Apple has unveiled a refreshed, redesigned MacBook Pro model that features a slimmer profile and lighter frame, and a system that runs on newer Ivy bridge processors and faster, more power-efficient flash chips. As expected – or at least detailed by a number of rumors during the weeks before the event – the top-end model also rocks a Retina display, with a 15-inch screen that packs in a resolution of 2880 x 1800.
If anyone’s counting, that resolution packs in a lot more pixels (around three million more) than your average HDTV with a 1920 x 1080 resolution. Crunched into its 15-inch screen, that resolution amounts to a pixel density of 220ppi – considerably less than the 326ppi you get on the iPhone 4/4S, but still good enough to get you crisp lines on text and high-def images, where you can’t determine individual pixels.
Past the increased number of pixels, the MacBook Pro’s Retina screen is also listed to offer less glare, a 29 percent higher contrast ratio (compared to the display on the standard, non-Retina MacBook Pro), and a wider viewing 178-degree angle thanks to IPS technology.
The MacBook Pro with Retina display features a 15-inch screen, and comes in two models. A $2,199 base model features a 2.3GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 and 256GB solid state drive, while the $2,799 top-end model comes with a 2.6GHz i7 and 512GB SSD. Both models can be configured with 8 to 16GB of RAM and feature Intel’s HD Graphics 4000 and NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 1GB of memory for graphics. Available ports include SD, HDMI, and USB 3.0 ports, two Thunderbolt ports, and a slimmer MagSafe power connection, now called MagSafe 2.
Features include a built-in FaceTime HD camera, built-in stereo speakers, and dual microphones that reduce background noise. Other highlights include a glass multi-touch trackpad and backlit keyboard – all packed inside an aluminum body that measures 0.71 inches thick and weighs 4.46 pounds.
For people who don’t mind working on a MacBook Pro without the new Retina display – or don’t plan on blowing more than two grand on a notebook – Apple also released 13-inch models and a pair of 15-inchers with an updated spec and regular (non Retina) screens.
The 13-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1,199 with a 2.5GHz Core i5 chip, 4GB of RAM and a 500GB hard drive, and tops out at $1,499 with a 2.9GHz CPU, 8GB of RAM and a 750GB hard drive. The 13.3-inch screens feature a max resolution of 1280 x 800. The 15-inch MacBook Pro models start out at $1,799 with a 2.3GHz Core i7 chip, 4GB of Ram and a 500GB hard drive, while the higher-end model upgrades the spec with a 2.6GHz Core i7, 8GB of RAM and 750GB hard drive. All models feature the same Intel HD Graphics 4000 GPU, while the 15-inchers can switch to an NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M GPU for graphics-intensive tasks.