Apple's Notebook Announcements

The various Live Blogs are up and running.

First news of interest to me (as someone who would consider gaming on one of these) is the new NVIDIA 9400M, which provides 55% graphics performance compared to the 8600 GT. Is that good? I don’t know! But it’s certainly better than Intel integrated graphics crap.

Oh, and a new glass touchpad. [EDIT] Which is multitouchy, of course, and buttonless. So, no more complaning about lack of two button support, Windows users. Now it’s NO BUTTON support. But four finger gestures are go!

The 8600gt is certainly capable, but it’s still a notebook chip.

Too bad they made it ugly though.

Well, looks like they’re now using the 9600M GT for people who don’t want the “integrated” 9400M and are willing to pay the price. Looking forward to performance with WoW numbers in the near future ;)

They’re really proud of that mini-display port. I don’t get it. What’s wrong with HDMI? I was hoping they’d finally add HDMI. And still no mention of Blu-ray. At this point, I think Apple’s saying “screw you” to Sony, and is betting the farm on 720p content from the iTunes Store for HD to the Mac.

So is the Macbook a dead line and it’s all Air and Pro from here on out?

edit oops spoke too soon.

Nope, the “one more thing” is the Macbook.

So far the price is reduced to $999 entry level. And it’s otherwise the same in terms of looks and new tech as the new MacBook Pro.

Well, the live coverage is talking about how the Macbook is the best selling Mac ever and they just did a rev-up on the product line so, no, I’d say far from dead.

Hm, well, wait. I dunno what the price of the entry level is $999 for, but the new MacBooks come in two models: $1299 and $1599, with the main differences being processor speed, hard drive size, and backlit keyboard.

Is the $999 for the old style white plastic one? Answer: Yes! They’re going to keep making them.

Yes, the $999 is for the old style one.

Yeah, seems so. New one looks like a nice update.

They seem to be done.

I have to admit, the $1299 MacBook seems pretty decent. I don’t know how useful keyboard backlighting turns out to be in reality (anyone have any anecdotes to offer?), and I can always upgrade the RAM myself. 2.0 GHz is more than good enough for what I’d be doing, and I like the 13.3" form factor, it’s a lot easier to take notes on in class.

I just don’t know what the gaming performance of the 9400M will be compared to the 9600M. Sure, I doubt I’ll be able to play Crysis at max settings, but how about the average MMO of today? Or even some of the Blizzard titles coming out at decent framerates and native resolution?

Pretty uninspiring event. The new style for MBP’s is very nice, but everything is way overpriced, as usual. The standard plastic Macbooks need to be priced between $700 & $800 bucks.

Ah, HDMI can’t drive a 30" external display, didn’t realize it wasn’t dual-link.

So that’s why. I suppose that makes sense. I wonder if the audio out connector can handle digital audio, then? I’d want that, at least, for hooking up to my HDTV.

I like Steve’s answer to the “why no Blu-ray?” question:

“Blu-ray is just a bag of hurt. It’s great to watch the movies, but the licensing of the tech is so complex, we’re waiting till things settle down and Blu-ray takes off in the marketplace.”

I’m going to be looking to pick up a Mac Pro sometime next year so I’m hoping they rev that line sometime in the next 12 months. HEAR ME, JOBS!!

The Mac audio connectors have done optical digital out for some time now.

I’d expect the Mac Pro refresh as soon as the server/workstation Nehalems start shipping.

Not so. The HDMI spec, at least, calls for a max of 2560x1600 [b]at ten bit color[/b].

So uh, why don’t they lower the licensing? They are on the Board of Directors. You’d think they could get an employee discount or something. :P

I’d expect the Mac Pro refresh as soon as the server/workstation Nehalems start shipping.

Ahh, you’re probably right. Very nice…