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2016 15" Mbp.


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2016 15" Mbp.
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turtle
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Join Date: Mar 2005
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2017-01-18, 20:57

Pages and Word huh? You swing both ways do ya!
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alcimedes
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2017-01-19, 10:25

Ha, indeed. If I'm doing word processing, Word is decent enough. If I have to do a floor plan and where I want various network jacks to go in the wall, Pages (old version) is where it's at.

So yesterday when it became clear that anything that engaged the dGPU was going to make my energy consumption increase 300% even if it's doing nothing, I returned the touch book.

Picked up the 15" older style machine they had in the store, which only had a 256GB HD in it. Thankfully with this model I can swap that out for a TB drive myself. If I had to wait for Apple, it would have been 2+ weeks before the machine arrived.

Instead got an external enclosure and drive from Macsales for $50 more than the charge of just the upgrade alone, and I'll have it in hand this afternoon.

I've been running the laptop off the charger and pushing a second monitor, so far looks like it's estimating 6 hours of battery life. Brightness is at 80%.

I love this keyboard.

I like that I'm not constantly brushing the touchbar esc key.

I think I like the smaller trackpad. My hands were too big, and would constantly trigger the larger trackpad.

And I got $1,700 back to boot. (almost enough to buy 2 more macbook airs.)

The touchbook model is the first new mac where I pretty much universally preferred the previous version.

(oh, and I almost lost the new laptop within 2 hours of it being home, when my 2 year old thought she was grabbing the wire/charger for an iPad, and instead almost sent my laptop to the floor. That USBC connection really sticks. I love magsafe. Sorry Apple)

So, after being at work for a while, I'm 2 hours into running on the battery, computer is estimating I have 4 hours left to go. Literally 100% better than the new model.

What I really don't get though, is why choose a dedicated graphics card that's so power hungry, but pretty much the worst of the high-end notebook video cards? If you're going to screw the pooch with energy draw and charge through the nose for it, the least you could do is provide a GOOD video card in exchange. In the list of "high end" notebook video cards I came across, Apple's choice ranked 91 out of 92.

So this video card is completely f'ing over my battery life, but I can't game for shit with it even if I wanted to.

Google is your frenemy.
Caveat Emptor - Latin for tough titty
I tend to interpret things in the way that's most hilarious to me

Last edited by alcimedes : 2017-01-19 at 11:29.
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PB PM
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2017-01-19, 11:58

Apple picks graphics cards based on what will give them the best profit per unit, not what is best for users. That's nothing new, why does that surprise you? I think the last time Apple put a good GPU in a Mac was when the 8800GT/GTX was king of the hill for consumer GPUs, so ten years ago.
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Eugene
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2017-01-19, 13:15

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
Apple picks graphics cards based on what will give them the best profit per unit, not what is best for users. That's nothing new, why does that surprise you? I think the last time Apple put a good GPU in a Mac was when the 8800GT/GTX was king of the hill for consumer GPUs, so ten years ago.
This is what you think Apple is doing, but it has no basis in reality. Apple chose AMD because the Radeon 400 series is brand new, stamped on a 14nm FinFET process and comes with a significantly lower TDP than Nvidia's newest Pascal mobile chips. The GTX 1070M for example has a TDP of 120W. That's almost as high as the MBP's entire system power consumption.

The problem is really just battery capacity.

E:
Radeon Pro 460 TDP: 35W
GeForce GTX 1060M TDP: 90W
GeForce GTX 1050M TDP: 60W
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El Gallo
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2017-01-19, 13:53

Quote:
Originally Posted by alcimedes View Post
What I really don't get though, is why choose a dedicated graphics card that's so power hungry, but pretty much the worst of the high-end notebook video cards? If you're going to screw the pooch with energy draw and charge through the nose for it, the least you could do is provide a GOOD video card in exchange. In the list of "high end" notebook video cards I came across, Apple's choice ranked 91 out of 92.

So this video card is completely f'ing over my battery life, but I can't game for shit with it even if I wanted to.
Actually there are several videos on YouTube showing pretty decent gaming with the current tbMBP and a fair number showing decent gaming with the prior generation. I completely feel you though about being stuck between having some ports, larger battery, etc. and a newer machine with a slightly less outdated processor and GPU.

It looks like AMD is running roughly a generation behind Nvidia right now. Many benchmarks have put the current tbMBP as comparable to the Nvidia GTX 960m which was a good GPU released a year ago. So most laptops are moving on to the 10xx series while Apple does what they do. I think two generations back was when they had the actual Nvidia GT 750m. Your laptop is likely comparable to the Nvidia 8xxm series but you of course are paying what you pay for it to have that two gen old graphic card out of the box.

http://https://m.youtube.com/channel...gETH9Eayxn6fxw

That links shows several pretty decent games running on the 2015. It requires setting up a Windows partition, etc but it doesn't look too terrible.
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PB PM
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2017-01-19, 14:45

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eugene View Post
This is what you think Apple is doing...
I was speaking in general, not specifically for notebooks. I'm well aware of the TPD advantages of the Polaris GPU's over Pascal in the mobile space. Then again what's the point of having Apple's auto switching GPU system if the system is forced use the more power hungry option when using an external display? I realize Apple would need two video outputs for this work for external monitors, and that would go against the KISS (Keep it simple stupid) system they use for ports. Still kind of annoying.
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chucker
 
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2017-01-19, 18:26

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
Then again what's the point of having Apple's auto switching GPU system if the system is forced use the more power hungry option when using an external display?
Part of it is that Intel appears to have abandoned having CPU options with integrated GPUs Apple deems sufficient for their 15-inch models. Kaby Lake doesn't even bother with "Iris Pro" models any more.
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Eugene
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2017-01-19, 21:52

As bad at the battery situation is, I rarely use my laptop for more than a couple hours at a time on battery. It's mostly a mobile/travel desktop, and I would welcome the extra GPU power over the previous generation. It's really only been the two most recent generations of laptop graphics that have been good enough for gaming beyond 1080p.
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PB PM
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2017-01-20, 00:44

Quote:
Originally Posted by chucker View Post
Part of it is that Intel appears to have abandoned having CPU options with integrated GPUs Apple deems sufficient for their 15-inch models. Kaby Lake doesn't even bother with "Iris Pro" models any more.
Indeed, there have been numerous rumours that Intel may even use AMD IGP's in one of the next few generations of CPU's or chipsets (I would think it would have to be on the chipset). AMD's IGPs are better Intel IGPs in just about every way, so that would not be surprising.

The real issue is that Intel is not putting much R&D into the notebook/desktop class period, with focus switching to ultra portable to compete with ARM manufacturers (Samsung, Apple, etc). The lack of meaningful compilation from AMD in the desktop/notebook space is to blame for this at the end of the day. I suspect if the next generation of AMD CPU's and GPU's live up to the hype we might see Intel get their butts in gear, with another leap that will give them the performance edge for another 8-10 years again. Short term gain for consumers, but as with this cycle long term pain.
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alcimedes
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2017-01-20, 10:55

Is there a quantifiable number as to how much better the dGPU in the new MBtouch is compared to the integrated card in the older models? Because in daily use, I can't tell a thing.

I also think it's telling that this wasn't even my money, and I didn't think the new model was worth it. If I'm not happy with the latest/greatest from Apple and it didn't even cost me a penny, that's a crappy update.

Google is your frenemy.
Caveat Emptor - Latin for tough titty
I tend to interpret things in the way that's most hilarious to me

Last edited by alcimedes : 2017-01-20 at 13:26.
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chucker
 
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2017-01-20, 18:31

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
The lack of meaningful compilation from AMD in the desktop/notebook space is to blame for this at the end of the day.
That's part of it, yes. The shrinking market is another part, though. There's simply less need for high performance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PB PM View Post
I suspect if the next generation of AMD CPU's and GPU's live up to the hype
Meh. We'll see. When was AMD last strong in performance per watt? Cheap high-end desktop CPUs or server CPUs, sure. But I'm skeptical Zen will scale down nicely to compete with Intel's H CPUs.
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chucker
 
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2017-01-20, 18:45

Quote:
Originally Posted by alcimedes View Post
Is there a quantifiable number as to how much better the dGPU in the new MBtouch is compared to the integrated card in the older models?
So the previous model had an Iris Pro 5200. The new one instead has an HD 530 and a Radeon Pro 450, 455, or 460.

The 450 scores about 201% compared to the Iris Pro; the 460 about 265%.

So the dedicated GPU is over twice as fast. However, the new integrated GPU is only about 73% as fast as its predecessor.

If they had gone, instead, with the Iris Pro 580, they could've had 146% the performance of the Iris Pro 5200. Nowhere near the Radeon's performance, but at presumably much lower power draw. I don't know why they didn't choose this path. They could have still combined that with an optional Radeon in a premium model, just like in the previous gen. Maybe they CPU yields are terrible. Maybe they ran into quality issues.
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alcimedes
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2017-01-23, 10:37

Thanks chucker. I def. feel like they chose poorly with the dGPU in the new machine.

I couldn't be happier with this older model.
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El Gallo
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Join Date: Dec 2009
 
2017-01-26, 18:15

So I finally decided between the two and cracked open the 2016 MacBook Pro for myself. I did so right after the most recent update that was supposed to address all the battery and graphic issues so I wouldn't have any bad taste in my mouth from the initial teething issues.

I set the touch bar to basically be the old style bar and if I hit function then it will show me the app specific features for the touch bar. I suspect I'll switch this around as time moves on and the bar gets more features. For now though it is interesting and not much else.

I LOVE the new speakers. They are really great. I usually have to wear headphones to enjoy my music but I don't mind just letting it play through these because they sound pretty amazing for laptop speakers.

Battery life has been fine for me. I don't drive external monitors nor do I normally use Chrome or Safari. I'm a Firefox guy for my private browsing on my own computer. Chrome gets partial duty often when at work and mix of home stuff. Firefox doesn't activate the dGPU at all except for when playing certain videos.

The new keyboard does take some getting used to but I've been using a small bluetooth keyboard with my iPad mini for quite a while anyway. I think this keyboard issue is just generational. I see younger kids just type on iPads like they were regular keyboards. Also they've all been using Chromebooks and the like for school so I am not certain they've ever gotten to adapt to real keyboards that ever hard a lot of travel. I love look of the new keyboard but I'm adjusting to the feel. The old keyboard is already starting to feel mushy in comparison and when I'm "on" with the new keyboard it seems like I type faster and with less effort.

I've bumped escape an brightness down a few times. I've had no issues with the new trackpad at all. I love space gray for the color. This is my first force touch trackpad so that has taken some time to adjust to but I am one of those that loved the new home button on the iPhone 7 so I'm adjusting pretty quickly so far.
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Frank777
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2017-01-30, 20:42

There's a cool lawyer joke in here somewhere, but I haven't thought of it yet.
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alcimedes
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2017-01-31, 10:48

El Gallo, wondering if you're still liking the MacBook now that you've had more time to play with it.
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El Gallo
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2017-01-31, 13:38

Quote:
Originally Posted by alcimedes View Post
El Gallo, wondering if you're still liking the MacBook now that you've had more time to play with it.
I'm still getting used to the new keyboard a bit. Maybe I'm delusional and just trying to be like the young cool kids but I 2/3's love it and 1/3 have issues with it. I like the sound it makes as well. Typing on the old keyboard feels very mushy in comparison now as well. I think I'll adapt as time moves on.

The battery life has been okay for me with the apps I typically use which is Firefox, Pages, Photos, Kindle app, etc. I knock the brightness down to halfway and I've got the resolution set what would approximate 1400x900-ish or whatever that article mentioned for saving battery life. I've never done ten hours straight on it, but have had several 2-3 hour sessions on it across a few days while leaving it unplugged.

I love the size and weight. I love the space gray color.

I haven't had any instances where the trackpad moves the cursor while typing. I read somewhere that there are two actual trackpad controllers for the giant trackpad. I have had the beginning of the three finger up gesture started a few times. I think my left hand plus using two fingers two scroll has done this. It didn't activate the motion fully but leaned that way.

I bought a few dongles and haven't minded them at all. I also bought a bluetooth mouse and use that when I feel the need instead of the wireless mouse with USB receiver that I had before.

This is my first retina machine and my aging eyes do appreciate the improvement in resolution. I am enjoying reading Kindle books and swapping back and forth between that and some web browsing quite a bit.

Finally, I LOVE the speakers. Spotify through them is quite nice for me and makes it so I can use my bluetooth headphones quite a bit less.

I'm hoping I'll be able to mentally deal with the last bit of keyboard adaptation. I'll probably tend to leave the screen at the prior default resolution and only bump it up to the new default for playing with FCP and so forth. Sadly my aging eyes are getting to where the gains aren't helpful anymore.

That's where I'm at for now on it. I have a 500 GB little flash drive on order. If I feel like showing off for my boys I'll install Windows and Steam on that and we can watch them snipe Dad or something while playing CS:GO, Dota or some equivalent. My old laptop could manage them just barely but the new one runs them at max everything with 100+ fps. It will play all the latest games but I'm not buying them since I don't really game.
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chucker
 
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2017-01-31, 14:10

Quote:
Originally Posted by El Gallo View Post
I LOVE the new speakers. They are really great.
Quote:
Originally Posted by El Gallo View Post
Finally, I LOVE the speakers.
Clearly a paid Apple fanboi shill. SMH.
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El Gallo
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2017-01-31, 14:38

Quote:
Originally Posted by chucker View Post
Clearly a paid Apple fanboi shill. SMH.
Did I mention I love the speakers?
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Dr. Bobsky
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2017-01-31, 15:34

I am still liking my MBP -- and yes the speakers are much superior to those of my 2009 MBP. I do find the occasional glancing activation of the touch bar annoying -- but I imagine this is something that they can fix or allow you to set with an update -- much like the track pad ignores short inputs...

I am not driving an external display (those clearly have issues), but I am happy that my stomach or lap doesn't get cooked when watching Netflix or other videos like my old laptop. That alone was worth the upgrade. I still haven't made the machine fully productive -- I intend to invest in Affinity and perhaps Serif's other options.

My lab has moved to Linux basically enmass (except the boss who is still on MacOS), so having the mac as a better productivity tool (here defined as presentations and papers) is certainly welcome (we're all running Window's emulators within linux to accomplish this in lab, and that becomes a mess quickly)...
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Frank777
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2017-02-01, 14:38

I'm surprised that we haven't heard any rumours of whether Apple is still working on the upgraded stackable battery that wasn't ready for the launch.

The MacBook version works and the battery life issues users are complaining about would be fixed. Guessing it will come in the Late 2017 rev.
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alcimedes
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2017-02-01, 16:30

eh, i'd be surprised to see them adding a 'stack' in order to fix energy problems. today's Apple is so minimalistic, that seems way out of the norm for them.

Sounds like the new hardware is working decently for the bulk of new users though. my sister in-law was down visiting over the weekend and had picked up a 13" with touchpad for her work, and had enjoyed it.

i must be the odd duck.

Google is your frenemy.
Caveat Emptor - Latin for tough titty
I tend to interpret things in the way that's most hilarious to me
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Frank777
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2017-02-01, 16:52

Quote:
Originally Posted by alcimedes View Post
eh, i'd be surprised to see them adding a 'stack' in order to fix energy problems. today's Apple is so minimalistic, that seems way out of the norm for them.

Sounds like the new hardware is working decently for the bulk of new users though. my sister in-law was down visiting over the weekend and had picked up a 13" with touchpad for her work, and had enjoyed it.

i must be the odd duck.
No, I was referring to the terraced battery cell found in the MacBook. http://www.apple.com/ca/macbook/design/

The Forbes article said that it was the original battery design, and when Apple couldn't get it to work reliably, they reverted to the smaller rectangular shape.
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Dr. Bobsky
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2017-02-01, 17:17

I cannot imagine they want to risk a Samsung type incident, where tight construction tolerances are essentially non-starters with Li ion batteries, which swell with charging (due to different crystal lattices of the anode associated with the embedded lithium ions). The issue is that more recent advances in battery tech make this swelling worse. What this means is that it might be a while before battery capacity begins to noticeably increase again, and engineering focuses might be more on lowering energy consumption to improve off-cord work time.

I do wonder whether the improvement of battery tech will be sufficiently fast to beat the development of wireless charging tech, which may serve as an incentive to reduce the size of the battery.
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El Gallo
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2017-02-01, 17:30

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Bobsky View Post
I am still liking my MBP -- and yes the speakers are much superior to those of my 2009 MBP. I do find the occasional glancing activation of the touch bar annoying -- but I imagine this is something that they can fix or allow you to set with an update -- much like the track pad ignores short inputs...

I am not driving an external display (those clearly have issues), but I am happy that my stomach or lap doesn't get cooked when watching Netflix or other videos like my old laptop. That alone was worth the upgrade. I still haven't made the machine fully productive -- I intend to invest in Affinity and perhaps Serif's other options.

My lab has moved to Linux basically enmass (except the boss who is still on MacOS), so having the mac as a better productivity tool (here defined as presentations and papers) is certainly welcome (we're all running Window's emulators within linux to accomplish this in lab, and that becomes a mess quickly)...
The non-cooked lap is indeed a positive. I'll whole heartedly endorse that as well. Lol

How have you set up you or task bar? Maybe I'm too old school but for now I basically reversed it. I made the default the same set up as the old MBP and function actives it for me for whatever adaptations have been put in for it. I figure I'll reverse this in time as the task bar acquires more/improved function.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alcimedes View Post
eh, i'd be surprised to see them adding a 'stack' in order to fix energy problems. today's Apple is so minimalistic, that seems way out of the norm for them.

Sounds like the new hardware is working decently for the bulk of new users though. my sister in-law was down visiting over the weekend and had picked up a 13" with touchpad for her work, and had enjoyed it.

i must be the odd duck.
The only thing I read about what you mentioned that struck me as outside of typical norms was lots of time driving an external monitor without being plugged in.

They keyboard does take getting used to over all. The battery life probably is lower in certain cases given the fact it is physically so much smaller. When I read of your issues, it really made me worry.

The only thing that helped me crack open that box is asking about the last apple product I was disappointed in and I think for me it was the iPod Nano that had zero buttons. Everything else I've had I've always like so I am hoping Apple continues to show me the way here. I know as an example that most people mentioned a concern about the new iPhone 7 home button but I love it. I still do miss a headphone jack occasionally though.

EDIT:

Found this link on battery life testing and added it.


I found that plugging the MacBook Pro 15 into an external monitor engaged the discrete GPU full-time at a cost of 9 watts. While it’s unlikely you’d be at a desk using an external monitor without being plugged into AC, if you do, expect poor battery life.

Last edited by El Gallo : 2017-02-01 at 19:49.
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alcimedes
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2017-02-02, 12:27

Did any one catch the Nova episode last night on batteries?

the solid plastic Li Ion you could puncture repeatedly with a screwdriver, or cut apart while in use was pretty amazing, and was supposed to have approx 2x the energy density of existing models.

not having a catastrophic chain reaction to worry about would be huge.

Google is your frenemy.
Caveat Emptor - Latin for tough titty
I tend to interpret things in the way that's most hilarious to me
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El Gallo
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2017-02-22, 11:32

I've had the MacBook Pro and I'm still caught in the middle with the keyboard. Going back to the old keyboard makes me want to tear my eyes out with how mushy it feels now. However I'm not fully adjusted to the new one. #firstworldproblems
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turtle
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2017-03-16, 21:48

I made the leap to this machine yesterday and today is my first day of sort of using it. Tomorrow it will be my full time machine now that I've moved my work VM to it.

I'm overall very satisfied with the speed. It doesn't wow me or anything, even the I/O isn't impressive, it's just solid and good. I did have faster rsync speeds compared to a SATA SSD doing the same rsync in comparison to the 2010 MBP this is replacing. That was also wireless and not over ethernet because I don't have any dongles yet.

The keyboard is really weird to me. I've been using an Apple USB keyboard with number pad so this is a big change from that. My old MBP had the same keyboard as the USB one so this is definitely different. I feel like I hammer the keys on this too. Like I'm going to push my finger through the keyboard to type. I am sure that is just muscle memory from the other keys with a longer travel. I do really like the slight mechanical feel of these keys though. It is nice to know know that it's been "clicked". More satisfying in a way. I've thought of going to a mechanical keyboard for my desktop set up and this gives and element of that.

The Trackpad is enormous. I mean it is just massive. I've had a number of false positive touches, but I'm sure that is way less than the number of times it knew it was a false touch. Force Touch or whatever they are calling the "hard press" on it really threw me for a loop. Since it doesn't actually move down when pressing on it I've been over-pressing for just about everything. You know how hard it is to drag and drop something when it thinks you are force touching it? I couldn't figure out for the life of me why I couldn't drag and drop anything. I actually looked at System Preferences to see if there was a new setting I missed!

TouchBar... I still think it's more gimmick than not. I've used it some, but I'm going to have to purposely make it part of my workflow for things. Like most of the time I "print" something it is to PDF, not a printer. I still do CMD-P to bring up the print menu. With the TouchBar I can now press PDF on it for those options instead of having to move my pointer all the way up to the dropdown and click the button. Most of the time I've accidentally called up Siri or escaped something. I can see potential though, that I like. I'm not missing the actual function keys like I thought I would either. When you hold down the "fn" key it brings up the function keys right where I would expect them. That is really nice.

The battery has been overall good for me...until I moved my work Virtual Machine on here. Once I started a VM on here the 455 kicked in and the battery started to drain. I was able to make it most of the day using Safari and other apps getting installed and downloaded and such. I'm sure having OneDrive and Dropbox syncing didn't help the battery life either, but it held out mostly good until the VM started. I finally had to plug it in at the end of my workday.

Unlocking and waking up with my Watch is really cool. Sure it's kinda like a party trick, but why not do it if I can? TouchID is really nice too. I didn't realize how hooked on it I am. I know it makes my privacy a nightmare, but gives me enough value I'm willing to use it. It does feel odd that it's a physical button though after using the iPhone 7's solid state home button.

Dongles and docking this thing is a real focus for me right now. I ultimately want this to be my one machine. This will be my work computer and my play computer. When I'm working it will be on my desk with external keyboard and track pad. It'll connect to two displays and work like my Hackintosh desktop does now. Then when I'm done I'll undock it and take it where I may want it. So I'm trying to find the right middle ground of dogies and USB-C docking stations that will give me the abilities I'm looking for. I won't care about battery life and such when it's plugged in at the desk so it will be great for my work related stuff in that regard. OWC has a dock going on pre-order now that looks awesome, but it can't be the only real option for me though it is the only good option I've found so far. When it's at the desk it would benefit from all the ports and expansion options. When it's off the desk I'll likely not need to plug it into anything other than power at some point.

I'm sure there is more, but overall I'm pleased with this so far. I also got it for a steal of a deal so I just couldn't pass it up.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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turtle
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2017-04-08, 23:13

I wanted to write another massive block of text about how happy I am with my MBP but I'm not going to. I'll just say that it works great for everything I need it to right now. I still need a good dock for it so it can serve as a desktop replacement for some things. For now though, it works great and the battery life is far better than the 17" MBP had.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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turtle
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2017-04-27, 14:29

I'm still loving my new MBP. I even just pre-ordered the dock for it by OWC in hopes that it will serve my needs of making this a solid desktop machine for most of my needs. I'll still have a really desktop for my power uses.

Louis L'Amour, “To make democracy work, we must be a notion of participants, not simply observers. One who does not vote has no right to complain.”
MineCraft? mc.applenova.com | Visit us! | Maybe someday I'll proof read, until then deal with it.
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