In the large notebook test over 15 inches, Warentest wanted the middle class to compete against each other. The Apple notebook steals the show from all Windows competitors. But that has its price.
As great as the slim ultrabooks are for mobile use: Sometimes you just need more space to work, surf or edit pictures. And also accepts a chunkier case. Notebooks over 15 inches are less suitable than devices that you always have with you, but as a desktop replacement that can be tidied away. Stiftung Warentest has tested 17 current models.
When it came to Apple, the experts encountered a challenge: they had actually decided on a model selection in the mid-range price range. The average price of laptops sold in Germany is 700 euros, which is why devices between 600 and 850 euros for the 15-inch models and between 700 and 1000 euros for the 17-inch models were selected. But Apple doesn’t have such a large mid-range device. The cheapest Macbook Pro over 13 inches costs almost three times as much at 2200 euros. And cleans up the test accordingly.
Unsurprisingly, given the price difference, the luxury notebook gets top marks in almost all categories. Whether for the display, the performance or the runtime – that Macbook Pro 16 already holds first place in the basic configuration. Only in the sub-heading “daily use”, in which product test points such as the start time, the unlocking methods but also the volume development match, it is not quite enough for the top. The overall result of “good” (1.8) is by far the best in the test. The only compromise is the significantly higher price.
The competition shows that there is good performance for less money. However, there it is associated with more considerations. Three models from Acer, Dell and Lenovo share second place with an overall grade of “good” (2.3). In contrast to Apple’s high-end bolide, the Windows laptops all have clear strengths and weaknesses. And that’s relative: none of the runner-ups have any real failures.
The Asus VivoBook S15 has a display that is almost as good as the Macbook, but it can’t quite keep up in terms of battery life and computing power. In return, the price is significantly lower: The Asus notebook (model number: S532FA-BN139T) is available online from 850 euros.
The tested Dell Inspirion 15 5590 notebook was able to convince with the battery. With 11:10 hours, it lasts only ten minutes shorter than Apple’s device when watching video. The computing power is also better than the Asus notebook. Potential customers will have a hard time finding one of the devices, which according to the product test cost 850 euros: it could not even be ordered from the manufacturer on the Internet.
The third runner-up, the Lenovo Ideapad 5 15IIL, will make gamers’ hearts beat faster: It is the only model in the test field that can keep up with the MacBook in terms of gaming performance. The slightly weaker measured values for the display and battery make up for it with the price alone: The tested model (item no. 81YK003GGE) is available from 630 euros. In terms of performance, this is a real bargain.
Bigger is better – and more expensive
With the 17-inch models, the higher average rating is also reflected in the price. The best big model that HP Envy 17 (2020), is the most expensive device after the Macbook with a price from 950 euros. But it can score with performance. The display is one of the best in the test, the compromises in computing power and battery are limited. With an overall rating of “good” (2.2), it gets the best overall rating among Apple’s competitors.