During Monday’s “Scary Fast” Apple Event, Apple introduced an updated lineup of 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pros featuring an array of new M3 chips and a sleek Space Black chassis.
Apple now offers the 14-inch model with a base M3 processor for a price of $1,599, marking the first time the 14-inch laptop has reached this lower price point. Previously, the older 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Touch Bar was equipped with the M2, while the 14-inch MacBook Pro started at $1,999 with the M2 Pro chip. The M3 Pro option still comes in at $1,999, and prices increase for configurations with the M3 Max processors. Meanwhile, a base 16-inch MacBook Pro with an M3 Pro chip maintains the same $2,499 starting price as its M2 Pro-equipped predecessor.
The addition of a fresh Space Black color option, which appears as a matte charcoal gray in person, is available on both 14- and 16-inch systems equipped with M3 Pro and M3 Max chips. This color choice also has the benefit of better-concealing fingerprints compared to the classic silver models. The rest of the laptops’ hardware remains largely unchanged, including features such as Apple’s 1080p FaceTime cameras and six-speaker sound systems. The only minor alteration is that the Liquid Retina XDR displays on the new M3 MacBook Pros can now render SDR content 20 percent brighter than before, reaching peaks of 600 nits (up from the previous generation’s 500 nits).
However, thanks to the new M3 chips, these refreshed MBPs are expected to deliver significant performance enhancements. In everyday use, Apple claims that a 14-inch M3 MacBook Pro is 60 percent faster than a 13-inch M1 model, all while still providing up to 22 hours of battery life. Furthermore, if you opt for a laptop with an M3 Pro chip, you can anticipate a 40 percent boost in performance compared to an equivalent M1 Pro MBP. Notably, the 14- and 16-inch M3 Max systems will support a substantial 128GB of unified memory, enhancing workflows in applications like MATLAB, DaVinci Resolve, and more. Yet, the most remarkable figure is the comparison to the fastest Intel-based MacBook Pros from 2021, where Apple is touting an astounding 11x faster performance for systems equipped with M3 Max chips.
Additionally, a crucial upgrade with the M3 chips is their support for hardware acceleration of ray tracing and mesh shading. This development holds immense promise for gamers, as well as professionals like animators and 3D modelers, who can harness the M3’s more efficient on-chip processing power in apps that support these features.
Pre-orders for all the new M3 MacBook Pro models are available starting today, and M3 and M3 Pro configurations will begin shipping as early as next week on November 7. M3 Max setups are expected to arrive slightly later next month. The 14-inch M3 MacBook Pro has a starting price of $1,599 ($1,499 for educational purposes) or $1,999 for the M3 Pro version ($1,849 for education). Meanwhile, the 16-inch M3 Pro MacBook Pro starts at $2,499 ($2,299 for education).