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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > My take on the new MacBook Pro

My take on the new MacBook Pro (Page 2)
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OreoCookie
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Nov 3, 2016, 10:29 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
I think that they took a look at Skylake and said "meh". Which is not unfair, it is some 7% faster clock-per-clock. I also think that Intel probably has Broadwell chips for cheap (there is a Broadwell CPU in this brand-new HP laptop from work, which is otherwise excellent).
Intel's staggered releases of new generations and how that meshes with the upgrade cycles of PC manufacturers doesn't make it any easier. Add to that the problems Skylake had on Windows (although as far as I understand this was due to Windows driver and not Intel issues), and it is not clear what CPU generation you get when you go shopping for new machines.
Originally Posted by P View Post
No, what it needs is the new display, and if you're doing that why not go to Retina if that is the path forward, and that is what the new MB and low-end MBPs are. And they'd be fine at it, if not for the price.
I agree, and while it is easy for us armchair quarterbacks to spend Apple's money, I think in this case there would have been a tangible and significant benefit to going to an all-Retina line-up. I'm sure a Retina 13" Air would sell like hot cakes. If I had to take a guess, I would say that this is Apple's reason for not upgrading them: the upgrade would not seem significant if all you get is +5 % in performance, -15 % in weight/volume and a better trackpad.
Originally Posted by P View Post
Note that the base 13" MB was $1100 in 2013, $1200 in 2012 and $1300 in 2011. Apple pushed the price down over time, and I'm thinking that maybe they regret doing that.
Don't forget that Apple's first Aluminum unibody MacBook had essentially the same genesis as the cheapest MacBook Pro now (although now Apple decided to keep the Pro moniker). The only difference, though, is that there were good cheaper alternatives at that time. You could still buy (non-Pro) MacBooks (Airs) at reasonable prices, and get a very good machine.
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Nov 4, 2016, 07:01 AM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
This is intriguing. I have never heard of a FireWire to USB adapter that actually works, and as far as I know, this is actually impossible. What exactly is your setup here?
Oh, you're right! It's not a FireWire to USB adapter. I used to use the external HD with FireWire on my old MacMini. Now I use it with an eSATA-USB adapter on the new Mac mini and the MBP (the HD has eSATA and FireWire). Sorry for that!
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Nov 4, 2016, 07:12 AM
 
Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
1. You don't have "this notebook" yet. so you shouldn't need to worry about connecting to it.

2. Based on your criticism, this notebook isn't for you at this time. Apple dealt with this complaint in 2015 with their 12" Macbook by responding with a faster model with again one USB-C port in 2016. Concerning the Pro MacBooks, the 2015 models are still available, and there is a very large used Mac market.
1. Don't understand this argument! Shouldn't I worry first and then buy? Do you really think it makes more sense to buy and complain afterwards?
2. Yes, maybe you're right. This notbook isn't for me at this time. But which one is, if I want OS X, at least 15" and a touch bar?
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And.reg
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Nov 4, 2016, 07:14 AM
 
Originally Posted by badidea View Post
1. Don't understand this argument! Shouldn't I worry first and then buy? Do you really think it makes more sense to buy and complain afterwards?
No, but you seemed so concerned even before getting to that point.
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Nov 4, 2016, 09:22 AM
 
Originally Posted by badidea View Post
Oh, you're right! It's not a FireWire to USB adapter. I used to use the external HD with FireWire on my old MacMini. Now I use it with an eSATA-USB adapter on the new Mac mini and the MBP (the HD has eSATA and FireWire). Sorry for that!
Ah, thanks for checking that.

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Nov 4, 2016, 09:34 AM
 
Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
No, but you seemed so concerned even before getting to that point.
Of course I am concerned!
Apple is the company I spent most of my money within the last 24 years! I probably spent more money with them than I spent for cars in the last 24 years!
I don't want to use Windows or Linux so I have to rely on the products made by Apple!
My favorite laptop from Apple was the 2011 17" MBP I used until January this year.
I switched now to a 2015 15" MBP. Finally retina!
Downside:
- no more 17"
- no more FireWire (my FireWire only external HDs were getting too old anyway so this wasn't a huge problem)
- RAM soldered
- Battery glued (probably more difficult to sell a used Laptop)

The brand new model now has two new features I would really like to have:
- touch bar
- even bigger trackpad

BUT
- no MagSafe
- no USB-A
- no optical 3.5mm jack
- no SD card slot

Conclusion: Since a few years now Apple still manages to make new products that give me the "I want to have it" feeling but they also always manage to make it more and more difficult to accept the discontinued features! They should have at least included one USB-C to USB-A adapter in the package! That's something that probably everybody, who is a potential customer for this notebook, would need!
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Nov 4, 2016, 09:42 AM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
That's a USB-C to SATA adapter. Wouldn't help me to connect an external 2-bay enclosure with FireWire and eSATA to a new MBP!

When I bought my 15" MBP this year it already made 4 external FireWire HDs useless for me but that was ok since these HDs were already very old and I only used them as "backup" disks for very old stuff.
My FireWire/eSATA enclosure is a 2TB media HD which I would really like to keep!

Don't think we have to find a solution for this "problem" since I won't buy a new notebook anyway. I just wanted to make the point that I don't really like that the new MBP is Thunderbolt 3 only!
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Nov 4, 2016, 09:44 AM
 
Well I agree on nearly 100% of your points and I've been a Mac user for 25 years. I just don't get worked up over it since you're not missing much relative to the 2015 model, which is cheaper anyway, and the 2017 model is supposed to be cheaper and use OLED displays.

Likely by then, far more USB-C and T3gen2 devices will be on the market so the concern for ports (except for MagSafe) won't matter so much.

Let's also keep in mind that Intel's choice to give up HDMI and other compatibility with their *Lake architecture is a strain not just to Apple but to other companies that choose Intel CPUs.
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Nov 4, 2016, 11:25 AM
 
Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
Well I agree on nearly 100% of your points and I've been a Mac user for 25 years. I just don't get worked up over it since you're not missing much relative to the 2015 model, which is cheaper anyway, and the 2017 model is supposed to be cheaper and use OLED displays.
Both of those are HIGHLY unlikely. I am sure that they will be cheaper in that the base model becomes the Touchbar-less variant, but the memory discussion is based on a misunderstanding of Intel's roadmap. OLED displays are likely coming, but they won't keep the current display for only a year, so it won't be 2017 - and anyway OLED will arrive on the iPhone first.

Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
Likely by then, far more USB-C and T3gen2 devices will be on the market so the concern for ports (except for MagSafe) won't matter so much.
Magsafe stops mattering when you realize that you don't need to keep your computer connected to power while working - and anyway there are already aftermarket fixes for that.

Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
Let's also keep in mind that Intel's choice to give up HDMI and other compatibility with their *Lake architecture is a strain not just to Apple but to other companies that choose Intel CPUs.
Yes, but this isn't segmentation - keeping HDMI support actually costs money and battery life. I really wish that people would understand that HDMI sucks and DisplayPort is the way forward, but that interface isn't exactly helped by the fact that there are three different ports for it.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Nov 7, 2016, 09:19 AM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
Nah, it is just about profit maximization. They added the new hotness to the expensive models first to get people to buy those. It also probably doesn't hurt that supplies of the new touchbar are likely to be tight at first. Next gen the model without the touchbar will come in at the $1300 price point and there will probably be an integrated graphics 15" again, and the gen after that the no touchbar model might actually get down into the territory of the old MBA.
What about the rumblings that the current integrated offerings are actually inferior to the previous generation's? I've been trying to find numbers, and Tom's Hardware seems really disappointed in Skylake's integrated GPU.
     
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Nov 7, 2016, 09:51 AM
 
Link? The only thing I can find where Tom's is looking at Skylake graphics has them looking at the 6600K and 6700K, which come with HD 530 - the GT2 version without eDRAM. That is obviously worse than the GT3e with eDRAM, which is what Apple used in the last generation and is using on the 13" and what is in those weird Broadwell desktop chips that Tom's likes, but I can't see that they have looked at a GT3e variant.

In general the Skylake GPU is a rather minor update. It has more features in the DirectX 12 sense, and it has basic color compression to save some memory bandwidth, but Intel hasn't added more shader clusters or anything. Main advantage to me is that the eDRAM now exists on the dualcore models, which is what I have been asking for for years.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Nov 8, 2016, 12:25 AM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
In general the Skylake GPU is a rather minor update. It has more features in the DirectX 12 sense, and it has basic color compression to save some memory bandwidth, but Intel hasn't added more shader clusters or anything.
I always understood this to be the reason as well: GPUs for SoCs still see rapid improvements with each new generation while Intel's GPU — like their CPUs — are stagnant.
Originally Posted by P View Post
Main advantage to me is that the eDRAM now exists on the dualcore models, which is what I have been asking for for years.
I have an inkling that Apple was begging them for such a part, too. It's a pity Intel hasn't released one earlier (read: my Early 2015 MacBook Pro doesn't come with eDRAM ).
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Nov 8, 2016, 05:04 AM
 
It has been pretty widely rumored that the entire GT3 and in particular the eDRAM comes from a request from Apple. Apple REALLY wants to use integrated graphics, because it saves so much space inside the box - and the fact that it didn't materialize in the Broadwell generation was a big reason why I waited for this one.

Looking up the specs for the integrated graphics, it seems like the quadcore Skylake chips have the "GT4e" graphics. I know that this was delayed, but they have apparently launched. GT4e adds a third slice of graphics hardware, boosting performance by 50% over the GT3e stuff we had in Haswell/Broadwell. That would seem a decent boost, but maybe memory bandwidth is holding it back? If not, I don't see why Apple didn't at least offer this as an option in the 15". Supply issues?
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
OreoCookie
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Nov 8, 2016, 06:16 AM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
It has been pretty widely rumored that the entire GT3 and in particular the eDRAM comes from a request from Apple. Apple REALLY wants to use integrated graphics, because it saves so much space inside the box - and the fact that it didn't materialize in the Broadwell generation was a big reason why I waited for this one.
Yeah, I read rumors to that effect, too. But in that case, Intel's decision to put eDRAM only into the 4-core variants seems really weird. Apple has been steadfast in its belief that 2-core variants are the sweet spot for anything but the 15" model, so they must have heard Apple's requests but decided against them (which, given Apple's SoC design chops is doubly weird).
Originally Posted by P View Post
Looking up the specs for the integrated graphics, it seems like the quadcore Skylake chips have the "GT4e" graphics. I know that this was delayed, but they have apparently launched. GT4e adds a third slice of graphics hardware, boosting performance by 50% over the GT3e stuff we had in Haswell/Broadwell.
While I think Apple might even want 2c+GTE4e, even a GT3e iGPU is way more powerful than the non-e variant. I couldn't wait that long, there was leftover money at the institute that had to be spent before the end of the fiscal year (31 March). But of course, I don't want to complain too much as I type this on a fully decked out 13" MacBook Pro (next to a “leftover” 2012 Mac Pro).
Originally Posted by P View Post
That would seem a decent boost, but maybe memory bandwidth is holding it back? If not, I don't see why Apple didn't at least offer this as an option in the 15". Supply issues?
Yeah, good question, I reckon that is the most likely explanation. BTW, is there any sign that Intel's launch of Cannonlake Coffee Lake will be a little more orderly, where the launches of the different SKUs aren't months apart?
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Nov 8, 2016, 08:27 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Yeah, I read rumors to that effect, too. But in that case, Intel's decision to put eDRAM only into the 4-core variants seems really weird. Apple has been steadfast in its belief that 2-core variants are the sweet spot for anything but the 15" model, so they must have heard Apple's requests but decided against them (which, given Apple's SoC design chops is doubly weird).
I think that they intended to make an eDRAM 2-core version with Haswell and that it was process issues. If you look at the naming, there were the GT2 stuff named "HD 4x00", GT3 named "HD 5000", more GT3 named "Iris 5100" and GT3e named "Iris Pro 5200". I think that everything named Iris anything was supposed to have eDRAM, which is how it is today with Skylake, but that they had problems with the process to add the eDRAM and pulled a bait'n'switch.

Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
Yeah, good question, I reckon that is the most likely explanation. BTW, is there any sign that Intel's launch of Cannonlake Coffee Lake will be a little more orderly, where the launches of the different SKUs aren't months apart?
Absolutely no sign of that.

To be honest, we don't know what Intel's 10nm process will be. There are interesting rumors (QWFET) but absolutely nothing solid. Intel's process upgrades have been ticking along nicely from 65nm to 22nm, but don't forget that 90nm was an absolute disaster for the company. They fail sometimes.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Nov 19, 2016, 08:33 PM
 
I'm willing to bet that most people who are (still) disappointed with Apple's release of the 2016 Pro MacBooks would complain less if the 15" model, for example, was only $1500 with AMD Polaris 450 (for those who just want a 15" screen) and had a $2000 model with AMD Polaris 470. With their budget-GPU choices, it's difficult for me to justify their high price tag.

"Making the parts small" doesn't flatter me much since the 2012 rMBP was already super thin and very impressive for its time back then. Thin does not impress me as much anymore. I would much rather have a screaming-fast laptop running OS X (not Windows) than be thinner.

I am also befuddled as to why their previous-gen Pro MacBooks still did not get a price cut. I mean, $2000 for a Haswell CPU with an iGPU with a 3dmark score of ~2000 is a poor deal to me.

Can anyone suggest how Apple can turn this mess around?
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reader50  (op)
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Nov 19, 2016, 09:45 PM
 
iFixit has now torn down all three new models. Results:

13" MBP with function keys: soldered RAM, proprietary-but-socketed SSD
13" MBP with TB: soldered RAM, soldered SSD
15" MBP with TB: soldered RAM, soldered SSD

Unless something can be done with the "SSD diagnostic port" there is no way to internally upgrade any of the new notebooks. No matter how much you pay, you get a disposable computer. In 2-3 years Apple gets all of the upgrade money, instead of splitting it with 3rd parties.

The way I see it, the only way Apple will change course is if people refuse to buy the new models.
     
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Nov 20, 2016, 11:44 AM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
iFixit has now torn down all three new models. Results:

13" MBP with function keys: soldered RAM, proprietary-but-socketed SSD
13" MBP with TB: soldered RAM, soldered SSD
15" MBP with TB: soldered RAM, soldered SSD

Unless something can be done with the "SSD diagnostic port" there is no way to internally upgrade any of the new notebooks. No matter how much you pay, you get a disposable computer. In 2-3 years Apple gets all of the upgrade money, instead of splitting it with 3rd parties.

The way I see it, the only way Apple will change course is if people refuse to buy the new models.
As for the SSD: Considering that the very few available third-party upgrades for previous rMBP aren't that much cheaper and IIRC only about half as fast as Apple's own, and that Apple's purchase of Anobit in early 2012 means that they will continue to use in-house custom SSD controllers exclusively, there really is no potential third-party market that Apple is denying existence here.

And Apple themselves have never offered after-market storage upgrades AFAIK.

RAM ain't gonna happen either - Apple can't use what doesn't exist, and low-power mobile RAM simply isn't socketed anymore.
     
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Nov 20, 2016, 01:37 PM
 
OWC upgrades look pretty close to Apple speeds. You've got me on the prices though - around the same as Apple's for BTO upgrades. But it still allows upgrades after the fact, for a fraction of the price of a new MBP. Plus higher capacities as they become available.
     
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Nov 20, 2016, 02:21 PM
 
Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
I'm willing to bet that most people who are (still) disappointed with Apple's release of the 2016 Pro MacBooks would complain less if the 15" model, for example, was only $1500 with AMD Polaris 450 (for those who just want a 15" screen) and had a $2000 model with AMD Polaris 470. With their budget-GPU choices, it's difficult for me to justify their high price tag.
$1500? Apple has NEVER sold a 15" MBP at $1500. I checked. There was a single model at $1700 at one point, but they go for $2000 generally.

"Polaris" is a codename for the current generation of graphics chips. "Polaris 11" is the chip in the current 15", all three variants (they have disabled different parts of the chip). They are called Radeon Pro 450, 455 and 460. There is no "Radeon Pro 470". There are "Radeon R9 M470" and "M470X", but they are both slower than Radeon Pro 460. It is not clear what chip you mean.

Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
"Making the parts small" doesn't flatter me much since the 2012 rMBP was already super thin and very impressive for its time back then. Thin does not impress me as much anymore. I would much rather have a screaming-fast laptop running OS X (not Windows) than be thinner.
They are screaming fast. They're just not cheap.

Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
I am also befuddled as to why their previous-gen Pro MacBooks still did not get a price cut. I mean, $2000 for a Haswell CPU with an iGPU with a 3dmark score of ~2000 is a poor deal to me.
Yep. It is there not as a budget alternative, it is there for someone who absolutely wants the ports etc that it has. Note that the last non-retina MBP, which was kept around for a very long time, never dropped in price.

Originally Posted by And.reg View Post
Can anyone suggest how Apple can turn this mess around?
Ehm... it is not a mess for Apple. The new MBPs sell great right now, I saw somewhere that they were the best selling laptop during October. I think that Apple has a gap at the lower end, and I think that they will fix that by dropping the price of the 12" Macbook and the 13" Touchbar-less MBP to the level that they can retire the 13" MBA. I also suspect that the price of the 15" will drop back to $1999 with integrated graphics soon enough

I think that Apple messed up this transition. I think they should have made a straight Skylake update of the old MBPs about 9 months ago and then they could have upgraded only the 15" slightly earlier, without Touchbar supply problems. I think they should have realized directly that the 12" MBP needs a second USB-C port, and I think all the new MBPs still need a couple of USB-A (2.0) ports - if for no other reason then because you need to be able to connect Apple's own peripherals to pair them. I also think that they should have made the 15" MBP use DDR4 so they could have upped the RAM ceiling to 32GB, but I can understand how a common platform makes sense from Apple's perspective.

But all of these problems are transitory. I don't think they will back down - except for dropping some prices back to where they usually are - and the problems will go away over time.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Nov 20, 2016, 06:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
OWC upgrades look pretty close to Apple speeds. You've got me on the prices though - around the same as Apple's for BTO upgrades. But it still allows upgrades after the fact, for a fraction of the price of a new MBP. Plus higher capacities as they become available.
Read speeds are approximately equivalent to the older retina MacBooks Pro.

Write speeds seem to be about 2/3 of Apple's.

However, the 2015 'Books switched to four-lane PCIe modules, doubling the speed again.

Really, though, the consequence of what you're saying is it allows reconfiguration in the second-hand market or correcting of bad professional judgement (in misgauging required capacity). The second-hand market is of no value to Apple.
     
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Nov 20, 2016, 06:07 PM
 
Why are we concerned with value to Apple? They're in no danger, most weeks they're either 1st or 2nd most valuable company in the world.

This is about value for us customers. SSDs are falling rapidly in price, and rising rapidly in capacity. Both metrics are evolving faster than HDs. So tomorrow's SSD will be bigger, cheaper, and possibly faster. With upgrade options, we can spend less money today and get more capacity tomorrow.

This is a no-brainer. Look out for number one - our interests. Tying our hands to give Apple more money today (for bigger SSDs) or more money tomorrow (for new MBP) makes no sense from our perspective. In either case, we have less money and fewer options today. With the same outlook tomorrow.
     
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Nov 20, 2016, 06:30 PM
 
It makes no sense from our perspective?

I'm not sure I understand. I buy a machine and figure what I'm probably going to be needing, configure it, and budget accordingly. That's my perspective.

I upgraded my last machine from HD to SSD after three years because my needs had changed and I needed a vibration-proof stage machine.

But such a quantum change is not going to be happening again any time soon. The storage PCIe lanes are saturated. Replacing the SSD with something like Optane makes no sense on the existing logic board.

So all that's left is adding more capacity, sometime down-market.
     
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Nov 20, 2016, 06:41 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
I also suspect that the price of the 15" will drop back to $1999 with integrated graphics soon enough
It struck me after reading Ars' take why Apple aren't selling iGPU-only 15" machines:

They wanted to position the 15" machine as being able to take two 5k displays, and the only way to do that right now (until DisplayPort 1.3 is a thing) is 2 streams of DisplayPort 1.2 per display. If you add the internal display, that's five displays running simultaneously.

The NVIDIA cards can't do five streams of DisplayPort 1.2, and I'll bet the Intel integrated graphics can't, either.
     
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Nov 21, 2016, 04:34 AM
 
Correct, 3 Displays at 4K is the max supported for Intel. nVidia supports 4 displays, and since they support DisplayPort 1.3/1.4, they can fit in 5K per display. Unfortunately DisplayPort 1.3 does not work with Thunderbolt 3 (yet), Apple can't use that - they can have a max of 4K per display, which is why the AMD solution (max 5 displays, DisplayPort 1.3/1.4 supported but not actually needed here) is the only one that works.

However, I think that there is a market for a 15" model that "only" supports one 5K display or two 4K displays, and I think Apple will add that feature level back.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Nov 21, 2016, 05:27 AM
 
And before anyone asks: it does not appear that Kaby Lake changes this in any way, and I have no information about Coffee Lake will do.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Nov 22, 2016, 04:54 AM
 
I was kind of interested in buying a new Mac, but will hold off. I don't want to be in dongle heaven and I've been reading various issues with the machines. That and the fact that Macs are getting even more expensive than what they were before scares me.
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Dec 3, 2016, 09:43 AM
 
Well, I contradicted myself and have a 13'' non touch bar model now. So far, so good. I wanted the non touch bar model because physical keys are just better without actually looking, and when I want to change the volume key, I don't have to use a silly slider. And also, I got a nice discount on the machine with a free sleeve and USB C to A dongle.
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Dec 3, 2016, 10:33 AM
 
I got a touchbar model, just picked it up yesterday evening late and is just getting it ready. Got a cheapskate USB-C hub with 4 USB-A ports as well so I could import my stuff from the Time Machine drive. Still getting used to it, but some reflections:

* This thing is closer in size to my 11.6" MBA than I thought. It is deeper, but the width is almost identical, and the thickness is very close to the MBA. Of course the MBA is thinner at the the thin end, but the average is very similar.
* The new keyboard rocks! Typing faster on this than on the old MBA and than on my HP work laptop. I know that the travel is almost zero, but it works.
* Trackpad is... fine. It feels like you're clicking when you're not, so that's good, I guess? Wow did people get upset over nothing.
* The touchbar is a clever thing, but it is very different in different programs. It is very much OLED - the emojis pop, but I wouldn't say that it is color correct in any real sense. One nice touch is that if you're typing and spot a mistyped word, corrected by autocorrect or not, you can just move the insertion point there and it will offer three possible corrections. Much quicker than moving your hand to the mouse, IMO.
* Haven't done anything performance sensitive yet, but it is...snappy, I guess? Will have to play with it a bit more later.
* The screen is gorgeous.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Dec 3, 2016, 12:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
I wanted the non touch bar model because physical keys are just better without actually looking, and when I want to change the volume key, I don't have to use a silly slider.
Both of those things can actually be adjusted in the settings. The OS is updated so you can move the Esc key to a physical key (but for some reason only to one of the modifier keys, not to the § key which would be the obvious option, because they reused the interface that let you reconfigure the Control and Caps Lock etc keys) and the Mac rarely uses the F keys.

If you hit the speaker key in the control strip, you indeed get a slider on the touchbar, but you can tap the edges of it to make the sound go up or down one notch just like before. If you extend the control strip - either permanently in the settings or temporarily by hitting the relevant "button" - you also get the old up/down buttons for sound and brightness.

All in all, the touchbar is very configurable. Apple isn't so much for the configurable these days, preferring to lock things down tight, so this was a nice surprise.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
Spheric Harlot
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Dec 3, 2016, 01:50 PM
 
I love that it is absolutely silent. 15" model here.

Really like the keyboard, too.
     
mindwaves
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Dec 3, 2016, 10:06 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
* The new keyboard rocks! Typing faster on this than on the old MBA and than on my HP work laptop. I know that the travel is almost zero, but it works.
* Trackpad is... fine. It feels like you're clicking when you're not, so that's good, I guess? Wow did people get upset over nothing.
I don't mind the keyboard. Trackpad, I am having minor issues when I am in bed. I guess I am pressing too far ahead on the trackpad compared to before so the cursor goes bonkers.
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mindwaves
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Dec 3, 2016, 10:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
Both of those things can actually be adjusted in the settings. The OS is updated so you can move the Esc key to a physical key (but for some reason only to one of the modifier keys, not to the § key which would be the obvious option, because they reused the interface that let you reconfigure the Control and Caps Lock etc keys) and the Mac rarely uses the F keys.

If you hit the speaker key in the control strip, you indeed get a slider on the touchbar, but you can tap the edges of it to make the sound go up or down one notch just like before. If you extend the control strip - either permanently in the settings or temporarily by hitting the relevant "button" - you also get the old up/down buttons for sound and brightness.
I didn't know that, thanks. I still think I would prefer the physical fn keys. One other reason why I got this model is the larger battery that it comes with. Kind of unusual why the touchbar model comes with a slightly smaller battery.
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Dec 4, 2016, 04:58 AM
 
++ on the noise level, that is great. It is actually fast enough for me to play my never-ending strategy games on it, and I guess that was what I wanted from the GPU.

Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
I didn't know that, thanks. I still think I would prefer the physical fn keys. One other reason why I got this model is the larger battery that it comes with. Kind of unusual why the touchbar model comes with a slightly smaller battery.
It is a minor difference in battery size, it is mainly that the CPU is lower power - but I agree, having better battery life in the base model is odd. The alternative would be to make it even thinner, so it is actually a little surprising that they didn't do that.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
reader50  (op)
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Dec 4, 2016, 12:53 PM
 
Apple often develops a more-conservative backup when they do a major redesign. We don't see the backup unless they decide to sell it anyway.

Examples:

Sunflower iMac (CRT eMac)
first Retina MBP (2012 normal 13" and 15")
2016 touchbar MBP (non-TB 13", the non-TB 15" not released)
2013 Darth Pro (updated cheesegrater not released)
     
mindwaves
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Dec 5, 2016, 04:53 AM
 
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
I don't mind the keyboard. Trackpad, I am having minor issues when I am in bed. I guess I am pressing too far ahead on the trackpad compared to before so the cursor goes bonkers.
I found out why. It was caused by the "Force Click and haptic feedback" option in settings. I disabled that and all is well.
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mindwaves
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Dec 5, 2016, 08:23 PM
 
Why is the new 13" MPB power adapter so huge? My 13" MBA is 45W and my 2016 MBP is 61W. I think my 2012 15" MBP is 65W!
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Spheric Harlot
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Dec 6, 2016, 02:54 AM
 
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
Why is the new 13" MPB power adapter so huge? My 13" MBA is 45W and my 2016 MBP is 61W. I think my 2012 15" MBP is 65W!
All 15" MBP have been in the 85W range, AFAIK.
     
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Dec 6, 2016, 03:44 AM
 
85W is a lot? I think my iMac is 310W, and gaming PCs are rarely below 500W. If you just add up the power need of CPU and GPU, it comes to 75W, and there needs to be a few amps left for RAM, storage, USB power supply, TB3...

Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
All 15" MBP have been in the 85W range, AFAIK.
There was like one that was less, but then the CPU had to run at a lower clock when only on the charger and the battery empty. It was a long time ago though.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
badidea
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Dec 6, 2016, 05:28 AM
 
Originally Posted by mindwaves View Post
I found out why. It was caused by the "Force Click and haptic feedback" option in settings. I disabled that and all is well.
As you mention "force click" - does anyone here use that feature on a MacBook?
How do you drag and drop stuff with "force click" enabled? I just can't!
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Dec 6, 2016, 06:33 AM
 
Originally Posted by badidea View Post
As you mention "force click" - does anyone here use that feature on a MacBook?
How do you drag and drop stuff with "force click" enabled? I just can't!
So far not liking the force click/3D touch stuff. not sure what it should be used for, I can right-click already. I had problems dragging too, and in the end I had to do it by clicking down with one finger and then dragging with another, like on trackpads with separate buttons.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
Doc HM
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Dec 6, 2016, 12:21 PM
 
had a good play with 13 an 15in touchbars.

Interesting but not compelling. I would not be surprised to see this fade away a few models down the line.
This space for Hire! Reasonable rates. Reach an audience of literally dozens!
     
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Dec 6, 2016, 03:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by Doc HM View Post
had a good play with 13 an 15in touchbars.
Didja play Doom on them?
     
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Dec 6, 2016, 04:23 PM
 
The touchbar is growing on me, it is a very clever thing. I think that its survival will depend on whether Apple puts them in a desktop keyboard any time soon. The fact that the desktop keyboards recently got updated is not a good sign IMO.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
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Dec 6, 2016, 05:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by Thorzdad View Post
Didja play Doom on them?
I withdraw my reservations.
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Dec 7, 2016, 02:32 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
So far not liking the force click/3D touch stuff. not sure what it should be used for, I can right-click already. I had problems dragging too, and in the end I had to do it by clicking down with one finger and then dragging with another, like on trackpads with separate buttons.
Force-clicking on a link brings up a small preview window of it. That is actually quite nice when you want to check out something - like the Youtube link Thorzdad posted below - and then return to page you were on. For something like funny pictures on reddit, it is actually quite nice.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
badidea
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Dec 8, 2016, 05:12 AM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
Force-clicking on a link brings up a small preview window of it. That is actually quite nice when you want to check out something - like the Youtube link Thorzdad posted below - and then return to page you were on. For something like funny pictures on reddit, it is actually quite nice.
Yes, there are of course a few nice things I'd like to enable force click for...but since I just can't live without drag and drop, it's impossible for me to activate force click!

Maybe Apple should build the trackpad in a way that only the right side of the pad is for force click...or even better...a setting that allows that force click only works with 2/3/4 fingers.
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Dec 8, 2016, 06:50 AM
 
You can still drag with 3D touch on - click down with one finger and drag with another, like you had an old trackpad with separate buttons.

Have you tried BetterTouchTool? It probably has an option to configure the trackpad how you like, because that thing has options for everything. Haven't used it recently, apparently it isn't free anymore.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
Spheric Harlot
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Dec 8, 2016, 09:59 AM
 
I use the new trackpad *exactly* as I've been using the Mac trackpads for the past decade or so.

Drag-and-Drop is "click with thumb, drag with index finger", just like it's always been.

I'd completely forgotten about force-click until this thread. Kinda neat, actually. Especially the link previews.
     
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Dec 8, 2016, 01:55 PM
 
I was just thinking, if you adjust the price of the 540c for inflation, it's release price would be $7,999 in today's dollars... or about $10,000 Canadian... with a high-color 640x480 screen
I guess the 2016 Pro MacBooks aren't as "super expensive" as I thought they've become.
This one time, at Boot Camp, I stuck a flute up my PC.
     
 
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