Apple just concluded its Unleashed 2021 event. The tech giant used the event to unveil a couple of audio products as well as the most powerful MacBooks till date.
The new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models will be powered by the new M1 Pro and M1 Max SoCs (system-on-a-chip). Apple says that this is the first time that SoCs will be used on Pro laptops. The company also revealed a new HomePod Mini and Third Generation AirPods. Apple also announced Apple Music’s new voice-only plan.
M1 Pro and M1 Max SoCs
The biggest announcement from today’s event was the new chips designed for the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models. Both new SoCs are built on the 5nm process node with Apple promising big bumps in performance across the board. The M1 Pro offers 70 percent better CPU performance and twice the graphics performance as compared to the M1.
While the architecture remains the same, the new M1 Pro opts for a 10-core CPU with eight performance cores and two power efficiency cores. The CPU is paired with a 16-core GPU with 2048 execution units. The M1 Pro supports configurations with up to 32GB of RAM and 200GB/s memory bandwidth. The new Pro chip also features twice the number of transistors (33.7 billion) as the standard M1 chip.
Apart from the powerful M1 Pro SoC, Apple also announced a more powerful M1 Max chip based on similar architecture. The M1 Max features the same CPU but doubles the memory bandwidth to 400GB/s and RAM support up to 64GB. The M1 Max also uses a 32-core GPU with 4,096 execution units. Apple claims that the M1 Max can deliver up to four times the GPU performance of the vanilla M1. The M1 Max is also the largest chip Apple has made with 57 billion transistors.
The M1 Pro supports up to two displays, while the M1 Max can support up to three displays and a 4K TV. The M1 Pro and M1 Max chips offer up to 1.7 times better CPU performance per watt as compared to the M1. Both the M1 Pro and M1 Max were shown to outpace unnamed laptops with four-core and eight-core chips.
14-inch MacBook Pro and 16-inch MacBook Pro
The new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros are the first to use the new M1 Pro and M1 Max SoCs. The 14-inch MacBook Pro also sports a 14.2-inch Liquid Retina Pro XDR display with the 120Hz refresh rate. The ProMotion display features a 3024x1964 pixels resolution. The 16-inch MacBook Pro shares the same chips as the 14-inch model. The 16-inch MacBook Pro (2021) opts for a 16.2-inch Liquid Retina Pro XDR display with a 120Hz refresh rate.
Both the MacBook Pro (2021) models feature the same mini-LED display technology. The new panel can deliver up to 1,000 nits of sustained brightness, 1,600 nits of peak brightness, and a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio. It supports a P3 wide colour gamut and supports one billion colours. Apple has also reinstated physical function keys on the MacBook Pro.
"The new MacBook Pro models bring back the physical function keys to replace the Touch Bar, bringing back the familiar, tactile feel of mechanical keys that Pro users love," it said.
Also Read: MacBook Pro price in India announced; new Apple laptops get M1 Pro, M1 Max chips
Apple also claims that the new 14-inch model can deliver up to 17 hours of video playback, while the 16-inch MacBook Pro models offer up to 21 hours of video playback on a single charge. MagSafe 3 charging support also comes to the new MacBook Pro models, delivering a charge of up to 50 percent in 30 minutes. The new MacBook Pro (2021) notebooks also come with updated ports, a powerful new speaker system, and a 1080p webcam. The new 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro come with macOS Monterey.
The 14-inch MacBook Pro (2021) features a starting price of Rs 1,94,900, while the 16-inch MacBook Pro (2021) will set you back Rs 2,39,900 for the base model.
Apple’s new AirPods have a redesigned custom driver and adaptive EQ. While the build quality is the same, the third-generation AirPods get a new design. The AirPods also feature six hours of continuous playback, going up to 30 hours with the case.
It features a MagSafe charging system. Apple is putting a major emphasis on spatial audio and Dolby Atmos on the third-generation AirPods. The Third-Generation AirPods are priced at Rs 18,500 in India and $179 in the US. The AirPods will be available for pre-order starting Monday and will go on sale from October 26.
Apple also announced new colour options for the HomePod Mini, which now arrive in yellow, orange, and blue, in addition to the white and black. Lastly, the company also announced a new voice-only plan
for $4.99. The Voice plan will allow you to use Siri voice assistant to access all Apple Music content across Apple devices. It will be available later in the fall in 17 countries.