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Apple MacBook Pro "Core i7" 2.0 15" Early 2011 Specs

Identifiers: Early 2011 15" - MC721LL/A - MacBookPro8,2 - A1286 - 2353-1*

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Apple MacBook Pro 15-InchThe MacBook Pro "Core i7" 2.0 15-Inch (Early 2011/Thunderbolt) features a 32 nm "Sandy Bridge" 2.0 GHz Intel "Core i7" processor (2635QM), with four independent processor "cores" on a single silicon chip, a 6 MB shared level 3 cache, 4 GB of 1333 MHz DDR3 SDRAM (PC3-10600) installed in pairs (two 2 GB modules), a 500 GB Serial ATA (5400 RPM) hard drive, an 8X DL "SuperDrive", dual graphics processors -- an AMD Radeon HD 6490M with 256 MB of dedicated GDDR5 memory and an Intel HD Graphics 3000 graphics processor that shares 384 MB of memory with the system -- and an integrated FaceTime HD webcam.

The standard configuration of this model has an LED-backlit 15.4" widescreen TFT active-matrix "glossy" display (1440x900 native resolution), but it also was available via custom configuration with a "high-resolution glossy" 1680x1050 display and a "high-resolution antiglare" 1680x1050 display for an additional US$100 and US$150, respectively.

Connectivity includes AirPort Extreme (802.11a/b/g/n), Bluetooth 2.1+EDR, Gigabit Ethernet, a Firewire "800" port, two USB 2.0 ports, separate audio in and out ports, an SDXC card slot, and a new "Thunderbolt" port that is backwards compatible with Mini DisplayPort and, likewise, supports an external display at 2560x1600 and passes an audio signal. Thunderbolt also supports other peripherals that use the Thunderbolt standard which provides up to 10 Gbps of bandwidth in both directions.

This model uses a "Unibody" aluminum case design -- milled from a single piece of aluminum -- and has a backlit keyboard, a "no button" glass "inertial" multi-touch trackpad, and a non-swappable battery design that provides an Apple estimated 7 hours of battery life.

Compared to its predecessor, this model has a very similar external enclosure, apart from a higher-resolution webcam and the aforementioned Thunderbolt port. Internally, however, it has a significantly faster architecture, faster RAM, and improved graphics.

Also see:

  • What are the differences between the "Early 2011" 13-Inch, 15-Inch, and 17-Inch MacBook Pro models?
  • What are the differences between the "Early 2011" 13-Inch, 15-Inch, and 17-Inch MacBook Pro models and the "Mid-2010" MacBook Pro models that they replaced?

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  • Tech Specs
  • Ports
  • Global Original Prices
  • Popular Q&As

Click on the category for related details. The most commonly needed info is "open" by default, but all info is important.


February 24, 2011 October 24, 2011
Details: The "Introduction Date" refers to the date a model was introduced via press release. The "Discontinued Date" refers to the date a model either was replaced by a subsequent system or production otherwise ended.

Also see: All Macs introduced in 2011.
1 (4 Cores) 64-Bit
Details: Also see: All models with a 64-Bit processor courtesy of EveryMac.com's Ultimate Mac Sort.
8786 9518
Details: Geekbench 2 benchmarks are in 32-bit and 64-bit modes, respectively. These numbers reflect an average of user provided 32-bit and 64-bit results as submitted to the Geekbench website. Higher numbers are better.

You also might be interested in reviewing all 32-bit and 64-bit Geekbench 2 user submissions for Macs with the MacBookPro8,2 Model Identifier, which may include multiple models.

To dynamically compare Geekbench 2 results from different Macs side-by-side, see EveryMac.com's Ultimate Mac Comparison.
2195 7916
Details: These Geekbench 3 benchmarks are in 32-bit mode and are for a single processor core and all processor cores, respectively. Both numbers reflect an average of user provided results as submitted to the Geekbench website. Higher numbers are better.

You also might be interested in reviewing all 32-bit single core and multicore Geekbench 3 user submissions for Macs with the MacBookPro8,2 Model Identifier, which may include multiple models.

To dynamically compare 32-bit Geekbench 3 results from different Macs side-by-side, see EveryMac.com's Ultimate Mac Comparison.
2455 8945
Details: These Geekbench 3 benchmarks are in 64-bit mode and are for a single processor core and all processor cores, respectively. Both numbers reflect an average of user provided results as submitted to the Geekbench website. Higher numbers are better.

You also might be interested in reviewing all 64-bit single core and multicore Geekbench 3 user submissions for Macs with the MacBookPro8,2 Model Identifier, which may include multiple models.

To dynamically compare 64-bit Geekbench 3 results from different Macs side-by-side, see EveryMac.com's Ultimate Mac Comparison.
2.0 GHz Core i7 (I7-2635QM)
Details: This model is powered by a "Quad-Core" 32 nm, 64-bit Intel Mobile Core i7 "Sandy Bridge" (I7-2635QM) processor which includes four independent processor "cores" on a single silicon chip. Each core has a dedicated 256k level 2 cache, shares 6 MB of level 3 cache, and has an integrated memory controller (dual channel).

This system also supports "Turbo Boost 2.0" -- which "automatically increases the speed of the active cores" to improve performance when needed (up to 2.9 GHz for this model) -- and "Hyper Threading" -- which allows the system to recognize eight total "cores" or "threads" (four real and four virtual).

Also see: How fast are the "Early 2011" 13-Inch, 15-Inch, and 17-Inch MacBook Pro models compared to one another? How fast are they compared to the models each replaced?
2.9 GHz N/A
Details: N/A
Soldered Integrated
Details: Also see: Can you upgrade the processor in the "Unibody" MacBook Pro?
5 GT/s* 2.0 GHz (Built-in)
Details: *This system has a "Direct Media Interface" (DMI) that "connects between the processor and chipset" in lieu of a traditional system bus. Intel reports that it runs at 5 GT/s.
EFI 64-Bit
Details: N/A
32k/32k x2 256k x 4, 6 MB
Details: Each core has its own dedicated 256k level 2 cache and the system has 6 MB of shared level 3 cache.
PC3-10600 DDR3 1333 MHz
Details: Supports 1333 MHz PC3-10600 DDR3 SDRAM.

Also see: How do you upgrade the RAM in the "Early 2011" 13-Inch, 15-Inch, and 17-Inch MacBook Pro models? How much RAM of what type do they support?
4 GB 16 GB*
Details: 4 GB of RAM is installed as two 2 GB modules, no slots free.

*Apple officially supports a maximum of 8 GB of RAM, but as first confirmed by site sponsor OWC, this model actually is capable of using up to 16 GB of RAM with two 8 GB memory modules.

In the US (and many other countries), site sponsor Other World Computing sells memory -- as well as other upgrades -- for this MacBook Pro.

In the UK, site sponsor Flexx sells memory and other upgrades for this MacBook Pro.

In Australia, site sponsor RamCity sells memory and other upgrades for this MacBook Pro.

In Southeast Asia, site sponsor SimplyMac.sg sells memory and other upgrades for this MacBook Pro.

Also see: Actual Max RAM of All G3 & Later Macs.
None 2
Details: N/A
Radeon HD 6490M* GDDR5
Details: *This system has dual graphics processors -- an AMD Radeon HD 6490M graphics processor with 256 MB of dedicated GDDR5 SDRAM and Intel HD Graphics 3000 with 384 MB of DDR3 SDRAM shared with main memory. The system automatically switches between graphics systems based on use (when applications use OpenGL, Core Graphics or other graphically demanding technologies, the system will use the dedicated graphics card, otherwise it will use Intel HD Graphics to conserve battery life).

Also see: What type of video processor is provided by the "Unibody" MacBook Pro models? Is it upgradable? Which models have "dedicated" and "integrated" video memory?
256 MB* 256 MB*
Details: The AMD Radeon HD 6490M graphics processor has 256 MB of dedicated GDDR5 memory. On the other hand, the Intel HD Graphics 3000 graphics processor shares system memory. Apple reports that when using Intel HD Graphics, the "memory available to Mac OS X may vary depending on graphics needs. Minimum graphics memory usage is 384 MB". If the system is upgraded to 8 GB of RAM (or more), the amount of system memory used by the Intel HD Graphics 3000 is 512 MB.
15.4" Widescreen 1440x900
Details: By default, this model has a 15.4" color widescreen LED-backlit TFT active-matrix "glossy" display with a 1440 by 900 native resolution. However, it also was available via custom configuration with a "high-resolution glossy" 1680x1050 display and a "high-resolution antiglare" 1680x1050 display for an additional US$100 and US$150, respectively.

In addition to the native resolution, Apple reports that this system also supports "1280 by 800, 1152 by 720, 1024 by 640, and 800 by 500 pixels at 16:10 aspect ratio; 1024 by 768, 800 by 600, and 640 by 480 pixels at 4:3 aspect ratio; 1024 by 768, 800 by 600, and 640 by 480 pixels at 4:3 aspect ratio stretched; 720 by 480 pixels at 3:2 aspect ratio; 720 by 480 pixels at 3:2 aspect ratio stretched."
Dual/Mirroring 2560x1600
Details: The maximum resolution supported on an external display is 2560x1600.

Also see: Are there any adapters or "hacks" that make it possible to connect a second external display to a MacBook, MacBook Pro, or MacBook Air model?
500 GB (5400 RPM) Serial ATA (6 Gb/s)
Details: By custom configuration, this model could be equipped with a 500 GB 7200 RPM Serial ATA hard drive or a 750 GB 5400 RPM Serial ATA hard drive for an additional US$100 or US$150, respectively. It also could be configured with a 128 GB, 256 GB, or 512 GB SSD for an additional US$200, US$600, or US$1200, respectively.

Also see: How do you upgrade the hard drive in the "Early 2011" 13-Inch, 15-Inch, and 17-Inch MacBook Pro models? What type of hard drive do these models support? Can one replace the hard drive with an SSD?

In the US (and many other countries), site sponsor Other World Computing sells storage upgrades for this MacBook Pro.

In the UK, site sponsor Flexx sells storage upgrades for this MacBook Pro.

In Australia, site sponsor RamCity sells storage upgrades for this MacBook Pro.
8X DL "SuperDrive" None
Details: Apple reports that this slot-loading "SuperDrive" (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW) has a maxium write speed of "8x DVD-R, DVD+R; 4x DVD-R DL (double layer), DVD+R DL (double layer), DVD-RW, DVD+RW; 24x CD-R; 10x CD-RW" and a maximum read speed of "8x DVD-R, DVD+R, DVD-ROM; 6x DVD-ROM (double layer DVD-9), DVD-R DL (double layer), DVD+R DL (double layer), DVD-RW, and DVD+RW; 24x CD".

Site sponsor Other World Computing offers a "Data Doubler" mounting kit that may be of interest. It makes it simple to install a second hard drive or SSD in the optical drive bay of this MacBook Pro.
None 10/100/1000Base-T
Details: N/A
802.11a/b/g/n (450 Mbit*) 2.1+EDR
Details: AirPort Extreme (802.11a/b/g/n) and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR standard. *This model unofficially supports 450 Mbit/sec 802.11n Wi-Fi using MIMO.

Also see: What is 802.11n? How is it different from 802.11b, 802.11g, and 802.11a?
2 (2.0) 1 (800)
Details: Two 480-Mbps USB 2.0 ports, one 800-Mbps Firewire "800" port.
SDXC Card Slot None
Details: This model has an SDXC card slot. No expansion bays are provided.

In the US (and many other countries), site sponsor Other World Computing sells a wide variety of external expansion options and accessories, including docking stations, adapters, input devices, cases, and more for this MacBook Pro.

In Ireland, site sponsor SmartSpot sells a number of external expansion options and accessories like cases, cables, SD cards, speakers, and more for this MacBook Pro.

In Australia, site sponsor Macfixit offers an extensive selection of external expansion options and accessories like docks, stands, chargers, cases, security products, and more for this MacBook Pro.
Full-size Trackpad (Inertial)
Details: Apple reports that the backlit integrated keyboard has "78 (US) or 79 (ISO) keys, including 12 function keys, 4 arrow keys (inverted "T" arrangement)."

The glass multi-touch trackpad supports "inertial scrolling, pinch, rotate, swipe, three-finger swipe, four-finger swipe, tap, double-tap, and drag capabilities".
Notebook MacBook Pro (Unibody)
Details: By default, this MacBook Pro uses a black and silver "unibody" case design milled from a single piece of aluminum with a "catchless" magnetic latch. However, if configured with an "anti-glare" (matte) display, it has a silver border framing the display rather than a black border.
MC721LL/A Early 2011 15"
Details: The Apple order number should be unique to this system.
A1286 (EMC 2353-1*) MacBookPro8,2
Details: *Please note that these identifiers refer to more than one model. In this case, please also note that the EMC number is not externally listed on the notebook so it cannot be used readily for identification.

Also see: All Macs with the A1286 Model Number, the 2353-1* EMC Number, and the MacBookPro8,2 Model Identifier.

For more about these identifiers and how to locate them on each Mac, please refer to EveryMac.com's Mac Identification section.
77.5 W h Li-Poly 7 Hours
Details: Apple reports that this model has a "77.5-watt-hour lithium-polymer battery" that provides "up to 7 hours of wireless web" use.

Also see: What is the "real-world" battery life of the "Early 2011" 13-Inch, 15-Inch, and 17-Inch MacBook Pro models? How does the battery life of each compare to the model each replaced?

In the US (and many other countries), site sponsor Other World Computing sells quality batteries for this MacBook Pro.

In Australia, site sponsor Macfixit is a local distributor of OWC batteries for this MacBook Pro.

In Southeast Asia, site sponsor SimplyMac.sg sells OWC batteries for this MacBook Pro.
X 10.6.6 (10J3210) Current*
Details: *This system fully supports the last version of OS X 10.8 "Mountain Lion" as well as OS X 10.9 "Mavericks" with the exception of the "Power Nap" feature. It also supports the last version of OS X 10.10 "Yosemite" and OS X 10.11 "El Capitan" -- including Mac-to-Mac AirDrop and AirPlay Mirroring capability -- but other advanced features are not supported. It is capable of running the forthcoming macOS Sierra (10.12) as well, although precise feature support has yet to be released.

Please note that OS X "Lion" 10.7 and subsequent versions of OS X are not capable of running Mac OS X apps originally written for the PowerPC processor as these operating systems do not support the "Rosetta" environment. To run PowerPC applications on this Mac, it will be necessary to use Mac OS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard."

Also see: Which Macs are compatible with OS X El Capitan (10.11)? What are the system requirements? Which Macs support which features?
7 (32-Bit)* 8.1 (64-Bit)*
Details: *Apple's Boot Camp 4 supports the 32-bit of Windows 7 on this model. Boot Camp 5 supports the 64-bit versions of Windows 7 and Windows 8. Earlier versions of Windows are not supported.

Although Apple does not support Windows 10 via Boot Camp 5 (officially or otherwise), this system meets Microsoft's hardware requirements and it very well may be possible to boot Windows 10 on this Mac. If you have installed Windows 10 on this system (successfully or unsuccessfully), please share the results of your experiment. Thank you.
None Boot/Virtualization
Details: Also see: Are there any third-party programs to run Mac OS 9/Classic applications on Intel Macs?

Site sponsor OHS specializes in heavily upgraded Macs capable of running both Mac OS X and Mac OS 9 applications.

For more on running Windows on Intel Macs, please refer to the exhaustive Windows on Mac Q&A.
0.95 x 14.35 x 9.82 5.6 lbs (2.54 kg)
Details: In inches while closed - height by width by depth, (2.41 cm, 36.4 cm, 24.9 cm).
US$1799 US$950-US$1150
Details: Please note that on average the estimated current retail pricing of used systems is updated twice a year (please refer to the date on the bottom of the page for the date last updated).

Photo Credit: Apple, Inc.



Click on a category for additional details. The most commonly needed info is "open" by default, but all info is important. The icons correspond with the icons for each port on the computer.


1 (Thunderbolt) None
Details: This model is equipped with a Thunderbolt port in place of a Mini DisplayPort. It is backwards-compatible with Mini DisplayPort-equipped displays as well as adapters that are compatible with Mini DisplayPort (DVI, VGA, dual-link DVI and HDMI). It also can support other peripherals that use the Thunderbolt standard, which provides a maximum theoretical 10 Gbps of bandwidth in both directions.
None None
Details: N/A
None None
Details: N/A
2 (2.0) 1 (800)
Details: Two 480-Mbps USB 2.0 ports, one 800-Mbps Firewire "800" port.
None 1 (RJ-45)
Details: No internal modem. Gigabit Ethernet, AirPort Extreme (802.11g/n) and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR standard.
None None
Details: N/A
1 (Internal) 1
Details: Internal omnidirectional microphone. Independent audio line in minijack (digital/analog) and audio line out/headphone minijack (digital/analog).
1 1
Details: Has an independent audio line in minijack (digital/analog) and audio line out/headphone minijack (digital/analog).
1 None
Details: N/A
N/A 1
Details: 100V-240V AC, 85W "MagSafe" power adapter. Also see: What is the "Magsafe" power connector? How does it work? How was it designed to not cause data loss?

Global original prices for the MacBook Pro "Core i7" 2.0 15" Early 2011 in 34 different countries and territories follow; organized alphabetically by region.

For global original prices for Intel Macs in one particular country on a single page, please refer to EveryMac.com's Global Original Prices section.

Original Prices - North & South America

C$1849 R$6.699
MXN $26,999 US$1799

Original Prices - Europe

€1749 €1799
DKK 13,799 €1799
€1749 €1749
€1799 €1749
€1709,80 €1749
NOK 14.990 €1799
€1749 SEK 16.495
CHF 2'099 £1549

Original Prices - Asia

RMB 13,998 HK$13,788
Rs 104,900 Rp 17,999,000
¥158,800 KRW 2,290,000
RM 5,499 PHP 91,990
S$2,488 NT$57,900
THB 59,900 VND 43,999,000

Original Prices - Australia & New Zealand

A$2099 NZ$2999

If you have additional original prices for this model, please get in touch. Thank you.


Ten of the most popular Q&As about the MacBook Pro models follow.


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