Apple Announces New, Cheaper MacBook Pros; OS X Mavericks is Free to Download
October 22, 2013 1:36 PM
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Apple refreshes its MacBook Pro range
Apple announced that it is revamping its MacBook Pro lineup. The new 13” MacBook Pro is now thinner, and lighter, and of course is powered by fourth generation Intel Core (Haswell) processors. It also gets up to 9 hours battery life. Like the MacBook Air ultraportables that were updated earlier this year, the new 13” MacBook Pro gets 802.11ac, PCIe SSDs and Thunderbolt 2.
Apple is also dropping the price of entry for the 13” MacBook Pro from $1,499 to $1,299. That base configuration will get you a 2.4GHz quad-core processor, 4GB of RAM, Intel Iris integrated graphics, and a 128GB SSD.
The 15” MacBook Pro also features fourth generation Intel Core processors along with the hardware updates seen on its smaller brother. The 15” MacBook Pro is also available with an NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M discrete graphics card.
The base price has also dropped from $2,199 to $1,999. The base configuration comes with a 2GHz Core i7 processor, 8GB of RAM, Iris Pro graphics, and a 256GB SSD.
Apple’s Phil Schiller also announced that the all-new Mac Pro will ship this December with a price tag of $2,999. That configuration will get you a 3.7GHz quad-core Xeon processor, 12GB of RAM, dual FirePro D300 GPUs and a 256GB SSD.
On a related note, Apple has announced that OS X 10.9, Mavericks, will be a free download for all Mac hardware that supports the operating system.
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The Von Matrices
The Von Matrices
10/23/2013 12:35:23 AM
All of the parts in that base system are reasonable to estimate even if they aren't currently available.
The FirePro D300 is a rebrand of the W7000, which retails for $650 each.
The Xeon CPU is the Ivy Bridge-E replacement for the E5-1620, which costs $294 in tray (Intel isn't charging a premium for Ivy Bridge-E versus Sandy Bridge-E in its 2xxx series, so I don't see why this one would be any different).
The memory is three sticks of ECC DDR3-1866, which should cost around $200.
I would reasonably assume the PCIe SSD commands a premium versus a SATA SSD, so let's say it costs $250.
The motherboard is high end with dual Thunderbolt controllers, so let's say it costs $300.
Finally, I'll be generous and say that it costs $150 for the case and custom cooling solution.
With that you have a cost of around $2500 for the parts, and remember this is based on retail pricing on most of the individual components. The real cost of hardware to Apple is probably somewhere around $2000-$2200, although for $3000 the end user does get tech support a warranty and an operating system.
Maybe it isn't that overpriced for the hardware, but it is certainly heavily weighted toward GPU performance. I know Apple is obsessed with GPU performance but I think their decision here was unwise. By choosing dual GPUs over dual CPUs they certainly made it much more of a niche product. The number of applications that can make use of more CPU power is much greater than the number of applications that can make use of more GPU power. The decision to go uniprocessor is especially bad because Intel prices its 12-core CPUs at $2400 for the least expensive E5-2695 V2. Requiring you to buy a 12-core processor instead of two 6-core processors is a $1500 difference.
"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007
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