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Apple's next MacBook Pro lineup will feature a new case design - report

post #1 of 73
Thread Starter 
Though the latest refresh of MacBook Pros are just two months old, rumors of the next update have already begun, with a new report claiming that the next model will feature a newly redesigned case construction.

Citing "reliable confirmation," MacRumors reported Monday on the alleged plans for a new case design in the next MacBook Pro update. However, the report offers no details on what changes Apple could make to the unibody construction of the current aluminum MacBook Pros.

Instead, it cites a report from iLounge in February, which stated that the newly redesigned MacBook Pro notebooks would arrive next year. The rumored all-new design was said to already be in development at Quanta in Taiwan.

The last major update to the look of the MacBook Pro line came in 2008, when Apple updated the line with unibody construction. The unibody MacBook Pros are machined from a single block of aluminum, allowing Apple to create a strong, single-piece shell.

Apple refreshed its MacBook Pro line of products earlier this year, adding Intel's latest-generation Sandy Bridge processors, as well as the new high-speed Thunderbolt data connection port. But the external design of the new notebooks was largely unchanged from their predecessors.



AppleInsider first reported in February that Apple plans to transition its notebooks in the next 12 to 18 months and add features from its hot-selling thin-and-light MacBook Air notebooks. Major changes to the MacBook Air including instant-on, standard flash solid-state drives, slimmer enclosures, and the omission of optical drives are expected to become more prevalent in the design of many Mac notebooks planned for introduction in the future.
post #2 of 73
How about unibody glass enclosure?

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post #3 of 73
The amazing thing about Apple is I always find myself thinking, this is brilliant, they'll never beat that. I'm thinking that about my Unibody Macbook Pro as I type now - it's amazing.

The thing is, in time, be it 6 months, 12 months, 24 months, they somehow will come up with something even better.
post #4 of 73
Methink the MBP's will get more cosmetic features of the MBA. Slimmer design, tapered front, SSD-Card. With Thunderbolt storage options, Apple could be considering users to use external storage for major capacity and use slimmer, internal SSD storage for the immediate stuff???

It's obvious the MBA's design was a hit with consumers, and Apple wants to apply that to the rest of the product line.

Will be interesting to see what they do.
post #5 of 73
Id like to see that LightPeak within the MagSafe connector per the patent with the next revision along with new Apple LED displays. That would make it a single cable for docking.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

Methink the MBP's will get more cosmetic features of the MBA. Slimmer design, tapered front, SSD-Card. With Thunderbolt storage options, Apple could be considering users to use external storage for major capacity and use slimmer, internal SSD storage for the immediate stuff???

It's obvious the MBA's design was a hit with consumers, and Apple wants to apply that to the rest of the product line.

Will be interesting to see what they do.

Im still hoping for dual internal drives. One the SSD card, the other a 7mm or 9.5mm HDD/SSD.
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post #6 of 73
Bye bye optical drive.
post #7 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

How about unibody glass enclosure?


How about a friggin IPS screen, totally appropriate in a $2k+ laptop, so I won't get an instant headache and eyestrain when looking at the screen.
post #8 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by romandoc View Post

How about a friggin IPS screen, totally appropriate in a $2k+ laptop, so I won't get an instant headache and eyestrain when looking at the screen.

I can't speak to whether a friggin IPS screen would be improvement over the current MBP screen, but if you're getting instant headaches you might want to consider urgent medical attention. Could be a stroke or maybe a form of epilepsy.
post #9 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by romandoc View Post

How about a friggin IPS screen, totally appropriate in a $2k+ laptop, so I won't get an instant headache and eyestrain when looking at the screen.

Is it? I recall the HP EliteBook having an option for an IPS panel that was $550 more. That may be lower now since I assume they didnt sell well.

I also seem to recall a review (maybe from AnandTech) that stated the overall quality wasnt worth the money and that Apples quality TN panels werent too far off, especially at the upgrade price. Id much rather see the rumoured double resolution displays as noted in Lion.
http://www.anandtech.com/show/3889/a...dows7-laptop/3
http://www.anandtech.com/show/4049/h...ps-on-the-go/6
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post #10 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdkennedy1 View Post

Bye bye optical drive.

Just moved from a 1st gen MBA to a 2010 MBP. Never once since 2007 did I miss the optical drive, and since moving back, haven't used it once.

It takes guts to take away these things you're so used to (5.2" floppy anyone?) and boldly go into the future
post #11 of 73
Is your MBP reliable? I got one (for free with airmiles) 3 weeks ago and it already have 2000$ repairs on it (thank god its on warranty). It shipped with a broken isight. They replaced the screen and it didnt fix the problem. (Dont they check if the repair solved the problem?) Now they are changing the screen (again) and the motherboard. I asked for a new one but they wont do it. I am still waiting for it (been 4 days)

In the meantime I bough Applecare since it looks like I am going to need it. I have been to the store 5 times and its amazing to see how many macs are being serviced. They have six peoples at the Genius Bar troubleshooting hardware problems non stop all day long everyday, there are so many people you need to take an appointment each time you go there.

Imo they need to work on reliability first.
post #12 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by malax View Post

I can't speak to whether a friggin IPS screen would be improvement over the current MBP screen, but if you're getting instant headaches you might want to consider urgent medical attention. Could be a stroke or maybe a form of epilepsy.

... or more likely an incorrect prescription for corrective lenses, or the lack of a correct one.
post #13 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

Is your MBP reliable? I got one (for free with airmiles) 3 weeks ago and it already have 2000$ repairs on it (thank god its on warranty). It shipped with a broken isight. They replaced the screen and it didnt fix the problem. (Dont they check if the repair solved the problem?) Now they are changing the screen (again) and the motherboard. I asked for a new one but they wont do it. I am still waiting for it (been 4 days)

In the meantime I bough Applecare since it looks like I am going to need it. I have been to the store 5 times and its amazing to see how many macs are being serviced. They have six peoples at the Genius Bar troubleshooting hardware problems non stop all day long everyday, there are so many people you need to take an appointment each time you go there.

Imo they need to work on reliability first.

Tell us, what percentage of customers does that equal, and how does that compare with the industry average? You don't know? Oh, so you don't really have a point, do you?
post #14 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

Is your MBP reliable?

In the meantime I bough Applecare since it looks like I am going to need it. I have been to the store 5 times and its amazing to see how many macs are being serviced. They have six peoples at the Genius Bar troubleshooting hardware problems non stop all day long everyday, there are so many people you need to take an appointment each time you go there.

Imo they need to work on reliability first.

I've always took applecare with my laptops as life on the road can be tough. So far it has been worth it, with some major repairs in my second year (new screen with one, new motherboard with an other) and after 3 years they seem to literally fall apart (my MBA was losing its screws one by one, 20 a piece NOT covered by applecare )
post #15 of 73


Please lord jobs...

I'd jump on the boat for removing the optical drive. I used mine once in the year and a half life of my laptop, and it was an OS install that can now be done via memory stick. They could make it thinner, pack in more battery, allow discreet graphics on the 13', more efficient cooling, etc.
post #16 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

I have been to the store 5 times and its amazing to see how many macs are being serviced. They have six peoples at the Genius Bar troubleshooting hardware problems non stop all day long everyday, there are so many people you need to take an appointment each time you go there.

Imo they need to work on reliability first.

Have you been to a hospital and been amazed at how many ill people are there?

Doctors troubleshooting health problems all day long every day, there are so many people you need to take an appointment.

In my opinion they need to work on the human body's reliability first.
post #17 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

Tell us, what percentage of customers does that equal, and how does that compare with the industry average?

Downtown Montreal Store (there is 2 other stores in Montreal). Even if you assume they service every mac sold in Montreal, its still a lot. They should add more people at the Genious Bar because having to make an appointment just to drop something for repairs is pretty stupid. Not to mention there is a 30 to 45 min wait even with an appointement. And the fact THEY DIDNT CHECK if the repair actually solved the problem is pretty bad. Next time I am going to verify in the store to make sure it works before I leave.
post #18 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

Is your MBP reliable? I got one (for free with airmiles) 3 weeks ago and it already have 2000$ repairs on it (thank god its on warranty). It shipped with a broken isight. They replaced the screen and it didnt fix the problem. (Dont they check if the repair solved the problem?) Now they are changing the screen (again) and the motherboard. I asked for a new one but they wont do it. I am still waiting for it (been 4 days)

In the meantime I bough Applecare since it looks like I am going to need it. I have been to the store 5 times and its amazing to see how many macs are being serviced. They have six peoples at the Genius Bar troubleshooting hardware problems non stop all day long everyday, there are so many people you need to take an appointment each time you go there.

Imo they need to work on reliability first.

I've been there. Every now and then there's a lemon, that's with every company though. I got a replacement after 3 or 4 major repairs, I'll bet you do too. Definitely get that Apple Care. People get defensive when it seems like you're bashing Apple around here, but if you've got a legitimate complaint that just sucks. Most Macs are far more reliable than other computers, and with the exception of that one lemon that's been my experience.
post #19 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by tipoo View Post

Please lord jobs...

Is liquid metal viable for the casing?

I like the colour options but I dont care for the design. Id rather get a tapered design like the MBAs, albeit thicker.

Quote:
I'd jump on the boat for removing the optical drive. I used mine once in the year and a half life of my laptop, and it was an OS install that can now be done via memory stick. They could make it thinner, pack in more battery, allow discreet graphics on the 13', more efficient cooling, etc.

Lion betas are had via the Mac App Store and is installed without first having to copy/burn to another disc. The installer also creates a hidden 750MB Recovery Drive that is used just like the Restore Disc is used today for Disk Utility, etc.

This looks like it will be the most common way to buy and install Lion. I imagine they will also include an 8GB USB flash drive on new machines and ay also sell DVDs of Lion for an increased cost.
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post #20 of 73
I'm surprised the optical drive hasn't already disappeared from the Macbook Pro line when the Macbook Air Superdrive has been available for some years now.

Is there an advantage to making a Thunderbolt version of this Superdrive? I presume that the writing of tracks to the disc is now the limiting factor for DVDs and not the speed of the interface, even for the current USB version.
post #21 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by malax View Post

I can't speak to whether a friggin IPS screen would be improvement over the current MBP screen, but if you're getting instant headaches you might want to consider urgent medical attention. Could be a stroke or maybe a form of epilepsy.

You should definitely NOT pursue any medical field and/or stop offering medical opinions on a technical forum, some gullible individuals might, just might take you at face value and you'd be in trouble. Ethically speaking, not legally.

"could be a stroke or a form of epilepsy"

OR it could be an intentional exaggeration to underline the fact that the screen is shitty, a 6bit TN panel coupled with white LEDs that do, in fact cause headaches and eyestrain after a much shorter time than it should. An IPS panel would be a HUGE improvement over the current cheap TN screen.

I said it before on a different forum, just look at a solid color on the current MBP screen, like a picture of a pure, blue sky, straight in the middle, and the eyes will immediately see the washed out colors closer to the bottom and darkening closer to the top, it's a fact, not a defective screen, it's due to the abysmally poor vertical viewing angle. Same with verything else, including skin tones. That, in a $2k+ laptop, can be improved, to say the least.
post #22 of 73
This is indeed a great news for me. I hope they ditch the optical drive, put more than two USB 3.0/Thunderbolt ports, use SSDs as the standard storage, have 1080p display with a better color profile as the default display, improve the speakers (more bass would be welcomed) and reduce the weight of 15" by 500g while maintaing the strength of the material. This would be a MBP I have been waiting for sometime and would buy without wasting any time. I hope they wouldn't go for the tapered design of MB Air, as I don't like it.
post #23 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Is it? I recall the HP EliteBook having an option for an IPS panel that was $550 more. That may be lower now since I assume they didnt sell well.

I also seem to recall a review (maybe from AnandTech) that stated the overall quality wasnt worth the money and that Apples quality TN panels werent too far off, especially at the upgrade price. Id much rather see the rumoured double resolution displays as noted in Lion.
http://www.anandtech.com/show/3889/a...dows7-laptop/3
http://www.anandtech.com/show/4049/h...ps-on-the-go/6

Very interesting, I haven't seen that before. It makes me wonder whether he actually looked at the screens, instead of just measuring them.
Just to give you an example, just search the amazon reviews on, say, LG5300 television and see that this particular tv set is either absolutely loved or absolutely hated by customers. Why? Because LG decided to play a "panel lottery", in which, randomly, some of the TV's had IPS panels (apple uses these in iphone, ipad, cinema display, imac) and some TN panels (apple uses these in macbooks and mbp's). Guess which ones were the hated ones? With poor color accuracy and viewing angles, something that Anand didn't say a word on?
TN should be made illegal, and those who charge $3k for a MBP like mine with such poor viewing angles, unnatural looking whites, poor color accuracy compared with even the iphone/ipad screens should offer a public apology.
post #24 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Is it? I recall the HP EliteBook having an option for an IPS panel that was $550 more. That may be lower now since I assume they didnt sell well.

I also seem to recall a review (maybe from AnandTech) that stated the overall quality wasnt worth the money and that Apples quality TN panels werent too far off, especially at the upgrade price. Id much rather see the rumoured double resolution displays as noted in Lion.
http://www.anandtech.com/show/3889/a...dows7-laptop/3
http://www.anandtech.com/show/4049/h...ps-on-the-go/6

What display type is the ipad??? Its pretty good.
I do agree Apple displays are better. Went to a Best Buy for a look around, and Mien Gott! the display reading angles for PC's(non-Apple) are atrocious. There only seemed to be one viewing angle and that was it. My old T-40 has IPS, works great.
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post #25 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

Downtown Montreal Store (there is 2 other stores in Montreal). Even if you assume they service every mac sold in Montreal, its still a lot. They should add more people at the Genious Bar because having to make an appointment just to drop something for repairs is pretty stupid. Not to mention there is a 30 to 45 min wait even with an appointement. And the fact THEY DIDNT CHECK if the repair actually solved the problem is pretty bad. Next time I am going to verify in the store to make sure it works before I leave.

It's unfortunate that you've had a bad experience, but I wouldn't assume it's the typical Apple experience. Apple hardware is regularly near the top of customer satisfaction and reliability surveys. Although their laptops are about average with the rest of the industry and the desktops are at the top of the chart.

I also don't take my experience to be typical. I've owned Macs since about 1990, and I've never had to send one in for any sort of repairs (I did have an Apple monitor that was sent back for repairs). I've never purchased AppleCare, and only twice have I had failures that would have been covered if I'd had AppleCare. One was a failed harddrive, which I replaced myself for about 1/3 the price that AppleCare would have cost me. And one was an iSight camera that stopped working. But since I never used it anyway, no loss (and another $300 +/- saved not getting AppleCare).

I'm not saying AppleCare isn't worth it for some folks. Just that Apple's hardware is mostly of good quality. Although not as good as it used to be, it's still as good or better than most of the rest of the industry.

But back on topic:

- Get rid of the optical drive (I still use mine occassionally, but rare enough that an external drive is a viable option)
- Good chance FW will be dropped, they can include a TB-FW adaptor in the box
- I question if the 17" will still have an ExpressCard slot once TB gets more established
- I doubt they'll eliminate the hard drive, external as some have mentions just isn't a viable option for most people. But they may go with a hybrid or dual drive (one SSD, one hard drive). The SSD will be on the motherboard like the current Air, and could have a read-only partition that contains the things you'd normally have on the install DVD.
- Still no USB 3 (I know some of you will whine about that. )
post #26 of 73
Just purchased a MacBookPro 17 to replace my 6 year old PowerMac G5 Dual.
I am disappointed in the lack of eSATA and USB3, but other than that, I am really happy with the machine. I purchased the 17 specifically to get the ExpressCard slot, giving me eSATA (and others).
Personally, I use the optical drive quite a bit, and I think the display is stunning.
It would be good if Apple provided an option to replace the optical drive with an SSD.
post #27 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by boeyc15 View Post

What display type is the ipad??? Its pretty good.
I do agree Apple displays are better. Went to a Best Buy for a look around, and Mien Gott! the display reading angles for PC's(non-Apple) are atrocious. There only seemed to be one viewing angle and that was it. My old T-40 has IPS, works great.

IPS, which gives me hope that if anyone can figure out how to mass produce an inexpensive, low-power IPS panel it’s Apple. But again, their TN panels are top notch and I’d rather go for higher pixels (once Lion is out) than for an IPS with the same resolution options.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

I question if the 17" will still have an ExpressCard slot once TB gets more established

What are the arguments for keeping EC/34 aside from “I already bought an EC/34 card for my previous machine”?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Applecation View Post

It would be good if Apple provided an option to replace the optical drive with an SSD.

http://www.mcetech.com/optibay/
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post #28 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by romandoc View Post

How about a friggin IPS screen, totally appropriate in a $2k+ laptop, so I won't get an instant headache and eyestrain when looking at the screen.

I would say as long as it doesn't increase the price significantly but the displays really could use some improvement.

The SSD move is a must and dual drives would be great. Toshiba are going to 19nm NAND so they can get a 128GB boot drive by default with options up to 512GB, maybe even 1TB with any HDD options up to 1TB.

Ditch the optical, put 2 x USB 3.0 ports on, 2 x Mini-DP/TB ports and ditch FW800 and ethernet to shrink the enclosure down to about 0.8" tapering to something a little thinner but not too much that it hampers battery capacity.

Lastly, some better cooling design, maybe perforate the base or just have a vent that sucks cool air in from the left side and out the right side - it could even suck air in from the left speaker grill and out the right one. Nothing beats good airflow for cooling and the MBP just seems a little too tightly sealed up.
post #29 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

Lastly, some better cooling design, maybe perforate the base or just have a vent that sucks cool air in from the left side and out the right side - it could even suck air in from the left speaker grill and out the right one. Nothing beats good airflow for cooling and the MBP just seems a little too tightly sealed up.

Simply by removing the optical drive they can regain that 5.25 of port-side space. That means laying the logic board about along the entire backside which one 1) will allow for separating the CPU and GPU a little more to allow more even heat distribution, and 2) getting all the components closer to the air vents between the hinges to allow for less travel to cool.

11 MBA

http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/MacBo...Teardown/3745/
13 MBP

http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/MacBo...Teardown/814/2
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post #30 of 73
Steve said "touchscreen interface does not work for notebooks" last time, so you can be sure that next generation notebooks will support multi-touch display.

Maybe the screen will fold completely backwards such that MacBook Pros could be used as "Big" iPads....
post #31 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by macshark View Post

Steve said "touchscreen interface does not work for notebooks" last time, so you can be sure that next generation notebooks will support multi-touch.

Maybe the screen will fold completely backwards such that MacBook Pros could be used as "Big" iPads....

Mac notebooks have supported multitouch for years on the trackpad. I dont see the primary display being the primary input when you have a mouse and keyboard and your display is vertical. I also dont see Apple trying to make a hybrid notebook and tablet at this point; Id expect Apple to make the multi-tocuh glass trackpad an AMOLED display that would come on for certain tasks.
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post #32 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Im still hoping for dual internal drives. One the SSD card, the other a 7mm or 9.5mm HDD/SSD.

Yes please!

A modest capacity SSD boot/app drive, say 128GB, would give great speed benefits yet not be too expensive. Then a regular rotating platter HD would take care of mass storage needs. Best of both worlds at a reasonable price!

We have a MacPro workstation set up this way and it's great. Boot and app launch times are 3-4 times faster.

I'd be happy to outboard my MacBook Pro's optical drive, something I find myself using maybe once every two or three months.
post #33 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Mac notebooks have supported multitouch for years on the trackpad. I dont see the primary display being the primary input when you have a mouse and keyboard and your display is vertical. I also dont see Apple trying to make a hybrid notebook and tablet at this point; Id expect Apple to make the multi-tocuh glass trackpad an AMOLED display that would come on for certain tasks.

They should have let us plug in our iDevices for that in current macs already. I know there are 'Apps for that' but native support would be amazing.
post #34 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiggin View Post

It's unfortunate that you've had a bad experience, but I wouldn't assume it's the typical Apple experience. Apple hardware is regularly near the top of customer satisfaction and reliability surveys. Although their laptops are about average with the rest of the industry and the desktops are at the top of the chart.

I also don't take my experience to be typical. I've owned Macs since about 1990, and I've never had to send one in for any sort of repairs (I did have an Apple monitor that was sent back for repairs). I've never purchased AppleCare, and only twice have I had failures that would have been covered if I'd had AppleCare. One was a failed harddrive, which I replaced myself for about 1/3 the price that AppleCare would have cost me. And one was an iSight camera that stopped working. But since I never used it anyway, no loss (and another $300 +/- saved not getting AppleCare).

I'm not saying AppleCare isn't worth it for some folks. Just that Apple's hardware is mostly of good quality. Although not as good as it used to be, it's still as good or better than most of the rest of the industry.

The Apple store tech just called me to say the manager has approved of replacing the laptop by a new one instead of repairing it. Pretty happy with the decision since it was defective from the start. For having seen the prices of the repairs I think the applecare plan is a must, especially since Macs don't seem to be easy to repair like pc's are.
post #35 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post

... or more likely an incorrect prescription for corrective lenses, or the lack of a correct one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by malax View Post

I can't speak to whether a friggin IPS screen would be improvement over the current MBP screen, but if you're getting instant headaches you might want to consider urgent medical attention. Could be a stroke or maybe a form of epilepsy.

The leading cause of seizures in the U.S. is tapeworm infection. I just thought I'd point that out.
post #36 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by romandoc View Post

OR it could be an intentional exaggeration to underline the fact that the screen is shitty, a 6bit TN panel coupled with white LEDs that do, in fact cause headaches and eyestrain after a much shorter time than it should.

Funny, because all the reviews I've read (even in PC-land outlets) stress out how good those screens are, on par or a notch above the best laptop screens out there...
post #37 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by malax View Post

I can't speak to whether a friggin IPS screen would be improvement over the current MBP screen, but if you're getting instant headaches you might want to consider urgent medical attention. Could be a stroke or maybe a form of epilepsy.

I'd try an I test first. You may need glasses, dude!
post #38 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by christopher126 View Post

I'd try an I test first. You may need glasses, dude!

So an iExam and eye exam aren't the same thing?
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post #39 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by NeilM View Post

Yes please!

A modest capacity SSD boot/app drive, say 128GB, would give great speed benefits yet not be too expensive. Then a regular rotating platter HD would take care of mass storage needs. Best of both worlds at a reasonable price!

We have a MacPro workstation set up this way and it's great. Boot and app launch times are 3-4 times faster.

I'd be happy to outboard my MacBook Pro's optical drive, something I find myself using maybe once every two or three months.

My MBP has had that setup for over a year. There is no going back to a HDD for the boot drive. Having iTunes load in 1 second with no bouncing in the dock is just too nice.

I had to take my MBP into Apple for service. The Geniuses didn't care about my Optibay installation, which technically voids my warranty, and instead were intersted in it. They did say that if I shipped my MBP to Apple they might be a less forgiving but it likely wouldn't matter unless the drive was deemed the culprit.
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post #40 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Simply by removing the optical drive they can regain that 5.25 of port-side space. That means laying the logic board about along the entire backside which one 1) will allow for separating the CPU and GPU a little more to allow more even heat distribution, and 2) getting all the components closer to the air vents between the hinges to allow for less travel to cool.

11 MBA

http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/MacBo...Teardown/3745/
13 MBP

http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/MacBo...Teardown/814/2

I'm surprised Stevo allows those labels not to be straight!
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