MacBook

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This article is about the Apple Inc. computer called "MacBook". For the MacBook family as a whole, see MacBook family.
MacBook

MacBook white.png

The original white MacBook.
Developer Apple Inc.
Type Laptop
Release date May 16, 2006 (original release)
May 18, 2010 (most recent model)
Discontinued July 20, 2011 (consumer sales)[1]
February 2012 (educational sales)[2]
CPU Intel Core 2 Duo (last model)
Intel Core Duo (original release)
Predecessor iBook G4
Related articles MacBook Air, MacBook Pro
Website Apple — MacBook

The MacBook is a brand of notebook computers manufactured by Apple Inc. from early 2006 to late 2011. It replaced the iBook series and 12-inch PowerBook series of notebooks as a part of the Apple–Intel transition from PowerPC. Positioned as the low end of the MacBook family, below the premium ultra-portable MacBook Air and the powerful MacBook Pro,[3] the Apple MacBook was aimed at the consumer and education markets.[4] It was the best-selling Macintosh in history, and according to the sales-research organization NPD Group in October 2008, the mid-range model of the MacBook was the single best-selling laptop of any brand in US retail stores for the preceding five months.[5]

There have been three separate designs of the MacBook: the original model used a combination of polycarbonate and fiberglass casing which was modeled after the iBook G4.

The second type, introduced in October 2008 alongside the 15-inch MacBook Pro, used a similar unibody aluminum casing to the 15-inch Pro, but lacked Firewire, as a cost-balance with the more expensive aluminum case. Sales were poor and customers complained of the lack of Firewire.[6]

A third design, introduced in January 2009, reverted to the polycarbonate shell and, in response to customer backlash, reverted to Firewire again like all MacBooks prior to the Late 2008 model. In this sense, it was really the first design revisited. A Mid 2009 model also had Firewire, but with the Late 2009 release, Firewire was again dropped by Apple. With neither USB 3.0 nor Thunderbolt as an alternative, the MacBook now lacked any high-speed port, considered an important feature by power users.

On July 20, 2011, the MacBook was quietly discontinued for consumer purchase as it had been effectively superseded by the MacBook Air whose starting price was lowered.[7] Apple continued to sell the MacBook to educational institutions until February 2012.[1][2]

Original polycarbonate model [edit]

First-generation black polycarbonate MacBook, 2006

The original MacBook, available in black or white cases, was released on May 16, 2006, and used the Intel Core Duo processor and 945GM chipset, with Intel's GMA 950 integrated graphics on a 667 MHz front side bus. Later revisions of the MacBook moved to the Core 2 Duo processor and the GM965 chipset, with Intel's GMA X3100 integrated graphics on an 800 MHz system bus.[8] Sale of the black polycarbonate MacBook ceased in October 2008 after the introduction of the aluminum MacBook.

While thinner than the iBook G4 which it replaced, the MacBook is wider than the 12-inch model due to its widescreen display. In addition, the MacBook was one of the first (the first being the MacBook Pro) to adopt Apple's MagSafe power connector and it replaced the iBook's mini-VGA display port with a mini-DVI display port. The iBook's discrete graphics chip was initially replaced by an integrated Intel GMA solution, though the latest revisions of the MacBook were upgraded with the more powerful Nvidia GeForce 9400M and later the 320M.[9]

While the MacBook Pro largely followed the industrial design standard set by the PowerBook G4, the MacBook was Apple's first notebook to use features now standard in its notebooks: the glossy display, the sunken keyboard design, and the non-mechanical magnetic latch. With the late 2007 revision, the keyboard received several changes to closely mirror the one which shipped with the iMac, by adding the same keyboard short-cut to control multimedia, and removing the embedded numeric keypad and the Apple logo from the command keys.[10]

A more expensive black model was offered until the introduction of the unibody aluminum MacBook. The polycarbonate MacBook was the only Macintosh notebook to be offered in more than one color since the iBook G3 (Clamshell).

Ports[edit]

The ports are all on the left edge; on early models, from front to back, they are: Kensington Security Slot, audio out, audio in, two USB 2.0 ports, FireWire 400, mini-DVI, Gigabit Ethernet, MagSafe power connector.

Ports for the white Macbook, on the left edge, from front to back: Kensington Security Slot, audio out, two USB 2.0 ports, mini-DVI, Gigabit Ethernet, MagSafe power connector.

The front edge features a short line-shaped power light and a round black infrared receiver, for Apple Remote; the right edge features only the disc slot.

User serviceability[edit]

The polycarbonate Intel MacBook is easier for users to fix or upgrade than its predecessor. Where the iBook required substantial disassembly to access internal components such as the hard drive, users need only remove the battery and the RAM door to replace the MacBook drive. Apple provides do-it-yourself manuals for these tasks.[11]

Quality problems[edit]

In February 2007, the Macbook was recalled because the graphics card and hard drive caused the computer to overheat, forcing the unit to shut down.

Some early polycarbonate MacBook models suffered from random shutdowns; Apple released a firmware update to resolve these random shutdowns.[12]

There were also cases reported of discolored or chipping palmrests. There were many instances of the edges of the palm rest and screen bezel splitting and thin strips peeling off. In such cases, Apple asked affected owners to contact AppleCare.[13]

There were problems with batteries on some models from 2007 not being read by the MacBook. This is caused by a logicboard fault and not a fault with the battery.

In February 2010, Apple announced a recall for MacBooks bought between 2006–2007 for hard drive issues. This is caused by heat and other problems.

Model specifications[edit]

Apple used the A1181 code, printed on the case, for this family of models, though 17 variations may be counted if color is included.[14]

Table of models
Component Intel Core Duo Intel Core 2 Duo
Model Early 2006[15] Late 2006[16] Mid 2007[17] Late 2007 (Santa Rosa)[18] Early 2008[19] Late 2008
(White)[20]
Early 2009 (White)[21] Mid 2009[22]
Release date May 16, 2006 November 8, 2006 May 15, 2007 November 1, 2007 February 26, 2008 October 14, 2008 January 21, 2009 May 27, 2009
Model numbers MA254*/A MA255*/A MA472*/A MA699*/A MA700*/A MA701*/A MB061*/A MB062*/A MB063*/A MB061*/B MB062*/B MB063*/B MB402*/A MB403*/A MB404*/A MB402*/B MB881*/A MC240*/A
Model identifier MacBook1,1 MacBook2,1 MacBook3,1 MacBook4,1 MacBook4,2 MacBook5,2
Display 13.3-inch glossy widescreen LCD, 1280 × 800 pixel resolution (WXGA, 16:10 = 8:5 aspect ratio)
Front side bus 667 MHz 800 MHz 1066 MHz
Processor 1.83 GHz or 2.0 GHz
Intel Core Duo (T2400/T2500)
1.83 GHz or 2.0 GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo (T5600/T7200)
2.0 GHz or 2.16 GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo (T7200/T7400)
2.0 GHz or 2.2 GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo (T7300/T7500)
2.1 GHz or 2.4 GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo (T8100/T8300)
2.1 GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo (T8100)
2.0 GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo (P7350)
2.13 GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo (P7450)
Memory
Two slots for
DDR2 SDRAM
512 MB (two 256 MB) 667 MHz PC2-5300
Expandable to 2 GB
512 MB (two 256 MB) or 1 GB (two 512 MB) 667 MHz PC2-5300
Expandable to 4 GB (3 GB usable)5
1 GB (two 512 MB) 667 MHz PC2-5300
Expandable to 4 GB (3 GB usable)5
1 GB (two 512 MB) or 2 GB (two 1 GB) 667 MHz PC2-5300
Expandable to 6 GB (4 GB supported by Apple)
1 GB (two 512 MB) 667 MHz PC2-5300
Expandable to 6 GB (4 GB supported by Apple)
2 GB (two 1 GB) 667 MHz PC2-5300
Expandable to 8 GB 800 Mhz PC2-6400 (4 GB supported by Apple)6
2 GB (two 1 GB) 800 MHz PC2-6400
Expandable to 8 GB (4 GB supported by Apple)6
Graphics
Shared with system memory
Intel GMA 950 using 64 MB RAM (up to 224 MB in Windows through Boot Camp).[23] Intel GMA X3100 using 144 MB RAM (up to 384 MB available in Windows through Boot Camp) Nvidia GeForce 9400M using 256 MB RAM
Hard drive2 60 GB or 80 GB
Optional 100 GB or 120 GB
60 GB, 80 GB or 120 GB
Optional 160 GB or 200 GB, 4200-rpm
80 GB, 120 GB or 160 GB
Optional 200 GB, 4200-rpm
80 GB, 120 GB or 160 GB
Optional 250 GB
120 GB, 160 GB or 250 GB 120 GB
Optional 160 GB or 250 GB
120 GB
Optional 160 GB, 250 GB, or 320 GB
160 GB
Optional 250 GB, 320 GB, or 500 GB
Serial ATA 5400-rpm unless specified
Combo drive3
Base model only
8× DVD read, 24× CD-R and 10× CD-RW recording 8× DVD read, 24× CD-R and 16× CD-RW recording N/A
Internal slot-loading SuperDrive3 double-layer discs reads. 4× DVD±R & RW recording. 24× CD-R and 10× CD-RW recording 2.4× DVD+R DL writes, 6× DVD±R read, 4× DVD±RW writes, 24× CD-R, and 10× CD-RW recording 4× DVD+R DL writes, 8× DVD±R read, 4× DVD±RW writes, 24× CD-R, and 10x CD-RW recording
Connectivity Integrated AirPort Extreme 802.11a/b/g
Gigabit Ethernet
Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR
Integrated Airport Extreme 802.11a/b/g/n (draft-n disabled by default)1
Gigabit Ethernet
Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR
Integrated Airport Extreme 802.11a/b/g/n (draft-n enabled)
Gigabit Ethernet
Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR
Integrated Airport Extreme 802.11a/b/g/n (draft-n enabled)
Gigabit Ethernet
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Peripherals 2x USB 2.0
1x Firewire 400
1x Optical digital / analog audio line-in
1x Optical digital / analog audio line-out
Camera iSight Camera (640 × 480 0.3 MP)
Video out Mini DVI
Maximum Operating System OS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" OS X 10.7 "Lion" OS X 10.10 "Yosemite"
Battery 55-watt-hour removable lithium-polymer
Weight 5.2 lb (2.4 kg) 5.1 lb (2.3 kg) 5.0 lb (2.3 kg)
Dimensions 1.08 in × 12.78 in × 8.92 in (27.5 mm × 325 mm × 227 mm)

Notes:
1 Requires the purchase of a wireless-N enabler software from Apple in order to enable the functionality.[24] Also enabled in Mac OS X 10.6 and later.
2 Hard drives noted are options available from Apple. As the hard drive is a user-replaceable part, there are custom configurations available, including use of 7200-rpm drives.
3 Given optical drive speed is its maximum.
4 Beginning with the early 2008 revision, the Apple Remote became an optional add-on.
5 Expandable to 4 GB, with 3.3 GB usable.[25]
6 Expandable to 8 GB, but with only 6 GB working stably with a Mac OS X older than 10.6.6 due to a software bug.[26]

Unibody aluminum model [edit]

The aluminum unibody MacBook

On October 14, 2008, Apple announced a MacBook featuring a new Nvidia chipset at a Cupertino, California press conference with the tagline: "The spotlight turns to notebooks".[27]

The chipset brought a 1066 MHz system bus, use of DDR3 system memory, and integrated Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics up to five times faster than the original MacBooks' Intel chipset.[28] Other changes include a display which uses LED backlights (which replace the fluorescent tube backlights used in the previous model which contain mercury) and arsenic-free glass, a new Mini DisplayPort (replacing the polycarbonate MacBook's mini-DVI port), a multi-touch glass trackpad which also acts as the mouse button, and the removal of the FireWire 400 port (thus it doesn't support Target Disk Mode, used for data transfers or operating system repairs without booting the system).[29]

Design[edit]

The design had stylistic traits of the MacBook Air which were also implemented into the design of the MacBook Pro. This model is thinner than the original polycarbonate MacBooks, and it made use of a unibody aluminum case with tapered edges. The keyboard of the higher-end model included a backlight.

Reception[edit]

Although Gizmodo concluded it to be "our favorite MacBook to date," they did claim, at this time, its display was inferior to that found on the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air, alleging a smaller viewing angle, washed-out colors, and dimmer backlighting.[30] Similarly, AppleInsider and Engadget concluded it "may well be Apple's best MacBook to date" and "these are terrific choices—not only from an industrial design standpoint, but in specs as well" respectively, while also drawing attention to a lower quality display as compared with the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air.[31][32] Charlie Sorrel of Wired News reached an identical conclusion about the MacBook display, citing its poor contrast and lack of vertical angle in comparison with the MacBook Pro and even the older white MacBook.[33] Peter Cohen wrote an article discussing the loss of the FireWire port for Macworld, saying "The absence of FireWire ports is certainly an inconvenience for some users. But it shouldn’t be considered a deal-breaker for most of us, anyway."[34]

Model specifications[edit]

Table of models
Model Late 2008[35]
Release date October 14, 2008
Model number MB466*/A; MB467*/A
Model identifier MacBook5,1
Display 13.3-inch LED backlit glossy widescreen LCD, 1280 × 800 pixel resolution
Front side bus 1066 MHz
Processor 2.0 GHz or 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (P7350/P8600)
Memory
2 GB (two 1 GB)
Expandable to 8 GB (4 GB supported by Apple)[36][37]
Two slots for PC3-8500 DDR3 SDRAM (1066 MHz)
Graphics Integrated Nvidia GeForce 9400M with 256 MB shared with main memory
(up to 512 MB available in Windows through Boot Camp)
Hard drive1
Serial ATA 5400-rpm
160 GB or 250 GB 5400-rpm
Optional 320 GB HDD; 128 GB or 256 GB Solid-state drive (SSD)
Internal slot-loading SuperDrive2 Maximum write: 8× DVD±R, 4× DVD±R DL, 4× DVD±RW, 24× CD-R, 10× CD-RW
Maximum read: 8× DVD±R, DVD-ROM, 6× DVD-ROM (double layer DVD-9), DVD±R DL, DVD±RW, 24× CD
Connectivity Integrated AirPort Extreme 802.11a/b/g/draft-n (BCM4322 chipset)
Gigabit Ethernet
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Peripherals 2x USB 2.0
1x Combined optical digital input/analog line in
1x Combined optical digital output/analog line out
Video out Mini DisplayPort
Battery 45-watt-hour removable lithium polymer
Weight 4.5 lb (2.0 kg)
Dimensions 0.95 in × 12.78 in × 8.94 in (24.1 mm × 325 mm × 227 mm)
Maximum operating system OS X Yosemite

Notes:
1 Hard drives noted are options available from Apple. As the hard drive is a user-replaceable part, there are custom configurations available, including use of 7,200-rpm drives and SSDs.[38]
2 Given optical drive speed is its maximum.

Unibody polycarbonate model [edit]

On October 20, 2009, Apple released a MacBook that introduced a new polycarbonate (plastic) unibody design,[39] faster DDR3 memory, a multi-touch trackpad, an LED-backlit display, and a built-in seven-hour battery. The polycarbonate unibody MacBook, like its aluminum predecessor, lacks FireWire and, like the 13-inch MacBook Pro, has a combined audio in/out port. There is no infrared port and the Apple Remote is not included. On May 18, 2010, the MacBook was refreshed with a faster processor, a faster graphics card, improved battery life, and the ability to pass audio through the Mini DisplayPort connector. On July 20, 2011, the MacBook was discontinued for consumer purchases,[1] but was still available to educational institutions until February 2012.[2]

Design[edit]

Like the MacBook Pro, the MacBook follows the same tapered design first seen in the MacBook Air; however, it is rounder on the edges than previous laptops in the MacBook line. This model has an all-white fingerprint-resistant glossy palm rest, unlike the grayish surface of its predecessor, and uses a multi-touch glass trackpad like the one found on the MacBook Pro. The video-out port is Mini DisplayPort. The bottom of the MacBook features a rubberized non-slip finish. The built-in battery of the late 2009 revision, a feature introduced earlier in the year with the MacBook Pro, is claimed by Apple to last seven hours compared with five hours in the older models. However, in tests conducted by Macworld, the battery was found to last only about four hours while playing video at full brightness with AirPort turned off.[40] However, Apple's battery life was calculated with the brightness at the middle setting and while browsing websites and editing word documents, not with video and at full brightness.[41] Gizmodo also reached about the same conclusion in their tests, but with AirPort turned on.[42] The battery included in the mid-2010 model holds an additional five watt-hours over the previous model's and is claimed to last up to ten hours.[43]

Reception[edit]

Despite being hailed by Slashgear as "one of the best entry-level notebooks Apple have produced," the unibody MacBook has received criticism for its lack of a FireWire port and SD card slot.[44] Nilay Patel of Engadget added the USB ports were easily dented and the bottom of the laptop became worn and discolored after a few days. He also drew particular attention to the fact that the price was not lowered, stating the small price difference between the MacBook and the MacBook Pro makes it a "wasted pricing opportunity."[45] However, most critics agree that the unibody MacBook's display is significantly better than its predecessor's. AppleInsider states the new display "delivers significantly better color and viewing angle performance" than the previous MacBook, but still "not as vivid and wide-angle viewable as the MacBook Pro screens."[46]

Model specifications[edit]

Table of models
Model Late 2009[47] Mid 2010[48]
Release date October 20, 2009 May 18, 2010
Order Numbers MC207*/A MC516*/A
Model Numbers A1342 A1342
Machine Model MacBook6,1 MacBook7,1
Display 13.3-inch LED backlit glossy widescreen LCD, 1280 × 800 pixel resolution
Front side bus 1066 MHz
Processor 2.26 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (P7550) 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (P8600)
Memory1
Two slots for PC3-8500 DDR3 SDRAM (1066 MHz)
2 GB (two 1 GB)
Expandable to 8 GB (4 GB supported by Apple)[49] Expandable to 16 GB (4 GB supported by Apple)[50]
Graphics Integrated Nvidia GeForce 9400M with 256 MB shared with main memory
(up to 512 MB available in Windows through Boot Camp)
Integrated Nvidia GeForce 320M with 256 MB shared with main memory
Hard drive2
Serial ATA 5400-rpm
250 GB 5400-rpm
Optional 320 GB or 500 GB HDD
SuperDrive 3 Internal Slot-Loading
Maximum write: 8× DVD±R, 4× DVD±R DL, 4× DVD±RW, 24× CD-R, 10× CD-RW
Maximum read: 8× DVD±R, DVD-ROM, 6× DVD-ROM (double layer DVD-9), DVD±R DL, DVD±RW, 24× CD
Connectivity Integrated AirPort 802.11a/b/g/n (BCM43224 chipset)
Gigabit Ethernet
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Peripherals 2x USB 2.0
1x Optical digital audio out / analog audio line-out/in
Camera iSight Camera (640 × 480 0.3 MP)
Video out Mini DisplayPort
Video only
Mini DisplayPort
with Audio-out
Battery 60-watt-hour non-removable lithium-polymer 63.5-watt-hour non-removable lithium-polymer
Weight 4.7 lb (2.1 kg)
Dimensions 1.09 in × 13.00 in × 9.12 in (27.4 mm × 330.3 mm × 231.7 mm)
Maximum operating system OS X Yosemite

Notes:
1 Memory noted are the options available from Apple. As memory is a user-replaceable part, there are custom configurations available, including use of two 2 GB RAM modules, for 4 GB of RAM.
2 Hard drives noted are options available from Apple. As the hard drive is a user-replaceable part, there are custom configurations available, including use of 7200-rpm drives and SSDs.
3 Given optical drive speed is its maximum.

Criticisms and defects[edit]

The rubber bottom of unibody MacBooks has been known to start bubbling and peel off. Apple has noticed this as a flaw and will replace the bottom for free, with or without a warranty. Some consumers have also reported defects in their LCD displays in mid-2010-2011 models.[51]

Timeline of the MacBook family

iMac (Intel-based) MacBook Pro#Third generation (Retina) MacBook Pro#Third generation (Retina) MacBook Pro#Second generation (unibody) MacBook Pro#Second generation (unibody) MacBook Pro#Second generation (unibody) MacBook Pro#First generation MacBook Pro#First generation MacBook#Unibody aluminum model MacBook Pro#First generation MacBook#Unibody polycarbonate model MacBook#Original polycarbonate model MacBook#Original polycarbonate model MacBook Air MacBook Air


See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Slivka, Eric (July 20, 2011). "White MacBook Not Dead Yet: Still Available for Educational Institutions". MacRumors. Retrieved July 20, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c Slivka, Eric (February 8, 2012). "Apple Kills Off White MacBook as Educational Institution Distribution Halted". MacRumors. Retrieved February 9, 2012. 
  3. ^ [1]
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  7. ^ "Apple discontinues white MacBook". macrumors.com. July 20, 2011. Retrieved July 20, 2011. 
  8. ^ "White & Black MacBook Q&A – Revised March 1, 2008". EveryMac.com. Retrieved October 22, 2009. 
  9. ^ "Apple – MacBook – Technical Specifications". Apple. May 27, 2009. Retrieved June 9, 2009. 
  10. ^ Booker, Zac (January 9, 2008). "The Vanishing Numeric Keypad". The New Mexico Times. Retrieved November 19, 2008. 
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  13. ^ "About white MacBook palmrest area". Apple. Archived from the original on February 9, 2008. 
  14. ^ http://www.everymac.com/systems/by_capability/mac-specs-by-model-number-family-number.html Apple model numbers
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  17. ^ "MacBook (Mid 2007) – Technical Specifications". Support.apple.com. October 13, 2008. Retrieved October 22, 2009. 
  18. ^ "MacBook (Late 2007) – Technical Specifications". Support.apple.com. October 13, 2008. Retrieved October 22, 2009. 
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  22. ^ "MacBook (13-inch, Mid 2009) – Technical Specifications". Apple.com. May 27, 2009. Retrieved October 22, 2009. 
  23. ^ "Mobile Intel 945 Express Chipset Family Datasheet". Intel. April 12, 2007. Retrieved February 1, 2013. 
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  28. ^ Apple. "Apple MacBook Graphics". Archived from the original on February 6, 2009. Retrieved February 1, 2013. 
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  31. ^ "Apple's unibody MacBook Review". AppleInsider. November 2, 2008. Retrieved November 3, 2008. 
  32. ^ "MacBook and MacBook Pro Review". Engadget. October 21, 2008. Retrieved October 22, 2008. 
  33. ^ Sorrel, Charlie (February 19, 2009). "Hands On: Old MacBook Pro vs New MacBook". Wired News. Retrieved April 6, 2009. 
  34. ^ Cohen, Peter (October 7, 2008). "FireWire’s MacBook absence—inconvenience or fatal flaw?". Macworld.com. Retrieved March 16, 2009. 
  35. ^ "MacBook (13-inch, Aluminum, Late 2008) – Technical Specifications". Apple.com. October 14, 2008. Retrieved October 22, 2009. 
  36. ^ Weintraub, Seth (October 20, 2008). "NVidia says new Macbook/Pro can do 8GB of RAM". ComputerWorld. Computerworld, Inc (IDG). Retrieved May 26, 2014. 
  37. ^ ""Secret" Firmware lets Late ’08 MacBooks use 8GB.". Other World Computing Blog. Other World Computing. March 3, 2011. Retrieved March 4, 2011. 
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  43. ^ "Teardown of Apple's latest MacBook reveals slightly larger battery". AppleInsider. May 20, 2010. Retrieved May 20, 2010. 
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  46. ^ "Review: Apple's redesigned, late 2009 13-inch MacBook". AppleInsider. October 30, 2009. Retrieved May 20, 2010. 
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  51. ^ "Review: Apple's redesigned, late 2009 13-inch MacBook". Apple. May 7, 2011. Retrieved February 14, 2012. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
iBook G4
MacBook
May 16, 2006
Succeeded by