1. OZsMac's Avatar
    It seems that almost every single major podcast and many of the news web sites appear to have their complaint key stuck when discussing the new MacBook Pro line-up for 2016. Maybe I'm the only one, however here is my experience a few months into my ownership of the 13" MacBook Pro with Touchbar:

    Battery
    Never had an issue, never have run out of juice and have never had any form of battery anxiety (I run a Windows 7 VM with Fusion all the time, along with a pile of other software)

    Keyboard
    Love it, don't have a clue what folks are complaining about, I find it more precise than my MacBook Air and far more accurate.

    USB-C ports
    Love USB-C, my Samsung T3 SSD external drive plugs right in (using the power cable when I need it), love that I can charge on both sides, love that any port can be anything I need. I had a MacBook Air, so already had a dongle for external monitors, the fact that one cheap external dongle can be a mini-docking station (USB-A, USB-C Charge & HDMI) is fantastic. I'll own this laptop for 4-5 years before replacing, perhaps within the second year of ownership USB-C will be everywhere, meaning that this is a short (and yes a little painful for some) transition.

    Speed & Memory
    This laptop is amazing, processor is great and exactly what I need (from large graphics file and video, through Handbrake all the way to Fusion VMs and X-Code). I went with 16GB of RAM, even when I give the VMs more than enough memory, all of the other functions I need to use my MacBook for are accommodated with heaps of room to spare. I understand that a tiny tiny tiny percentage of folks do have a legitimate need for more RAM, however I'm not sure if this kind of work really happens on laptops, that always run internals more suited to efficiency rather than outright performance........speaking with some friends who are in video and graphics focused jobs, they don't use laptops (a discussion about the Mac Pro is very valid, it is long overdue a basic upgrade) for any tasks that would go beyond the hardware that is available in the MacBook Pro.

    Heath/Thermal Efficiency
    My MacBook Air and 2014 MacBook Pro both had a habit of running the fans hard in warmer weather conditions, to the point where it was annoying. I'm sitting here in Melbourne Australia, with temps around 30-40 C (90-100 F), and I'm yet to hear the fans kick in at all (reminder that I'm always running a Windows VM). At times the MacBook has been very warm to the touch on the case above top of keyboard, so I'm not sure what kind of magic is going on, but I love it

    Screen
    I love the brightness of the new screen, for the first time ever in most conditions I turn down the brightness not for battery saving needs, but to dim things down a bit for comfort. Also the fact it no longer has a glowing Apple logo, this I do like, I always had a cover or sticker over it previously as I didn't want to scream "look at me, I'm an Apple user".

    Touchbar
    Once again I believe that people are criticising a feature they haven't used enough (or at all) and one that hasn't had a change to really sing at this point. If I could urge anyone who isn't sure to try to take a screen shot (Shift + Command + 3), then look at the Touchbar and tell me this isn't something that can really make a difference. Apple did an ok job getting most/all of the native apps updated with at least a basic Touchbar capability, however third party apps are starting to really show the way. Also I've found that OSX could do with the ability to select options in a pop-up window by just pressing the first letter of the option (i.e. O for OK), Windows has done this forever, with Touchbar you can just tap with a finger, rather than having to change input modes by going back to the Trackpad or Mouse.

    Touch ID
    What is not to love, especially with 1Password integration.

    My average daily use of the MacBook:
    I need to use three browsers in OSX, along with Mail, Calendar, Jabber, Any.Do, Excel, Word & Powerpoint frequently
    I also need to always run a Windows 7 based VM for some work things (that I can't get to work in OSX)
    60% at a desk plugged into two external monitors, 40% mobile without power
    I never use an external keyboard or mouse, love the MacBook Pro keyboard and very large trackpad
    I do at least two work trips (flights of 2 hours or so) per month

    What are your thoughts?
    01-05-2017 06:36 PM
  2. njlx2016's Avatar
    Regarding the performance, that's really on Intel. For the last 5 years or so they've stagnated because we're at a point where the limitations of silicon are being reached.
    OZsMac likes this.
    01-06-2017 10:51 AM
  3. C6TX6's Avatar
    Regarding the performance, that's really on Intel. For the last 5 years or so they've stagnated because we're at a point where the limitations of silicon are being reached.
    Annnd lack of competition! Ryzen (hopefully) will be like Athlon was in 2000 and get the wheels turning again at Intel and finally we see improvements in IPC and power consumption, etc.
    OZsMac likes this.
    01-06-2017 04:05 PM
  4. msm0511's Avatar
    I think a lot of it is for clicks and listens. Sensationalized headlines or podcast titles are going to get more attention than a glowing review. It's everywhere in all media these days, but it's become a big trend to bash Apple since the rumors of omitting the headphone jack on the 7. Apple deserves some criticisms for some of their decisions lately, but lack of traditional ports is just dumb. Price is a huge thing to complain about as well. But I paid the same for my 2011 MBP than my 2016 one. It feels like in the media:
    Google is the new Apple (can do no wrong)
    Apple is the new Microsoft (too big for it's own good)
    Microsoft is the new Google (scrappy, but innovative)
    njlx2016 and DMP89145 like this.
    01-06-2017 10:34 PM
  5. StraightlineBoy's Avatar
    Well while I agree with quite a lot of the criticism it does get rather boring when every website, every blog, every podcast is rehashing the same thing, mostly without anything original (and valid) to say.

    There's a lot of bleating and whining by people who don't back up their words with actions. I can at least say that after 12 years of Mac ownership that the new MBP prompted me to go and buy a Windows PC instead...not just say it, I've done it. It's not that the new machine isn't any good but it's not what I was hoping for and I'm not saying that I'm right and others are wrong, but the new MBP isn't what I want.

    Maybe this is just the new reality. Websites are funded by clicks and the old Apple is doomed cliche, or the Mac is on life support drives more site visits than a headline of Apple releases new MacBook that is fairly good. Everything must be the best or worst thing, there's no middle ground apparently. I'm probably breaking some rule in 2017 by saying that the new MBP is pretty good but not for me - I'm supposed to say that it's the worst thing ever and Apple has lost it's mind!

    I think my answer will be to read fewer sites and reduce the number of podcasts that I listen to. There's only so many times I need to read/hear the same old thing.
    MasterDarque likes this.
    01-07-2017 05:05 AM
  6. OZsMac's Avatar
    @StraightLineBoy, what Windows device did you end up with? When I purchase a new laptop, I always check options, and this time round for me it was the MBP, Surface Book, Surface Pro, Lenovo Yoga (quite a good machine) and the Dell XPS.

    I have a long history with Windows (going back to 3x in both a professional sense MCSE and personal), my last Windows machine was Surface Pro 3 and I still run two other Windows boxes at home (running Windows Media Centre on 8.1), and at some level feel more comfortable with it (but have found all the work arounds I need in OSX to balance this).

    The MBP actually turned out to offer (in my slightly biased, but reasonably balanced) the best value package, especially against the more Apples to Apples MacBook Pro v Surface Book.

    I borrowed a Surface Book for 48 hours just to be sure, and found it to be quite good with the following exceptions (most of these are Windows failings, that have been long standing):

    - Handing of screen scaling (DPI) when using different external monitors is a mess, unless your external displays match the DPI of your internal monitor this is a disaster (this is an issue for all Windows hardware and should have been fixed prior to launch of Windows 10, they are getting slightly better but still some way to go)

    - Trackpad when it works is almost on par with Apple, however sadly it just doesn't work reliably, several times clicking stopped working and gestures were a total mess (and nothing like BetterTouchTool exists, this is without question the best utility on my Mac)

    - Tablet mode of the Surface range is a joke, I'm sorry, but no one that I know (including me when I owned one) uses them in a tablet mode, they just use them as heavily compromised laptop devices

    - I had several instances where the physical screen disconnection "latch" failed to work to release the screen, also this doesn't work when the machine is powered down so you can't just grab your (rather poor) "tablet" and run out the door without powering it up

    - Battery life and fans, this is still a big issue for every single Windows laptop I've seen, this has been an issue for Apple also, however with this new MBP I'm honestly not sure if it has fans as I haven't heard them (even with a stupid work provided VM SOE image that has several security products that drive CPU very hard in normal operation)

    - Going to sleep, sorry but both my Surface Pro 3 and the Surface Book I borrowed regularly failed to sleep when closing the lid, resulting in a running machine going into my bag (as has happened with all my Windows laptops over the years, mainly Thinkpads provided by work). Nothing worse than pulling your laptop out of your bag to do some work and having no battery, or your laptop starting to feel a bit melty.

    What do I like about windows, it's a long list, however it's the simple thinks like screen snapping (can be delivered to OSX via BetterTouchTool), better task scheduler, less desktop waste by not having both menubar and dock, cheaper more flexible hardware options (that do take more work to look after) not to mention my scripting capabilities are quite good (both batch files and vbs, along with Powershell).

    I hope that next upgrade cycle the choice is harder than ever, that we have multiple options in the market that are blowing it out of the water.

    @StraightLineBoy - let us know how your Windows adventure is going, because I think you are right that a whole load of people are talking the "I'm going to buy a Windows device" talk without the associated walk, yet it might very well turn out to be the best option moving forward (Maybe Windows 11??).
    Hage0022 likes this.
    01-07-2017 03:29 PM
  7. StraightlineBoy's Avatar
    @OZsMac here's the strange thing, I went from expecting to buy a new MBP (I watched the keynote with credit card ready to go) to buying a (near) silent desktop gaming PC! I probably should explain a bit more...

    When the MBP was unveiled and I started thinking about specs vs price I got to thinking more deeply about what my computing needs actually are. Most of my lightweight computing (internet, twitter, calendar, reminders etc) is done on my 9.7 iPad Pro with Logitech Create and iPhone. I've got a Bose Soundtouch 30 which plays my music direct from a NAS so don't need a computer for that which only really leaves photo stuff which thanks to a Adobe Creative Cloud subscription can be done on Mac or PC. So if I bought a new MBP I could spend £1800/$2000 for a computer that will run Photoshop a bit faster than my existing 2012 MBA. As I'm not a photo professional this barely feels worth it.

    So instead I bought a desktop gaming PC, paid a bunch extra so it doesn't sound like a washing machine on full spin so I as well as handling Photoshop with ease, I can play the latest games and potentially dabble in VR in the future. In terms of money I paid nearly as much as I would have for a MBP as I had the money set aside, spending the extra on a decent graphics card and lots of silencing. I have very little to say about Windows because I use it as little as possible. I boot up, use Photoshop/play some games and turn it off again whereas I let my MBA run more or less 24/7. I'm trying to use it almost like a console where I do as little machine management as possible.

    This isn't a move that would work for everyone and I'll repeat that I'm certainly not saying that anyone who bought a MBP is wrong or that Apple has lost it's way etc. What I would say is that if you are on the fence about the MBP is to at least consider your computing needs because perhaps there's another way.
    01-08-2017 06:03 AM
  8. OZsMac's Avatar
    Sounds like a great outcome, and when putting up this kind of $$$$'s what you end up with really does need to deliver exactly what you need. If I were a gamer, no question Windows would be far more appealing, like you I muddle my way through Photoshop and would never put a slow CPU (Celeron) to any real exertion

    I absolutely agree with you around considering all options, I happily run Windows on a few machines in the house, and both Windows 7 and Windows 10 daily in VMWare on my MacBook Pro. I do kinda like the segmentation of OSX as my personal space and the Windows VMs as my work.

    The good news is that with Microsoft hardware coming along, and that of many of the other laptop/convertable manufacturers, you can't go wrong as long as your needs are met. One thing is true, that when I'm in Windows I miss various OSX features......and then when I'm in OSX I miss various Windows features.
    01-09-2017 08:56 PM
  9. AustinIllini's Avatar
    Enjoy your device. However, understand what's right for you isn't right for everyone. This Macbook Pro, like it or not, is not the same kind of machine as the Macbook Pro's of yesteryears.
    01-13-2017 03:54 PM
  10. Hage0022's Avatar
    Thanks @StraightLineBoy and @OZsMac, for all the typing. I like your discussion.
    StraightlineBoy likes this.
    01-21-2017 10:11 AM

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