In January, following a meeting with Samsung Storage solutions at CES 2012, we told you that Apple’s next-gen MacBook Air would likely make the switch to the speedier 830 series SSDs from Samsung alongside an update to Ivy Bridge. This was of course before we revealed some major changes coming to Apple’s new MacBook and iMac lineups. In addition to Retina displays for almost the entire new lineup, the new ultra-thin 15-inch MacBook Pro will be getting a complete redesign, losing the optical drive, and bringing it closer to to the thin design of current Airs. Like the new MacBook Airs, we have been told that at least some of Apple’s prototype MacBook Pros have used Samsung’s 830 series SSDs…
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Specifically, a 256GB Samsung 830 SSD was in use in prototype MacBook Pro we’ve been told, but we can only assume that Apple will use these SSDs across the line in various sizes. They are available in retail packaging from 64GB to 512GB configurations.
Apple currently offers SSDs as build to order upgrades on its MacBook Pro line at pretty nutty prices (when compared to Samsung’s retail prices which are getting close to a $1/GB):
We can’t be sure if Apple will be moving to the smaller Air-type SSD in the new Pros or if they will continue to use the 2.5-inch form factor that is currently in use (or even better – both). Of course, utilizing the smaller SSDs for future MacBook Pros would also help Apple achieve the new super slim design.
As we noted for the new MacBook Airs that are likely to get the 830 series SSDs, it’s unlikely that Samsung will be the only supplier for Apple’s next round of Macs – Apple likes to have redundant suppliers. Both Toshiba and Samsung currently provide SSDs for the existing MacBooks, although Toshiba’s SSDs are notably slower. Samsung hasn’t confirmed that it is shipping the 830 series to Apple, but it was sold out of the slower 470s series that currently ship in the existing MacBook Airs in January.
Above is a screenshot from our speed tests of the 2.5-inch 830 series when it launched last year. Real world speeds were over 400MB/s write and 500MB/s reads, almost twice as fast as the SSDs from Samsung shipping in current MacBook Airs.
- Report: Retina MacBook displays to cost Apple more, but will it affect the customer? (9to5mac.com)
- Bloomberg reiterates: Apple to unveil new, thinner MacBook Pro at WWDC (9to5mac.com)
- Apple also working on MacBook Airs and iMacs with Retina Displays (9to5mac.com)