1 x HDMI via Optional Cable
    1 x VGA via Optional Cable
    Audio 2 x Integrated Speaker
    2 x Integrated Microphone
    1 x 1/8" (3.5 mm) Headphone/Microphone Combo Jack
    Communicationsyxfffqfy
    Network None
    Wi-Fi Wi-Fi 5; Dual-Band (2.4 & 5 GHz)
    Bluetooth Bluetooth 4.0
    Mobile Broadband None
    Webcam User-Facing
    Battery
    Battery Chemistry Lithium-Ion Polymer (LiPo)
    Watt Hours / Type 41 Wh Non-Removable
    Maximum Runtime 10 Hours
    Power Requirements 100-240 VAC, 50-60 Hz
    Power Supply 1 x 29 W
    General
    Keyboard Keys: 78
    Type: Standard Notebook Keyboard
    Pointing Device Force Touch Trackpad
    Dimensions (W x H x D) 11.0 x 0.5 x 7.7" / 27.9 x 1.3 x 19.6 cm
    Weight 2.03 lb / .92 kg
    Packaging Info
    Package Weight 4.35 lb
    Box Dimensions (LxWxH) 13.2 x 9.7 x 3.6"

    Apple MacBook reviews

    12" MacBook (Early 2016, Space Gray) is rated 4.7 out of 5 by 23.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great, small machine that performs well. Bought initially as a travel machine, I'm finding that the speed and performance is better than my primary computer of the last 6 years, a 2010 MacBook Pro that I upgraded with a SSD and 8gb of RAM. My primary uses are for working with plain text and managing my photo library and editing photos. Performance is better than by 2010 MacBook Pro. This was a pleasant surprise. My plan is to later add either a late 2016 MacBook Pro or a Mac Pro. I've now passed on the 2010 MacBook Pro to a relative and am happily working with the 2016 MacBook as my primary computer as well as my travel computer. The small size and the retina screen are great. I bought a second one for my wife to replace her 2008 MacBook.
    Date published: 2016-11-19
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Portability with Great Performance I've been looking for a light laptop that can bridge between MacBook Pro (Retina 15) and iPad Pro (12.9). MacBook Air (either 11 or 13) could be a reasonable choice but the screen is not a Retina display. iPad Pro does a lot of things but does not support full applications under iOS (compared with macOS). After testing 2015 and 2016 MacBook, I was convinced that 2016 MacBook would do the job - including Windows 10 with Parallels Desktop. Now it's been over a month and I'm very happy with this. So far no problem with a single USB-C port. I chose the top of the line - m7 1.3 GHz & 512GB. Highly recommended for a ultralight/ultraportable laptop.
    Date published: 2016-12-29
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Better than I expected I bought this as a travel computer thinking it would be a bit painful to use. I am now running Lightroom, and a full suite of windows 10 applications with Parallels and it is great. It's obviously not as powerful as my 6 core 64Gb Mac Pro but it actually runs my day to day stuff just fine. Very pleasantly surprised that it can handle my stuff just fine. I got the M7 version so that I had the most powerful MacBook just in case. It's fast enough.
    Date published: 2016-05-18
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Best entry-level MacBook you can get I was a little hesitant to purchase this MacBook as I was waiting for the release of a newer MacBook Pro or iMac. I needed to replace my 5-year old iMac soon and I decided to take a plunge on this product. After nearly one month of using, I can say this is the best entry-level MacBook, or Mac in general you can get. It's lightweight, fast and great looking. The retina display is amazing and I'm delighted with the butterfly keyboard design - it only takes you a few minutes to feel natural. The only reasons I'm not giving it the 5th star is because I feel it really needs a second USB-C port and the ability to drive 4K displays at 60 Hz.
    Date published: 2016-06-25
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from I upgraded from the early 2015 Macbook to the early 2016 May 2016 UPDATE: I've purchased the early 2016 M7 Macbook to replace my early 2015 model of the same speed. The differences have been very consistent with the online reviews. Key differences: - CPU is about 15% faster - GPU is about 40% faster - SSD is much faster - Longer battery life In normal use, I find that the 2016 model is just a bit quicker to respond when opening apps and saving documents. So it feels snapper but honestly you would have to have both versions side by side to really see the difference. Would I recommend other 2015 Macbook owners upgrade to 2016? Unless the $1K difference between new 2016 price and the resale value of the 2015 isn't a factor for you, I'd say no. But if you don't have one and you can work within the boundaries of the product design, I highly recommend one. December 2015: As with my 2015 model, the 2016 model makes a great secondary or travel laptop. My primary machine used to be a 15 Macbook Pro (mid-2015). I need a fast machine for my photography hobby but perhaps I'm getting old I've been thinking about going small and light for travel. I was trying to answer with this purchase is can I keep my MBP at home for the batch work and use the Macbook on the road for light photo editing and web surfing. May 2016 UPDATE: I've taken several trips now using the early 2015 Macbook and I've been surprised by how little issue I've had, despite dealing with over 2,000 36mp photos on each trip. I can't do large exports using the Macbook (just as I thought would be the case) but selecting and editing photos has been no problem. And this form factor is so airplane and train friendly. It will fit on any tray table and fit into any seat back pocket. I have to say that I consider this Macbook to be the perfect airplane computer. The extra hour of battery life on this 2016 model will make it just that more useful during a long flight. PROS - Very light and very small the MB fits into an airplane seat back pocket like a tablet. Indeed, it's smaller and lighter than all tablet/keypad combos. - Overall the industrial design is excellent. Everything is very precise and well put together. I got the Space Gray model (it was the cheapest over the holidays) and find that the dark keys blend in nicely with the case. - Completely quiet - Excellent screen quality with over 100% of sRGB color gamut - Sound quality is very good - The highest resolution of 1440x900 is more than enough for a 12 screen. - The force touch track pad (I have this on my MBP too) is the best track pad I've used - Better battery life than with my 15 (one would hope so) - For interactive tasks moving around in Lightroom, productivity apps, web surfing, and even light editing in Photoshop I find the machine to be very responsive. Much more so than I expected from a Core M machine. - I had an I5 Mac Mini for a media server and this Macbook feels MUCH more responsive than the mini. Perhaps the SSD versus a rotating drive is making the difference. - Importing photos in Lightroom using minimal previews is just as fast as with my MBP - Moving from photo to photo in Lightroom develop mode isn't as fast as my MBP but it's close enough that I'm happy to use it on the MB. Indeed, after processing thousands of photos, I'm surprised by how little I noticed the difference in performance in the Develop module. CONS - One port. Buying new USB C dongles is a must - Generating large previews in Lightroom during import will take 2-4 times longer than my MBP - Editing in iMove works pretty well but exporting the result will take a long time 10 times longer in my test. - No Thunderbolt support So I can't plug into my Apple monitor The keyboard definitely takes some getting used to but if you are willing to adjust your style to work with the new design, it goes pretty well. If you feel you must bang away at the keys regardless, then you will not like the new design. May 2016 Update: I've seen any number of YouTube reviewers, some of whom say you can edit 4K video on this machine and some say they can't edit even 1080P video very well. I've concluded that the difference is in the software you are using. If you are using Apple software such as Final Cut Pro X, you can edit 4K. If you are using Adobe Premiere, then you will struggle.
    Date published: 2016-05-11
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from No bigger than an iPad; I love it. The size is so small and concise; but you have to be ready for the USB C world. When I saw the fist generation of this guy, I thought I couldn't live with only the one port. Now there are much more USB C items out there and I just bought a nice hub (HooToo) with 3 regular USB ports, a power pass through, and an SD slot. I thought I'd miss having s ethernet port but I had an older USB to ethernet adapter I used with my Air and it works fine and is much faster than my slower WiFi. Next I need the WiFi with ac.
    Date published: 2016-07-06
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect mac for me! Switched from 15 macbook pro to this one. Thanks to B&H for their promise of quality transaction. This is my second mac form them in past 3 years. This mac is super quiet, handles everything I do with ease - browsing, youtube, netflix, photos and 1080p video editing, emails, messages, etc. Retina display and keyboard is simply amazing. I carry it around everywhere and very useful when i have to take my son to his classes and i have to wait out for hour many times a week. B&H shipped in one day and i received my mac on day three perfectly. They have the most competitive prices compared to any other vendor period. I am a very happy customer indeed. My 15 macbook was so heavy that i hesitated to carry it around anywhere. This is very useful for me. I will keep an eye for the new 2016 13 macbook pro when its released if its as light as the air but with i7. But that would be my second device. I am not parting with this puppy period. this Lappy is like a sports car while other one would be my SUV lol!
    Date published: 2016-08-30
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love this laptop This is my first time using Mac (Space Gray, core m7, 512 GB of storage) and I love it. I did some research on laptops for a couple of weeks before settling with this one. First of all, the design is absolutely beautiful and extremely light-weight. It is perfect for a college student (or grad student) to carry it around and you don't even feel that you have a laptop in your backpack. Portability was one of the most important factors that I had to consider and I was happy when I discovered that this only weighed 2 lbs, The keyboard takes some time to get used to but trackpad is awesome. Overall performance is great. It comes with only one USB-c port so extra adapters are necessary but it is worth it because everything else has surpassed my expectations.
    Date published: 2016-12-09
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