The MacBook Pro with Retina display picked up a nifty little speed boost today: Apple upgraded its powerhouse laptop line with double the standard memory in the entry-level configurations, as well as bumping the processor speed by 200MHz. In addition, Apple dropped the high-end 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display price by $100, also giving the 13-inch non-Retina MacBook Pro a $100 price cut as well.
The New 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display
The 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display entry-level model is now available with a 2.6 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.1 GHz, 8GB of memory, 128GB of flash storage, and Intel Iris graphics starting at $1,299.
The next option is exactly the same but bumps the storage up to 256GB, bringing the cost to $1,499.
The high-end 13-incher with Retina display sports a 2.8 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.3 GHz, 8GB of memory, 512GB of flash storage and Intel Iris graphics for a price of $1,799. More expensive configure-to-order options include faster dual-core Intel Core i7 processors up to 3.0 GHz with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.5 GHz, up to 16GB of memory, and flash storage up to 1TB.
The New 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display
The 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display base model is now available with a 2.2 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.4 GHz, 16GB of memory, 256GB of flash storage, and Intel Iris Pro graphics starting at $1,999.
The high-end 15-incher sports a 2.5 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.7 GHz, 16GB of memory, 512GB of flash storage, and Intel Iris Pro graphics, along with NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M graphics, starting at the new slightly lower price of $2,499. More expensive configure-to-order options include faster quad-core Intel Core i7 processors up to 2.8 GHz with Turbo Boost speeds up to 4.0 GHz, and flash storage up to 1TB.
The Price Drop for the 13-inch Non-Retina MacBook Pro
The 13-inch non-Retina MacBook Pro is now $100 cheaper, starting at $1,099. It comes with a respectable 2.5 GHz quad-core Intel Core i5 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.1 GHz, 4GB of memory, Intel HD Graphics 4000, and a 500GB hard drive. Of course, Apple’s older-generation of MacBook Pro remains an interesting option because it’s the last of the MacBook line that is easily upgradable and comes with a decent amount of storage without a high price. For instance, you can easily snap in new memory modules at some point in the future when you’re budget allows. The same goes for the storage — you can upgrade to a 7200RPM traditional hard drive, which is faster than the standard 5400RPM drive, or better yet, you can easily drop in an SSD flash-based solid state hard drive. Plus, you have the DVD/CD SuperDrive, which will let you play and burn DVD and CDs. It’s old school, but handy for some customers.
The downside to all this flexibility and power?
It’s about 1/4-inch thicker and 1 pound heavier, and while the display is sharp and bright, it’s not as sharp and bright as a Retina display. Of course, if you plug in a much larger external monitory anyway, the Retina’s advantage is not an issue.
Free Upgrade to OS X Yosemite
In case you haven’t heard, Apple will be upgrading its Mac operating system this fall to OS X Yosemite (right now the latest version is OS X Mavericks). All new Mac buyers will be able to upgrade free to Yosemite (check out this preview), and the upgrade process is easily accomplished through Apple’s built-in App Store app.