Apple launches new 15-inch MacBook Pro with Force Touch trackpad

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited May 2015
Apple on Tuesday issued an update to its 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display, adding faster Intel processors, as well as the new pressure-sensitive Force Touch trackpad.




The new trackpad, previously available on the 13-inch MacBook Pro and 12-inch MacBook, has built-in force sensors and a Taptic Engine that delivers haptic feedback. It allows users to click anywhere with a uniform feel, and users can even customize the amount of pressure needed to register each click.

Force Touch opens up a range of new gestures, including the new force click. Developers can tap into these expanded capabilities with new APIs available in the latest builds of OS X Yosemite.




And with refreshed Intel processors, the new 15-inch MacBook starts with a 2.2-gigahertz Intel Core i7 chip for $1,999, upgradeable to a 2.5-gigahertz processor and dedicated AMD Radeon R9 M370X graphics card for $2,499.

Notably, the chips are not Intel's latest-generation "Broadwell" processors, which remain unavailable in quad-core configurations. As a result, Apple is still utilizing the previous-generation "Haswell" architecture, albeit at faster speeds.

"The response to the new MacBook and updated 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display has been amazing, and today we are thrilled to bring the new Force Touch trackpad, faster flash storage and longer battery life to the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display," said Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing.




The updated 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display also features up to 2.5 times faster flash storage than the previous generation, with throughput up to 2GBps. Apple also claims that the notebook offers an additional hour of battery life, with up to 9 hours of wireless web browsing and up to 9 hours of iTunes movie playback.

In addition, MacBook Pro with Retina display discrete graphics deliver up to 80 percent faster performance using new AMD Radeon R9 M370X graphics for editing video in Final Cut Pro X, rendering 3D images in pro graphics apps or playing high-resolution games.

AppleInsider first noted last week that Apple had begun discontinuing multiple 15-inch MacBook Pro models ahead of the introduction of new hardware. Additional reports correctly indicated that both the 15-inch MacBook Pro and 27-inch iMac would see upgrades this week.




The newly updated 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display is available today through Apple's online store, Apple's retail stores and select Apple Authorized Resellers. Configurations include:
  • A 2.2 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.4 GHz, 16GB of memory, 256GB of flash storage and Intel Iris Pro graphics starting at $1,999 (US)
  • A 2.5 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor with Turbo Boost speeds up to 3.7 GHz, 16GB of memory, 512GB of flash storage and AMD Radeon R9 M370X graphics starting at $2,499 (US)
  • Configure-to-order options include faster quad-core Intel Core i7 processors up to 2.8 GHz with Turbo Boost speeds up to 4.0 GHz and flash storage up to 1TB.

Trade in your old Mac

Readers planning to purchase Apple's new 15-inch MacBook Pro, 27-inch iMac, 12-inch MacBook or otherwise may want to lock in a cash buyback offer from AppleInsider partner Gazelle on their old model, before payouts fall. See our previous coverage on Gazelle's buyback programs for more details.
«134

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 80
    curtis hannahcurtis hannah Posts: 1,805member
    Didn't even take till wensday, curious if it simply wasn't just supply shortages when the 13 inch updated.
  • Reply 2 of 80
    dk49dk49 Posts: 186member
    I was hoping they would introduce a redesigned model based on the new macbook - thinner, lighter, more colours (but with more connectivity options). Hope they do it around September this year with intel skylake.
  • Reply 3 of 80
    tonglajitonglaji Posts: 12member

    hoping to see the external trackpad upgraded to Force Touch.

  • Reply 4 of 80
    dempsondempson Posts: 62member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Curtis Hannah View Post



    Didn't even take till wensday, curious if it simply wasn't just supply shortages when the 13 inch updated.



    The 15-inch update was delayed because Intel staggered the release of the next generation (Broadwell) processors. The 2-core processors used by the 13-inch MBPro were released in February. The 4-core processors used by the 15-inch MBPro were due to be released about now.

     

    Edit: it appears these updated MBPros do not have Broadwell processors. Evidence from the configuration page on the store is that they are still the same Haswell processors as before ("fourth generation" vs "fifth generation" for the 13-inch models). If that isn't an oversight, it means Intel probably cancelled the Broadwell 4-core release because the next generation (Skylake) is due relatively soon, or Apple got tired of waiting.

     

    The AMD Radeon GPU might have been another factor delaying the 15-inch update.

     

    If this really is Haswell, I'm impressed they achieved another hour of battery life with the same processor.

  • Reply 5 of 80
    ljc94512ljc94512 Posts: 54member
    This upgrade has no Broadwell processors (it is still Haswell; check Apple website and Schiller didn't say processors upgrade) so the Iris Pro graphics is still from Haswell and RAM is still 1600MHz and no LPDDR3. Only the flash storage has upgraded along with Force Touch trackpad and battery life and discrete graphics. What a shame
  • Reply 6 of 80
    jameskatt2jameskatt2 Posts: 720member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by tonglaji View Post

     

    hoping to see the external trackpad upgraded to Force Touch.




    It probably will be upgraded to Force Touch.  That is the future for Apple trackpads. 

     

    Apple, however, will not release it until it is ready.

  • Reply 7 of 80
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member

    Why do the pictures of the new Macbook Pro in the Store have a flower on the screen instead of Yosemite? Were the old ones like that, or have they just accidentally leaked the name of the new OS X?

     

  • Reply 8 of 80
    applezillaapplezilla Posts: 941member

    At the moment, I am still happy with my mid-2009 17-inch MBP (upgraded with SSD).

     

    Apple, ship a Retina 17-inch model and you have my money.

  • Reply 9 of 80
    philotechphilotech Posts: 105member
    Arstechnica has confirmed with Apple that the CPU is indeed Haswell and not Broadwell. Kind of disappointing but Skylake is near!
  • Reply 10 of 80
    sphericspheric Posts: 2,115member



    AppleZilla, you will be waiting a looooooong time.

  • Reply 11 of 80
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,416member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by LJC94512 View Post



    This upgrade has no Broadwell processors (it is still Haswell; check Apple website and Schiller didn't say processors upgrade) so the Iris Pro graphics is still from Haswell and RAM is still 1600MHz and no LPDDR3. Only the flash storage has upgraded along with Force Touch trackpad and battery life and discrete graphics. What a shame



    Yeah, it would have been nice to get a bit of a speed boost with Broadwell + 1866MHz RAM, so in that regard I'm a bit disappointed.  However, having 4 cores is more important to me than a modest speed bump.  My main interest in waiting to upgrade was getting the force touch trackpad, so I went ahead and pulled the trigger.

     

    And yeah, I'm wondering too if Intel is just skipping the 4-core Broadwell and going straight to Skylake...

  • Reply 12 of 80
    rcfarcfa Posts: 1,124member
    Still maxes out at a lousy 16GB of RAM; one heavy Safari Session with Mail.app and Finder open gobbles up that much; then try opening some virtual machine like Parallels, Fusion, VirtualBox and you're in swap-hell.

    The point of a 64-bit CPU is to be able to have massive amounts of RAM both for pro apps that require a lot of in-memory (vs. on-storage) data (e.g. 32-bit deep 60-megapixel HDR images and their undo edit history, massive sample libraries for Logic, in-memory rather than on-disk database architectures, etc.)

    16 GB is a joke, the machines have been stagnating at this level for years now, MBAir stagnating at an even more ridiculous 8 GB.

    I get the increased battery consumption of RAM, but massive swapping gobbles up power, too.
    I don't want the machines reduced to something that is essentially a slightly more sophisticated single-tasking machine with a somewhat enhanced multifinder, particularly as long as Safari doesn't cache open web pages content and layout without reloading each page upon relaunch and while it doesn't remember which space a window was in and keeps tossing all windows back in its default space, which makes (auto)quitting and reactivating Safari a total no-go.

    If Apple can switch between integrated and discrete GPUs on the fly, it should be able to limit and shut off RAM based on power management preferences, thus lowering power consumption by reducing RAM e.g. from 64GB down to 16GB on the fly.
  • Reply 13 of 80
    sphericspheric Posts: 2,115member

    They'll need a mobile controller chip that can address more than 16 GB first. AFAIK, nobody makes one, yet.

  • Reply 14 of 80
    rcfa wrote: »
    Still maxes out at a lousy 16GB of RAM; one heavy Safari Session with Mail.app and Finder open gobbles up that much; then try opening some virtual machine like Parallels, Fusion, VirtualBox and you're in swap-hell.

    The point of a 64-bit CPU is to be able to have massive amounts of RAM both for pro apps that require a lot of in-memory (vs. on-storage) data (e.g. 32-bit deep 60-megapixel HDR images and their undo edit history, massive sample libraries for Logic, in-memory rather than on-disk database architectures, etc.)

    16 GB is a joke, the machines have been stagnating at this level for years now, MBAir stagnating at an even more ridiculous 8 GB.

    I get the increased battery consumption of RAM, but massive swapping gobbles up power, too.
    I don't want the machines reduced to something that is essentially a slightly more sophisticated single-tasking machine with a somewhat enhanced multifinder, particularly as long as Safari doesn't cache open web pages content and layout without reloading each page upon relaunch and while it doesn't remember which space a window was in and keeps tossing all windows back in its default space, which makes (auto)quitting and reactivating Safari a total no-go.

    If Apple can switch between integrated and discrete GPUs on the fly, it should be able to limit and shut off RAM based on power management preferences, thus lowering power consumption by reducing RAM e.g. from 64GB down to 16GB on the fly.

    Can you manually upgrade the RAM higher than 16gb?
  • Reply 15 of 80
    sennensennen Posts: 1,468member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleZilla View Post

     

    At the moment, I am still happy with my mid-2009 17-inch MBP (upgraded with SSD).

     

    Apple, ship a Retina 17-inch model and you have my money.


     

    I have the same machine, with a Crucial SSD and a 1TB HDD in an optibay adapter. Still great for at home, and I love the quality of the screen, not to mention the size yet I doubt we'll see a retina 17". My next Mac (next year?) may end up being a retina 5K. 

  • Reply 16 of 80
    thewhitefalconthewhitefalcon Posts: 4,453member
    This pretty well, for me, confirms that Intel is skipping most of the Broadwell rollout in favor of Skylake. I expect this to be a short-lived model.
  • Reply 17 of 80
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    The updated 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display also features up to 2.5 times faster flash storage than the previous generation, with throughput up to 2GBps.

    That's amazing! Are there any other laptops out there with an SSD so fast?

  • Reply 18 of 80
    adamwadamw Posts: 114guest
    This looks good. I am interested in it.
  • Reply 19 of 80
    profprof Posts: 78member
    No matte display == no buy.
  • Reply 20 of 80
    profprof Posts: 78member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by rcfa View Post



    Still maxes out at a lousy 16GB of RAM; one heavy Safari Session with Mail.app and Finder open gobbles up that much; 

     

    Rrrright... I doubt you have even the slightest clue what you're talking about.

Sign In or Register to comment.