On Wednesday we brought you news that an anonymous tipster in the Mac accessory business was preparing wares for a 15-inch MacBook Air that could kill off the MacBook Pro. Now word from a source on the inside claims that the bigger of Apple’s laptops will, in fact, live on. Read on for the full details.

While it looks clear that Apple will be launching a 15-inch MacBook Air in April, a report from Digitimes reckons that it’ll coincide with a range of three new MacBook Pros. Rumour has it that these will eschew a disc drive – confirming what our source said – but will still maintain their independence from Apple’s waif-like MacBook Airs.

Why the MacBook Pro disc drive should die

Without that optical drive the Pros will be able to cut some serious millimeters off their girth, although they’ll still be noticeably chunkier than the Airs. The key difference between the two ranges, then, will be power: larger hard drives and Intel’s Ivy Bridge chips will take pride of place inside the new, slim MacBook Pros, allowing Apple to still offer something extra for the power user.

As we mentioned before, Apple needs to offer a portable (if you can call it that) 17-inch laptop with enough grunt to handle properly intensive picture, video and sound editing. If the new 17-inch MacBook Pro manages to boost its performance while slimming out at the same time, we can live without a disc drive.

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