macbook pro: first impressions

October 17, 2008

There is an Apple store about five minutes from my house. I don’t end up there as often as I expected I might, but it’s been very convenient for times when they, oh…say, totally redesign their laptops and I want to see them in person.

Yesterday, I swung by the Apple Store on my way back from a lunch meeting to take a peek at the new MacBook and MacBook Pro. I currently have a six month old MacBook Pro and I have no intentions of upgrading anytime soon. But I always appreciate Apple’s design, and photos usually don’t do justice to their products.

Some random thoughts for those who haven’t had a chance to get their hands on one yet:

  • I didn’t have a good first impression of the black around the edge of the screen, but I think I could get used to it quickly. It is a nice frame for whatever you have going on on the beautiful LED screen.
  • I didn’t mind the glossy finish on my MacBook, but I went with a matte on my MacBook Pro, and I’m glad I did. I would miss the matte if I were ever to upgrade. I think it’s clever that Apple even includes a glare in the promo shots (as in the image to the right), as if to show that the glare really doesn’t affect your view of the screen.
  • The trackpad is nice. I was a skeptic of the whole thing being a button, but man, they got it just right. It clicks easily from anywhere on the touchpad with a good tactile feel, but it doesn’t seem like accidental clicks would be a problem.
  • Speaking of the trackpad, I really liked the three and especially four finger gestures. The three finger can scroll through items (like images in iPhoto), and four finger can activate the task switcher or expose. I’m hoping an update will incorporate these features into mine since it has multi-touch capabilities, but Apple doesn’t usually seem to play it that way.
  • With the new graphics processor, I was impressed with how fast the MacBook was able to flip through images in iPhoto.
  • The new MacBook Pro seemed larger than my model, and that’s because it is. According to the specs, it is .05 inches thinner, but it is over .2″ bigger both in width and depth. It also weighs .1 lbs more. That’s a surprise to me since there is so much emphasis on how the unibody is helping them make smaller products. On the other hand, the MacBook has the same footprint, but is .13 inches shorter and .5 pounds lighter.
  • I do like the keyboard and the magnetic closure on the new Pro…two things I miss from my old MacBook.
  • Latest Posts