Apple updates its flagship notebook

17in MacBook Pro gets the unibody treatment, new battery.

  • The 17in MacBook Pro retains a standard SuperDrive, capable of burning DVDs and CDs — the lack of a Blu-Ray drive may be a letdown for some.

  • Perhaps most surprising about today's announcement is the inclusion of an embedded battery instead of a traditional removable battery. Apple claims that doing this allows it to include a 40 per cent larger battery, allowing the battery to last up to 8 hours on a single charge. Apple also says that the battery has a lifespan of 1000 charges, as opposed to the 200 to 300 charges offered by competitors' batteries.

  • The new 17in MacBook Pro comes standard with a 2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, along with 4GB of DDR3 RAM, a 320GB hard drive and dual NVIDIA GeForce GPU chips; users can switch between a 9400M and 9600M GT depending on their needs. It can also be configured with a 2.93GHz CPU, and their are options for a 128GB or 256GB solid-state drive. The base model starts at $4499.

  • Utilising Apple's proprietary construction process, the body of the 17in MacBook Pro is carved from a single block of aluminium, giving the notebook a more rigid and durable case.

  • Like its smaller counterparts, the 17in MacBook Pro now has an LED-backlit display, allowing for brighter and more vibrant colours. The display, capable of a 1920x1200 pixel resolution, is available with a matte or glossy coating (the former is not an option for the less expensive models, however).

  • The 17in MacBook Pro adds a third USB port to the bevy of ports offered by the 15in model. The notebook also offers Gigabit Ethernet, FireWire 800, a Mini DisplayPort and an ExpressCard/34 slot.

  • Apple today announced an upgrade to its flagship notebook, the 17in MacBook Pro. The notebook boasts the same unibody enclosure found in the new MacBook line-up and the 15in MacBook Pro, as well as overhauled hardware specifications.

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