MacBook Pro vs. Surface Book vs. Razer Blade vs. Dell XPS 15

How do Apple's new laptops stack up with the Windows competition? Here's a huge spec breakdown.

Sean Hollister Senior Editor / Reviews
When his parents denied him a Super NES, he got mad. When they traded a prize Sega Genesis for a 2400 baud modem, he got even. Years of Internet shareware, eBay'd possessions and video game testing jobs after that, he joined Engadget. He helped found The Verge, and later served as Gizmodo's reviews editor. When he's not madly testing laptops, apps, virtual reality experiences, and whatever new gadget will supposedly change the world, he likes to kick back with some games, a good Nerf blaster, and a bottle of Tejava.
Sean Hollister
2 min read
Watch this: Apple debuts MacBook Pro

If you really want a MacBook Pro , you'll buy a new MacBook Pro.

But maybe you're on the fence. How does the new Mac compare to the Windows competition?

Truth be told, there aren't as many direct competitors as you'd think. The recently upgraded Microsoft Surface Book, the 14-inch Razer Blade and the Dell XPS 15 are the main machines you'd probably buy instead -- if you're looking for a lot of processing power in a fairly thin frame.

Mac vs. Surface vs. Blade vs. XPS

15-inch MacBook Pro (2016)13-inch MacBook Pro (2016, w/Touch Bar)13-inch MacBook Pro (2016)Surface Book w/Performance BaseRazer Blade (14-inch, QHD)Dell XPS 15 (4K)
Starting price (USD) $2,399$1,799$1,499$2,399$2,099$1,699
Materials AluminumAluminumAluminumAluminumAluminumAluminum, carbon fiber
Display 15.4-inch 2,880x1,800-pixel13.3-inch 2,560x1,600-pixel13.3-inch 2,560x1,600-pixel13.5-inch 3,000x2,000-pixel14-inch 3,200x1,800-pixel15.6-inch 3,840x2,160-pixel
Pixel density 220 PPI227 PPI227 PPI267 PPI262 PPI282 PPI
Dimensions (imperial) 13.75 x 9.48 inches11.97 x 8.36 inches11.97 x 8.36 inches12.3 x 9.14 inches13.6 x 9.3 inches14.1 x 9.3 inches
Dimensions (metric) 349 x 241 mm304 x 212 mm304 x 212 mm312 x 232 mm345 x 235mm357 x 235mm
Thickness 0.61 in (15.5mm)0.59 in (14.9mm)0.59 in (14.9mm)0.9 in (22.8 mm)0.7 in (17.9 mm)0.66 in (17mm)
Weight 4.02 lb (1.83kg)3.02 lb (1.37kg)3.02 lb (1.37kg)3.63 lb (1.65kg)4.3 lb (1.95kg)4.5 lb (2.04kg)
Operating system Mac OS 10.12 SierraMac OS 10.12 SierraMac OS 10.12 SierraWindows 10 ProWindows 10Windows 10 Home
Processors 2.6GHz 4-core Intel Core i7 "Skylake"2.9GHz 2-core Intel Core i5 "Skylake"2.0GHz 2-core Intel Core i5 "Skylake"Intel Core i7 "Skylake" (likely 2-core)2.6GHz 4-core Intel Core i7 "Skylake"2.3GHz 4-core Intel Core i7 "Skylake"
Graphics AMD Radeon Pro 450 (2GB)Intel Iris 550Intel Iris 540Nvidia GeForce GTX 965M (2GB)Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB)Nvidia GeForce GTX 960 (2GB)
Up-spec 2.9GHz Core i7, Radeon 460 (4GB)3.3GHz 2-core Core i72.4GHz 2-core Core i7N/AN/A2.6GHz 4-core Core i7
Storage 256GB / 512GB / 1TB / 2TB256GB / 512GB / 1TB256GB / 512GB / 1TB256GB / 512GB / 1TB256GB / 512GB / 1TB256GB / 512GB / 1TB
RAM 16GB8GB / 16GB8GB / 16GB8GB / 16GB16GB8GB / 16GB / 32GB
Battery 10 hours (mfgr. estimate)10 hours (mfgr. estimate)10 hours (mfgr. estimate)16 hours (mfgr. estimate)5 hours (mfgr. estimate)4 hours (CNET test)
Networking 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.2802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.2802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.2802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0Killer 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.1802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.1
Ports 4x USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), any can charge, 1x 3.5mm headset4x USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), any can charge, 1x 3.5mm headset2x USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), any can charge, 1x 3.5mm headset2x USB 3.0, 3.5mm headset, SD card, Mini DisplayPort, Surface Connect (dock and charge)3x USB 3.0, 1x USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), 1x HDMI, 3.5mm headset2x USB 3.0, 1x USB-C (Thunderbolt 3), HDMI, 3.5mm headset, SD card
Cameras 720p FaceTime HD720p FaceTime HD720p FaceTime HD8MP rear, 5MP front (1080p)2MP frontFront
Touchscreen NoNoNoYesYesYes
Extras Touch Bar secondary screen, Touch ID fingerprint sensor, Force Touch trackpadTouch Bar secondary screen, Touch ID fingerprint sensor, Force Touch trackpadForce Touch trackpadDetachable tablet, Windows Hello face sign-in, Surface Pen stylusRGB LED keyboard, optional external graphics with Razer Core dock; also available in cheaper 1080p configMinimal screen bezel; compatible with Dell external battery

Because the new Macs haven't moved past Intel's sixth-gen Core processors, they may not actually have much of a speed boost over the Windows competition -- though brand-new AMD graphics may definitely help. Apple claims new MacBook Pros each have twice the graphical power of the ones it released in 2015.

Still, that's only on the 15-inch model: most of these Windows machines will likely trounce the 13-inch MacBook Pro's integrated graphics in games and other graphically intensive tasks.

And as you can see from the chart, the weight and size advantages also aren't as big as you'd think. Windows machines have made some major strides in the last few years while Apple was working on its big new update.

On paper, battery life is definitely still the best reason to buy a Mac, unless you count the Surface Book -- but the Surface Book will likely have a dual-core processor. It's impressive that Apple is quoting 10 hours for the 15-inch quad-core. If you want a touchscreen or stylus, Windows is the way to go.

Watch this: Apple makes Thunderbolt 3 more versatile with USB-C charger

And there's always way more to any computer than you'll see in a spec sheet, even when it comes to specs: we're very curious how Apple's speedy new solid-state storage and improved display stack up, too.

Plus, the new USB-C ports might make Apple's computer easier to charge -- both Microsoft and Razer's machines use proprietary chargers instead of the new USB charging standard.

We'll need to do some extensive testing to be sure.

Check out all of today's Apple news here!

Correction, 1:10p.m. PT:The 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar is $1,799, not $1,499. Also fixed a couple other copy/paste issues with the non-Touch Bar version, which has 2 Thunderbolt 3 ports, not 4.