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Apple Updates MacBook Air and Current Generation MacBook Pro with New Hardware

Discussion in 'News' started by btarunr, Jun 11, 2012.

  1. btarunr

    btarunr Editor & Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Apple today updated MacBook Air with the latest Intel Core processors, faster graphics and flash storage that is up to twice as fast as the previous generation.* MacBook Air is the ultimate everyday notebook, and with new lower prices it is more affordable than ever. The current generation 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro have also been updated with the latest Intel Core processors and powerful discrete graphics from NVIDIA. Apple’s popular AirPort Express has been redesigned to include features previously available only in AirPort Extreme.

    “Today we’ve updated the entire MacBook line with faster processors, graphics, memory, flash storage and USB 3 connectivity,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “We’ve made the world’s best portable family even better and we think users are going to love the performance advances in both the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro.”

    Available in 11-inch and 13-inch designs, the new MacBook Air features the latest Core i5 and Core i7 dual-core processors and is perfect for browsing the web, making movies and managing photos. The new integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000 is up to 60 percent faster and gives the MacBook Air plenty of power to tackle games and videos.** MacBook Air features flash storage up to four times faster than traditional hard drives for instant-on performance and fast access to your apps and data. Now with 4GB of faster memory, configurable up to 8GB, you can run memory-intensive apps with ease. MacBook Air also features a new FaceTime HD camera that delivers high-definition 720p.

    The 13-inch MacBook Pro features the latest Intel Core i5 or Core i7 dual-core processors up to 2.9 GHz with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.6 GHz. The 15-inch MacBook Pro features the latest Intel Core i7 quad-core processors up to 2.7 GHz with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.7 GHz and NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M discrete graphics. Both the 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro can be configured with a 1 TB hard drive or SSDs up to 512 GB that are up to twice as fast as the previous generation.

    MacBook Air and MacBook Pro both feature a high-speed Thunderbolt port and two USB 3.0 ports to easily connect to external displays and a wide variety of high performance peripherals. The 13-inch MacBook Air, and 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pro deliver up to 7 hours of wireless battery life, and the 11-inch MacBook Air delivers up to 5 hours. Mac notebook batteries use advanced chemistry and Adaptive Charging technology to provide up to 1,000 recharges.

    The MacBook Air and MacBook Pro ship with OS X Lion. Starting today, customers who purchase a Mac are eligible for a free copy of OS X Mountain Lion when it becomes available. Mountain Lion introduces innovative features including the all new Messages app, Notification Center, system-wide Sharing, AirPlay Mirroring, Game Center and the enhanced security of Gatekeeper. With iCloud built into the foundation of OS X, Mountain Lion makes it easier than ever to keep your content up to date across all your devices.

    Priced at just $99, the new AirPort Express features a completely redesigned compact enclosure and new wireless and connectivity capabilities. Simultaneous dual-band 802.11n Wi-Fi allows users to easily create a network that delivers optimal performance and range. The AirPort Express also features an audio-out port to connect external powered speakers or an A/V receiver and use AirPlay to wirelessly stream from iTunes on your Mac or iOS device. A USB 2.0 port allows you to share a printer wirelessly over your network, and an additional ethernet port lets you connect to other computers and network devices. Setup is built right into OS X and iOS and can be done in just a few simple steps, and with AirPort Utility 6.0 for OS X Lion and iOS you can access a visual map of your network for viewing and reconfiguring devices.

    Pricing & Availability
    The 11-inch MacBook Air comes with a 1.7 GHz processor, 4GB of memory and is available with 64GB of flash storage starting at $999 (US), and 128GB of flash storage starting at $1,099 (US). The 13-inch MacBook Air comes with a 1.8 GHz processor, 4GB of memory and is available with 128GB of flash storage starting at $1199 (US), and 256GB of flash storage starting at $1,499 (US). Configure-to-order options include a 2.0 GHz Intel Core i7 processor, up to 8GB of 1600 MHz DDR3 onboard memory and up to 512GB flash storage.

    The 13-inch MacBook Pro is available with a 2.5 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB of memory and 500GB hard drive starting at $1,199 (US), and with a 2.9 GHz dual-core Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of memory and 750GB hard drive starting at $1,499 (US). The 15-inch MacBook Pro is available with a 2.3 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor, 4GB of memory, Intel HD Graphics 4000 and NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M, and 500GB hard drive starting at $1,799 (US); and with a 2.6 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of memory, Intel HD Graphics 4000 and NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M, and 750GB hard drive starting at $2,199 (US). Configure-to-order options include faster quad-core processors up to 2.7 GHz, additional hard drive capacity up to 1 TB, up to 8 GB of memory and solid state storage up to 512 GB.

    Additional technical specifications, configure-to-order options and accessories are available online at apple.com/macbookair or apple.com/macbook-pro. The updated MacBook Air and MacBook Pro are available through the Apple Online Store (www.apple.com), Apple’s retail stores and Apple Authorized Resellers.

    *Testing conducted by Apple in June 2012 using preproduction MacBook Air configurations. For more information visit apple.com/macbookair/features.html.

    **Testing conducted by Apple in June 2012 using preproduction MacBook Air configurations. For more information visit apple.com/macbookair/features.html.

    ***The Wireless Web protocol testing was conducted by Apple in June 2012 using preproduction MacBook Pro and MacBook Air configurations. Battery life and charge cycles vary by use and settings. For more information visit apple.com/macbook-pro/features/.
     
  2. Completely Bonkers New Member

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    Nice product. Nice prices. If only Apple had kept support for XP drivers in bootcamp I would go out and buy 2 even 3 tomorrow. (Very happy with XP for laptop and have licenses hanging around)
     
  3. NC37

    NC37

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    Wonder if Apple used DDR3 or 5 for the 650M.
     
  4. x800h2o New Member

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  5. wickerman

    wickerman

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    I'm a bit let down that Apple still isnt offering discrete graphics on the MacBook Air, or at least decent ATI or Nvidia graphics. I've been reluctant to upgrade my late 2010 Air and give up my Nvidia 320M in favor of Intel's HD 3000 (even though the Core i5 was significantly faster than the core 2 duo), and though the HD 4000 is probably a bit faster...I still don't see it as much of a graphics improvement. The other specs are easy for me to justify, I love the transfer speeds of USB 3, I would love to upgrade from 4gb 1066 up to 8gb 1600L, but the graphics just feels like a let down. Hell I can still run Diablo 3 at 1440x900 on low (or 720p on mixed medium) and get 25-30fps (maybe a bit higher, haven't tested since the latest patch as I have a desktop for gaming), and source games run fine as well.

    IVB and HD4000 should be a step up, I guess I'll wait and see for myself before I decide. But if Apple had announced ATI or Nvidia had come back to the Air, I would have been much more excited.
     
    NC37 says thanks.
  6. Dippyskoodlez

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    I agree, my Air is a bit long in the tooth too.

    Unlike windows though, the HD series actually has properly working drivers[OS X], atleast. Windows its a crapshoot to get stuff working. I'm confident after using the HD3000 on my i5 that the 4000 is still a pretty hefty step up over the 320 Nvidia offered.

    I really would like to see AMD be able to step up and compete in the ULV dual core area. We need some GPU love! :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2012
  7. Solidstate89

    Solidstate89

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    Well given the pathetic refresh of the MBA, that pretty much leaves the new Zenbook Prime as the best Ultrabook on the market, what with its 1920x1080 matte IPS panel.
     
  8. Steevo

    Steevo

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    I like how they just get USB 3 and they proudly pronounce it as if it is a new feature for all computer hardware. I have had it on my laptop for a long time now.
     
    10 Million points folded for TPU
  9. Dippyskoodlez

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    Actually, after seeing the keynote, they just said "usb 3, oh look a pretty bar graph" and then moved on to the other important stuff; retina/mountain lion/iOS 6. Its not really "omgomgomgomg usb3" at all. For good reason too, though. Its just new because ivy bridge offers it baseline.
     
  10. Solidstate89

    Solidstate89

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    The only thing I found rather stupid was that when they were labeling the USB ports, they labeled them as; "USB 3.0/USB 2.0." Well no shit sherlock.
     
  11. NC37

    NC37

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    Yeah they are faster than that 320M but it is still Intel so...shoddy drivers. I was really hoping Apple would intro an inexpensive Trinity Book. The MBAs make me laugh. MBPs are just...ehhh. Too expensive for what they come with.

    Oh well, Apple lost my sale. They would have had it if they did a Trinity book for maybe $800-$1000. Heck even $1200 I would have prolly gone.

    I'll just wait for PC side. See how it fares then plan on transitioning the last of my Mac only software over to Windows. Complete the conversion to PC only. Thank you Apple, I'm a PC because of you.
     
  12. wickerman

    wickerman

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    I believe the point there was showing that Apple was putting nothing but USB 3.0 on the new MacBook Air and Pro generations, rather than how some manufacturers are throwing just 1x USB 2.0 and 1x USB 3.0 port on their ultrabooks or some other combination of mix and match on the larger ones. There is no reason not to go all out on a premium laptop in these price ranges. That seemed pretty clear in the keynote speech.

    Yea my experience with Intel's modern HD graphics on my HTPC has not been good and I must admit I have been forced back to ATI, currently with an HD 6450 2gb/128bit which I've modded to be passively cooled. But that has also had driver issues, up until the recent 12.6 beta I had a hell of a time due to HDMI audio dieing after my tv and/or receiver being turned off, if I came back to watch something later I would have to restart the whole pc to get HDMI audio back. Using the HD2000 graphics in the 2100T solved that but I had artifacting caused by drivers (damn thing is a 35w water cooled chip and never gets above 40c). So there are driver issues on both fronts I'd say...but given ATI's got far better control, better control panel, better features, and the fact that this issue was actually resolved in 12.6 I'd like to stick with them.
     
  13. Dippyskoodlez

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    Trinity cannot compete in the ULV market currently.

    They really just don't have anything to offer.

    OS X also negates the HD windows driver issues. Apples driver doesn't fall apart like the Windows one does.

    As nice as having a better GPU would be, in the MBAs, going from a sandy bridge to trinity would hurt more than it would help in overall performance. Theres more of a demand for CPU performance in that market than there is GPU. I peg my 1.4c2d air CPU on a regular basis, to its absolute maximum. The Gt320 sits idle 99% of the time.
     

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