Apple updates MacBook Pro and MacBook Air range
Apple has announced updates to its MacBook Pro and Air ranges with the introduction of Intel Ivy Bridge processors, more memory and HD cameras.
As well as updating these ranges, Apple introduced a new MacBook Pro model. Read our look at the Apple MacBook Pro with retina display.
MacBook Pro refresh
Apple has included the latest Intel Ivy Bridge quad-core processors in its new laptops. This means they should run faster than previous models and provide better performance. The highest spec 15-inch Macbook Pro features a 2.7GHz processor and the 13-inch version can be bought with a 2.9GHz chip.
The MacBook Pros are also being treated to a new graphics processor with a Intel HD Graphics 4000 processor, plus the 15-inch model includes an NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M processor for handling intensive graphics such as games. These updates mean graphics should appear smooth and the 15-inch model should be able to handle the latest games available on Mac.
Storage comes in a range of options with the choice between a conventional hard drive up to 1TB or a solid state drive with a maximum capacity of 512GB.
Finally, the USB ports are now USB 3.0 – so they will transfer information faster – and an HD camera has been added so users will be able to make Facetime calls – or other video calls – in 720p resolution and so will appear much clearer than on previous models.
The 13-inch model starts at £999 and the 15-inch version is available from £1,499.
To see how the last model performed in our labs read our Apple MacBook Air 13-inch review.
New MacBook Air
The MacBook Airs also get the new generation of Intel processors and run up to 2.0GHz, plus get the same graphics upgrade as the MacBook Pros, moving to a Intel HD Graphics 4000 processor.
Ram is doubled from the previous models with 4 and 8GB versions in place of the 2 and 4GB models meaning the models should run faster, while the top-of-the-range versions now include up to 512GB of flash storage memory – the previous maximum storage was 256GB.
The USB ports have been upgraded to the 3.0 versions, while the charging port has also been changed for the latest version.
The 11-inch MacBook Air starts at £849 and the 13-inch model costs at least £999.
To see if the old version of the MacBook Air was worthy of a Best Buy award check out our Apple MacBook Pro review.
Are they worth the upgrade?
While the improvements are fairly impressive, they are also incremental and not a huge leap forward. If you already have a recent laptop it probably wouldn’t be worth forking out the huge prices Apple demands for these premium models.
However, if you’re laptop is starting to get a little long in the tooth and you have a lot of money burning a hole in your pocket, then it can be hard to find a more impressive or a better looking set of laptops.
- Apple’s MacBook Pro with retina display – a look at the specs of the new model
- Laptop reviews – see which models performed best in our tests
- Laptop choosing tool - use our interactive tool to find the best computer for you
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