Hi all, My Macbook Pro (rev A, no less) has just turned slightly over a year old, and I thought I'd share what I feel about it here for all the people thinking about buying a Macbook Pro. I have previously been an all windows person, so the MBP has been my first Mac. As I bought it when I was a final year student at University, it has been by my side almost all the time in my backpack. I'm not a particularly active person, so the most rough and tumble experience my MBP has had as been the jostling up and down in my backpack as I walk around Campus. The user experience so far has had its ups and downs. Ups === 1. Excellent setup time. From unboxing to getting on my ssh server to check out code for development through wireless, the whole thing took me 10 minutes. That included setting up the connection, watching the entry video, unboxing and lovingly putting back all the plastics and discs where I found them. 2. Excellent learn curve for common OS tasks such as installing software. Having never used a mac before, it took me a few days to get used to everything, but by then I had figured out how to install/uninstall programs, customise my user experiece, set up a shared network drive, set up network profiles (bear in mine that my MBP shipped with 10.4 Tiger). 3. Excellent user interface. Coming from a windows environment, I was actually quite shocked to find that: a. I quickly got used to the trackpad as a mouse replacement. In fact, the mouse i bought for use with the MBP is still languishing in my cupboard. b. I didn't miss the right-click (enough said) c. I was faster shuffling windows around and doing things that required input and output between multiple apps. d. I didn't need to download bloatware (or work utilities if you like) such as Antivirus, Adobe Reader, Office, Cygwin. e. Rebooting was passe f. Sleep and wake functions actually worked, first time, every time. g. Search was actually fast and useful. 4. Support is generally excellent with machine/part failures. Never had any dramas claiming any warrenty work. Heck, the way the battery recall was handled (get a new battery, send your old one back when you can) was a major plus point in my book. All in all, I love the mac for productivity and ease of use. I recommend it all the time. However, everything must have its drawbacks, and here are the few that I found with my particular unit. Downs ===== 1. Less than 3 months into use, my power cable started fraying. The part where it frayed is actually where the wire connects to the macsafe head. And before you start thinking that its because of abuse, I use my MBP in the lab, library and at home on a desk, and have _never_ have had the cable forcibly disconnected or mistreated. Magsafe was cool and I loved it, but for something that seemed to be one of the features of the MBP, it was disappointing that I had to have my power brick replaced so soon. Granted, it was done for free, but its recently started to fray again. What annoys me is that soon the warrenty is going to be over and if it happens again (as history suggests it will), I will need to pay for a replacement. 2. Apple RAM is expensive. The default 512 MB RAM I had was barely enough to keep Tiger happy. I had to shell out money for extra RAM. (after researching at Macrumours the best thing to do when getting extra RAM, of course) Seems to me that if the Apple user experience is paramount, they should have not allowed those machines to be shipped with inadequete RAM in the first place. Just to put things in perspective, I had my MBP running stock everything for around 3 months before I slapped in 1GB extra RAM. The user experience went from good to excellent. No more spinning beach ball or safari freezes. Zlich, Nada. Then again, it didn't seem to happen very often. 3. The fan. Its been covered in the forums extensively. Trust me, I used to think that the people that complain of the noise was making it up, and it shocked me to the bone to know that they weren't. I theorise that its the sound of the blades scraping against the fan enclosure as it spins. Especially pronounced at high operating temperatures. And before anyone starts, its not a software issue, I had applied the patch from Apple for fan management and it still happens. Might be warping or something similar I think. Shudder in horror to know that a sharp slap on the machine where the sound is actually _might_ sometimes stop the noise. (Not that I do it often, of course) 4. The hard disk. The hard disk started failing after 8 months. Since its not even subjected to rough usage, it really is beyond me why that happens. All of my spare sectors are currently used. Fonts get corrupted causing the spinning beach ball of death. No screenshots if you're wondering, but imagine your log in screen with all the normal pictures, but where the words are supposed to be, you get gibberish. And that's not just the login screen that's affected. Subsequent installs of software results in corruption. Lost+Found disk folder growing. SMART status puzzlingly reports the disk as ok. Trust me, its not. 5. Paint flaking. The groove between where the spacebar is and the surface of the trackpad started flaking in 5 months. To clarify, I keep short fingernails, and I don't wear any jewellery. I don't even have sweaty palms! The exposed area is shiny and really noticable. No pictures, but I'll be happy to post some when my MBP gets back from servicing. 6. Optical Disk Woes. My optical disk drive recently decided to become tempermental. It would take a disk and either: a. read and mount it fine b. Spin up, stop, repeat 3 times and eject c. Spin up and sit in the drive doing nothing. Launching Disk Utility gives me a beach ball. Impossible to mount manually or perform any disk options. Ejecting the only option. This happens with burnt CD-Rs, DVD+Rs, (just to be clear, LEGAL!) DVD movie disks. Certain disks seem to have a 100% not-working track record. Said disks would mount and read fine in another machine. Just on a whim (since I used to do this on my old failing Playstation when disks stopped being read properly), I turned the machine upside down on one of the DVDs that kept ejecting (Las Vegas Season 1 Disc 5 to be exact). It mounted the DVD fine. Turning it the right way up resulted the spinning beachball of doom. Said drive is not region locked. It has also not been abused and has possibly only been used around 50 times, of which maybe 10 - 15 times was burning media of either DVD or CD form. 7. Leopard. I bought Leopard when it came out and actually did a clean install of Leopard on another HDD which I put into the machine. (taking out my old woinky Tiger one) Leopard has the same user experience as Tiger, sleek and intuitive. Puzzlingly, the following applications actually are slower on my brand new drive with Leopard than my woinky Tiger one: a. Parallels + Windows XP b. Office: Mac 2008 c. Adobe Photoshop CS3 Odd, isn't it. Results can be posted on request next week. So here I am, sitting at my desk and typing on the forum on a crappy $500 Acer laptop running Xubuntu. I just sent in my MBP to the Apple service centre yesterday (with a few days left on my warrenty) and am waiting for them to give it back. I decided to put this up to see if any of you other readers have the same experience, or similar and would like to share them - Also to let any newbies know that its better over here in the world of Apple, but don't expect all roses and sunshine.