New MacBook Pro unveiled in two M1-powered flavours

This evening Apple unveiled two new additions to its M1 foundry in the form of the M1 Pro and M1 Max. These new chipsets are said to be the firm’s most powerful to date and both will be available as options for a freshly debuted MacBook Pro, which was also revealed this evening.

“Apple today unveiled the completely reimagined MacBook Pro powered by the all-new M1 Pro and M1 Max — the first pro chips designed for the Mac. Available in 14- and 16-inch models, MacBook Pro delivers groundbreaking processing, graphics, and machine learning (ML) performance whether running on battery or plugged in, as well as amazing battery life — enabling workflows previously unimaginable on a notebook,” the company explained in a post on its press portal.

Along with the enhancements to the silicon, Apple added (or replaced) some elements to the 2021 MacBook Pro. This comes in the form of a Liquid Retina XDR display, a 1080p FaceTime camera and a reworked audio system.

For those frustrated by the dongle life of recent MacBooks, there are now a bevy of ports on hand, as well as a return to the much-loved MagSafe system for charging, which is now in its third iteration.

“Combined with macOS Monterey, which is engineered down to its core to take full advantage of M1 Pro and M1 Max, the user experience is simply unrivaled. Shattering the limits of what a notebook can do, MacBook Pro is designed for developers, photographers, filmmakers, 3D artists, scientists, music producers, and anyone who wants the world’s best notebook,” adds Apple.

For those unconvinced by the jargon, Apple also shared some figures comparing the performance of its 14″ and 16″ MacBook Pros to that of its previous generation 13″ models.

To that end some of the highlighted statistics include:

  • “Up to 9.2x faster 4K render in Final Cut Pro with M1 Pro, and up to 13.4x faster with M1 Max.
  • Up to 7.2x faster scene edit detection in 1080p ProRes 422 video in Adobe Premiere Pro.
  • Up to 2.5x faster render in Maxon Cinema 4D with Redshift with M1 Pro, and up to 4x faster with M1 Max.”

As such, it looks like the new MacBook Pros are very much aimed at the professional content creator crowd and those involved in data analytics.

No local details on the release or price of the new MacBook Pro have been shared for any of the four available models at this stage, but the notebook is already up for pre-order in the US. The 14″ variant starts at $1 999 (~R29 345) and the 16″ option starts at $2 499 (~R36 686).


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