I decided that today was the day: after months of waiting, the new MacBook Pros had finally come out and I decided that today was the day I was getting one. My MBP is just over four years old and it’s served me well, but it started to fall apart and break down and it was time for a new one. And what better time to buy one when they’ve refereshed the product range and I’m sitting on a relatively large pile of cash from my recent poker tourney success.
I did my research first and while admittedly it’s more powerful than I need, I decided on the 2.66GHz 15″ MacBook Pro with an i7 processor and 512MB of video ram. I bought the top-of-the-line 15″ model back in 2005 when I bought my current MBP and I never, ever had an issue with performance. At some point it stops being the best, obviously, but it was always pretty damn good and could pretty much run anything, even stuff developed three years on.
So I toodled off to our local Apple flagship store where I basically pointed at the sign and said ‘That one, please’. I was a bit concerned it was going to be a bit heavy to lug around on the train and tram on the way home, but geezus have they reduced the packaging. The box wasn’t any bigger than your average laptop bag. They put it in this drawstring-type plastic bag thingy, which really wasn’t necessary and probably made it more clumsy than if I had just carried the box by the built in handle. But whatever.
And now for the truly geeky part where I show you pictures of me unboxing my computer. If you’ve never bought an Apple product, then you’ve never experienced the nirvana of packaging design. Seriously. Opening an Apple product is like having really good sex. Everything just fits and there’s a lot of’ ‘Oh yeah…’ and ‘Oh my God’ type of exclamations during the actual act.
There’s no wedging your finger in the packaging and pulling the unit out of the box (um, that was not meant to be another sex analogy, so get your mind out of the gutter). Instead there’s a black tab that tells you it was ‘Designed by Apple in California’. Pull on it and the computer is lifted up for easy removal. Underneath is a black envelope with the instruction booklet, DVDs and two Apple stickers. And the power supply.
The first thing I noticed compared to mine was the curves. Seriously gorgeous. They lent a smooth, almost flowing feel to the design. I admit it. I just sat there and basically felt up my computer for awhile.
Performance aside, I don’t think I was really aware how much the design had changed. Though ‘change’ probably isn’t the right word. Maybe ‘evolved’ is. Even the power connector had become dead sexeh.
With the unibody construction, I’m not sure how easy it would be to upgrade the RAM myself like I did with my last MBP. But the feeling of the computer is so solid, it reminds me of the old black PowerBooks. Not that it’s as big or heavy, obviously, but there’s a real feeling of quality in the build.
And while I’m not a huge fan of the keyboard aesthetically (the black doesn’t do much for me, to be honest), from a functional standpoint it’s great. Again, very solid feeling and yet very responsive. You really feel like you could ‘pound the keyboard’ when typing, if you were so inclined. The SD card slot is a nifty little thing as well – not a new feature, obviously, but new to me. So much easier just to pop the card directly into the computer than connect my camera or an external card reader.
The only quibble I had in the whole process was when I went to transfer the information from my old laptop to my new. Apple makes it incredibly painless with the Migration Assistant, and the transfer is actually part of the set-up process. All you have to do is connect your computers with a Firewire cable. The thing I didn’t realise is that the new(er) MacBook Pros have a FireWire 800 port while my old MBP has a FireWire 400 port. The connectors are different, and all I have are FireWire 400 cables… Bah. I debated making the 20 minute walk to my local computer store but I was far too lazy for that. Thankfully I was able to connect the two computers with an Ethernet cable and two hours (and one nap) later all my data, settings, applications, etc. had migrated across.
The more I use the computer, the more I love it. It absolutely flies and it’s deadset beautiful in terms of design. I mean, even the power button has been refined to be smaller and more flush with the surface.
I know, I know. I’m a fan girl. But I spend so much time on my computer, I might as well love it, yeah?