The Bottom Line
- Sturdy and Stylish Aluminum Case Design
- Swappable Hard Drive and Battery Compartment
- Faster DDR3 Memory
- Limited Expansion Ports
- Glossy Screen Can Be Difficult to Use In Certain Light
- DisplayPort Adapters Not Included
- Intel Core 2 Duo P7350 Dual Core Mobile Processor
- 2GB PC3-8500 DDR3 Memory
- 160GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
- 8x DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Burner
- 13.3" WXGA (1280x800) Wide LED Display with iSight Webcam
- NVIDIA GeForce 9400M Integrated Graphics
- Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11a/g/n Wireless, Bluetooth v2.1
- Two USB 2.0, Mini-DisplayPort
- 12.8" x 9" x 1" @ 4.5 lbs.
- Mac OSX 10.5, iLife '08
Guide Review - Apple MacBook 2.0 GHz 13.3-inch Ultraportable Laptop PC
11/10/08 - The first thing that most people will notice about the new MacBook is case that looks exactly like the larger MacBook Pro. The case is cut from a block of aluminum giving the system its low weight yet extremely solid feel. This is one extremely well built laptop that should hold up to years of use.
The MacBook is similar to the MacBook Air yet with a larger case. Both share the same 13.3-inch display along with width and depth dimensions. The thicker case allows the MacBook to pack in more features including a dual layer DVD burner and a removable battery. Another great addition is the ability to replace the hard drive from the same battery compartment. Thus, if the 160GB drive is a bit too small for you, it takes little effort to swap it with a new notebook drive.
One drawback to this new compartment design is that the MacBook still lacks the expansion ports one would normally see in a 13.3-inch laptop of this size. With just two USB 2.0 ports and a mini-DisplayPort graphics connector, users will not be able to connect FireWire devices or even use an ExpressCard expansion card like they can with the larger MacBook Pros or competing 13.3-inch laptops from the likes of Dell, Lenovo and HP.
Another major feature of the MacBook is the use of a chipset from NVIDIA rather than Intel that includes the GeForce 9400M integrated graphics. This gives the MacBook improved video performance over even the new GMA X4500 from Intel. Still, it is not a dedicated processor and lacks the performance one might need for high intensity 3D applications such as PC games.
All-in-all, the new MacBook is a great improvement and easily one of the best built ultraportables on the market.