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MacBook Pro's crazy new LEDs

An interesting little nugget I found out about the MacBook Pro when I turned out the lights: Apple seriously juiced up the new notebook's LEDs.
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Written by Jason D. O'Grady, Contributing Editor on

The devil, as they say, is in the details. And the MacBook Pro is no exception.

When I turned out the lights to go to bed recently I discovered something new about the MacBook Pro that was quite surprising. Apple has cranked up the keyboard backlight on the new notebook to several times the brightness of the backlight on my PowerBook G4 (1.5GHz). Take a look at this picture:

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That's the PowerBook G4 on the left and the MacBook Pro on the right. Both keyboard backlights are set at 8 out of 16 bars (50 percent) brightness. I'm hesitant to say that the MBP keyboard is ten times brighter, but it's darned close. It almost burned a hole in my retinas! In fact, the MBP's keyboard backlight set to one bar is brighter than the keyboard backlight on the PowerBook set at 16 bars (100 percent.)

Another interesting change in the MacBook Pro are the brighter caps lock and the num lock LEDs under the keyboard. Apple has chosen an entirely new color for the caps lock and num lock for the MBP (again on the right). You can tell by the picture below that the MBP uses a much brighter kelly green as opposed to the softer yellow/green LEDs in the PowerBook G4 on the left.

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Both of these subtle LED changes contribute to the overall look of the new MacBook Pro quite nicely - even if they are just details. 

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