Feeds
75%
Apple MacBook Pro 13in mid-2012

Apple MacBook Pro 13in

Simply the best? Um…

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Nice, but...

The faster processor and RAM do produce a modest speedbump – up from 2280 to 2450, when using Boot Camp to run PCMark 7 – but that’s not going to have existing users camping overnight to upgrade from last year’s model. In fact, from a practical point of view it’s the two USB3 ports that will probably provide the greatest benefit in this model as it means that Mac users no longer have to pay over the odds for Firewire or Thunderbolt storage.

Apple MacBook Pro 13in mid-2012

Peekaboo

The new integrated Intel HD 4000 graphics provides a slight improvement to 3D graphics performance, but still only just managed 30fps when running Far Cry 2. An Ultrabook or MacBook Air can afford to sacrifice performance in order to cut down on weight, but that level of performance doesn’t really impress when you’re paying £1000 for a fully-featured laptop that weighs in at 2kg. Dell’s XPS 14z weighs the same amount, yet manages to provide a 14in screen and a dedicated graphics card for about £150 less.

Battery life and display quality are as good as ever but, again, they’re no longer best-in-category. The screen, admittedly, is a delight, with a bright, sharp image and bold colours, although its 1280 x 800 resolution should perhaps have been tweaked to the slighter more widescreen 1366 x 768 that is now standard amongst 13in PC laptops. There’s also no HDMI, unless you cough up another £25-£30 for a third-party adaptor that won’t carry Apple’s guarantee of compatibility.

Thrashing PCMark 7 non-stop runs the battery down in about two hours, although less taxing tasks such as Wi-Fi streaming on the BBC iPlayer were able to last for a good 4.5 hours – pretty much the same as on the previous model. In practice, that should last most people for a full day – it’s just that there’s plenty of competition that can now match it and even do better.

Verdict

When my esteemed colleague Dabbsie reviewed the 2011 model last November he bemoaned the MacBook’s high price but concluded that it was justified as this was ‘the best bloody entry-level laptop in the world’. This year’s model is just as good, but the Windows PC competition is now catching up and, at this price, it’s hard to argue that it’s still the best. ®

More Notebook Reviews

Ten...
Ultrabooks
HP Envy 14
Spectre
Toshiba
Portégé
Z830-10N
Asus
Zenbook
UX31E
Dell
XPS 13

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

75%
Apple MacBook Pro 13in mid-2012

Apple MacBook Pro 13in

Apple's classy 13in notebook gets an Ivy Bridge upgrade and USB 3.
Price: £999 (Core i5, 500GB HDD), £1249 (Core i7, 750GB HDD) RRP

More from The Register

next story
TEEN RAMPAGE: Kids in iPhone 6 'Will it bend' YouTube 'prank'
iPhones bent in Norwich? As if the place wasn't weird enough
George Clooney, WikiLeaks' lawyer wife hand out burner phones to wedding guests
Day 4: 'News'-papers STILL rammed with Clooney nuptials
iPAD-FONDLING fanboi sparks SECURITY ALERT at Sydney airport
Breaches screening rules cos Apple SCREEN ROOLZ, ok?
Crouching tiger, FAST ASLEEP dragon: Smugglers can't shift iPhone 6s
China's grey market reports 'sluggish' sales of Apple mobe
A moment of brilliance? UPnP for Internet of Stuff lightbulbs
Thus doth tech of future illuminate present, etc
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
The British Museum plonks digital bricks on world of Minecraft
Institution confirms it's cool with joining the blocky universe
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.