The best MacBook yet with some sacrifices to reach its goals. (October 20th, 2008)
Product Manufacturer: Apple
Price: $1,599 (2.4GHz, 2GB RAM, GeForce 9400M)
- Excellent, durable industrial design.
- Much faster GeForce 9400M video; good for some modern games.
- Trackpad is intuitive and a real selling point.
- Lighter, thinner.
- Backlit keyboard a useful addition.
- Eco-friendly packaging.
- No FireWire port.
- Same lower-quality LCD panel as before, just LED-backlit.
- Performance updates are minor beyond graphics.
introduction: the pack-ins
On October 14, 2008, Apple released two new MacBook models that stand as its first major overhaul of the 13-inch system since its introduction in May 2006. Apple as always claims a dramatic overhaul; but the real question is whether this is the giant leap promised by the company, a minor step forward in a new disguise, or something in between.
If you buy a new MacBook, the first thing to catch your eye is its box. As part of Apple’s continuing emphasis on “greener” technology and materials, the new MacBook package has shrunk 41 percent smaller compared to previous boxes, saving bulk and paper at the same time.
The new MacBook boxes are much smaller and thinner.
Opening the package reveals the laptop on a recyclable plastic tray and underneath is a second recyclable plastic tray that holds the power adapter and cord along with the installation discs in case you need to wipe out your hard disk and restore it to its original factory condition. The entire box resembles a Japanese bento tray with every item in a separate compartment.
The MacBook components are packaged in recyclable plastic trays.
Other use of “green” technology includes arsenic-free glass, a mercury-free LED-backlit display, and the removal of brominated flame retardants (BFRs) in logic boards and PVC in cables and connectors. Add to this the recyclable aluminum case and glass used in the display and you have one of the “greenest” laptops on the market.