Apple Introduces New 15-inch MacBook Pro, Advanced Graphics, Glass Trackpad

On Tuesday, Apple introduced a new 15.4 inch MacBook Pro with advanced fabrication techniques, option to select an NVIDIA 9400M or 9600 GT graphics, Core 2 Duo at 2.4, 2.53 or 2.8 GHz, a next generation glass trackpad, an SSD option and much more.

Steve Jobs first brought Jonathan Ive to talk about a new manufacturing process that leads to a thinner, stronger aluminum frame. Apple starts with a 2.5 pound piece of aluminum and cuts away whatis not needed to end up with "a remarkably precise part," he said, weighting just one quarter pound. The rest of the material is recycled. While lasers were mentioned for hole cutting, there was no explicit mention of a high pressure water cutting technique, but Mr. Ive was vague on those details.

Then Mr. Jobs returned to the stage to introduce the new MacBook Pro In typical fashion, Mr. Jobs started with some of the details, and built up the excitement before revealing the whole computer.

Highlights of the new 15.4 inch MacBook Pro include:

  • Unibody construction, saves half the parts, 0.95 inch thick.
  • LED backlighting (not new for this model).
  • 802.11n, Bluetooth 2.1, mini DisplayPort, FireWire 800 only.
  • Full accessibility to battery and drives. SSD option.
  • NVIDIA 9400M graphics with 16 cores, 54 gigaflops plus (user selectable)
  • NVIDIA 9600 GT graphics with 32 cores, 120 gigaflops
  • External battery indicator LEDs
  • Base model: 15.4 in glass display like iMac, 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 2 GB of 1066 MHz DDR 3 memory, 250 GB hard disk, slot-loading superdrive, US$1999.
  • Higher end model: 2.53 GHz C2D, twice the L2 cache (6 MB), larger hard disk (320 GB), US$2499.
  • 5.5 pounds
  • 128 GB SSD option adds US$600.00
  • Either model can be ordered with 2.8 GHz CPU.

Mr. Jobs predicted 4 hours of battery life with the NVIDIA 9600 GT graphics card or 5 hours with the 9400M. TMO will provide updates as more details become available.

This model is expected to be available immediately.

For a comparison of how the MacBook Pro compares to the MacBook and MacBook Air, Apple has posted a page, "Which MacBook Are You?"