Apple's new MacBooks carved from blocks of aluminum

Manufactured by a technique developed for the original MacBook Air.

Apple Tuesday unveiled an entirely new lineup of laptop Macs, carved from blocks of aluminum for strength and lower costs, and equipped with powerful graphics chipsets.

The new MacBook, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air designs are intended to build on Apple's fast-growing sales in the notebook market. Executives say Apple has now over 17% of the U.S. retail notebook market and has supplanted Dell as the market leader in the all-important education market, at 39%.

All the new notebooks use a manufacturing technique developed for the original MacBook Air: instead of starting with an aluminum frame and bolting in parts, Apple starts with a 2.5-pound block of aluminum, which is carved out and shaped to receive parts. The result is a very light but extremely strong and rigid body, a design that also uses far fewer parts than previous Apple notebooks.

The new MacBook now has an LED backlight display, a sleek multi-touch glass trackpad, and new graphics based on the Nvidia GeForce 9400M chip, which combines the chipset and graphics processing unit in a single die. Apple says the result is five times faster than conventional integrated graphics designs, delivering 54 gigaflops of performance.

There are two models of MacBook, one with a 13.3-inch display, 2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, the Nvidia chip, and a 160GB hard drive, priced at about US$1,300. For $300 more, you get the backlit display, a 2.4GHz Intel CPU, and 250GBs of disk.

The two new MacBook Pro models include two Nvidia graphics chipsets: the embedded 9400M, with about five hours of battery life, and the GeForce 9600M, with about 4 hours, as a separate part, for a total of 125 gigaflops of performance.

The Pro's new glass trackpad has nearly a 40% larger tracking surface, and now acts as a button itself, eliminating the need for a separate button. The trackpad now supports multi-touch gestures.

One model has a 15.4-inch screen, the 2.4GHz Intel CPU, both Nvidia chips, and 250GB hard drive, and a roughly $2,000 price tag. The $2,500 model adds a 2.53GHz Intel CPU, more memory and a 320MB disk.

The two new MacBook Air models, with prices unchanged at about $1,800 and $2,500, also sport the Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics chip, replacing an Intel chipset. Apple says the change will boost graphics performance by four times.

The lower-priced model features a 120GB disk, compared to 80GBs previously; the more expensive model now boasts a 128GB solid state disk, compared to the previous 64GB device.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags notebooksApplelaptop

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Cox

Network World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?