Apple today announced upgrades to all three of their MacBook Portables.
The MacBook Pro has been upgraded with a glass multi-touch trackpad, faster processors, Mini DisplayPort, and NVIDIA’s Hybrid SLI mode. Hybrid SLI allows users to toggle between the onboard GeForce 9400 (for five hours of battery life) or switch to a GeForce 9600M (reducing battery life to four hours). While FireWire 400 has been removed, the device still can use FireWire 400 via the FireWire 800 port. In addition, the new case design support easy upgading of the hard drive.
The MacBook has been completely redesigned in aluminum. Most significantly, the MacBook will use GeForce 9400 graphics, giving it five times the graphical performance of the previous generation. PhoneNews.com’s editor-in-chief has criticized against Apple for allowing obsolete PowerBooks to outperform MacBook systems.
Important to note however, is the removal of FireWire 400. This is the second Mac to lose FireWire completely, the MacBook Air being the first.
Both the MacBook and MacBook Pro benefit from the long-rumored “brick” process. At the launch event today, CEO Steve Jobs noted that the process is only “partially true.” The design process takes cues from the MacBook Air, and carves the case out of two halves of aluminum. The internals of the system are inserted into a pressed backplate. A plastic gasket then joins the two halves together.
During the event, Apple also announced a new 24-inch Cinema Display. The unit will carry built-in speakers, iSight camera, and a USB hub. Moreover, it is Apple’s first LED-backlit external display. The new display will retail for $899.
Finally, the MacBook Air has been upgraded, retaining its original design. The new MacBook Air is unchanged from when PhoneNews.com first announced the system. The processor speeds remain the same, but benefiting from Core 2 “Penryn” processor technology (more cache and a faster front-side bus). In addition, the low-end model will sport a 120 GB hard drive, while the high-end model will use a 128 GB SSD. Update: The MacBook Air will also carry the GeForce 9400 GPU.Â