Have a new MacBook Pro? You need these accessories.
New computers inevitably call for new accessories, but when it comes to Apple's MacBook Pro, they're especially key: The computer's USB-C ports may find you needing dongles, entirely new devices, and more. If you just picked up a new MacBook Pro (Touch Bar or no), here are my must-have accessories.
USB-C to USB adapter
This one's a gimme: Unless you want to replace all your cords and cables, you're going to need adapters for your existing devices. Luckily, Apple sells these for just $19, and Amazon has a host of cheaper $7 adapters, too.
Lightning to USB-C cable
Sure, you could pick up a USB adapter for your iPhone or iPad's existing cable to properly charge or sync it with your Mac, but this $35 cable has another great use, too: You can pair it with a 29W Adapter for quicker iPhone and iPad charging.
Add an extension cord to your charging brick
The new MacBook Pro has a decent battery, but let's be honest — if you're going to work at a café for a long period of time, you may want to plug in. Though Apple's traditional brick charger isn't the worst option for supplying power, its cord can be too short — or the brick too bulky — in some circumstances. That's why I recommend ditching the two-prong charger connector for Apple's $19 extension cord; best of all, if you have an old MacBook Pro or MacBook charger with one, you can swap it over to your new computer's charger at no cost.
Kanex USB-C SD reader
While the new MacBook Pro models shipped with USB-C ports galore, that came at the expense of some of the more well-loved connectors — including an SD card slot. If you still regularly use SD or other camera cards, you'll definitely want to pick up Kanex's $18.95 USB-C SD Reader — the small device can read SD, mini SD, micro SD, MMC, and more, all at a 5Gbps transfer rate.
Unlike Apple's other hit product of 2016, The MacBook Pro still comes with a headphone jack — but Bluetooth headphones like Apple's AirPods are often a much nicer proposition. There are lots of great Bluetooth headphones options out there, but the $159 AirPods are especially nice if you plan on using them with multiple Apple devices.
Waterfield Designs Outback Solo for MacBook Pro
As a fan of Waterfield's many leather and nylon bags, I couldn't go through this list without a mention of the company's newest slimline option for MacBook Pro users — the $159 Outback Solo. Designed to work as both a carrying sleeve and shoulder bag, the Solo offers a neoprene-lined compartment for your MacBook Pro along with a secondary compartment to hold your phone, cables, and even an iPad Pro and Pencil. (The bag's rear pocket can hold even more goodies.)
Continuing in grand Waterfield tradition, you can get the Outback Solo with a leather flap and waxed canvas exterior, or leather flap and black ballistic nylon.
Not a fan of the Outback Solo? Totally fine: Replace this bag on your own shopping list with your personal carrying preference.
Pad & Quill Cartella Slim
If you're less of a "dedicated Mac bag" person and want to protect your laptop wherever it goes, I've been loving Pad & Quill's Cartella Slim. The $89.95 book-style hard linen cover attaches to your MacBook Pro via ultra-strength 3M adhesive and won't let go unless you want it to. I've had it on my 13-inch MacBook Pro since November, and while the corners are showing slight wear, the shell still looks as dashing as it did on day one.
Transformative shells like this are especially good for frequent travelers, as they disguise high-value items as low-value textbooks or sketchbooks; when closed and bound with a Moleskine-style elastic, the Cartella makes the MacBook Pro look positively pedestrian — well, as pedestrian as a sleek linen book-bound case can look.
Twelve South BookArc
File this under the "maybe not must-have, but certainly nice-to-have" category: Twelve South's $49.99 BookArc and $39.99 BookArc Mod are not only beautiful additions to most side tables or desks, but they also give your MacBook Pro a sleek place to live while charging (or in clamshell mode, if you have an external monitor). The BookArc even offers an underside hook to hide and control your charging cable.
While not for everyone, they've become a must-have for my house, especially given that my charging station is in our living room.
LG UltraFine 5K Display
As with the BookArc, you could live without a 5K Display for your MacBook Pro. But do you want to? If you need a big-screen solution for your new computer that also gives you a docking station's worth of ports, you can't go wrong with LG and Apple's new $1299 collaboration.
Your must have accessories?
How did you outfit your new MacBook Pro? Any accessories I should add to this list? Let me know below, friends.
Updated July 2017: Updated pricing and my picks for Apple's 2017 MacBook Pro models, as well.