The 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display is official, giving notebook shoppers a more affordable option than the 15-inch Retina model. Of course, $1,699 isn’t cheap, but you get a class-leading Retina display and a design that’s 20 percent thinner (.8 inches) and weighs only 3.6 pounds.
The new Retina MacBook packs a 2560 x 1600-pixel resolution, which is double the sharpness you’d see from an HDTV. Other highlights include two Thunderbolt ports, two USB 3.0 ports and dual speakers for more powerful sound. The starting configuration is powered by a 2.5-GHz Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD.
Apple says you can expect up to 7 hours of battery life from the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display. What may disappoint some is that this notebook doesn’t include discrete graphics; you’ll have to make due with Intel HD 4000 graphics. However, we do expect the combination of the flash memory, fast CPU and plenty of RAM to offer zippy performance.
Is this $1,699 machine the 13-inch laptop to beat? It could be the Ultrabook to beat.