Dear All, This going to be a long post so take a cup of coffee and lean back I am a long time reader of Mac rumors and a lifetime Apple user and just turned 28. I use my Macs mostly for designing circuit boards (for audio and music applications) and for making music. I am an electronic audio product designer, mostly digital audio applications. My attempt is to write as objective as possible. Of course emotions influence us all when it is about the stuff we believe in, but I try to stay down to earth here and the same time-share some of my enthusiasm. To start the story (and I will make a long story short) a year ago like many of us I fell in love with the just introduced MBA. It was exact what I needed. That year I would make a Europe tour and live for a while in Paris (I am from the Netherlands). Short after the introduction I bought the MBA/SSD for the full retail price of $2800 (if memory serves me well). I can honesty say, the MBA/SSD REV A. changed my life and days literally. During my Europe trip. I didnt had internet for two months in our apartment in Paris, so every day I went out on my own walking through Paris with my MBA to find some free WIFI spots. It was a pleasant fact that I was able to walk around all day long with a laptop without even notice it. My (now ex ☹) girlfriend had a HP 14,1 laptop which was a nightmare to bring around and after n hour of walking you just wanted to get rid of it because the weight started to annoy. Not with the MBA. You hardly feel you have it with you. That really changed my life. I appreciated the design every single minute of the day. I was in heaven! Unfortunately some heavenly dreams can turn out into nightmares. To start, it took me 4 MBAs to get a decent one. The first had a dead pixel, the second a broken fan and serious damages on the case. The third was overheat right away already in 5 minutes. The 4th one was the one I could live with. Unfortunately none of the MBAs where cosmetically perfect, in a sense, that all of them had less ore more physical damages straight out of the box. However, I could live with it. The 4th one serves me very well for over 7 a 8 months, but then the problems start to occur again. Overheating, Kernel panics, and on the last I was not even able to chat on yahoo messenger anymore without the computer to overheat and get totally unresponsive. I can say honest, there where moments I wanted to throw it out of the window! I cant describe how frustrating it is if you do your work and the whole computer start to stuck and lag. This in a sense that every letter I typed in word took likes 3 seconds to appear on the screen. The same time my screen became slobbier and slobbier and was about to break. That was the point for me that I decide to write an email to Apple customer relations. I have to say, they where always be more then great for me, and I am very fortunate and lucky to have such an excellent service in the Netherlands. My MBAs where always replaced direct, without any questions or difficulties. As customer I was always token very serious. Anyway, almost end of my Apple care my 4th MBA was considered a total failure with above issues. It was not usable anymore as a normal computer. I wrote a very kind letter to customer relations, in where I told them in a kind way about my disappointment in the product, but the same time I also shared my appreciation for their service they offered me in the past, and I putted clear that my complain is not towards them but towards Apple directly. Above any surprise I got called right away next day with a unique offer: Because they felt sad that my experience was so sour, I could choose to trade in my MBA/SSD REV. A for a brand new MBP 17 with processor boost (3,06GHz.) and 7200RPM HD. And if that was not enough yet I got as extra: -Mini display port to dual link DVI adapter -Tucano sleeve -MagSafe airline adapter -Mini display port to VGA cable -Mini display port to DVI cable -Remote It only took 3 days (from Monday till Wednesday) to send this CTO product from Shanghai to the Netherlands. I am still speechless at the moment I type this with this incredible service and offer. I think this is among the best in the industry I ever heard of or experienced. However, we have to remain objective and critical. The fact is (for me at least) that Apple suffers a quality control issue, or the tolerances are just high. This is not something you should expect from a premium product. From all the Apple products Ive owned the last 3 years, none of them was without scratches, nicks or dents straight out of the box, which is really sad for such a near perfect and beautiful design. The 17 Macbook Pro: From the smallest and lightest to the biggest! Lets go to my new Macbook pro 17 As many of is know, there is nothing better then the smell of a just opened brand new Macbook box! It is surprising how Apple manage to package this all in such a small and thin package. Very impressive. The Screen: The screen is perfect. No dead pixels, no dust underneath the glass, and my first LCD without any form of light bleed. (My MBA al though a gorgeous screen, suffered also light bleed). The 17 MBP is the sharpest screen Ive ever seen in a notebook. Better then my already wonderful MBA screen. In comparison the 17 MBP screen is a little less warm in color and more to the bluish and fresh side but without being cold. The black levels are stunning and for the first time on an LCD screen the backlight doesnt bother me. Something Plasma TVs excel in. I have chosen the glossy variant by purpose. I am aware of the mirror reflections but they dont bother me at all. I do like the black levels over the matte screen. Blacks and background contrast are very deep with the 17 glossy screen it is really stunning. The Keyboard: The keyboard (even though look the same) is different then the MBA. The MBA has a more tactile and direct click feel which I find very pleasant. The same time the MBA keyboard was noisier. The MBP 17 has a softer touch with more suspension and less noise. The later sounds and feels more refined and neat, but personal I prefer the click feel of the older MBA. The new trackpad is a little bit confusing at first, but I get used to it soon, and it is a great addition to what was already a great track pad. Changing from the MBA to a 17 MBP is a world difference in size and weight, and I will miss the portability of the MBA. But the fact that I am able again to do all my stuff and design work without flaws, stuttering, overheating and locking the system is worth everything. Since the MBA REV C still seems to have issues (stripes) and since I am not sure if the hinge problem is solved I didnt dare to take the risk again with a MBA. Cosmetical: Unfortunately also this MBP 17 came with a small dent on the rear of the top case (above the screen), but I dont want to be nitpicking here anymore. I am glad to have no dead pixels and a perfect screen, so I accept this dent with love. I just mention this fact to point out that Apples quality control really has to change since this is still unacceptable and needless. For those who are picky, the chance on a perfect MBA or MBP (cosmetically) is not that big, but once you know this (the fact Apples quality control isnt want it was anymore) you can get over it and accept it I guess. Conclusion: The 17 MBP is a beast of a machine. It hardly get warm, the fans never kick in, even not with 1080P HD trailers. The screen is gorgeous. The weight is minimal for a 17 laptop and the enclosure is extremely thin for such a workhorse. Last but not least, the real bummer for me is the huge resolution of 1920x1200 is something I highly underestimated. Now I experience it with the huge overview on my desktop and work arrays it is something I cant get without anymore. It works much more pleasant and clean, without the need to scroll al the time. All with all after some less nice experience with the MBA this is once again a wonderful Mac experience all over like I had with my first Powerbook G4. It is a beautiful product. It is the best Mac I ever owned and in my opinion the best laptop design ever. The glossy screen is beautiful and I am so happy they went with glass! I want to say from the bottom of my heart, Thank you so much Apple!! Sorry for the bad quality photos... it is the Iphone With kind regards, Bas PS: If someone want to know which screen is in my machine please tell me how I can look it up, I know it is pointed out many times already.. sorry I forgot!