PSA | Preorders Open for Apple’s New 13″ M2 MacBook Pro Later This Week

The M2 MacBook Pro will start at the same $1,299 price tag as its predecessor.
M2 MacBook Pro Credit: Apple
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Although you’ll have to wait until next month to get your hands on the new MacBook Air, Apple has announced that the slightly higher-end M2 MacBook Pro will be available to preorder this Friday, June 17.

Specifically, Apple says orders will open at 5 a.m. PDT on Friday morning on Apple’s online store and through the Apple Store app, with the first orders landing in customers’ hands on Friday, June 24. It will also arrive at select Apple Store locations and Apple Authorized Resellers that same day.

It’s probably not surprising that the M2-equipped 13-inch MacBook Pro is arriving ahead of its more affordable M2 counterpart.

With the transition to the M2, Apple took the opportunity to make some nice design changes to the MacBook Air, including moving to the new MagSafe power connector and adopting a design that’s much more in line with last year’s much more powerful 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro lineup.

That wasn’t the case with the 13-inch MacBook Pro. That model remains visually unchanged from its predecessor. You’d have a hard time telling the two models apart by looking at them.

Of course, the M2 MacBook Pro has much more going for it on the inside, thanks to the improved Apple Silicon. This gives it a 10-core GPU and up to 24GB of unified memory. By comparison, the M1 version only featured an 8-core GPU and topped out at 16GB of RAM.

M2 MacBook Air vs. M2 MacBook Pro

The M2 MacBook Pro will start at the same $1,299 price tag as its predecessor, which will fetch you the base model with 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. That’s $100 more than the equivalent M2 MacBook Air, although, as with last year’s M1 models, the entry-level version only offers an 8-core GPU. You also won’t get the newer 35W Dual USB-C adapter in the base package.

However, with the 13-inch MacBook Pro, you’re also giving up the MagSafe port, higher-resolution 1080p webcam, four-speaker sound system, and other design improvements.

The M2 MacBook Air even offers a slightly larger screen — 13.6 inches vs. 13.3 inches — thanks to the adoption of the same notch design as the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro.

What you’re getting in the M2 MacBook Pro is essentially the same as what the M1 MacBook Pro offered over its MacBook Air counterpart: an active cooling system to provide sustained performance for intense gaming or serious video editing workflows.

The 13-inch MacBook Pro is also the only Mac to retain Apple’s somewhat divisive Touch Bar. For some folks, that could be reason enough to go with the more traditional design.

Should I Upgrade from the M1 MacBook Pro?

One thing that does seem sure is that the M2 MacBook Pro doesn’t offer much that would compel users of the M1 version to upgrade.

The key differences between the M1 and M2 models are the improved performance of the M2, including the two extra GPU cores, and the higher maximum memory capacity. If you’ve been finding 16GB too limiting, then the 24GB M2 version might give you that extra headroom you need.

If you opted for the 8GB M1 MacBook Pro, this could also be an excellent opportunity to move to something with higher capacity. There’s no realistic way to upgrade the RAM in an Apple Silicon Mac, so the only way to get more is to buy a whole new MacBook.

Otherwise, the differences between the M1 MacBook Pro and M2 MacBook Pro are relatively minor. The display, camera, built-in speakers, and overall design are identical. The M2 chip offers a better media engine that includes ProRes and ProRes RAW support, but it won’t make much difference for folks who don’t work with those formats. There’s also support for Spatial Audio with dynamic head tracking when using a set of compatible AirPods, and you can plug high-impedance headphones into the 3.5mm jack.

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