13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display vs. 13-inch MacBook Air (pictures)
Adding the high-res Retina Display to a new 13-inch MacBook Pro, Apple has created a new midway point between the slim ultrabook-like MacBook Air and the traditional 13-inch Pro. By eliminating the long-standing optical drive and platter hard drive, the new Retina 13-inch Pro slims down greatly, and even has a smaller desktop footprint than the 13-inch Air.
We took the just-delivered 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display and lined it up next to a current-gen 13-inch MacBook Air. The results left us feeling that each design has its advantages, but at the same time, there's still a big difference in the hand between the two.
While the new Retina MacBook Pro is not as thin and light as a MacBook Air, it actually has a slightly smaller footprint. The Retina Pro is 12.4 inches by 8.6 inches, while the 13-inch Air measures 12.8 inches by 8.9 inches. The gallery above shows several of the key angles, but we've called a few notable comparisons out here.
- Overall score: 8.2 (4.0 stars)
CNET Editors' Rating
Average User Review
out of 10 user reviews
Starting at: $1,169.99
The good: The new 13-inch Apple MacBook Pro with Retina Display adds a screen that's nearly as high-res as the 15-inch version, making for incredibly crisp text and images. The slimmer body feels much more modern, and the excellent keyboard and trackpad remain.
The bad: Considering that this looks and feels a lot like the 13-inch MacBook Air, you may be in for a bit of sticker shock, especially as the base model only includes 128GB of SSD storage.
The bottom line: While the Retina MacBook Pro is easily the most desirable 13-inch Mac laptop to date, the high price and lack of discrete graphics make it a tough call versus either the more powerful 15-inch Retina Pro or the more affordable 13-inch Air.
October 24, 2012 10:32 AM PDT
Photo by: Sarah Tew/CNET
| Caption by: Dan Ackerman
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