Apple on Monday unveiled a family of new MacBooks Pro laptops running on its latest M3 processors at its “Scary Fast” event just ahead of Halloween.
The company unveiled an upgraded baseline 14-inch MacBook Pro running on the new M3 chip. Power users can opt for a version of the 14-inch MacBook Pro and 16-inch MacBook Pro running on the faster M3 Pro and M3 Max processors. The iMac, which hasn’t gotten an update in two and a half years, gets upgraded with the new M3 processor as well.
The new family of M3 processors marks a shrinking of the upgrade cycle, with Apple just unveiling the M2 Pro and M2 Max chips at the beginning of this year, which arrived in the MacBook Pro 14 and 16. Last year, Apple unveiled its M2 in June, but built off of that with the M2 Pro and M2 Max in January. The company stressed these new models represent a major jump for people still running off of an Intel-powered Mac, with up to 11 times the performance.
While the overall PC market has slowed, Apple has seen a resurgence of its own Mac business, first during the pandemic but sustained through consumers and businesses buying the newer versions powered by its own silicon. The company has spent the last few years overhauling its entire lineup to run on its M line of ARM-based processors — the same kind powering its iPhones and iPads. The M chips are appealing because they offer better battery life, consume less power and, in some configurations, boasts superior processing power.
The M family of processors led to the “creation of the strongest and most capable lineup in the history of the personal computer,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said during the event.
The event was held at the unusually late time of 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and comes just three days before it’s slated to report its fiscal fourth-quarter financial results.
Apple executives touted its smaller 3 nanometer architecture, which means it can fit more transistors into a much smaller space, allowing for faster processing using less power. Features include “dynamic caching,” which allows the processor to more smartly allocate GPU resources, which will help run things like video games and 3D rendering tasks more efficiently. It’ll also feature hardware-accelerated ray tracing, which makes the visuals of video games far more realistic.
The company said all MacBook Pros deliver the same level of performance whether plugged in or on a battery. The MacBooks are all expected to last for 22 hours on a single charge. The Liquid Retina HDR displays have a sustained 1,000 nits of brightness, and can go as high as 1,600 nits.
Lastly, the MacBook Pros come in silver and Space Gray.
Here’s a breakdown of the new products.
- MacBook Pro 14: This is the new “base” model for the lineup of MacBook Pro devices. The company said this is for students and professionals dealing with more everyday tasks. It starts at $1,599 for the 512GB model, and $1,799 for the $1TB model.
- MacBook Pro 14 with M3 Pro: This is a model for coders, researchers and anyone with more involved tasks. It can power two external high-resolution displays. It starts at $1,999, with another configuration with additional processing cores for $2,399.
- MacBook Pro 14 with M3 Max: This is for people who work in animation, 3D rendering, video editing and artificial intelligence work, and can power four high-resolution displays. It starts at $3,199.
- MacBook Pro 16 with M3: The base version of the larger Pro starts at $2,499.
- MacBook Pro 16 with M3 Pro: There are two configurations, with the first starting at $2,899 and the second at $3,499.
- MacBook Pro 16 with M3 Max: The ultimate Pro model costs $3,999.
- iMac: The 24-inch all-in-one computer also gets the M3 processor. It starts at $1,299.