Apple Unveils M3 MacBook Pro: Faster Chips, Mini-LED Displays, Up to 36GB RAM

At its latest product launch event, Apple unveiled a new generation of MacBook Pro models featuring the company’s latest M3 chipsets. The new 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros boast significant performance and design improvements.

Headlining the updates are Apple’s new M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max silicon. Manufactured on TSMC’s cutting-edge 3nm node, the M3 chips deliver major speed and efficiency gains over Apple’s previous M-series processors.

Compared to the M1, Apple claims the M3 offers 20% faster CPU performance and 30% faster graphics, higher-end M3 Pro and M3 Max push performance even further for professional workloads.

Apple M3 Processor

The new baseline 14-inch MacBook Pro comes equipped with the M3 chip. Configurable upgrades are available to the M3 Pro and new top-of-the-line M3 Max, which Apple says makes it the fastest compact pro laptop ever.

Adding to the performance enhancements, the new MacBook Pros support up to 36GB of fast LPDDR5 RAM and up to 4TB of SSD storage. Apple has also improved the thermal system for better sustained performance under heavy workloads.

Distinguishing itself from its non-Pro sibling, the 16-inch MacBook Pro maxes out with the M3 Pro or M3 Max chips. Graphics performance sees a major uplift on the Pro model thanks to a 16-core GPU on the M3 Pro and massive 38-core GPU on the M3 Max.

The displays on both the 14-inch and 16-inch versions deliver the same stellar quality with mini-LED backlighting capable of peak 1,600 nit brightness. ProMotion adaptive refresh rates up to 120Hz remain for silky smooth visuals.

Battery life has also been improved. Apple quotes up to 22 hours video playback on the new 14-inch MacBook Pro, while the heavier-duty 16-inch model still provides up to 15 hours.

Other marquee features like the 1080p webcam, Wi-Fi 6E connectivity, and six speaker sound system carry over from prior generations. Both laptops offer a healthy selection of ports including 3x Thunderbolt 4, HDMI, SD card reader, and MagSafe charging.

With the new models, Apple is sunsetting the iconic 13-inch MacBook Pro. The larger 14-inch form factor seemingly provides the best balance of portability and usability.

Starting prices are set at $1,999 for the 14-inch MacBook Pro and $2,499 for the 16-inch model. As usual, extra memory, storage, and the upgraded M3 Pro/Max chips raise the cost further.

Nonetheless, the combination of bleeding-edge Apple silicon and proven premium hardware makes the latest MacBook Pros a compelling upgrade for power users, creative pros, and developers needing cutting-edge performance in a portable package.

For the majority of everyday users, the new MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro with M2 provide plenty of speed and capabilities at lower costs. But the addition of the M3 propels the higher-end MacBook Pros into a new echelon of power and performance.

EDITOR PICKED: 2023 MacBook Pro M2 Pro: Two-month experience using the Heavy Gift

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Max Hyland
Max Hyland
Long form contributor Apple iPhone, iPad, watch reviews, opinion, editorial

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