Is the Retina comfortable to use while lying down etc?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by kimochisan, Jul 11, 2012.

  1. kimochisan, Jul 11, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2012

    kimochisan macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    #1
    Hi all,

    I would appreciate inputs from rmbp owners.

    I currently own a mid 2010 mbp 13". I wanted something more portable that has a ssd drive and had my mind set to buying a macbook air.. That is until the announcement of the rmbp.

    Now I cant decide whether to get the macbook air 1.8ghz, 128gb ssd, upgraded with 8gb of ram. Or the lower rmbp with 256ssd and 8gb of ram.

    I use the laptop mainly for web surfing (I read a lot on the net) and doing work on word and excel.

    Here's the thing:

    This will be my primary computer. I do not wish to own a desktop.

    95% of the time that I use my current mbp 13 is on the bed. I place the laptop between my belly and pelvic, and often time between my lower chest and belly, such as now as Im typing and wanted to get closer to the screen.

    I travel overseas and bring my laptop along every 2 months. This is the main reason why I had my mind set on the mba 13". My current mbp 13 can feel kind of heavy in my backpack (together with its charger n other stuffs) after carrying it around in airports.

    My questions are:

    1. is the rmbp comfortable to use it on the bed lying it on top of my body? or is it too wide, wont be comfortable, not balance as well etc? This is my most important criteria.

    2. Will be the 15" retina screen be much more beneficial for my needs? Is it really less strenuous to the eyes? or will prolonged readings on the retina will also cause temporary astigmatism(I get that)?

    I know the specs of the rmbp is overkill for my needs. However, Price is not an issue for me. Im considering the rmbp mainly for its high res large screen(as I read a lot). I just want the lowest end as I do not store much music or vids.

    I have not found a thread anywhere about the comfort of using the rmbp lying down etc. I never tried or owned the 13" mba, but I imagined it will feel much more comfortable to use in the way I intended.


    I'll appreciate all the inputs guys.

    Cheers
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    Depending on the workload, any Mac notebook can get uncomfortably hot. Also, the MBPR has intake vents along the sides at the bottom and exhaust vents at the rear near the hinge that should not be blocked. Other than those considerations, it's no different than any other Mac notebook for comfortable use.
     
  3. mohsy90 macrumors 65816

    mohsy90

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
    Location:
    New York
    #3
    Based on your needs, you do not need a rMBP. A MBA should suffice and will definitely be more comfortable while laying down. The 15" models in general are just a tad big and can be a hassle moving it around while laying down. Go with the 13" MBA, or wait till October for a possible 13" retina release.
     
  4. kimochisan thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    #4
    thanks for the input. My mbp rarely gets hot as I don't use it for processor intensive things. I occasionally use photoshop and illustrator and I would place it on the bed instead while Im doing that.
     
  5. Zorn macrumors 6502a

    Zorn

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2006
    Location:
    Ohio
    #5
    this right there tells me you don't really need a rMBP. Get a MBA and save yourself a thousand bucks and a decent amount of weight. You don't need the extra power of the Pro.
     
  6. kimochisan thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    #6
    hi, you have a point there about it being a hassle while moving it around while lying down. I do move it back and forth between my side table and onto the bed numerous times a night. Also now i am imagining that the wrist placement will be worse on the 15"(as it is wider) to use while lying down. on the 13" mbp, as im typing, my wrist goes to the sides near the corners, and bending down till the elbow meets the bed. and its kind of sharp on the wrist. This is a different position as opposed to someone who is sitting down on a chair with the laptop on a table.

    ----------

    Yep, I don't need the power for sure. I just thought that the retina display will make reading more comfortable and less straining. I get bad, temporary astigmatism whenever I read on the laptop intensively.
     
  7. Slivortal macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2012
    #7
    If I'm not mistaken, isn't the keyboard the same size, just that the 15" has speaker grills?

    But I'm curious about this as well. I usually do the same thing with my 13" MBP, so weight obviously isn't an issue. Considering upgrading to the MBPR, but obviously this isn't something I can exactly test in the store. ;)

    I need a quad core and 16GB of RAM, though, so the rumored 13" may not be the best option (since I'm guessing it'll run on dual core).
     
  8. gentlefury macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2011
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #8
    Based on your description, I would say go with the MBA. I have had one since last year and I LOVE it for basic tasks. I need a powerful computer for work, which is why I ordered the rMBP...but I LOVE my MBA and would recommend it to anyone!
     
  9. kimochisan thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    #9
    keyboard is the same size, but the case is wider overall. It will definitely affect the typing angle or point of contact where the sharp edges meets the wrist while lying down.

    ----------

    Im leaning to the mba as of now. Will take another look at the rmbp at the stores again. Pity I cant test it lying down at the stores.
     
  10. drison macrumors regular

    drison

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2005
    Location:
    Chicago
    #10
    I don't have the retina macbook pro yet(on order), but I've had the late 2010 air now for a year and half and like you, I use it primarily in bed. I'm a little concerned that the macbook pro will be a little odd balancing because I've had the non-retina macbook pro and the weight made it difficult to balance.

    To give you an example, I can very comfortably hold the macbook air on my knee with one hand and swipe the trackpad up and down because it's so light. I doubt I'll be able to do that with the retina macbook pro, even with the lowered weight from non-retina macbook pro. I'm 5'7" and weigh 140lbs, so not a big guy either.

    The other thing to consider is the latest macbook air is plenty fast for your needs. It has core i7 processor options and it includes the faster sata 6 ssd, so that should make it perfect for you. The only downside as I see it is the screen resolution if you were thinking you might like to jump up to 1920x1200 for things like photo editing, etc.
     
  11. LEARN2MAKE macrumors member

    LEARN2MAKE

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2011
    #11
    I have the rMBP, my wife has a 13" air. The difference is huge. My rMBP is portable and all but hers air is feather light it feels like my rMBP is 2 of her 13" airs.

    That being said I LOVE the screen on the retina.

    One thing that you should get that would be GREAT for your use lying down is this:

    http://www.barnesandnoble.com/p/home-gift-airflow-lap-top-lap-desk/21575897

    BEST LAPDESK EVER! I like to use a mouse sometimes and it has an attachable mouse pad, and then you can prop your computer to different heights so that it is comfortable typing and seeing the screen while laying down.

    I have looked whenever I am shopping and a few times online and I've never found a better lap desk! Using right now on the Chaise on my couch!

    Good luck!
     
  12. mattopotamus macrumors G5

    mattopotamus

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2012
    #12
    just be a boss and lay down in the middle of the apple store and test it on your chest
     
  13. drison macrumors regular

    drison

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    Apr 30, 2005
    Location:
    Chicago
    #13
    That looks pretty nice. Is the bottom of it padded or is it hard molded plastic? I like to keep my air on my bare legs but don't want to have something like this for the rMBP if it puts indents on my skin.
     
  14. kimochisan thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    #14
    ok. will do that. the alarm will go off tho once I disconnect it.:D

    ----------

    ahh. so there are quite a few of us who use the macbook this way. Can't find a thread anywhere outlining the rmbp comforts in this regard.
    Did you get the rmbp mainly for its screen? It is my only consideration: to enhance browsing experience by having crisper text n pics.
     
  15. LEARN2MAKE macrumors member

    LEARN2MAKE

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2011
    #15
    It is soft on bottom, it has a cushioned pad covered in felt like material. I fall asleep with it on my lap all the time. It is super comfortable and I've never had issues with it causing any kind of marks or indents. I actually have on of these attached to it and I use a retina iPad along with the Air Display app to have a dual Retina monitor set up while lying on my couch.
     
  16. kimochisan thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Jul 11, 2012
    #16
    I think this is the perfect product for you: http://www.macworld.com/article/1051674/laptopdesk.html

    Its a beanbag laptop desk. The bottom part is made of beanbag so it will contour nicely to your laps or other uneven surfaces. The top is flat of course. Some designs has a padding stopper at the edge to prevent the laptop from slipping off and also functions as a wrist rest.
     
  17. drison macrumors regular

    drison

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    Apr 30, 2005
    Location:
    Chicago
    #17
    I am a software developer, so I really want something more powerful and the screen just seems perfect because sometimes I want more real-estate for coding and other times I just want to surf the web and would be nice to give my eyes a rest.

    ----------

    That's cool. It reminds me of the beanbag writing desk my sister had when we were children. :)
     
  18. LEARN2MAKE, Jul 11, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 11, 2012

    LEARN2MAKE macrumors member

    LEARN2MAKE

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2011
    #18
    That beanbag one is cool. I just like the airflow because you can actually prop up your computer and keyboard to an adjustable angle which makes it very comfortable to use, rather than bending your wrists to match your keyboard. It also raises the screen up so so you can be pretty much lying down and still easily see the screen.

    Here is my sweet setup for when I don't want to be sitting at my desk and would rather be sitting on the couch with a movie or sporting event playing and still have lots of screen real estate:

    [​IMG]
     
  19. photosaurus macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2012
    #19
    Although I think the macbook pro retina is much more comfortable to use than the regular macbook pro, for just browsing the web and word processing, I think you'd be happiest with an air. Yes, text on the web is much sharper on the retina. But the retina costs more, and while it's comfortable as a bed computer, it's no air. Maybe wait for the 13" retina, if it is indeed coming soon. Would probably be the best of both worlds for you. But I still thank you'd be happy with an air.

    My wife has a 2011 air.. I have a personal rMBP and a late 2011 15" MBP work issued.

    I find the work mbp just too big to be a bed top. The retina is just fine as a bed top. The macbook air is not much less comfortable than a soft back novel in bed.
     
  20. Beta Particle macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 25, 2012
    #20
    Sounds like you want an iPad if you don't do any intensive tasks on it, and want a device that's comfortable to use when lying in bed.
     
  21. photosaurus macrumors regular

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    Jun 22, 2012
    #21
    He does word processing though. Personally, I'm not a pad fan. I need a keyboard. Apparently, I'm too old to comfortably pick up pad keyboarding skills. I can't even stand responding to a short email on a pad.
     
  22. gentlefury macrumors 68030

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    Jul 21, 2011
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #22
    iWork is available for the iPad and you can use a bluetooth or plug in keyboard.
     
  23. kimochisan thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    #23
    yup. I had iPad 1 and never considered the 2 or hd. Cant beat a physical keyboard. And typing on the iPad with the same angle as the viewing screen is unsuitable for me either. Buying a case with bluetooth keyboard just means extra thing to charge n bulk. Using the ipad on the bed also means constantly having to hold it up in order to view it, which is more tiring than a macbook. Unless you have a stand up case with a really large base.

    ----------

    Good points. October might be a busy month for apple. iPhone 5 is rumored to be launched around that same time too. If a retina 13 is going to be similarly weighted as the air, I'll go for that for sure.

    ----------

    thats pretty cool with the ipad on the side. Good for typing and plagiarizing stuff off the web at the same time.
     
  24. Interstella5555 macrumors 603

    Interstella5555

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2008
    #24
    Is sitting on the couch not an option? Not trying to be snarky, but I can easily use my 15"MBP this way and just put in on the coffee table if I have to do anything intensive on it.
     
  25. LEARN2MAKE macrumors member

    LEARN2MAKE

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2011
    #25
    LOL, yeah plagiarizing...

    Actually I use it for some different tools when using Maya for 3D stuff. Comes in handy to be able to have multiple docs or browser windows visible too.
     

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