At long last, Apple has refreshed its MacBook Pro line of notebook computers, with the 15- and 17-inch models adding more-powerful Intel Core i5 and Core i7 processors—Apple claims they’re up to 50 percent faster than the models they replace—along with Nvidia Optimus technology that enables the systems to switch seamlessly between battery-saving Intel integrated graphics and more-powerful integrated graphics. Folks looking for a smaller notebook can check out the 13-inch MacBook Pro: still Intel Core 2 Duo, but now with Nvidia GeForce 320M graphics.
“The new MacBook Pro is as advanced on the inside as it is stunning on the outside,” said Apple senior VP for worldwide product marketing Philip Schiller, in a statement. “With faster processors, amazing graphics, and up to three more hours of battery life, the new MacBook Pro delivers both performance and efficiency.”
The 15- and 17-inch MacBook Pro models boast Nvidia’s Optimus technology, which enables the systems to dynamically witch between Intel integrated graphics and Nvidia GeForce GT 330M graphics on an app-by-app basis, either saving power or delivering performance when people need it without any interaction from the user. Apple claims the technology helps the systems get 8 to 9 hours of use on a single battery charge. The systems’ Core i5 and i7 processor also feature Intel Hyper-Threading and Turbo Boost technology to improve performance, with the latter capable of pushing the clock speed all the way up to 3.06 GHz for single-core tasks.
At the top end is the 17-inch MacBook Pro features a 1,920 by 1,200 pixel display, a 2.53 GHz Intel Core i5 CPU, 4 GB of RAM (expandable to 8 GB), integrated Intel HD graphics and Nvidia GEForce 330M with 512 MB of video RAM, a 500 GB hard drive, slot-loading DVD±RW drive, Mini DisplayPort video output, gigabit Ethernet, integrated iSight webcam, FireWire 800 and 400 ports, three USB 2.0 ports, 802.11 and BLuetooth 2.1+EDR wireless, an ExpressCard/34 slot, illuminated keyboard and Apple’s glass multi-touch trackpad. The base price is $2,299, and build-to-order options include a 2.66 GHz Core i7 processor, SSD drives, and an antiglare display.
The 15-inch MacBook Pros feature a 1,440 by 900-pixel glossy display, Intel Core i5 processors running at 2.4 or 2.53 GHz (or a Core i7 running at 2.66 GHz), 4 GB of RAM (upgradable to 8 GB), Intel HD graphics and Nvidia GeForce GT 330M graphics with 256 to 512 MB of video memory, 320 to 500 GB hard drives, slot-loading DVD±RW drives, MIni DisplayPort output, gigabit Ethernet, two USB 2.0 ports, one FireWire 800 port (no FireWire 400), an SD card slot, iSight webcam, 802.11n and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR wireless, and Apple’s standard glass multitouch trackpad and illuminated keyboard. Base prices range from $1,799 to $2,199; build-to-order options include SSD drives and a high-resolution 1,680 by 1,050-pixel display.
The 13-inch MacBook Pro is still toodling along with Intel Core 2 Duo processors (running at either 2.4 or 2.66 GHz), with 4 GB of RAM (expandable to 8 GB), a 1,280 by 800-pixel glossy display driven by Nvidia GeForce 320M graphics (no Optimus or Intel HD graphics here), 250 to 320 GB hard drives, a slot-loading DVD±RW drive, Mini DisplayPort, gigabit Ethernet, two USB 2.0 ports, one FireWire 800 port, 802.11n and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR wireless, an SD card slot, and Apple’s glass multi-touch trackpad and illuminated keyboard. Bas prices start at $1,199 for the 2.4 GHz model and $1,499 for the 2.66 GHz model; built-to-order options include SSD drives.
All the new MacBook Pros are on sale now from Apple’s online store and Apple retailers.