We're all waiting for the new Macbook Pro i5/i7 systems. Now it seems that CNet is joining in. Apple won't like this kind of article in the mainstream media. We will definitely be getting new Macbook Pros soon. Article as follows: As performance laptops based on the Intel Core i5 processor proliferate, older Core 2 models look, well, old. That means Apple's core silicon is past its prime. What began as a trickle about a month ago is now a torrent of new Core i-based notebooks. Although lower-end Core i3 processor-based systems are widely available for the more budget-minded, the Core i5 is now powering performance laptops for those willing to pay a little more money. The mobile i5 chip is, in a word, fast. Made on Intel's cutting-edge 32-nanometer manufacturing process, it handily outperforms the older Core 2 Duo. Tech Web site AnandTech said the i5 processor delivers "the single largest performance improvement we've seen from a new mobile processor in years," and Tom's Hardware said it "boasts the best balance between desktop-class speed and true mobile usability we've ever seen." Dell: The Dell 15.6-inch Studio (S15Z-3630CPN) offered at Best Buy is a good example. Priced at $1,049, it comes, as many systems do, with the popular Core i5-430M processor (2.53GHz) and an ATI Radeon HD 4570 graphics chip with 512MB dedicated video memory. Other features for this Dell Studio model include 4GB DDR3 memory, a 500GB Serial ATA hard disk drive (7200 rpm), two built-in 2W speakers, a built-in optical drive, and Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium Edition 64-bit operating system. Apple, by comparison, offers a 15-inch aluminum MacBook Pro for a pricey $2,299 that uses the older 2.8GHz Core 2 Duo and comes with specifications that are otherwise pretty similar to the (much) cheaper Dell system. Hewlett-Packard: A $1,299 15.6-inch HP Envy (considered the company's consumer luxury laptop line) offers similar specifications to the Dell system but with more powerful graphics silicon. In addition to the Core i5-430M, it comes with a more powerful 1GB ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5830 graphics chip, a 320GB disk drive (7,200rpm), and 4GB of DDR3 memory. Sony: This week, a slim Sony system (VPCS111FM/S) with a 13.3-inch display found a spot on store shelves at Best Buy for the first time. Although it misses the sub-inch-thick cutoff for ultrathins by a few tenths of an inch, it does fall into the thin category (1.2 inches in height) and certainly does qualify as one of the thinnest Core i5 laptops yet--and one of the lightest, at 4.4 pounds. Other Sony specs include a 500GB hard disk drive (5400RPM), Intel Graphics Media Accelerator HD, 4GB of memory, a built-in optical drive, and Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit. One thing to note: No ATI or Nvidia graphics here. Ultraportables--the designation that Best Buy gives it--typically don't come with discrete (standalone) graphics cards. On the upside, Sony offers a two-year limited warranty for the system, a step up from the typical one-year consumer laptop warranties. It's priced at $1,049. Toshiba: The Core i5-based U505 Satellite from Toshiba (U505-S2010) is also relatively light, at 4.7 pounds and about the same thickness as the Sony. At $1,099, it is loaded similarly to the Sony laptop (including an optical drive) but adds a touch screen. By comparison, Apple offers its aesthetically attractive Core 2-based 13-inch aluminum MacBook Pro with an Nvidia graphics chipset. But the $1,499 model is using last-year's Intel and Nvidia technology. The upshot: With more and more speedy Core i laptops coming out of the woodwork, it doesn't make a lot of sense to buy an older Core 2 Duo system. Apple surely knows this and, as CNET's Erica Ogg pointed out last month, an e-mail sent from Intel to participants in a training program for company sales representatives hinted that a MacBook running the Core i5 may be coming soon. A refresh of the MacBook Pro line can't be very far off, but the clock is ticking.