Any 12" Macbook users holding out for an ARM Macbook?

leeuk321

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 21, 2018
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Just a quick post to see what 12" Macbook users' thoughts are since Apple's WWDC event? I imagine that a lot of people still using a Macbook are doing so because they love the silent, ultra-lightweight form, and have been waiting for three years for a refresh of some sort. Or perhaps have been deliberating over reluctantly jumping to the Air or 13" MBP?

I own a 2017 12" Macbook and love it to bits, but of course it's aging and there's definite limiting factors (butterfly keyboard, single 10gbps port, etc). I think I'm going to hold out a bit longer and hopefully the first ARM Macbook will be lighter and run cooler than the current Air and 13" MBP, and even if it's not quite as silent/light as the 12" Macbook I think I'll make the jump. That's assuming that they don't refresh the 12" Macbook with an ARM version, which of course would be amazing.

Anyone else in the same boat?
 
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nick9191

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Feb 17, 2008
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I own an old style MacBook Air and would love a new ARM 12" to replace it. Despite changing the thermal paste, the fans do still spin up on this thing. That's with the CPU barely hitting 65c under load. I can't imagine how people with the newer boiling hot Intel chips manage it.
 

leeuk321

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 21, 2018
58
43
I own an old style MacBook Air and would love a new ARM 12" to replace it. Despite changing the thermal paste, the fans do still spin up on this thing. That's with the CPU barely hitting 65c under load. I can't imagine how people with the newer boiling hot Intel chips manage it.
For sure, I've heard about the overheating from a lot of current MBA users. That makes me start looking at the 13" Pro, which is supposed to have a much better thermal architecture, but it's that little bit heavier still. I then start looking back at my 12" Macbook, and thinking whether I can hold out for the next silent Macbook. And at some point the idea of having a Macbook for portable use and a Mini for desktop use comes into my mind, but then I start thinking again that maybe an Air would would be a good compromise, and then my head starts spinning and I lie face-down on the couch.
 

essential

macrumors regular
Apr 8, 2008
233
86
i almost pulled the trigger on the last gen 12" macbook when they were discontinued but i couldn't find one new with 16gb RAM, and i was really weary about buying anything with a butterfly keyboard.

as soon as it was discontinued rumor articles started saying there will be an ARM 12" macbook in a couple years. i decided to wait and i'm ready to purchase if an ARM version is released assuming a few basic changes are met. i basically would want the same form factor from a size/weight standpoint (possibly larger screen), 1080p webcam, at least two thunderbolt ports (would welcome more though), and a scissor keyboard.

the rumors of the first ARM devices to be released before the end of the year are a 13" MBP and an iMac. this is slightly disappointing as i assumed the 12" macbook was perfect to be a first device, but as i said above (possibly larger screen), the 12" macbook does have decent bezels which could be shrunk to fit a larger screen. if they shrunk those bezels similar to the current 16" MBP bezels, i could see them cramming a 13" screen in the same 12" macbook body ... and that's what i'm hoping for.

i hope that of the rumored first ARM devices, the 13" MBP is actually a 13" screen in the 12" macbook body, with smaller bezels but the power equivalent of a MBP.
 

leeuk321

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 21, 2018
58
43
i almost pulled the trigger on the last gen 12" macbook when they were discontinued but i couldn't find one new with 16gb RAM, and i was really weary about buying anything with a butterfly keyboard.

as soon as it was discontinued rumor articles started saying there will be an ARM 12" macbook in a couple years. i decided to wait and i'm ready to purchase if an ARM version is released assuming a few basic changes are met. i basically would want the same form factor from a size/weight standpoint (possibly larger screen), 1080p webcam, at least two thunderbolt ports (would welcome more though), and a scissor keyboard.

the rumors of the first ARM devices to be released before the end of the year are a 13" MBP and an iMac. this is slightly disappointing as i assumed the 12" macbook was perfect to be a first device, but as i said above (possibly larger screen), the 12" macbook does have decent bezels which could be shrunk to fit a larger screen. if they shrunk those bezels similar to the current 16" MBP bezels, i could see them cramming a 13" screen in the same 12" macbook body ... and that's what i'm hoping for.

i hope that of the rumored first ARM devices, the 13" MBP is actually a 13" screen in the 12" macbook body, with smaller bezels but the power equivalent of a MBP.
I'm much of the same standpoint, and yes a better webcam would be a good improvement, especially in today's climate. Even in the future after the dust has (somewhat) settled on the pandemic and things get back to normal, as people say, it will be a new normal. Obviously, even before this broke out people were working from home more and more, and using webcams more and more; but in the current state, I imagine improvements in hardware for remote computing will be higher than ever on Apple's priority list. Longer runtime, better webcam, better keyboard, better connectivity.

And yes, I was wondering if they might use the body of the 12" Macbook, but expand the screen and guts of it. If they could refine the internal architecture with the help of Silicone to keep it circa Macbook weight, and fanless, but with one/two 40gbps ports and a better keyboard it'd be spectacular. Faster CPU and faster RAM etc would be nice, but with the Macbook it's more about portability, functionality and connectivity than being a workhorse, so I'd be more than happy with the tradeoff.
 

the future

macrumors 68000
Jul 17, 2002
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Me too. Apple Silicone promises the best of both worlds: laptops as light and silent as the Macbook, but with Macbook Pro level performance.
 
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madat42

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2011
209
26
Still holding out hope that they put out a 12" MacBook, but WWDC surprised me with how powerful the A12Z could be running full MacOS. So I'm siding with the rumor that the A14 will debut with Apple's more popular configs in the MacBook Pro and iMac lineup. The main question for me is, will it be fanless. That is what I'll be waiting for.
 
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radiologyman

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2011
680
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I had two MB12 and emailed Tim Cook back in 2018 to request an ARM replacement. I believe Apple will release it eventually but for now I am content with 13.3 inch Spectre from HP. While heavier than MB12, it has 10th gen intel proc and silent under normal use. It is a touchscreen convertible with great design but most importantly it has an absolutely amazing OLED screen. While Apple will not use OLED, I think they may be considering a miniLED and touchscreen for the replacement.
 
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EugW

macrumors G3
Jun 18, 2017
8,432
5,794
I plan on using this 2017 Core m3 16 GB MacBook 12" until about 2025, if it lasts that long.

It's 5 Gbps USB BTW.

Note though, these days I use my iPad Pro (with Smart Keyboard) much more than I use my MacBook. I already have an iMac at home so I have no use for the MacBook at home, and my work no longer needs me to use my MacBook much, since switching jobs last year.
 

The Samurai

macrumors 68020
Dec 29, 2007
2,019
623
Glasgow
Would drop some serious notes on a 12" Arm Macbook.

Always loved the 12" Macbook and was going to buy it had they of refreshed it but instead it was shelved so im very much in the market for one.

I use an 11" iPad Pro at the moment, its absolute overkill for me and I could easily do with a regular iPad so I intend on selling this then and getting the 12" Arm Macbook (fingers crossed).

I have a 27" iMac and a 13" Macbook Pro where I do all my serious work on but to move around in the house, I like to use the iPad due to the instant on and amazing battery life so the 12" would need to match or beat the battery life of an iPad (which im sure it will).
 

SuperMatt

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Mar 28, 2002
760
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I work with a person who loved their 11” MacBook Air and when it was discontinued and they needed a new laptop, I recommended the 12” MacBook - they were very happy with it. It was the same size but with a bigger, clearer screen. I think it’s a great form factor for an ultraportable. With Apple chips inside, I think it would be easier than ever to make a powerful laptop in that form factor.
 

4sallypat

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Sep 16, 2016
654
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So Calif
I love both my 2015 gold and 2017 space gray MB which are perfect still - no issues with the keyboards.

And I would gladly buy the next ARM/Apple Silicon MB.
 

tobefirst

macrumors 601
Jan 24, 2005
4,088
1,237
St. Louis, MO
My 2015 is either my favorite or second favorite mac ever (hello, G4 iMac!). I really wanted to upgrade now, but will be waiting to find out what Mac(s) will be first to ARM. I'll suffer until then.
 

ascender

macrumors 68040
Dec 8, 2005
3,245
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I’d buy one too. I have a 27” iMac available if I need it, but my main machine now is a 12.9” iPad Pro with Magic Keyboard. I love the ultralight format of the 12” and to be honest, none of the current laptop range hits the spot for me.
 

madat42

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2011
209
26
A tech YouTuber posted this video a few days ago crapping on the 12" MacBook. Some fair points, but a whole lot of misses.

No, it doesn't suck. I don't buy laptops to run Cinebench and running a couple of tabs doesn't produce a meltdown. What I love are the comments from folks who wholeheartedly disagree with his assessment. They could be you.
 

leeuk321

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 21, 2018
58
43
A tech YouTuber posted this video a few days ago crapping on the 12" MacBook. Some fair points, but a whole lot of misses.

No, it doesn't suck. I don't buy laptops to run Cinebench and running a couple of tabs doesn't produce a meltdown. What I love are the comments from folks who wholeheartedly disagree with his assessment. They could be you.
Just watched that video now, and yes it's an interesting watch but like you say...a whole lot of misses. So many critics and cynics miss the whole point of the Macbook, whilst ironically also being aware of it; it's as if they list the "few advantages", but don't actually appreciate the value of those things. As we all know, Apple made the Macbook with three priorities in mind for what it had to be:

A proper laptop that ran MacOS
As light as possible
As silent as possible

Everything else was made as good / fast / efficient as possible as a second-place to the above. Yet so many people who criticise the Macbook get the priorities twisted around and have the same argument: "Well, yes of course it's an actual MacOS running laptop that's ultralight and silent, but if you're willing to have something 50% heavier, a loud fan and/or another device that's running iPadOS or Windows...this is a TERRIBLE machine!!". Well, durr. People who are attracted to the machine love it because their priorities sync up with Apple's priorities on the design of this. It's a completely redundant, moot argument to bang on about a laptop that's heavier / louder / doesn't run MacOS. It's like trying to explain the advantages of a formula one car to a rally car driver.

That being said, it's clear that the Macbook hit a ceiling in 2017 that it couldn't really navigate around with the technology at the time. It's almost commendable for Apple to have discontinued it, rather than continuing it year after year with BS "incremental gains", albeit I appreciate that the main focus was on sales and profitability.

Hopefully Silicone will smash through that ceiling and we'll see the return of the silent Macbook.
 

nick9191

macrumors 68040
Feb 17, 2008
3,321
84
Britain
I think the 12" MacBook was where Apple wanted to take it's consumer laptop. If processor roadmaps had been delivered on as promised, and wacky new keyboard designs had been fault free, I think this would be the $999 consumer laptop. Silent, compact, beautiful and plenty fast for the task. Unfortunately it didn't pan out, Apple came back with a new MacBook Air, the laptop they didn't expect to make and the 12" was consigned to history.. Until later this year.
 

The Phazer

macrumors 68030
Oct 31, 2007
2,824
405
London, UK
No, an ARM Macbook holds very little appeal to me, software compatibility is everything. My Macbook will chug along for a while, but I'm moving my desktop from MacOS to Windows and will probably do the same here.
 

ascender

macrumors 68040
Dec 8, 2005
3,245
1,189
A tech YouTuber posted this video a few days ago crapping on the 12" MacBook. Some fair points, but a whole lot of misses.

No, it doesn't suck. I don't buy laptops to run Cinebench and running a couple of tabs doesn't produce a meltdown. What I love are the comments from folks who wholeheartedly disagree with his assessment. They could be you.
I think Luke is one of the better YouTubers and have really enjoyed lots of his stuff, but I think he missed the mark big time on that video. I’m basing that on my own experiences of owning a few of those MacBooks and also the feelings towards them from this forum and other owners.
 

leeuk321

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 21, 2018
58
43
I think Luke is one of the better YouTubers and have really enjoyed lots of his stuff, but I think he missed the mark big time on that video. I’m basing that on my own experiences of owning a few of those MacBooks and also the feelings towards them from this forum and other owners.
For sure, fully agree. He provides a lot of information in the video about the thermal architecture, CPU evolution, etc. But the main issue is the fact that it's painfully obvious that he's not even taken the time to properly use and test the machine, with the exception of opening it up and running benchmarks

I'm currently typing this on my 2017 m3 8GB Macbook, which is hooked up to a 4K screen running at 4K@60Hz, and it's perfectly cool and completely silent. On this same setup, I edited photos earlier in Photoshop, watched videos and researched some topics using multiple tabs in multiple windows (probably 40 tabs altogether). And yet, somehow this guy has his Macbook melting with two tabs. He's obviously researched specifications etc, looked online at a bunch of people moaning about it's performance, ran a quick benchmark and then made up his mind before actually using the machine. It's the kind of video that's driven by agenda.
 

FilmIndustryGuy

macrumors 6502
May 12, 2015
350
156
Manhattan Beach, CA
I don't think ill upgrade to ARM for the following reasons. I just got apple to rebuild mine, I use it mainly for document work on the go, I like the option of bootcamp, if its a grab and go device I like when it loses value in case I break it or it gets lost/stolen (I don't use cases). I dont see how a faster processor will improve my document typing. The main difference I see here is the keyboard. Once you buy multiple recent Apple devices, the issue is you end up not using all of them most of the time. They just lose value and make you feel like you need to upgrade to new tech. Whats the point of buying AppleCare for your MacBooks if you use each 1-2 times a week? I used the crap out of my 2017 as my sole laptop and put 760 battery cycles on it including spilling water into it. Apple replaced all that right at the end of AppleCare 3 year mark.

If you plan on using it as your main laptop with Apple creative software than for sure go with ARM.

Well maybe id upgrade but I want a bigger better screen, much faster performance and thunderbolt 3.
 

leeuk321

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 21, 2018
58
43
I don't think ill upgrade to ARM for the following reasons. I just got apple to rebuild mine, I use it mainly for document work on the go, I like the option of bootcamp, if its a grab and go device I like when it loses value in case I break it or it gets lost/stolen (I don't use cases). I dont see how a faster processor will improve my document typing. The main difference I see here is the keyboard. Once you buy multiple recent Apple devices, the issue is you end up not using all of them most of the time. They just lose value and make you feel like you need to upgrade to new tech. Whats the point of buying AppleCare for your MacBooks if you use each 1-2 times a week? I used the crap out of my 2017 as my sole laptop and put 760 battery cycles on it including spilling water into it. Apple replaced all that right at the end of AppleCare 3 year mark.

If you plan on using it as your main laptop with Apple creative software than for sure go with ARM.

Well maybe id upgrade but I want a bigger better screen, much faster performance and thunderbolt 3.
Fair point, and yes I definitely appreciate what you're saying about bootcamp. I don't personally use bootcamp, but it's something I've always given thought to; having said that, it's definitely a compromise I'd be willing to take. For me, I don't think it's so much about having huge power/performance, but more about it being more efficient and being hardware that Apple has control of. Hopefully, it will remove the bottleneck from the hardware upgrades, and simply allow Apple to bring back a silent Macbook - whatever the screen size or badge.
 

madat42

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2011
209
26
...
A proper laptop that ran MacOS
As light as possible
As silent as possible
...
Hopefully Silicone will smash through that ceiling and we'll see the return of the silent Macbook.
I've mentioned elsewhere that I thought the 12" MacBook was the iPad-like MacBook, or a MacBook-like iPad. The perfect in-between device.
 
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mj_

macrumors 6502a
May 18, 2017
866
522
Austin, TX
Only if it doesn't come with a Butterfly keyboard :rolleyes:

My current 2017 MacBook will be up for renewal around April/May of 2021 since it'll be three years old by then and fully depreciated. If there's a new fan-less (!) Apple laptop with ARM processor and traditional scissor-switch keyboard then that'll be my next move.
 
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