New Program Seeks to Address Widespread Complaints About Butterfly Keyboard Design

Apple today released a new version of its 15-inch MacBook Pro (MBP) with an eight-core processor, which it called its fastest notebook computer ever, doubling the performance of its fastest quad-core 15-inch system.

The entire MBP line is being refreshed with new models loaded with eighth- and ninth-generation Intel Core processors. The 15-inch model is now available with Turbo Boost speeds reaching 5.0 GHz, while the 13-inch MacBook Pro can be had with quad-core processors and Turbo Boost up to 4.7 GHz.

Citing examples of speed gains in the new systems, Apple said the eight-core MBP can render 3D scenes twice as fast using Maya and Arnold and apply “complex edits and filters” up to 75% faster in Photoshop compared to the four-core 15-inch version. The new MBP can also edit up to 11 simultaneous 4K multicam streams in Final Cut Pro X, Apple said.

The MBP comes with a Retina display that puts out 500 nits of brightness, supports P3 color and Thunderbolt 3 connectivity. Apple is also promoting the MBP’s ability to hook up with up to two 5K displays or up to four external GPUs (for example, Blackmagic Design’s eGPU and eGPU Pro, which Apple carries at its retail stores and online).

Apple didn’t mention it in the official press release, but the new MBPs also feature a revised keyboard design that may help address complaints about the keyboard’s “butterfly” mechanism and its responsiveness. A new Keyboard Service Program has been instituted to address problems existing users have been having with keyboards on MacBooks dating back as far as 2015.

The 13-inch and 15-inch MBPs start at $1,799 and $2,399, respectively, with the eight-core version running $2,799. That’s only the start, of course — a generously configured MBP with the fastest eight-core CPU, 32 GB of RAM and Radeon Pro Vega 20 graphics will run you $3,749.

Apple MacBook Pro: