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Intel Launches New Skylake Chips Appropriate for 15-Inch Retina MacBook Pro

As noted by AnandTech, Intel this week quietly released an updated processor price list which includes several new Skylake chips that could be used in an updated 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro.

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The direct upgrade path for the 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro would use the following quad-core chip options: a 2.6 GHz Core i7-6770HQ, a 2.7 GHz Core i7-6870HQ, and a 2.8 GHz Core i7-6970HQ, all coming in at the same price points as the Haswell variants currently used in the MacBook Pro.

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Perhaps a more intriguing but less likely scenario involves a series of new mobile Xeon E3 chips. These chips could offer even better CPU, graphics, and memory performance, although pricing becomes an issue with the highest-performing chip in the family.

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As for the 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro, Intel announced chips appropriate for those machines back in September, although it suggested the chips would not actually be launching until early 2016. Those chips have been included on Intel's price lists for several months, but have been slow to show up in the wild. A claimed benchmark for a 13-inch MacBook Pro running one of these chips last week appears to have been a fake.

Most of Apple's Mac lineup is in need of updates, as Intel's Skylake delays have hampered Apple's ability to launch refreshed models. But with the Skylake logjam finally starting to break, Apple appears set to update its entire notebook lineup over the next several months. Opportunities for major product introductions could come at Apple's rumored March media event or at WWDC likely scheduled for mid-June, although smaller updates could come at any time via press release.

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro
Tags: Intel, Skylake
Buyer's Guide: Retina MacBook Pro (Don't Buy)


Top Rated Comments

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22 weeks ago
Apple, please throw the Mac Mini a bone and put one of those quad cores in it.
Rating: 28 Votes
22 weeks ago
These processors are great and all, but, is there any macbook that can have more than 16gb of RAM? It's been a limitation for a long time.
Rating: 22 Votes
22 weeks ago

Are you a video editor, or work with really large images on a daily basis? Other than that, I don't see a good reason for having anything over 16gb (RAM).

As a developer, there have been times when I ran out of memory (on my 8GB machine), but that can easily be fixed by optimizing code. Even the newest games don't need anywhere near that much memory.


I don't need to explain why I need it. My question still stands:

When will MacBooks feature 32gb of RAM?
Rating: 20 Votes
22 weeks ago

Are you a video editor, or work with really large images on a daily basis? Other than that, I don't see a good reason for having anything over 16gb (RAM).

As a developer, there have been times when I ran out of memory (on my 8GB machine), but that can easily be fixed by optimizing code. Even the newest games don't need anywhere near that much memory.


I don't understand why people constantly ask this question. Just because You don't have use for more RAM doesn't mean others don't have legitimate uses for it. My 32GB iMac is quite frequently a limitation when running VMs and router simulations or when stitching large panoramas in PhotoShop. I can only run 12 or the possible 20 Cisco IOS-XR and NS-OX routers with 32GB.

64GB would be great but Haswell capped at 32GB for the desktop processors but Skylake can support 64GB. So for me, if they would extend the 32/64GB limit over to the Macbook Pro it would make my VM work much easier.
Rating: 11 Votes
22 weeks ago

Are you a video editor, or work with really large images on a daily basis? Other than that, I don't see a good reason for having anything over 16gb (RAM).

As a developer, there have been times when I ran out of memory (on my 8GB machine), but that can easily be fixed by optimizing code. Even the newest games don't need anywhere near that much memory.


I heard of this OS X feature called multitasking which apparently runs more than 1 program at a time. So even very optimized programs might collectively need abundant RAM so that each can get the memory they need. I have 24GB on one of my Macs, am not doing daily video editing or editing large image files, but can easily- and often- bump into that 24GB capacity.
Rating: 10 Votes
22 weeks ago
Sweet! Can't wait for the new MacBook inspired MacBook Pro's....take my money!!! :-)
Rating: 10 Votes
22 weeks ago
And on the seventh day, God created the 2016 Skylake retina macbook pro. And God saw that it was good.
Rating: 9 Votes
22 weeks ago
I *really really really* hate these kinds of ignorant responses. I'm a developer too. Would you believe there are types of software development *drastically* different than yours?

I work on a software stack that is primarily designed to be run on a cluster of larger machines. But, when doing development, we run it locally. This requires a plethora of running processes, each consuming varying amounts of memory. We've been drooling for 32GB in our MacBooks for literally *years* now.

Trust me, there is a whole world of use cases that would benefit from this beyond the very limited examples you provided and beyond your very limited experience.

Are you a video editor, or work with really large images on a daily basis? Other than that, I don't see a good reason for having anything over 16gb (RAM).

As a developer, there have been times when I ran out of memory (on my 8GB machine), but that can easily be fixed by optimizing code. Even the newest games don't need anywhere near that much memory.

Rating: 9 Votes
22 weeks ago

These processors are great and all, but, is there any macbook that can have more than 16gb of RAM? It's been a limitation for a long time.


Are you a video editor, or work with really large images on a daily basis? Other than that, I don't see a good reason for having anything over 16gb (RAM).

As a developer, there have been times when I ran out of memory (on my 8GB machine), but that can easily be fixed by optimizing code. Even the newest games don't need anywhere near that much memory.
Rating: 8 Votes
22 weeks ago

yeah, this is the problem with some being so obsessed about spec upgrades. Ultimately they're never going to be happy, because at some point as consumers, we have to just make a decision based on our needs and be good with that. Unless people have the disposable income to upgrade yearly, we have to learn to settle and not be so obsessive.


For some people it's not all about the specs but about the life cycle. Buying a Mac at the beginning of the revision's life cycle makes sense if you want to maximize it's useful life. If you buy a current MacBook Pro right now, just before the next revision is about to ship, you are spending a lot of money on a 1 year old computer and cutting the same amount of time off it's useful life.

A lot of people (myself included) are in the market for a new MacBook Pro right now, but are waiting for the next revision to maximize useful life. This is especially applicable for people who hold onto their Macs for an extended period of time and don't upgrade every 1-2 years.

If you need a computer right now, buy one right now. If you can hold off, it would be wise to do so with todays news.
Rating: 8 Votes

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