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MacBook and MacBook Pro Laptops Hand’s On: First Reviews and Hacking Mac


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The new version of Macbook and Mac Book Pro laptops, and updated MacBook Air was announced officially by Steve Jobs last Tuesday and you can read about all the specs and details here. The new Mac laptops are such snazzy machines that seeing the several spans of these stylish laptops in details and knowing some more about their Pros and Cons will quench this thirst.

Engadget and ifixit could have its hands on these two laptops and has written good reviews about them. Also, in ifixit and ifixit pages, you can learn about disassembling of the two Mac and Mac Pro, upgrading RAM and Hard Drives. Here, I am just summarizing the whole reviews in two Pros and Cons columns.

So, you can read the original articles here.

MacBook Laptops:


-“The new MacBook packaging is 41 percent smaller than the previous generation" and is made from recycled material”

- The all glass and aluminum MacBook looks very snazzy

- Amazingly solid and sturdy

-“It's about 12 percent thinner than its predecessor (0.95 in vs. 1.08 in) and 10 percent lighter (4.5 pounds vs. 5 pounds)”

- The all-clicking trackpad is usable

-it provides a Mini DisplayPort (adapter definitely required) and 2 USB 2.0 ports

-You can upgrade the hard drive in any Apple laptop.

- The new battery is 45 watt-hours compared to 55 on the predecessor and it is 20% lighter

- Faster performance (faster CPU up to 2.4GHz and 2GB 1066 MHz DDR3 RAM)

- The 13.3-inches display is LED-backlit

- Using Nvidia new GeForce 9400M graphics card

-Built-in iSight camera, stereo speakers, microphone

-Built-in AirPort Extreme WiFi and Gigabit Ethernet Port

-Mac OS X v10.5 Leopard & iLife '08

-Lithium-polymer battery prolonging 5 hour battery life

- Display Cleaning cloth included


-The glass screen is super shiny. It is a mirror not a screen! This screen will not be useful outdoors.

-The DisplayPort adapter is optional and for getting it you have to pay $29 extra

- Lack of a FireWire port

- Lack of built-in EV-DO or HSDPA mobile broadband

MacBook Pro Laptop:


-“37 percent friendlier-to-squirrels and tree-frogs MacBook Pro box”

- The all glass and aluminum MacBook Pro looks very snazzy

- Amazingly solid and sturdy

- The all-clicking trackpad is usable

-You can upgrade the hard drive in any Apple laptop.

- It comes with FireWire 800 port and ExpressCard/34 slot

- Audio in and out are hybrid digital / analog line mini jacks

- Faster CPU and better RAM (up to 2.8GHz and DDR3of RAM)

- Pair of latest NVIDIA graphics chips including GeForce 9400M and 9600M GT. You can switch from one graphics card to another according to your need to control your battery runtime.

- LED backlit screen

- An SSD option

- up to a 2.6GHz Core 2 Duo processor, 2GB of DDR3 RAM up to 4GB,

- Mini DisplayPort output port (adapter definitely required) with support for DVI, VGA, and dual-link DVI as well as 2 USB 2.0 ports, 1 FireWire 800 port and Express card 34

-Built-in iSight camera, stereo speakers, microphone,

-Mac OS X v10.5 Leopard & iLife '08

- Lithium-polymer battery prolonging 5 hours batter life

- Built-in AirPort Extreme WiFi, Bluetooth 2.1 and Ethernet LAN


-The glass screen is super shiny. It is a mirror not a screen! This screen will not be useful outdoors.

- By default, no video adapter included, for getting it you have to pay extra $29.00

-The new Mac Pro is 2/10 pounds heaver than the previous model.

- To switch graphics modes you have to enter to System Preferences and then logout but it is very easy to do (it is just a switch) on dual-graphics Sony VAIO Z

- Lack of built-in EV-DO or HSDPA mobile broadband

Some Benchmark Results tested by PC Magazine:

PC Magazine has done several tests on different laptops including the latest 15-in MacBook Pro dual graphics Boot Camp (featuring Core 2 Due T9400 CPU and (2.53GHz) GeForce 9600M GT/9400M GT), 15-in Mac Pro Penryn Boot Camp (featuring Core 2 Due T9500 (2.6GHz) and GeForce 8600M GT graphics), Dell Studio 15 (featuring Core 2 Due T9300 (2.5GHz) and ATI Radeon HD 3450 graphics), HP Pavilion HDX16t (featuring 2 Due T9600 (2.8GHz) and GeForce 9600M GT graphics), and Lenovo ThinkPad T400 (featuring 2 Due T9600 (2.8GHz) and ATI Radeon HD 3400 graphics).

SYSmark 2007 Preview test (Overall result): This test shows how a laptop can perform the business applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PhotoShop, Illustrator, WinZip, Vegas and 3D Studio Max well.

In this test, ThinkPad T400 took the first place (scoring at 146), then it was followed by Pavilion HDX16t (scoring at 136), Studio 15 (scoring at 122), Mac Pro Penryn (scoring at 112), and MacBook Pro with dual graphics (scoring at 104), respectively. So, this test shows that the new Mac has not been made for business goal. If you require a budget business laptop Dell studio is a very good option and you should not spend hefty money for the new Mac Pro.

3DMark06 test (default 1024 x 768): in this test result was opposite; the newest or latest Mac Pro dual graphics scored the best result (6,453). Then it was respectively followed by Pavilion HDX16t scoring at 5170, Mac Pro Penryn scoring at 4997, and in the end Studio 15 scoring at 2084.

These results show that the latest Mac Pro can play heavy 3D games well. However, you can not consider it as a professional gaming laptop, but it can bring good consent for the users. Especially, the Crysis gaming test (you will see the result in the following) shows that the latest Mac Pro can challenge this heavy 3D game well and delivers the impressive stunning outcome of 41.9fps.

The interesting is that the well-known Pavilion HDX16t stands behind the new Mac Pro and Mac Pro Penryn (both) in far distance in 3DMark06 test and Crysis gaming test. Especially in Crysis test the result is worse.

Comparing Mac Pro with dual graphics with Mac Pro Penryn shows that Steve Jobs has really done the best. The new Mac Pro is a good successor of the current one. The results show very good improvement in 3D section mainly. The new Mac Pro delivers much better performance than the Mac Pro Penryn in each test (except one test). This system is really an above-average gaming laptop and a very nice multimedia one (but not a better business laptop than its predecessor).

Crysis Gaming test (fps): the new Mac stands on top with the score of 41.9 fps. Then It is followed by Mac Pro Penryn (scoring at 23), HDX16t (scoring at 17.8), ThinkPad T400 (scoring at 12.7), and Studio 15 (scoring at 7.3).

According to these results ThinkPad T400 is really a very good business laptop and Studio 15 is a budget laptop for casual uses.

Multimedia test (Photoshop CS3): ThinkPad T400 shows the best score (0:26sec). It is respectively followed by HDX16t (0:29 sec), Studio 15 (0:31 sec), Mac Pro with dual graphics (0:32 sec) and Mac Pro Penryn (0:35 sec).

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