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Apple Unveils New Macbook 986

Several readers have written in to mention that Apple has released the new Macbook on their site. Yahoo! has details from the press release: "With prices starting at just $1,099, the MacBook lineup includes three models: a 1.83 GHz and 2.0 GHz MacBook in a newly designed, sleek white enclosure and a 2.0 GHz MacBook in a stunning new black enclosure. The new MacBook offers performance up to five times faster than the iBook and up to four times faster than the 12-inch PowerBook with a completely new system architecture including a 667 MHz front-side bus and 667 MHz DDR2 SDRAM memory expandable to 2GB."
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Apple Unveils New Macbook

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  • by Ford Prefect ( 8777 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:24AM (#15341671) Homepage
    Anyone hoping for 9in MacBook Micros, 36in MacBook MegaPros or other outlandish designs might be disappointed - the hardware overview page [] describes the Apple laptop family as 'now complete'.

    So, is this the full range?

    The black MacBook seems a bit weird - it's $200 more than the nearest equivalent white model, except it has 20GB more hard disk and, erm, a rather pay-as-you-go black finish. Odd.
    • by jjeffrey ( 558890 ) * <> on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:27AM (#15341693) Homepage
      Apple's website saying the family is complete has no bearing at all on whether we can expect any new arrivals- it's not like they'd put "coming soon" and hurt the sales of the current products.
    • Not to mention all models have Intel integrated graphics. Boo! At least the old ones had ATI (crappy ATI, but ATI nonetheless).

      At least the other hardware is nice. A laptop with a camera for only $1100? Sweet.
      • by Dan Ost ( 415913 )
        At least Intel makes documentation available so that open source drivers can be written
        for their kit. I'll take that over ATI-blob supported hardware.
    • by the web ( 696015 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:48AM (#15341892)
      Well, I'm gonna get a white 2.0 dual core, upgrade the harddrive for $60 and buy a $5 can of black spray paint. A net savings of $135!
    • Re:Family complete? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by pla ( 258480 )
      The black MacBook seems a bit weird - it's $200 more than the nearest equivalent white model

      You forget the company that produced it...

      The FP mentioning CPU, then color, then - nothing! - as the key specs of this product should give a bit of a clue on the target audience.

      Not sayin' it doesn't sounds like a hell of a nice laptop (and for a decent price at that, amazingly enough). Just... Know your audience.
  • and a 2.0 GHz MacBook in a stunning new black enclosure.

    What the article doesn't mention is that the new black enclosure is made from the same patented finish as the ipod nano [] ;-)

    Seriously, $1099 for the low end one is making these look pretty tempting, but I'm going to have to wait for the fourth gen (instead of usual second gen) for mactel stuff.
  • by gEvil (beta) ( 945888 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:25AM (#15341676)
    Leave it to Apple to set the trends again. I bet all the other companies are gonna copy them and come out with black laptops now... ; )
  • Once again... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by daveschroeder ( 516195 ) * on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:25AM (#15341679)
    ...FireWire is present [], as it is on all new Intel-based Macs to date, proving that FireWire isn't going anywhere (anytime soon, anyway) on Apple's computer products. It also totally shatters Jason O'Grady's ridiculous predictions [] that "FireWire is gone completely from the new Intel iBooks", which were widely accepted as fact. Of course, it made zero sense at that time, too, but that didn't stop it from spreading around the net like wildfire.

    Note also that the MacBook features the Core Duo, not Core Solo, and the screen resolution has increased from 1024x768 on the old 12" iBook and PowerBook to 1280x800.

    With the array of connectivity [] (mini DVI also supports VGA, S-Video, and composite), built-in Bluetooth and 802.11a/b/g (yes, a is included and supported by the OS), the ability to boot Windows natively or use Windows (or other x86 OSes) in virtualization, for just over $1000, this looks to be a great deal.

    It appears that some of the traditional differences between the "iBook" and "PowerBook" line are shrinking even more; I wouldn't be surprised if there was no 12" MacBook Pro based on the new MacBook's specifications.

    One hopes that Apple is applying a reasonable amount of thermal paste on the new MacBooks. ;-)
    • Re:Once again... (Score:4, Informative)

      by SlamMan ( 221834 ) <squigit AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:35AM (#15341781)
      Apple's pages list this a replacement for the 12" Powerbook as well as the iBook.
  • by ellem ( 147712 ) * <ellem52 AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:25AM (#15341683) Homepage Journal
    I mean 200USD for black and a 20GB bigger HD?

    And for the love of God why don't they just give them all 1GB of RAM?

    Still it's pretty and I want one.
  • video -- ugh! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gEvil (beta) ( 945888 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:27AM (#15341697)
    Intel GMA 950 graphics processor with 64MB of DDR2 SDRAM shared with main memory
  • by PurdueGraphicsMan ( 722107 ) * on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:27AM (#15341700) Homepage Journal
    is a brushed metal MacBook Pro that's black. That would be sweet.
  • RAM (Score:4, Interesting)

    by LoSLapPy ( 865798 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:28AM (#15341705)
    anyone notice that now its 2x256 and not 1x512?

  • by tji ( 74570 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:31AM (#15341736)
    This new laptop is much closer to the MacBook Pro than I expected. I thought they might only do Core Solo processors, to create more distinction between the two levels.

    I had been planning on getting the 15 or 17" Pro, but looking at the specs on these - and the price, I might go for the MacBook.

    The biggest difference I see is the display resolution.. 1280x800, like the older PowerBooks.
  • New keyboard design (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Tibor the Hun ( 143056 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:33AM (#15341757)
    I wonder what they've changed with respect to keyboard.
    They claim that it is firmer than before.
    Picture []

    Seeing as it is more than a quarter of an inch thinner than the iBook G4, this one looks like a pretty nice little system.
  • by Gleng ( 537516 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:33AM (#15341758)
    I mean, it's really not that great value for the black ones. It's quite an expensive price bump for the black finish and an extra few gigs of hard dr....OH GOD I WANT A BLACK MACBOOK!

    • Ladies and gentlemen, that "woompf" sound you just heard was teh reality distortion field taking effect. You can see how the subjects opinion of the black macbook changes instantly and with great force.
  • Display Spanning (Score:4, Interesting)

    by hexdcml ( 553714 ) <hexdcml@hotmail . c om> on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:33AM (#15341761)
    On the DESIGN page, looking the image, it looks like the new MacBooks support display spanning instead of the expected 'mirroring'.

    Dual Purpose Get the big picture when you join your MacBook with either a stunning 20- or 23-inch Apple Cinema Display by way of a crystal-clear connection miniDVI port. (Requires miniDVI to DVI adapter, sold separately.)

    It looks sweet.

  • by Clockwurk ( 577966 ) * on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:35AM (#15341782) Homepage
    is the addition of screen spanning, mirroring, and lid closed operation with a external monitor. Integrated graphics are a bummer, but are expected given their appearence in the mac mini. The new screen is long overdue (a 1024x768 screen doesn't cut it in 2006). Now the only thing we still are waiting on is a replacement for the powermac, but seeing as how few of the major pro apps are universal binaries, that release may be a ways down the road.
  • by objekt ( 232270 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:38AM (#15341796) Homepage
    Something this topic is sorely lacking []
  • Great! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Nexum ( 516661 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:39AM (#15341802)
    UK education prices are: £643 with VAT (£548 without).

    What a great deal for a Core Duo 1.83GHz CPU, decent other specs, software etc. plus the little Front Row remote.

    From the Dell UK website, for £802(the link page here [] says £649, when you go to the configure page, the price jumps to £802, wtf?) for the Inspiron M, you can get a slower CPU (1.66GHz Core Duo), same memory, same HDD, inferior Graphics (Intel GMA 900 vs GMA 950 in the Macbook). Same optical drive, except the Macbook is slot loading (nice). Both have 802.11g networking, but the Macbook also comes with Bluetooth 2.0EDR, the Dell has no Bluetooth capability.

    The Dell does have an extra inch on the screen than the Macbook, but is not widescreen.

    The Dell lacks:
    - Bluetooth
    - Remote
    - iLife
    - OS X

    The Dell is also bigger in every dimension. Heavier too. Whichever of the two prices give you (£649 or £802) it's clear that the Macbook is very competitive price-wise if you're a student. (We are comparing prices for students here, but I believe the price compares well without the student discount too.)

    Looks like a great little machine at a really affordable price. Very impressed, I was worried we'd see some price hikes.

    (Ah just figured out the pricing difference on the Dell site, they 'automatically' select the highest service-level when you go to the configure screen... great.)
  • by jedrek ( 79264 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:43AM (#15341837) Homepage
    It's late May, HS graduation is around the corner and here comes Apple with its flagship college laptop. At this price point, and with these specs, I'm pretty sure Apple won't be able to fill demand. A it's an $1100 Apple engineered laptop with built-in webcam, wifi and bluetooth that can also run Windows (and run it VERY well) - AWESOME. Sure, nobody's going to be playing games on it - nobody ever bought an Apple laptop to play games before (generalization) - but 90% of college students aren't CS majors and there are probably more people interested in the iSight web cam then in 3D performance.

    Not too big, not so small that you can't see the screen, with a LOT of horsepower under the hood and the incredible iLife package to boot. The only comparable performance/form factor laptops I can find after a cursory search are $1700+ VAIOs, so the price point is pretty great too. If I were a betting man, I'd be putting a buy order on some Apple stock today.

    (All this said, the only one I would ever think about getting is the lowest-end model and dropping in some extra RAM.)
  • by Fr05t ( 69968 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:44AM (#15341852)
    "... MacBook in a stunning new black enclosure."

    And here is the new MacBook logo []
  • by babbling ( 952366 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:58AM (#15341958)
    Introducing the superfast, blogging, podcasting, do-everything-out-of-the-box MacBook.

    Finally, a laptop that can do blogging and podcasting. This is exactly what I've been waiting for! Go Apple!
  • by jrau ( 880696 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @09:59AM (#15341959)
    So, apparently, for no extra charge, you can now get a glossy screen on the MacBook Pro. Can anyone explain to me why you would want a glossy screen? It just seems like it would make the glare rediculous.
    • by boomerny ( 670029 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @10:05PM (#15347614)
      I got a new Macbook today to replace an aging Pismo and I was worried about the glossy screen too. Even in the Apple store I was looking at it from every angle trying to see if the screen would be an issue. Once I got home and started using it though I found it's not a problem at all. The only time I can see any glare is if the background is black.
  • by ip_freely_2000 ( 577249 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @10:00AM (#15341965)
    I was really hoping Apple would step up and try to develop one. The Win Tablet market is so inadequate.
  • by ZombieRoboNinja ( 905329 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @10:01AM (#15341974)
    Decided I'd browse over to Dell and see how big the "Apple premium" is sitting right now.

    Dell Inspiron E1405:
    14.1" screen (1280x800)
    Core Duo 1.83
    1 GB RAM (can't get 512)
    80 GB HD
    Total cost: $1540

    13.3" screen (1280x800)
    Core Duo 1.83
    512 MB RAM
    80 GB HD
    built-in Webcam
    Total cost: $1100 ...So the Apple premium now stands at -$340, close as I can figure.
  • Glossy screen? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by caseih ( 160668 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @10:15AM (#15342086)
    Apple's web site indicates this new model has a stunning glossy screen. Am I the only one that hates these new glossy screens. They reflect glare and just look bad. The screen on the MacBook Pro isn't glossy. Why does the MacBook need a glossy screen?
    • Re:Glossy screen? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by shagoth ( 100818 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @10:51AM (#15342376) Homepage
      It looks like it's got chiclet keys. They may not be rubber ala the PC Junior but I can't see that thing being comfy to type on.

      "MacBook features a unique new keyboard design that sits flush against the bed for a sleeker, lower profile. Plus, you'll find a firmer touch when typing. That ought to make your fingers happy." That has the ominous tone of marketing to cover for a crappy keyboard. It will be interesting once people start putting hands on these machines.
    • Re:Glossy screen? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by adpowers ( 153922 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @01:33PM (#15343667)
      Okay, so it's not just me. I saw that on the page and did a double take. I really don't like the look of glossy screens. I've been seeing more and more on Windows laptops and I've always thought, "God, I'm glad my laptop isn't like that." I prefer the matte and I hope Apple isn't moving away from that.
  • Warning label (Score:3, Insightful)

    by aed ( 156746 ) * on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @10:20AM (#15342121)
    "Thanks to a 13.3-inch glossy widescreen display that's 79% brighter...."
    Good thing they put this warning on the website, although they make it sound like a glossy display is actually a good thing...
    (Perhaps it is a good thing for people wanting to spend $1099 on an Apple designed make-up mirror?)
  • by necro81 ( 917438 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @10:28AM (#15342175) Journal
    Can anyone give me more information about what Apple means by a "glossy display?" The press release and website are quite short on details. As a matter of fact, on the MacBook's product page [], there is even a hyperlink referring to the glossy [] display. Alas, it takes me to the Design page which, while cool and informative, doesn't have any information about the display.

    I assume the glossy display is meant to improve the contrast and sharpen things up in general, getting away from the flat matte of most LCD screens. I'll probably have to wait a few weeks for pictures of this new laptop sitting side by side with an iBook to tell the difference (there is no Apple store in my remote viscinity).

    I am a little wary of it, however. I have encountered laptops with what I would have called "glossy" screens. Instead of the matte surface finish of a typical LCD, it looked like the LCD was encased in glass. No doubt this improved the screen clarity and contrast in darkened environments, but the screens were about as reflective as, well, plate glass.

    I trust apple to not go with something that flawed. Does anyone have more info?
    • It's probably the same tech as Dell's "TrueLife" displays. I just got one Dell's laptops with that feature, and everything is glossy (which means background lights show up more clearly), but this is offset by the fact the colors are bright and vibrant. It's it's the same tech, it means they put a coating that is smooth, and keeps the light coming from behind the LCD from becoming diffused, while at the same time has an index of refraction that is in between air and the LCD screen, which means that most of
  • by thatguywhoiam ( 524290 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @10:57AM (#15342435)
    One thing I always loved about the 12" Powerbook is that it is almost exactly the dimensions of an 8.5" x 11" standard sheet of paper - which meant it fit into any space a typical binder would fit. The 13" is nice, as is the aspect ratio, but I cannot help but mourn the loss of what I considered 'perfect' ultraportable laptop size.
  • Battery Performance (Score:3, Informative)

    by n8_f ( 85799 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @11:46AM (#15342828) Homepage
    It looks like the battery performance [] is much closer to the iBook than I thought it would be:

    Work Longer Unplugged
    MacBook offers up to 6 hours of battery life. (2.5 hours of DVD playback, 3.5 hours with wireless turned on.) Here's how to squeeze out every last second of battery power when you need it.

    Turn off AirPort and Bluetooth if you're not using them
    Disconnect peripherals not in use
    Quit applications not in use
    Eject CDs and DVDs not in use
    Choose Energy Saver in System Preferences, click the Show Details button, and:
    Select "Better Battery Life"
    Set MacBook to sleep after five minutes (or less) of inactivity
    Put the display to sleep after five minutes (or less) of inactivity
    Check the box next to "Put the hard disk to sleep when possible"

    It will be tempting to switch from my MBP just for the battery life. Although the weight is now only 6.4 ounces less. Still, if work didn't pay for my laptop, there is no question which one I'd buy. I already have an external DVD burner (and dual-layer to boot), so I'd get the cheapest and spend the extra $200 on maxing out the RAM. The only thing that would give me pause is the integrated graphics. I don't care about games, but I do use Aperture and some other pro apps and I'd like to know what difference this will make. Apple is going to be supply constrained for quite a while.
  • Desktop Rumors? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by BigZaphod ( 12942 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @11:46AM (#15342830) Homepage
    Does anyone have any guesses on when Apple might upgrade their G5 pro desktop line? I got my dad to finally consider getting a Mac, but now he's convinced that he needs the biggest and baddest machine possible before he'll buy one. (He won't just get a top of the line iMac at this point since it isn't "pro" enough somehow. *sigh*) Since the G5 appears to be on the way out, I told him to hold off buying a PowerPC desktop and wait for the Intel upgrade - but it has been awhile now, and there hasn't been any mention of upgrading the PowerMac line that I've heard. (And apparently the money to buy a new computer is burning a hole in his wallet or something - wish I had that problem!) He even called Apple to ask them, but the tech support response was that PowerMacs would never be upgraded and support for them would never be dropped. (Sounds a bit fishy to me... I suppose if they change the name to something without "Power" in there, technically the guy didn't lie.)
  • Glossy? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by BigZaphod ( 12942 ) on Tuesday May 16, 2006 @11:57AM (#15342895) Homepage
    Has anyone had a chance to play with these in-person yet in an Apple store? (There are no such stores around here...) How does the glossy display look and feel? How does it compare with a standard Windows screen or vs. the displays used on the MacBook Pros or older PowerBooks and iBooks?

Q: How many IBM CPU's does it take to execute a job? A: Four; three to hold it down, and one to rip its head off.