Upgrades Make Retina MacBook Pro A Better Bargain – Macworld Review

Macworld’s James Galbraith notes that with the latest Retina MacBook Pro revision, some models got price cuts, some received slightly faster processors, and some got substantial RAM upgrades, and that the reduced cost for the 13-inch models and faster performance for the 15-inch models make Apple’s flagship laptops a better deal than ever.

Retina MacBook Pros’ RAM is not user-upgradable; but Galbraith observes that the standard 8GB of memory is sufficient for all but the most demanding users. Those who require more than that will need to get a 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro which can be configured with 16GB of RAM.

The rMBPs’ marquee feature remaims their ultra high resolution screens – 13-inch models featuring 2560-by-1600-pixel resolution and a pixel density of 227 pixels per square inch – four times greater than that of the MacBook Pros with standard screens.

The 13-inch base model’s price has been dropped from $1699 to $1499, and at $1699, the new high-end 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro costs $300 less than its predecessor as well as getting a slightly faster 2.6GHz Core i5 CPU – up form 2.5GHz Core i5 in the previous model.

The new 15-inch Retina MacBook Pros have 2880-by-1800-pixel resolution, with a slightly lower pixel density – 220 ppi – than the 13-inch Retina model. Galbraith notes that the 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro is also interestingly 0.04 inch thinner than the 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro, and weighs in at 4.46 pounds, about the same as the non-Retina 13-inch MacBook Pro. The new 15-inch models’ price points hold at $2199 and $2799, but the base model now has a faster, 2.4GHz Core i7 quad-core processor.

Galbraith reports that The high-end 13-inch 2.6GHz Core i5 Retina MacBook Pros Speedmark 8 score was 24 percent higher than that of the high-end 13-inch 2.9GHz Core i7 standard MacBook Pro, due almost entirely to the Retina MacBook Pro’s faster flash storage versus the non-Retina MacBook Pros standard 5400-rpm hard drive.

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