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Thursday, February 24, 2011, 05:35 am PT (08:35 am ET)

Apple's new 15- and 17-inch MacBook Pros feature quad-core i7 chips, AMD graphics

Apple's new high-end 15-inch and 17-inch MacBook Pros feature the latest quad-core Sandy Bridge Core i7 processors from Intel, as well as AMD Radeon HD graphics and the new high-speed Thunderbolt port.

Overview

The powerful 15-inch and 17-inch MacBook Pro models feature Intel quad-core Core i7 processors up to 2.3 GHz and AMD Radeon HD graphics processors with up to 1GB of video memory for high performance gaming, pro video editing and graphics intensive applications.

Sandy Bridge architecture

The new Core i7 chips, which are part of Intel's new Sandy Bridge architecture, also include integrated Intel HD Graphics 3000 with 384MB of DDR3SDRAM shared with the main memory. Apple uses its own unique automated graphics switching technology to allow these higher-performance MacBook Pro models to switch between these integrated graphics chips and the more powerful discrete graphics processors from AMD.

More powerful graphics

The 15-inch MacBook Pro features an AMD Radeon HD 6490M graphics processor with 256MB of GDDR5 memory on the 2.0GHz configuration, or an AMD Radeon HD 6750M GPU with 1GB of GDDR5 memory with the 2.2GHz configuration. The high-end 17-inch MacBook Pro features the AMD Radeon HD 6750M with 1GB of GDDR5 standard.

15-inch MacBook Pro Graphics Performance


Thunderbolt and FaceTime HD

Like the new 13-inch model, the updated MacBook Pros also have a high-speed Thunderbolt port and a new FaceTime HD camera with triple the resolution of the previous generation.

Featuring two bi-directional channels with transfer speeds up to 10Gbps each, Thunderbolt delivers PCI Express directly to external high performance peripherals such as RAID arrays, and can support FireWire and USB consumer devices and Gigabit Ethernet networks via adapters.

MacBook Pro


Thunderbolt also supports DisplayPort for high resolution displays and works with existing adapters for HDMI, DVI and VGA displays. Freely available for implementation on systems, cables and devices, Thunderbolt technology is expected to be widely adopted as a new standard for high performance I/O.

Unibody enclosures

The MacBook Pro lineup continues to feature its same aluminum unibody enclosure, glass Multi-Touch trackpad, LED-backlit widescreen display, illuminated full-size keyboard and 7-hour battery.

EPEAT Gold status

Every Mac notebook achieves EPEAT Gold status and meets Energy Star 5.0 requirements. Each unibody enclosure is made of highly recyclable aluminum and comes standard with energy efficient LED-backlit displays that are mercury-free and made with arsenic-free glass. Mac notebooks contain no brominated flame retardants, are PVC-free and are constructed with recyclable materials.

In addition, each new MacBook Pro comes with Mac OS X Snow Leopard and iLife, Apple’s suite of applications for creating and sharing photos, movies and music.

MacBook Pro


Features included with new Core i5 and i7 chips
    New Intel Core i5 and i7 chips up to 2x faster at the core

    Intel Core logo

    New quad-core Intel Core i7 processors are standard on the 15- and 17-inch MacBook Pro, and use Intel’s recently refined chipsets. This makes the new MacBook Pros perform up to twice as fast as the previous generation, capable of handling demanding tasks like editing HD video, compiling audio, or rendering a multilayered image file. And ac OS X Snow Leopard is designed to take advantage of every processor core, maximizing performance.

    15-inch MacBook Pro Performance


    Faster single-chip microarchitecture

    The latest Intel Core architecture puts the processor, cache, memory controller, and graphics engine on a single chip. Data travels a shorter distance, allowing for greater efficiency.

    Turbo Boost 2.0

    Turbo Boost is a dynamic performance technology that automatically increases the speed of the active cores — up to 3.4GHz. Turbo Boost 2.0 is even more dynamic and efficient. By shifting core frequency in smaller increments than before, it allows the processor to manage performance without sacrificing efficiency.

    Hyper-Threading

    Hyper-Threading is now standard on every MacBook Pro. This technology allows two threads to run simultaneously on each core, so Mac OS X recognizes eight virtual cores on a quad-core processor and four on a dual-core processor. When you’re running multiple applications at once, the processor spreads tasks more evenly across a greater number of cores.

    Integrated memory controller

    With faster access to memory, each core can get right to work on your data, rather than waiting for it to arrive. That’s why the new Intel Core architecture uses an integrated memory controller to connect fast 1333MHz memory directly to the processor. Together with up to 8MB of shared L3 cache, the integrated memory controller helps your applications run at peak performance.

    Energy-efficient graphics

    Thanks to the new microarchitecture, the graphics processor is on the same chip as the central processor and has direct access to L3 cache. That proximity translates into performance. The graphics processor also automatically increases clock speeds for higher workloads. An integrated video encoder enables HD video calls with FaceTime, while an efficient decoder gives you long battery life when you’re watching DVDs or iTunes movies.


Technical Specifications
    15-inch MacBook Pro:

    The new 15-inch MacBook Pro has Intel's latest Core i7 Sandy Bridge quad-core processors, available in speeds of 2.0GHz, coupled with a AMD Radeon HD 6490M GPU, or 2.2GHz, paired with a AMD Radeon HD 6750M GPU. It also features the new high-speed Thunderbolt port, which allows data transfers of up to 10Gbps in addition to audio and video connections, as well as a FaceTime HD camera with 720p resolution.

    MacBook Pro

      Size and weight
        Height: 0.95 inch (2.41 cm)
        Width: 14.35 inches (36.4 cm)
        Depth: 9.82 inches (24.9 cm)
        Weight: 5.6 pounds (2.54 kg)

      Connections and expansion
        MagSafe power port
        Gigabit Ethernet port
        FireWire 800 port (up to 800 Mbps)
        Two USB 2.0 ports (up to 480 Mbps)
        Thunderbolt port (up to 10 Gbps)
        Audio line in
        Audio line out
        SDXC card slot
        Kensington lock slot

      MacBook Pro

      Display
        Glossy
        Antiglare
        15.4-inch (diagonal) LED-backlit glossy or optional antiglare widescreen display with support for millions of colors
        Supported resolutions: 1440 by 900 (native), 1280 by 800, 1152 by 720, 1024 by 640, and 800 by 500 pixels at 16:10 aspect ratio; 1024 by 768, 800 by 600, and 640 by 480 pixels at 4:3 aspect ratio; 1024 by 768, 800 by 600, and 640 by 480 pixels at 4:3 aspect ratio stretched; 720 by 480 pixels at 3:2 aspect ratio; 720 by 480 pixels at 3:2 aspect ratio stretched

      Graphics and video support
        AMD Radeon HD 6490M graphics processor with 256MB of GDDR5 memory on 2.0GHz configuration; or AMD Radeon HD 6750M graphics processor with 1GB of GDDR5 memory on 2.2GHz configuration
        Intel HD Graphics 3000 with 384MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory
        Automatic graphics switching
        Dual display and video mirroring: Simultaneously supports full native resolution on the built-in display and up to 2560 by 1600 pixels on an external display, both at millions of colors
        FaceTime HD camera
        Thunderbolt port

      Processor and memory
        2.0GHz or 2.2GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with 6MB shared L3 cache; or optional 2.3GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with 8MB shared L3 cache
        4GB (two 2GB SO-DIMMs) of 1333MHz DDR3 memory; two SO-DIMM slots support up to 8GB
        Standard Configurations: 2.0 GHz or 2.2 GHz

      Storage
        500GB or 750GB 5400-rpm Serial ATA hard drive; optional 750GB 5400-rpm hard drive, 500GB 7200-rpm hard drive, or 128GB, 256GB, or 512GB solid-state drive6
        8x slot-loading SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
        Maximum write: 8x DVD-R, DVD+R; 4x DVD-R DL (double layer), DVD+R DL (double layer), DVD-RW, DVD+RW; 24x CD-R; 10x CD-RW
        Maximum read: 8x DVD-R, DVD+R, DVD-ROM; 6x DVD-ROM (double layer DVD-9), DVD-R DL (double layer), DVD+R DL (double layer), DVD-RW, DVD+RW; 24x CD

      Battery and power
        up to 7 hrs wireless web
        Built-in 77.5-watt-hour lithium-polymer battery
        85W MagSafe Power Adapter with cable management system
        MagSafe power port

    17-inch MacBook Pro

    The updated 17-inch MacBook Pro comes standard with a 2.2GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with 6MB shared L3 cache, but users can upgrade to an or optional 2.3GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with 8MB shared L3 cache. Like the rest of the updated MacBook Pro lineup, it also features the new high-speed Thunderbolt port, which allows data transfers of up to 10Gbps in addition to audio and video connections, as well as a FaceTime HD camera with 720p resolution.

    MacBook Pro

      Size and weight
        Height: 0.98 inch (2.50 cm)
        Width: 15.47 inches (39.3 cm)
        Depth: 10.51 inches (26.7 cm)
        Weight: 6.6 pounds (2.99 kg)

      Connections and expansion
        MagSafe power port
        Gigabit Ethernet port
        FireWire 800 port (up to 800 Mbps)
        Three USB 2.0 ports (up to 480 Mbps)
        Thunderbolt port (up to 10 Gbps)
        Audio line in
        Audio line out
        ExpressCard/34 slot
        Kensington lock slot

      MacBook Pro

      Display
        Glossy
        Antiglare
        17-inch (diagonal) high-resolution LED-backlit glossy or optional antiglare widescreen display with support for millions of colors
        Supported resolutions: 1920 by 1200 (native), 1680 by 1050, 1280 by 800, 1152 by 720, 1024 by 640, and 800 by 500 pixels at 16:10 aspect ratio; 1280 by 1024 pixels at 5:4 aspect ratio; 1280 by 1024 pixels at 5:4 aspect ratio stretched; 1600 by 1200, 1024 by 768, 800 by 600, and 640 by 480 pixels at 4:3 aspect ratio; 1600 by 1200, 1024 by 768, 800 by 600, and 640 by 480 pixels at 4:3 aspect ratio stretched; 720 by 480 pixels at 3:2 aspect ratio; 720 by 480 pixels at 3:2 aspect ratio stretched

      Graphics and video support
        AMD Radeon HD 6750M graphics processor with 1GB of GDDR5 memory
        Intel HD Graphics 3000 with 384MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory
        Automatic graphics switching
        Dual display and video mirroring: Simultaneously supports full native resolution on the built-in display and up to 2560 by 1600 pixels on an external display, both at millions of colors
        FaceTime HD camera
        Thunderbolt port

      Processor and memory
        2.2GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with 6MB shared L3 cache; or optional 2.3GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with 8MB shared L3 cache
        4GB (two 2GB SO-DIMMs) of 1333MHz DDR3 memory; two SO-DIMM slots support up to 8GB
        Standard Configuration: 2.2 GHz

      Storage
        750GB 5400-rpm Serial ATA hard drive; optional 500GB 7200-rpm hard drive or 128GB, 256GB, or 512GB solid-state drive6
        8x slot-loading SuperDrive (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
        Maximum write: 8x DVD-R, DVD+R; 4x DVD-R DL (double layer), DVD+R DL (double layer), DVD-RW, DVD+RW; 24x CD-R; 10x CD-RW
        Maximum read: 8x DVD-R, DVD+R, DVD-ROM; 6x DVD-ROM (double layer DVD-9), DVD-R DL (double layer), DVD+R DL (double layer), DVD-RW, DVD+RW; 24x CD

      Battery and power
        up to 7 hrs wireless web
        Built-in 95-watt-hour lithium-polymer battery
        85W MagSafe Power Adapter with cable management system
        MagSafe power port

Pricing & Availability

The new 15-inch MacBook Pro is available in two models: one with a 2.0 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7, AMD Radeon HD 6490M and 500GB hard drive starting at $1,799 and one with a 2.2 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7, AMD Radeon HD 6750M and 750GB hard drive starting at $2,199.

The new 17-inch MacBook Pro features a 2.2 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7, AMD Radeon HD 6750M and 750GB hard drive and is priced at $2,499.

Configure-to-order options include faster quad-core processors up to 2.3 GHz, additional hard drive capacity up to 750GB, solid state storage up to 512GB, more memory up to 8GB DDR3, antiglare and high-resolution display options and AppleCare® Protection Plan. Additional technical specifications and configure-to-order options and accessories are available online at www.apple.com/macbookpro.

Save on new MacBook Pros through Apple's Resellers

Several Apple Authorized Resellers have also begun discounting the new MacBook Pros and AppleInsider expects to offer discount coupons within the next few hours. Exact pricing will automatically update in our Mac Pricing Guide, the MacBook Pro section of which is included below:

MacBook Pro
13" MacBook Pros w/ ...
Amazon MacMall B&H Photo & Video OnSale.com Adorama
Discount
2.4GHz 13" (4GB,128GB) on order $1,197.94* $1,199.99+ $101.06
2.4GHz 13" (8GB, 128GB) n/a $1,333.74* n/a yet n/a $65.26
2.4GHz 13" (8GB, 256GB) $1,489.00 $1,382.24* $1,424.99+ $116.76
2.4GHz 13" (16GB, 128GB) n/a $1,503.18* n/a yet n/a $95.82
2.4GHz 13" (16GB, 256GB) n/a $1,581.09* $1,579.00+ n/a $117.91
2.6GHz 13" (8GB, 128GB) n/a n/a n/a n/a $100.00
2.6GHz 13" (8GB, 256GB) n/a n/a $1,499.00+ n/a $100.00
2.6GHz 13" (8GB, 512GB) $1,699.00 $1,648.99* $1,699.00+ $150.01
2.6GHz 13" (8GB, 1TB) n/a on order n/a yet n/a $100.00
2.6GHz 13" (16GB, 128GB) n/a n/a n/a n/a $100.00
2.6GHz 13" (16GB, 256GB) n/a on order n/a yet n/a $100.00
2.6GHz 13" (16GB, 512GB) n/a $1,891.49* $1,849.00+ n/a $150.00
2.6GHz 13" (16GB, 1TB) n/a on order n/a yet n/a $100.00
2.8GHz 13" (8GB, 128GB) n/a n/a n/a n/a $100.00
2.8GHz 13" (8GB, 256GB) n/a $1,697.49* $1,649.00+ n/a $150.00
2.8GHz 13" (8GB, 512GB) n/a $1,891.49* on order n/a $107.51
2.8GHz 13" (8GB, 1TB) n/a on order $2,349.00+ n/a $150.00
2.8GHz 13" (16GB, 128GB) n/a n/a n/a n/a $150.00
2.8GHz 13" (16GB, 256GB) n/a $1,934.18* $1,849.00+ n/a $150.00
2.8GHz 13" (16GB, 512GB) n/a $2,104.89* $2,049.00+ n/a $150.00
2.8GHz 13" (16GB, 1TB) n/a $2,618.99* $2,549.00+ n/a $150.00
15" MacBook Pro with...
Amazon MacMall B&H Photo & Video OnSale.com Adorama
Discount
2.0GHz 15" (8GB, 256GB) $1,829.00 $1,842.99* $1,829.00+ $1,899.99 $170.00
2.0GHz 15" (8GB, 512GB) n/a $2,201.89* n/a n/a $97.11
2.0GHz 15" (8GB, 1TB) n/a place order n/a n/a $250.00
2.0GHz 15" (16GB, 256GB) n/a $2,085.49* $1,999.00+ n/a $200.00
2.0GHz 15" (16GB, 512GB) n/a place order n/a n/a $200.00
2.0GHz 15" (16GB, 1TB) n/a on order n/a n/a $250.00
2.3GHz 15" (8GB, 256GB) n/a on order on order n/a $100.00
2.3GHz 15" (8GB, 512GB) n/a on order n/a n/a $150.00
2.3GHz 15" (8GB, 1TB) n/a on order n/a n/a $200.00
2.3GHz 15" (16GB, 256GB) n/a $2,182.49* $2,099.00+ n/a $200.00
2.3GHz 15" (16GB, 512GB, 750M) $2,449.00 $2,376.49* $2,449.00+ $2,469.99 $222.51
2.3GHz 15" (16GB, 1TB, 750M) n/a $2,958.49* $2,799.00+ n/a $300.00
2.6GHz 15" (8GB, 256GB) n/a $2,182.49* n/a n/a $150.00
2.6GHz 15" (8GB, 512GB) n/a on order $2,399.00+ n/a $200.00
2.6GHz 15" (8GB, 1TB) n/a n/a n/a n/a $200.00
2.6GHz 15" (16GB, 256GB) n/a $2,395.89* n/a n/a $103.11
2.6GHz 15" (16GB, 512GB) n/a place order $2,640.00+ n/a $155.76
2.6GHz 15" (16GB, 512GB, 750M) n/a n/a n/a n/a $150.00
2.6GHz 15" (16GB, 1TB, 750M) n/a $3,132.13* $3,149.00+ n/a $200.00
2.8GHz 15" (16GB, 768GB, 650M) n/a $2,327.99* sold out sold out $721.01