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I recently switched to the M1 Macbook pro and I am absolutely impressed with the machine. It’s fast and efficient, and the battery life is unparalleled. But when I was in the market for a new laptop, I read dozens of reviews saying I shouldn’t get an M2 Macbook Pro since it has a history of storage issues and overheats. So today I want to talk about why I decided to go with the original M1 Macbook Pro (2020) and why it’s so darn hard to find one.
Why Apple Wants You to Forget about the M1 Chip
The tech world is constantly evolving. Sometimes they evolve faster than they can profit from. Such is the case for the M1 2020 Macbook Pro. This handy machine was so darn good that there are still very few laptops that can even compete with it… including the M2 Macbook line…
See the biggest problem with M1 Macbooks is they were too good for Apple to convince people they needed to upgrade the next year. From Apple’s perspective, they had a solid model with the Intel series Macbooks where they consistently brought reasonable improvements year over year most consumers had a good reason to upgrade within about 3-5 years.
Why that’s no longer the case:
The biggest problem most people had with their older Macbooks is they just had absolutely terrible battery life. Like most computers at the time, these ran on intel chips which are based on an instruction set called x86. x86 model laptops were very powerful but not very power efficient which is why most laptops until 2020 only got around 4 or 8 hours of battery life.
But as shown by Linus from Linus Tech Tips, the battery life on the M1 Macbook Pro is actually still the best battery life in a professional-grade laptop to this day! In their test, they showed the M1 Macbook Pro outperforming M2, M2 Pro, M2 Max, M1 Air, and a few other Windows machines in a raw video playback test by hitting a crazy 20 full hours of video playback.
This kind of endurance is unprecedented and with many people citing battery life as the main reason they upgrade their laptops, the M1 Macbook pro might last much longer than its future laptop through the sheer force of its battery life alone.
What’s the difference between the 2020 and 2021 Macbook pro?
The biggest difference between the 2020 and 2021 MacBook Pro is in their ability to improve GPU performance. So if you really need an extra boost in GPU power, you may want to splurge on the 2021 Macbook pro but other than that, 2020 should be perfect for most people.
There are a lot of subtle differences between the m1 from 2020 and the 2021 MacBook Pros and Apple is a bit confused with how they named their chips. Below is a quick synopsis of how they named their devices.
A brief history of M1
2020 – Apple releases two laptops with m1. The Macbook Air and Macbook Pro. These laptops both contain the m1 chip but the main difference being the MacBook Pro has a cooling fan and still has the touch bar.
2021 – Apple releases more laptops with updated versions of the m1 chip called “M1 Pro and M1 Max.” These chips were pretty big advances but at the end of the day, were released specifically to demonstrate the power abilities of the m1 chip. Think – more of the same but still impressive
Frequently Asked Questions regarding the M1 2020 Macbook Pro
Though the M1 Macbook pro is an amazing device that most people should still buy, there are a few questions that should be answered regarding its preformance in 2023.
Is MacBook M1 2020 still worth it?
Absolutely. If anything, the M1 Macbook laptops are better purchases now than they were at launch. Developers have since started migrating their apps to work with the native M1 Macbook apps so earlier programs like the Premier and Photoshop are now able to run directly on M1 hardware instead of through a translation layer.
Does MacBook Pro 2020 have M1?
Yes! But be careful when looking up 2020 macbook pro because they technically have two models of the 2020 macbook pro. One with an intel chip called i7 and one with the apple chip called m1. The m1 version of the 2020 MacBook pro is so far ahead that buying the i7 model is a mistake for almost everyone.
Is Apple discontinuing M1 MacBook Pro?
Yes, Apple did discontinue the M1 Macbook Pro, but buying a refurbished model will still get you plenty of time with this new version of Apple silicone. Apple has a great track record of supporting their models with software and has not even announced an end-of-life date – signaling that we may be able to get another 5- 10 years of software support for these new devices.
What are the benefits of Apple M1?
The biggest benefits of the M1 Macbook Pro are:
- insanely long battery life
- Solid single-core performance for most day-to-day tasks
- Apple ecosystem integration like Sidecar for iPad
What are the disadvantages of the M1?
The biggest disadvantages I have found of the m1 macbook pro in 2023 are:
- Only allowing one external monitor unless you have an ipad for sidecar
- Limited usb c ports on the side.
- No HDMI export
This has actually been a big disadvantage for me as I routinely use multiple monitors in my own setup. However, I have found that using my WB19s dell docking station and a Pluggable USB to HDMI adapter, I can get all three of my screens working at the same time with no noticeable lag.
How long do MacBook Pros last?
Although nobody can predict the future, apple tends to support its own devices much longer than the industry average of 5 years. Previous macbooks received software support for 10+ years. Because M1 and M2 laptops are built using the same architecture and the m2 is basically 2 m1 chips stuck together, its reasonable to assume that Apple will continue to support their latest M1 Macbook Pros for much longer than previous generations.
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