We used to have the most eye-opening mentally-rewarding existential conversations when I worked as a comic book store clerk in high school. Customers and staff alike would engage in intensely-heated worldview-altering banter like “who would win in a fight between Wolverine and Batman” or “which cereal stays crunchier in milk?” I know! It was truly heady stuff. But in all seriousness, there is where my mind travels as I referee an unlikely–almost MARVEL Comics style “What if?” So here it is… If they were to meet in a dark alley, which laptop would win the Apple MacBook Pro Retina Vs. the new Razer Blade Pro.
What we have here is the 17-inch Razer Blade Pro. The company has done an admirable job of keeping the innards of the Blade Pro powerful yet petite. The form factor is super thin with dimensions the likes 16.8 inches wide, with a depth of 10.9 nches. It’s height is a lowered 0.88 inches thin and the thing weighs 6.58 lbs. That’s more than 2lbs heavier than the MacBook Pro Retina. To be fair the MBPR is only a 15.4-inch laptop size. The dimensions tally in at 14.3 inches in width, 9.73 inches in depth and 0.71 inches in height.
Winner: 15.4″ MacBook Pro Retina
Both the Razer Blade Pro and the MacBook Pro Retina are aesthetic showstoppers. Most notable on the Blade is the Switchblade capacitive touchscreen interface,which functions as a trackpad and numpad. You can also use it to check email, browse the internet, watch youtube videos, take screenshots and lot more. But this is an easy win for ye’ old lappy from Cupertino. The MacBook Pro Retina is thinner and lighter with more connectivity and storage options than the Razer Blade Pro. The 14-inch MBPR is also much more portable than the RBP. There is a 14 inch variant of the Razer Blade Pro, which is smaller by design and much lighter. But against the bulkier Razer Blade Pro, the MBPR comes out ahead in design and portability. But we all know those looking for this gaming laptop from Razer, are going to care little about a couple extra pounds.
Winner: 14″ MacBook Pro Retina
This one is difficult. On paper and in a vacuum, so to speak, the MacBook Pro Retina has the more potent Retina Display which is capable of a massive 2880 x 1800 native resolution with 220 ppi. The tech in the panel equates a superior product. But the surrounding tech in the Blade compliments its display much better than what’s in the MBPR. Images and movies are gorgeous on Apple’s window. Yet that resolution is taxed heavily by the underperforming GT 650m GPU with only 1gb of GDDR memory. Razer knows gamers and gaming very well and the Blade Pro is tuned with this experience. The 17.3 inch backlit HD LED display is not as flashy and really not as rich as the Retina. But it looks great still, pushing the now-standard 1920 x 1080. I should also mention each does great video-out. MBR can push 2560 x 1600 across two displays while the Razer Blade Pro can do 3840 x 2160 via HDMI 1.4a audio/video output.
Winner: 15″ MacBook Pro Retina
That resolution powered by the newer GTX 765m gpu coupled with nvidia GeForce Experience ensures today’s games run at approximately 60frames per second at 1080 and they look great. Sure blacks are deeper and the contrast is far better with superior color saturation so any static image or HD movie looks better on the MacBook Pro Retina. But gaming is the Razer Blade Pro’s bread and butter. Where the MBPR doesn’t hold high frame rates at in today’s games at either it or the Blade Pro’s native resolution. The Blade Blade Pro has another slight advantage that helps it keep pace with the Retina. It’s using the new Intel Intel 4700H series CPU which comes with integrated HD 4600–a faster step up from the MBPR’s HD 4000 integrated graphics solution. You can be sure Apple will step up their CPU game soon. But for now…
Winner: Razer Blade Pro
This is nearly a tie. Speeds are just so close. Intel enthusiasts will undoubtedly remind me the Blade is powered by the sparkling-new Intel Core i7-4700HQ Quad-Core Processor clocked at 2.4Ghz with an achieveable 3.4Ghz turbo. Thusly I remind all the MacBook Pro’s older i7 is clocked higher at 2.7Ghz and can be configured to 3.7ghz. Still the Razer Blade Pro steels the win with simple OC ability and a handsome new CPU that one of the best things to hit the mobile sphere in a while. It’s a smaller dies that uses less power (close to 20% reportedly) and generated less heat. Another benefit of Haswell is battery life. It’s hard to see it here. But Haswell is one the reason we can get close to 4hours of intense 1080p gaming out the machine while also powering a demanding capacitive touchscreen trackpad. Moreover, the CPU contains a higher performing integrated GPU option in the HD 4600.
The MacBook Pro Retina hits hard with a bevy of connectivity options. You get 2x USB 3 ports, 2x Thunderbolt ports, HDMI-out and SDXC card slot for added storage expansion. The Razer Blade Pro is much lighter in this round with 3x USB 3 ports and HDMI out. Each sports headphone jacks but the MBPR packs a dual microphone setup found on the side next to the headphone jack, while the Razer Blade Pro uses a mic positioned up near its webcam above the display.
the MBPR does not house a traditional Ethernet cat-5 connection. But the Thunderbolt ports can be used as Gigabit Ethernet with an adapter sold separately. Conversely the Blade Pro features a normal RJ45 Gigbit Ethernet Port for its suped-up Killer Wireless network adapter. The network solutions from Bigfoot Killer Nic can eek out precious extra frames per second by circumventing Windows OS natural network check resulting in lower pings and higher frame rates.
Winner: 15″ MacBook Pro Retina
The Razer Blade Easily comes close to a win on this one. While the MacBook Pro Retina can reach capacities of 768gb vs the the max 512gb of the Razer Blade Pro, it can’t touch the speed of Razer gaming laptop. With read and write speeds hitting above 550mb/s vs. the MBPR’s 400-440mb/s. MBR does feature a nice SDXC card slot for expanded storage. You will undoubtedly be using one of the 3- USB 3 ports to connect an external drive. Our is a 25gb model but again, the 512gb variant is available for more pennies.
The MacBook Pro Retina does 7hours wireless on general use. The Blade will get your 4-5 hours of general use with intense gaming cutting that in half–easily.
Winner: 15″ MacBook Pro Retina
The MacBook Pro Retina can be had for aroudn $2000 now. The Razer Blade Pro is priced at $2500.
Winner: 15″ MacBook Air Pro Retina
These are both exceptional machines. The Razer Blade Pro is more of a luxury item but I can’t stop playing with it. For some reason, I want to use this thing more than any laptop I’ve used. The switchblade interface is more refined than when saw it on the Deathstrike keyboard, the key are snappy and responsive. It boots to the desktop in under 5-seconds and it games likes a true desktop can. However, it’s about $500 more yet the performance gain doen’t equate the costdifference. So if you’re looking for a super thin super efficient dedicated gaming system, you may want to look to the Razer Blade without the “Pro” in the moniker. But if overal the MacBook Pro Retina still the win. It can play the same games at lower frame rates/or lower resolutions. That aside, it can do everything the Blade can do minus the tricks of novelty found on the Switchblade trackpad.
Overall Winner: 15″ MacBook Pro Retina
Shawn loves gadgets, literature, history and games. For 10yrs+ he's straddled both the comic book & video game industries, as a writer, editor, marketing officer & producer. Shawn got his start in tech & games as an editor & Hardware Director for GameRevolution.com. More notable accomplishments include Executive Producer on mobile games Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved & The Shroud.