1 Month In - Thinking of going MBP

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by shenan1982, Jun 9, 2015.

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  1. shenan1982 macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #1
    Now don't jump on me please... but I'm feeling a bit of buyer's remorse on this purchase. I do absolutely love how thin and light my Retina Macbook is... and when I bought it I knew I'd be sacrificing for the thin and light, but a couple issues have presented themselves to me....

    - It's slow... not just slow, but PAINFULLY slow at times. You notice it where you don't even realize you'd notice it. Mail for example. Normally I can arrow down and before I blink the next message is marked read and the message is open, BAM. Not the case with Macbook. The processor can't keep up, so you have to give it a half a second or so. Might not seem like a big deal, but when you're breezing through previews of 10-20 emails, it makes a big difference. Even opening a browser window takes longer than on my 2014 Macbook Air, or my iMac at home... we take for granted an app opening almost instantly on the older models.... then go to the Macbook and it all slows down.

    - The battery is nowhere near what they promised. Plenty of people have been having no issues, but I've been having issues. The battery will sit at 100% for an hour then drop to 90% quick... then 80%... it's not a battery issue as it's been swapped several times... I think Apple just hasn't updated the way they read the new battery technology. Not a huge deal, but it's not 9 hours.. 6-7 maybe.

    - The keyboard. It's nice, but I don't love it. Especially since I have iMac at home, and this on the road...the difference is huge. The keys feel nice, but I mis-type a lot even after a month using it now. I thought it would get better.

    - The screen is great. One of the reasons I didn't get a MBP is none of the default resolutions worked well for me. I didn't realize (until someone posted here) that one can manually edit the resolutions to allow the perfect resolution, so maybe a MBP is for me now.


    I don't know, just some observations, and this is coming from the 1.2 ghz model... I just feel like it lags... if it were faster, the other issues would probably be non-issues, but I feel like because it's slow, the other issues are more nagging to me.

    Anyone else in the same boat? Reconsidering? Now I just don't know if I want to go MBP or MBA. I don't think I can go back to non-retina. HMPHHHHHHHH
     
  2. Ghost31 macrumors 68000

    Ghost31

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    #2
    I think this first entry into the new MacBook world (12 inch) is just a beginning. A stepping stone. Much like the first underpowered MacBook Air people said was downright unusable, I think this product needs time to catch up. Which is exactly why I'm waiting until at least v2 to give it a try. and even then, I know it's not meant for power intensive stuff. Just basic web stuff and coding
     
  3. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2008
    Location:
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    #3
    Had no problems with my 1.2 so far, however I have been mindful of what software is loaded and how I set up the MacBook vs my Retina`a

    Q-6
     
  4. polee, Jun 9, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2015

    polee macrumors 6502a

    polee

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    #4
    I think the rMB is a great product. I have been waiting for a retina screen to come to the MBA. Well it didn't, so I bought this instead. With no regrets, though I had to take some time to get used to the keyboard.
     
  5. andy9l macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2009
    Location:
    England, UK
    #5
    All fair points, in my view.

    I bought the 1.1GHz because I knew the upgrades would have a minimal impact on performance. The rMB was always going to be ‘slow’ regardless of which of the 1.1, 1.2 or 1.3 processors you buy. It’s like decremental levels of ‘slowness’, as opposed to significant incremental levels of performance like on the MP, iMac or MBP ranges.

    It sounds like you bought the rMB expecting performance equal to that of much more powerful Macs. It was never going to deliver on those expectations, so you’ve probably bought the wrong product for your needs. Everyone does it at some point.

    As for the battery, well, I’ve been nothing but impressed by mine. I charge it maybe once every 4 days and squeeze probably 10-12 hours out of it. I may be overestimating there.

    The new keyboard is definitely a subjective thing. Personally I really like it, with the exception of the new up/down arrow keys. I’m still struggling to get used to those. Apart from that, I’ve had no issues adjusting and don’t remember a time when I was misspelling much more frequently. I actually prefer to type emails on my rMB than on my iMac/MBP now and will actively go to it.

    The screen – yeah, my photos are looking nothing short of fantastic given the point ’n’ shoot nature of them, and the fact they’re just from an iPhone 6.

    To give you my opinion:

    I bought this rMB as an accompaniment to my iMac. I expected to use it as, basically, a much more useful iPad. So far, my usage of my iMac has plummeted, way more than I expected it to. I find my rMB handles almost everything I do, and it has massively exceeded my expectations.

    YES it is slower. Of course it is. My iMac is running a quad-core desktop-class processor, with a powerful, dedicated GPU. But that slowness actually equates to maybe 0.25-0.5 seconds every now and then, and a slight bit of UI stuttering. To put that into perspective, I was expecting this rMB to be completely unusable for the tasks I’m referring to – Photoshop work, web development, IDEs, etc..

    So, the reason you don’t like yours and the reason I love mine is because we both had massively different expectations going in to our purchases. No one of us was right, no-one wrong. Just different opinions, different expectations and different requirements.

    As for your decision between MBA and MBP - definitely, definitely go with the MBP. I’d be surprised if the MBA is around for much longer. And that non-retina screen will really nag you.
     
  6. jimboutilier macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2008
    Location:
    Denver
    #6
    The rMB is definitely not for everyone.

    Its the least capable of all current MAC's. If you are used to a MAC with a QuadCore processor and or dedicated graphics, you should be extremely cautious in your evaluation of a rMB as it will be a huge performance change. Even current DualCore MACs have significantly higher CPU and graphics performance so some caution in your evaluation is indicated, particularly if you tend to push the limits of your current machine.

    I haven't been one of the folks that have experienced a "laggy" rMB. But I'm coming from a 2013 MBA and the performance difference isn't all that great (about 15%) in my case. In fact, graphics performance on the rMB is better, as is burst performance, with only sustained loads being slower. I'm sure if I was coming from a Retina iMAC or a QC 15" rMBP I would notice quite a difference.

    As 2013 and 2014 MBA's are pretty much identical (except for a 0.1ghz speed difference in the base model processor), and I don't see the kinds of differences you are experiencing, its possible you aren't just hitting the rMBs inherent limitations but that there is something "wrong" and you have a laggy rMB. Have you tried the typical solutions of turning off transparency (accessibility settings), rebooting from the recovery partition and repairing disk permissions etc? It's also possible that you are just more sensitive to these differences or my 1.3ghs rMB mitigates the difference a bit better.

    As to battery life, I'm getting better than my MBA for a given level of use but its close for heavy use and more of an advantage to the rMB under light use. Only under very light use do I get 9 hours. Under normal use I get 6-7 similar to you, and under heavy load it can be more like 4.

    I'm not reconsidering but everyone's needs and thresholds are different. If you try some of the many "lag remedies" in these threads and your rMB is still laggy to you, it might not be the machine for you (or maybe the 1.3 would be enough where the 1.2 isnt - but the 10% or so difference between the two may make no difference to you, so who knows).

    Good luck in your choice.


     
  7. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #7
    Yeah I'm ok with the keyboard. Not in love with it but it works. The arrow keys are annoying though.

    I'm just so torn. Now the MBP will feel like a boat anchor compared to the rMB. I just hate how slow everything is. Lol. I spent $1600 and got a much slower computer. I guess my expectations were just off.
     
  8. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #8
    I shouldn't use the wording "lag". I'm not talking about the general UI lag I'm more referring to just general slowness in comparison to the rest of the Mac lines.
     
  9. seong macrumors 65816

    seong

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2010
    #9
    I got the base model with base configuration (duh!) and it seems to perform just fine.
    I do a lot of basic photoshop/illustrator editing, web development, Xcode (though the builds are performed over the server,) and a lot of 1080p streaming from Youtube, etc.
    To me, it is as good as the rMBP 15" Late 2013 I used to use. Sure, the rMB got its hiccups here and there occasionally, but overall its great to have a small and light machine that I can bring and use almost anywhere without having to worry about the weight of my backpack.

    Right, it is slower than the rest of the line up because it can't theoretically be any faster or keep up with 100% of the speed of other high performance mobile CPUs. The rMB doesn't even have a fan. If you don't travel much and need a powerful machine, rMBPs are the way to go.
     
  10. iSheep5S macrumors 6502a

    iSheep5S

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2013
    Location:
    Scotland
    #10
    I think even if you do travel much a rMBP 13" is fine. Weight weenie stuff. A rMBP IS thin and light.

    You would be surprised at the amount of guys i know that do business to business training courses ALL DAY EVERY DAY 47 WEEKS A YEAR, (deducting holidays) that lug a 15" Windows machine thats about an inch and a half thick.

    Your all spoilt. :p
     
  11. bcaslis macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2008
    #11
    One of the other issues on the rMB is being a small machine, is I find myself hunching a bit more than with the 13" rMBP. One of the reasons I haven't gotten rid of the rMB yet is I love it's speakers. Makes the other laptops sound like they have speakers muffled in socks.

    I'm personally torn between the rMB and the 13" rMBP.
     
  12. seong macrumors 65816

    seong

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2010
    #12
    You'd be surprised to hear from me that I like the smaller form factor (I liked the MBA 11" form factor more than the rMBP 13",) the new keyboard, and USB-C.
    I agree on with you that the OP should get the rMBP 13".
     
  13. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #13

    That's my quandary, I travel a LOT... internationally 1-2 weeks a month. And that was the primary driver for thin and light. On the one hand, thin and light is amazing because it's small, doesn't weigh anything, and is great for a side pocket on my carry-on sized bag. On the flip-side, I spend so much time traveling, that I feel like 25-50% of the month I'm working on a sub-par computer. Such a quandary ehh?
     
  14. polee macrumors 6502a

    polee

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    #14
    I liked my MBA 11 more than my MBA 13. I still do. I never has a MBP 13. Somehow the MBA 11 remains a favourite in terms of its portability, design, number of ports. Only the non-retina screen is a drawback. Well I am still keeping it even when with my new rMB.
     
  15. masotime macrumors 68000

    masotime

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Location:
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    #15
    I have a feeling the issues are tied more to the operating system, and I'm hoping OS X El Capitan will resolve them.

    I have iStatMenu installed on my Mac, and every time it slows down the culprit always seems to be WindowServer, which suggests an issue with the graphical rendering engine for OS elements (like how people mention transparency).

    Have you considered disabling transparency? It may help. It should be under System Preferences > Accessibility > Display > Reduce Transparency.
     
  16. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #16
    That's for graphics performance... not the actual processing speed. But yeah, I turned mine off the first week I got the laptop. I do notice each beta seems to speed up performance a bit more.
     
  17. JoePa2624 macrumors regular

    JoePa2624

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2014
    Location:
    AZ
    #17
    I just picked up my MacBook this afternoon. Overall, my first impressions are what I'd expected. The keyboard will take some getting used to, and it's even better looking in person. I am amazed by the quality of the speakers on this!

    Coming from a 2015 MBPr 13", I have been really let down by the overall sluggishness of the machine. I knew this wouldn't be as fast as the MBP, but I'm slightly frustrated already at how long it take to open apps.

    So I think I understand what the OP is talking about. I have a couple weeks before I have to make a decision, but right now I'm 50/50 on whether or not it'll be staying. If I do decide to return it, I'm not sure what I'll get for my travel work computer. Already spoiled by how small and light this thing is, the MBP feels like a tank! And I refuse to use an Air because of that god-awful screen.

    Just my $0.02
     
  18. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #18
    You and me buddy... we're in the exact same boat. I came from a 2014 maxed out Macbook Air 11" ... so thin and light has been all I've known for several years. The MBA has spectacular speed and performance, almost as good as a Macbook Pro Retina....

    My pain is like you. I can't go to an Air and non-retina display. Now that I've had a MB that's so thin and light, it's hard to imagine going to a Macbook Pro 13" ... cause even though they're super slim, they're boat anchors COMPARED to the rMB.

    So yeah, dunno what to do. When I first got it I was kinda like WOW this is slow but hey I'm just using it as a travel computer... but I got it because I travel a lot, so on the one hand, it's small and super portable for travel purposes, but I do travel a lot so I feel like I'm banging my head on the desk.

    What really surprises me is how the slowness doesn't seem to bother many who have it. I guess my benchmark to compare it to is a combination of having come from a 2014 Macbook Air, which blows the 2015 rMB out of the water for app load speed, web browsing, email transition speed, and overall software install\usage on a daily basis. I'm trying not to compare it to my iMac because that's not a fair compare.

    Like you, I think I'm 50-50.. maybe more 60-40 against keeping it. I dunno. I don't love having to always use the dongle to make it a usable computer. I don't love the tradeoff of having ultra slow performance just to have an ultra portable unit. But if I sell it and buy a Macbook Pro, I feel like the next iteration of MBP that'll likely be released in September\October is just going to make me regret having just bought one in June. Ugh... such a troubled life of problems I live, huh?
     
  19. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #19
    I'm on the same page with you there. I liked the shape of the MBA 11" screen. I liked its speed. I liked it's port layout. I'd be in heaven if they had just bumped the specs to add retina to the 11", and gone black with the bezel. It was plenty thin, and had all the power to make things run smoothly. Now I feel like I've gone back 3 years with my rMB
     
  20. JoePa2624 macrumors regular

    JoePa2624

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2014
    Location:
    AZ
    #20
    I'm curious to see what feedback comes out regarding the improvements that were discussed at the keynote. My biggest gripe right now is how slowly apps open. That is one of the areas that was supposedly addressed in El Capitan. If it's true, then I'm confident this computer will remain in my backpack until V2 is released.
     
  21. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #21
    Yeah... if only El Capitan wasn't 4 months away.... are you using the BetaSeed program? I am on 10.10.4 and it's on beta 5 or 6 or so now, and it's a lot better than when I was on 10.10.3... a LOT better. Dunno if you've tried it yet.
     
  22. Queen6 macrumors 603

    Queen6

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2008
    Location:
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    #22
    @ shenan; Do you have FV-2 enabled? have you tried the rMB with FV-2 off?

    Q-6
     
  23. masotime macrumors 68000

    masotime

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2012
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    #23
    Well if the graphics routines use less processing power, naturally other tasks have more CPU time, leading to increased performance.

    WindowServer can eat up to 50% of CPU power based on what I've seen, which is frankly ridiculous - OS X should definitely focus more on stability and polish than any new features for a while....
     
  24. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #24
    FV-2? Farmville 2 or Filevault? I don't use either, no. And this isn't Twitter, no need for "@" hehe. You just click reply to my comment and it quotes me and tags me in the question, hehe.
     
  25. shenan1982 thread starter macrumors 68040

    shenan1982

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #25
    Don't get me wrong, I'm never going to complain about under the hood work. The problem is Apple has had a relatively plain, unchanged visual design now for what.. 10 years now? They should have worked out the issues years ago and been working on the next gen OS. Look at Windows 10. Windows 7 was great, then Windows 8 not so much. They realized people wanted more but didn't want the Windows 8 garbage. I'm running Windows 10 beta, and it's a fantastic operating system. It's visually stunning, and runs great. Apple needs to get with it. It almost feels like OS X is a secondary project these days.

    Apple once made great computers and software, and now they make phones. Least they do it right, but wish they still made great software.
     
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