The eagles have landed (and by eagles, we mean the new MacBooks)

A pair of shiny new Apple laptops have arrived in the CNET Labs.

Look what the FedEx guy dropped off...

Forty-eight hours after Steve Jobs showed off his latest MacBook collection to the public , a pair of shiny new Apple laptops have arrived in the CNET Labs.

We're currently benchmarking these new systems--one 13-inch MacBook and one 15-inch MacBook Pro, so stay tuned for full reviews. In the meantime, we snapped a few photos of the new systems to show off some of the physical changes, and to compare an older black 13-inch MacBook.

The 13-inch MacBook is the more radically redesigned of the two, with an aluminum body that closely apes the classic MacBook Pro--so much so that we've heard it referred to as the "MacBook Pro Mini." The edge-to-edge glass on the display and giant touch pad are also new.

Side by side with a previous generation MacBook, the new model is slightly thinner, and the metal body (carved from a solid block of aluminum) feels much sturdier (not that the older MacBooks felt particularly flimsy).

The giant touch pad will take some getting used to--it lacks a separate mouse button. Before opening the box, we had assumed the new touch pad was strictly tap-based, but in fact the entire pad depresses like a button. It's actually a bit hard to get used to, and feels a little clunky at first compared to a totally fixed-position touch pad. On the other hand, there are some useful new gestures: you can hide all your apps by sweeping four fingers up on the pad, and you can also designate one corner as a "right-click" zone.

Check out these unboxing and comparison pics, which will hopefully hold your interest while we test and review the new MacBook and MacBook Pro.

They call these "unboxing" shots for a reason.
The new packaging seems to use a little less cardboard.
Th 13-inch and 15-inch systems, side by side.
Another side-by-side view.
The new touch pad.
A closer view of the touch pad.
The new MacBook and the previous black model.
A closeup, showing the new system is slightly thinner.

About the author

Dan Ackerman leads CNET's coverage of laptops, desktops, and Windows tablets, while also writing about games, gadgets, and other topics. A former radio DJ and member of Mensa, he's written about music and technology for more than 15 years, appearing in publications including Spin, Blender, and Men's Journal.

 

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