Review Apple MacBook Pro 14-inch (M3, 2023) review: Hitting the sweet spot

Dec 13, 2023
This review (like the M3 Pro review) misses a critical point. Apple increased the price of the M3 MacBook Pro compared to the M2 model (which was uncompetitive because it used an older design with less ports, a worse webcam, and the dead touch bar). And at its new price, it's not $400 between the M3 & M3 Pro MacBook Pros. It's $200 for a similar amount of RAM and storage.

The biggest problem with the M3 MacBook Pro is that 8 GB of RAM on Apple Silicon is unified between the CPU & GPU and macOS takes around 4 - 5 GB at a cold boot as shown by Max Tech, one of the best known Apple reviewers on YouTube. So once you open around 5 or so Chrome tabs, the system already has to use swap space on the SSD, which is not only slower and thus slows the entire system down, but also will wear the non replaceable SSD, and once it exhausts its read/write cycles, congratulations, you now own a brick.

Once you upgrade the M3 model to 16 GB, the minimum I would consider okay for not only the price in 2023 but also for a "Pro" laptop, you are now only $200 from a M3 Pro MacBook Pro with 18 GB of RAM, an extra Thunderbolt 4 port, actually usable external monitor support (two instead of just one), HDMI 2.1 instead of 2.0, and the better CPU & GPU performance of the M3 Pro. So in my opinion, spending $200 more (or just 10% more money) on the M3 Pro MacBook Pro actually is a no brainer for MacBook Pro shoppers. If you don't want to spend $2000, either get a refurbished M2 Pro MacBook Pro, which can often be had for the same $1600 price tag, or wait for the M3 MacBook Airs to come out, which will be cheaper and you can spend the difference to upgrade the RAM and/or storage.

TL;DR, the MacBook Pro M3 is just an upselling strategy by Apple to trick users into buying e-waste; don't buy it.