Music and the Mac

The latest Apple event was clearly focused on two things – music and the Mac. In fact, that’s exactly what Apple’s Tim Cook said right from the get-go. It was also quite nostalgic to hear a traditional Mac startup sound mixed in at the beginning.

Audio Stuff

  • Apple has created a new Apple Music subscription called Voice Plan for $4.99/month. This will be the cheapest plan available to access Apple’s music library.
  • New colors for the Home Pod Mini in yellow, orange, and blue, priced at $99. All of the colors look fantastic.
  • The third generation of AirPods is being released with spatial audio for $179. Lots of new features in these AirPods.

MacBook Pro

Apple is calling the new MacBook Pro a “beast of a machine” with an impressive set of specs and features.

  • MacBook Pro has the first pro chip designed for Mac, the M1 Pro with 33.7 billion transitors, twice as much as the M1. The M1 Pro has more cores and is clearly more powerful.
  • M1 Max is the second new chip announced at today’s event with 57 billion transititors. It definitely looks like it geared towards video editing.
  • MacBook Pro will be available in a 16-inch and, for the first time, a compact 14-inch model. The new MacBook Pro has two fans built-in, but if/when the fans turn on, they will be ultra-quiet. Actual screen sizes are 16.2 inches and 14.2 inches, respectively.
  • The Touch Bar is gone. The MagSafe charging port is coming back.
  • Apple has added a notch to the top of the screen, allowing the menu bar to wrap around the notch with a 1080p webcam.
  • For the first time ever, the new MacBook Pro features a Liquid Retina XDR display.
  • Sound is improved with a 6-speaker sound system with spatial audio and studio-quality mics.
  • Battery life is extended since the hardware is so efficient with up to 21 hours of video playback on the 16-inch model.
  • The 14-inch model is priced starting at $1,999 and the 16-inch model starts at $2,499.