Earlier this month Intel introduced new models in their lineup of Haswell mobile CPUs. With the Haswell manufacturing process having matured since its initial launch, Intel was able to bump clock speeds by 200MHz on a handful of their laptop CPUs and those chips have found their way into a refreshed lineup of Macbook Pro laptops from Apple. This update brings CPU speed boosts, and more RAM in the base 13" and 15" models. The new CPU and memory specifications for Apple's new lineup are shown below.

MacBook Pro with Retina Display Lineup
Model 13-inch (base and mid-tier) 13-inch (flagship) 15-inch (base) 15-inch (flagship)
Old CPU 2.4GHz Core i5-4258U 2.6GHz Core i5-4288U 2.0GHz Core i7-4750HQ 2.3GHz Core i7-4850HQ
New CPU 2.6GHz Core i5-4278U 2.8GHz Core i5-4308U 2.2GHz Core i7-4770HQ 2.5GHz Core i7-4870HQ
New Memory 8GB DDR3L 8GB DDR3L 16GB DDR3L 16GB DDR3L

The first thing to make note of is that the CPU speed has been increased by 200MHz across the board. The highest end CTO (configure-to-order) 15" model which is not shown now comes with Intel's Core i7-4980HQ with a base clock of 2.8GHz and max turbo clock of 4.0GHz. The other important thing to note is that the amount of RAM in the entry-level models has been doubled from 4GB to 8GB on the 13", and from 8GB to 16GB on the 15". This is a change that is nice to see brought to the 13" Macbook Pro with Retina display. Originally the entire 13" line had 8GB of RAM and the 4GB model was introduced to reach a lower price point during Apple's Haswell refresh. Now the entry level model once again has 8GB of RAM like the higher end versions.

The new models are available to purchase now on Apple's website for the same prices as the previous generation and are all available to ship within 24 hours.

Source: Apple Online Store

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  • name99 - Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - link

    OSX (like Windows and like any modern OS) uses any RAM that's free as file cache because, why not --- might as well use it for something. The trick is in having the OS smart enough to throw away the RIGHT file data when it needs those pages for higher priority use.

    In my experience XP was pretty lousy about this (in spite of all those fancy MS algorithms that supposedly tracked the working sets of each active app), certainly lousier than OSX.
    In my experience Win 7 is still not as good as OSX (but it's good enough, and a LOT better than XP), but my Win 7 experience is all based on a Parallels VM so, to be fair, there could be VM weirdness there that's making Win 7 appear to page more than it would on a native machine.

    The other important data point is that Mavericks does page compression before resorting to disk paging, and it works pretty well. Apple says that, for most purposes, it makes your machine feel like it has 50% more RAM, and I have no reason to doubt that claim.

    To the actual question przemo_li asked:
    This is the MacBook PRO line, not the MBA line. They come with CrystalWell iGPU AND GT 750M with 2GB GDDR5. I'm not sure what faster RAM you want them to use --- they come with the pretty much standard DDR3 at, I assume, 1600MHz.

    I agree that the RAM bump seems strange, but I'm guessing Apple know their customers better than we do, and know that the type of people who are buying these machines (for whatever reason) ARE, for the most part, heavy RAM users. If you're not a demanding user, the Air is so much lighter. Certainly when I bought mine I bought it with 16GB, for large Mathematica sessions.
  • jamescox - Thursday, July 31, 2014 - link

    If you cant upgrade it, then you definitely should go with the largest ram size anyway.
  • tipoo - Friday, September 26, 2014 - link

    I definitely think that's a VM thing, as my experience is 100% the opposite. Windows seems to precache all the right things with superfetch,and closing them out clears memory out fast enough for other apps not to chug after a big one is closed, unlike OSX.
  • bountygiver - Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - link

    Performance intensive processes will always allocate more RAM when they see you have enough available.

    Unless you are opening hundreds of browser tabs at once, I recommend you using a feature called "favorites"
  • jamescox - Friday, August 1, 2014 - link

    I have probably hundreds of tabs open on a machine with 4 GB of memory. Firefox has an option to not load a tab until you bring it to the front, so if you quit and restart, it will only load one tab for each window. I have many tabs active at the moment, but I have an SSD, so I probably do not notice when it swaps pages. System ram does not need to hold all of the memory "used", it just needs to hold the working set; memory which is actually being accessed, rather than just allocated. With hard drives, you would often notice when something needed to be swapped in, but with an SSD this is usually unnoticeable.
  • nathanddrews - Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - link

    First off, why even complain? They aren't raising the price. Second, if you work with video (as many Mac purchasers claim to do), 16GB would be a bare minimum for any reasonably smooth HD workflow. Doing 4K? 32GB minimum... and probably not on a MBP. Third, DDR3-1600 is likely not going to interfere with anything given that IGPs suck no matter how fast the RAM is and Iris Pro has eDRAM to compensate. 1600vs1866 trade wins or equal each other:

  • przemo_li - Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - link

    eDRAM is great.

    But still 2133 should add 20-30% of graphic performance to the iGPU. (And any other workload for that matter)
  • nathanddrews - Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - link

    Cool, so 13fps instead of 10fps.
  • repoman27 - Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - link

    Just gonna throw this out there, but the memory controller for these processors only supports up to DDR3L / DDR3L-RS 1600. Are you really suggesting that an OEM like Apple should ship a rather popular line of laptops with overclocked RAM? You realize they will sell 3-4 million of these things before Broadwell arrives? The stupidity of spending even more on specially binned RAM when prices are fairly high already, plus the increased power usage and heat generation, for a gain that would be imperceptible to nonexistent for most end users, is staggering.
  • BSMonitor - Tuesday, July 29, 2014 - link

    Right. Apple will give you the sweet spot pricing wise(cost for them) in terms of the memory modules and their capacity.

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