Apple announces MacBook Air refresh, all-new US-made Mac Pro

By on June 10, 2013, 1:35 PM

Apple announced an entirely new line of MacBook Airs at WWDC 2013. The company refreshed its skinny laptop with the latest and greatest from Intel -- namely, their new Haswell processor. Particularly, the refreshed laptops will use the ULT variants of the chip, which should result in 40% faster graphics and much improved battery life, up to nine hours in the 11-inch model and 12 hours with the larger 13-inch model.

Also new is support for 802.11ac Wi-Fi, the faster and not-yet-finalized standard that should greatly improve range and bring wireless transmission speeds up to a theoretical 1300Mbps. You’ll need to upgrade your router for that, of course, so naturally new AirPort base stations and Time Capsules are forthcoming as well.

Available today, the new MacBook Airs maintain the same pricing structure as their predecessors: $999 and $1,199 for the 11-inch model in 128GB and 256GB capacities, respectively, as well as $1,099 and $1,299 for the 13-inch variant with similar 128GB and 256GB storage options. Rest of specs are the same, we assume.

Next up, Apple surprised attendees by announcing an all new Mac Pro -- a model aimed squarely at the professional market that had been largely neglected for the past couple of years.

Design-wise the new Mac Pro is 1/8 the size of its older sibling and it features plenty of niceties under the hood. Among them are six Thunderbolt 2 ports -- enabling 4K video support and faster data throughput -- four USB 3 ports, dual AMD FirePro graphics, full flash storage, and up to 12 processing cores.

Keeping up with an earlier promise to bring back manufacturing jobs to the US, the new Mac Pro takes a step into that direction with the announcement that it will be fully assembled stateside. We’ll have to wait for pricing details as the new machine isn’t due until later this year (check out the beautiful product page).




User Comments: 26

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m4a4 m4a4 said:

US made? Isn't that code for "assembled in the US but parts made in china" or "parts made in US but assembled in china" or something like that? (so basically a deceiving label?)

I forget which on it was...

Guest said:

It will most likely be "Assembled in the U.S. Parts from China, Designed in California" Other companies are starting to do the same, like Lenovo in North Carolina.

JC713 JC713 said:

That new Mac Pro seems nice. It needed a refresh. iOS7 is amazing though .

Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

That new Mac Pro seems nice. It needed a refresh. iOS7 is amazing though .

Yeah, nearly as amazing as the price of the machines.

JC713 JC713 said:

Yeah, nearly as amazing as the price of the machines.

Well, Apple products are overpriced definitely. But OS X renders photos and video in CS6 much faster than Windows, so professionals like that.

m4a4 m4a4 said:

Yeah, nearly as amazing as the price of the machines.

Well, Apple products are overpriced definitely. But OS X renders photos and video in CS6 much faster than Windows, so professionals like that.

I doubt that. With equivalent hardware, I'd say they are about the same (provided you don't use an OS biased renderer)

JC713 JC713 said:

I doubt that. With equivalent hardware, I'd say they are about the same (provided you don't use an OS biased renderer)

I remember reading a benchmark a year back that shows the Retina MBP demolishing a gaming laptop in Photoshop performance, I cannot find it though. When I do, I will post it.

m4a4 m4a4 said:

I have benchmarks [link]

Ummm... that showed a $2k Windows machine destroying a $4k Macbook. I don't get your point....

Not only did it destroy it in performance (in respect to power to price ratio), but it has a worse processor and still kept up...

JC713 JC713 said:

Ummm... that showed a $2k Windows machine destroying a $4k Macbook. I don't get your point....

Not only did it destroy it in performance (in respect to power to price ratio), but it has a worse processor and still kept up...

That was not the benchmark I wanted to show. It is not a fair battle. A 670M vs a 650M... that is why I removed it. I am still looking for the past benchmark in which apples to apples were compared (650M vs 650M), not apples to oranges (which was done in that link I first provided).

Nobina Nobina said:

Ummm... that showed a $2k Windows machine destroying a $4k Macbook. I don't get your point....

Not only did it destroy it in performance (in respect to power to price ratio), but it has a worse processor and still kept up...

That was not the benchmark I wanted to show. It is not a fair battle. A 670M vs a 650M... that is why I removed it. I am still looking for the past benchmark in which apples to apples were compared (650M vs 650M), not apples to oranges (which was done in that link I first provided).

The best benchmark would be to take a PC and install Windows and Hackintosh, then you can compare.

JC713 JC713 said:

The best benchmark would be to take a PC and install Windows and Hackintosh, then you can compare.

But the point is that you compare equivalent specs on Windows and on OS X and see which performs better.

VitalyT VitalyT said:

Quite disappointed about Macbook Air. I was looking forward to seeing a worthy upgrade for my Dec-2011 Macbook Air 13", but it didn't happen.

What I was hoping for was to see the following:

1. Better screen, to get one of these: 1600x1050, 1080P or retina. Instead, the screen was borrowed again from 2 or 3 generations from the past. Even when the last iMac came out half-year ago there were a number of improvements in the screen quality. How come we get nothing again for Macbook Air?

2. Option to get 16GB of RAM. Didn't happen.

3. Full support for Wi-Fi AC. Instead, we got cut-down 3-channel version of it. Why???!!!

So, the SSD has been upgraded, Wi-Fi is better now, better battery life. That's all good, but none of these will offer a noticeable improvement in my day-to-day use to justify an upgrade.

Other ultrabooks are coming out to offer a far better spec, like Sony's new Vaio Pro 13", which I'm now thinking of buying. It has pretty much the best 13'3" 1080P touch-screen display, the kind you just wouldn't want a better one.

m4a4 m4a4 said:

That was not the benchmark I wanted to show. It is not a fair battle. A 670M vs a 650M... that is why I removed it. I am still looking for the past benchmark in which apples to apples were compared (650M vs 650M), not apples to oranges (which was done in that link I first provided).

The problem is that it is apples to "oranges" because of the apple tax. I don't care if OSX runs faster or not, you cannot find a Mac that will beat an equivalent PC for a similar price...

JC713 JC713 said:

The problem is that it is apples to "oranges" because of the apple tax. I don't care if OSX runs faster or not, you cannot find a Mac that will beat an equivalent PC for a similar price...

LOL so true.

1 person liked this | JC713 JC713 said:

Quite disappointed about Macbook Air. I was looking forward to seeing a worthy upgrade for my Dec-2011 Macbook Air 13", but it didn't happen.

What I was hoping for was to see the following:

1. Better screen, to get one of these: 1600x1050, 1080P or retina. Instead, the screen was borrowed again from 2 or 3 generations from the past. Even when the last iMac came out half-year ago there were a number of improvements in the screen quality. How come we get nothing again for Macbook Air?

2. Option to get 16GB of RAM. Didn't happen.

3. Full support for Wi-Fi AC. Instead, we got cut-down 3-channel version of it. Why???!!!

So, the SSD has been upgraded, Wi-Fi is better now, better battery life. That's all good, but none of these will offer a noticeable improvement in my day-to-day use to justify an upgrade.

Other ultrabooks are coming out to offer a far better spec, like Sony's new Vaio Pro 13", which I'm now thinking of buying. It has pretty much the best 13'3" 1080P touch-screen display, the kind you just wouldn't want a better one.

They didnt even put in a 1080P webcam.

1 person liked this | St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

They didnt even put in a 1080P webcam.

Webcam? What is this blasphemy!! It's an innovative FaceTime camera!!

1 person liked this | JC713 JC713 said:

Webcam? What is this blasphemy!! It's an innovative FaceTime camera!!

Lol I know that naming garbage is so stupid. But the point was that they didnt even upgrade the webcam like people were saying they would.

m4a4 m4a4 said:

Heh, I just saw actual pictures for the mac pro. I guess they were going for the trash bin look...

Macbin?

JC713 JC713 said:

Heh, I just saw actual pictures for the mac pro. I guess they were going for the trash bin look...

Macbin?

I think it is a neat little idea. But seriously, what is so wrong with a tower (old Mac Pro)? That looks professional... The only reason people will buy the new one is because of the updated specs.

VitalyT VitalyT said:

Just out of curiosity I got in touch with our local Apple retailer who offered me an excellent trade-in on my Dec-2011 Macbook Air of 500 euro. This one is tough to resist, and I probably will do the swap for the latest now...

m4a4 m4a4 said:

I think it is a neat little idea. But seriously, what is so wrong with a tower? That looks professional... The only reason people will buy the new one is because of the updated specs.

It seriously looks like a trash bin. And it looks inconvenient.

Think about it, most desktops are meant for rectangular PC's (and would look better with one). This would either stick out like a sore thumb, or not fit well at all. But that might just be my opinion

2 people like this | VitalyT VitalyT said:

The new Mac Pro - take a break!

After all, Apple is for everyone...

JC713 JC713 said:

It seriously looks like a trash bin. And it looks inconvenient.

Think about it, most desktops are meant for rectangular PC's (and would look better with one). This would either stick out like a sore thumb, or not fit well at all. But that might just be my opinion

I was talking about the old Mac Pro being professional. There was nothing wrong with it.

2 people like this | captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

US made? Isn't that code for "assembled in the US but parts made in china" or "parts made in US but assembled in china" or something like that? (so basically a deceiving label?)

I forget which on it was...

You forgot the part where the plant will only create about a half dozen American jobs, all of the work will be done by robots, who curiously don't have to file an income tax return.

In any case, maybe Apple will bribe someone high up in the NSA to declare this turd, "weapons grade", like the G-4 was, and get a whole practically free theme for an ad campaign on the coattails of that declaration.

Other than that, I visited "the beautiful product page", and came to this conclusion. This monstrosity looks like R2-d2's evil twin. Not only that, the picture of it with its insides spread out, looks like R2-D2's evil twin whipping open its raincoat and flashing its junk on a street corner .....

m4a4 m4a4 said:

I was talking about the old Mac Pro being professional. There was nothing wrong with it.

Oh, well then I agree with you. Should be more specific next time...

JC713 JC713 said:

Oh, well then I agree with you. Should be more specific next time...

Yeah, I fixed it .

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