Apple Unveils Revamped MacBook

October 14th, 2008 at 12:00 am

macbook pro air brick nvidia aluminum enclosure

Steve Jobs unveiled and released new Apple notebooks today at the mystery shrouded event at the Apple HQ in Cupertino, CA.  The new laptops are enhanced versions of their old product line MacBook.

The key feature used to cause speculation and hype around the new line of notebooks is the "Brick" construction. Prior to the unveiling, the "Brick" build of the new laptop was rumored to be a complete touchscreen device, something like a tablet.  However, to the disappointment of much of the avid imaginative Mac users, "Brick" is simply the single piece construction of the outer enclosure of the MacBook.

Three variants of the Macbook were released and go up for sale today.  Top of the line comes the MacBook Pro which come in two trims, then the Macbook with three trims, and the MacBook Air also in two trims.   Common characteristics of all the new Macooks are, a "Brick" aluminum enclosure, a glossy LED-backlit LCD, a glass multi-touch trackpad, and best of all, NVIDIA chipsets and GPUs (graphics processing units).

Notable on this list are the track pad and graphics chips.  First, the trackpad is larger than the previous and any other track pad available in other notebooks.  It has no buttons, the whole trackpad is the button itself, and as expected is multi-touch.  Second, the graphics hardware.  The NVIDIA chipset and GPU on the new MacBooks are a first for Apple as well as the first of its kind ever wherein the chipset and GPU are all on one die. 

"The Nvidia GeForce 9400M performs five times faster than the current MacBook Pro systems, Steve Jobs said. The notebook also comes with the Nvidia 9600M GT, described as a "state-of-the-art graphics" system. It offers 512MB of video memory and can be activated by switching to "turbo mode" within the settings. The 9400 provides five hours of battery life, while the 9600 drops down to about four." [The Inquisitr]

The MacBook pro comes in two trims starting with the $1599 model featuring 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo with 3MB L2 Cache, 2GB 1066MHz DDR3 Memory, the two GeForces, and a 250GB hard drive and SuperDrive.  While the more expensive and top of the line version comes with 2.53GHz, 6MB L2 Cache, 4GB memory, 512MB video memory, a 320GB hard drive, and SuperDrive.

The less powerful and cheaper "next generation" MacBook comes in more flavors starting at $999 for the entry level 13-incher.  Next is the $1299 with 2.0 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 3MB L2 Cache, 2GB 1066MHz DDR3 memory, the Nvidia 9400M graphics system, a 160GB hard drive and SuperDrive. For more demanding users there’s the $1599 model that adds a 2.4GHz processor, 250GB hard drive, and backlit keyboard.

Finally the MacBook Air has little changes on the inside including the NVIDIA graphics system.  The new MacBook Air will be offered starting November in two trims, 1.6GHz Core 2 Duo version for $1799 and a 1.86GHz CPU version (with the 128GB SSD) for $2499.