Putting more pro in the MacBook Pro, Apple has upgraded its 13- and 15-inch Retina display laptops, offering faster Intel Haswell processors along with more RAM standard. But how much more notebook do you get for your money?
The 13-inch MacBook Pro still starts at $1,299, but now you get a 2.6-GHz Core i5 CPU and 8GB of RAM to go along with the 128GB of flash storage. The $1,499 model bumps the storage up to 256GB, while the top-end $1,799 configuration adds an even zippier 2.8-GHz processor and 512GB of flash.
Apple also dropped the price of its standard 13-inch MacBook Pro, which lacks a Retina display, to $1,099. But we don’t think that’s a good deal. For one, the specs haven’t improved (2.5-GHz CPU, 4GB RAM, 500GB hard drive). Second, the thinner $999 MacBook Air offers speedier flash memory and lasts much longer on a charge (12 hours versus 7 hours).
Prefer a larger 15-inch canvas? Apple now includes 16GB of RAM for the $1,999 starting price along with a powerful 2.2-GHz quad-core Intel CPU. As you should expect at this price, 256GB of flash storage comes standard.
Apple shaved $100 off the top-end configuration to $2,499, which bumps the storage to 512GB and complements Intel’s Iris graphics with Nvidia’s GeForce GT 750M GPU with 2GB of video memory. For this price, though, we’d expect Nvidia’s newer 800 series GPUs.
Overall, Apple is providing plenty of incentive to upgrade your Mac–or switch from Windows–especially with the slick and innovative OS X Yosemite on the way. We look forward to testing these refreshed laptops to see just how much more oomph Apple’s spec bumps will give you.