Long term durability of Apple's aluminium laptops

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by doctoree, Jun 30, 2008.

  1. doctoree macrumors 6502

    Jun 28, 2008
    Secret lair/ Earthmiddlepoint
    I have recently switched from Windows to Apple. My first mac is a high end MBP. I'd like to use this computer (which is my only computer) for at least 5 years.
    Do you guys think it's durable enough to stay usable for this amount of time? (I don't care about optical problems, I'm only talking about the usability)

    The first Apple Laptops with aluminium are pretty old by now. Are the hinges still ok? Is there a bad contact causing the displays to flicker occasionally?

    I might add that most of the time my MBP stays on my desktop so I don't carry it around all the time (which is a risk plus hurts durability).

    If there will be numerous bad reports here I'm seriously considering to sell it and get a Mac Pro isntead because you can easily,fast and cheap replace a damaged part on a Mac Pro which you can't on a laptop.

    Looking forward on what you have to report.

  2. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    My PowerBook 15 inch is doing fine. Purchased it in November 2003 so it is almost 5 years old.

    Recently upgraded to a MBP so I could run Windows due to my job requirements.

    If it wasn't for this requirement, I would still be using my PowerBook.

    The key with any laptop, is to take care of it. If you bang them around, they will fail on you. If you treat them nicely, they will last a long time.
  3. killerwhack macrumors regular


    Aug 5, 2004
    Los Angeles, California
    AL Macintosh - solid

    I agree with Mr. Sushi. I have had Mac laptops since Jan. 2004. No problems. I tote my MBP around everyday but I have a speck cover and I always carry it in a bag.

    I did have a sony vaio in 1999 that I dropped once. The case had a dent but nothing broke or failed.

    Sushi is right. If you treat the equipment well, it will not let you down.
  4. jkmcf macrumors newbie

    Jun 30, 2008
    The case is very sturdy and the components are tops. However, make sure you get at least something to protect the LCD from the keyboard. I think the newer MBPs come with something. My screen is irreversibly (?) smudged in a few places from either dust or something else on the keyboard.

    I'm looking into the following for my new MBP:


    Additionally, I'm using a booqbag laptop sleeve for protection inside my messenger bag (an Osprey which doesn't have a tight fit.)
  5. bamaworks macrumors 6502

    Nov 9, 2007
    Lexington, KY
    I have a 5 year old Aluminum powerbook that had NO issues that weren't cosmetic. I replaced a number of the outside casing just because I like things to look good... but other than that the computer still runs flawless.
  6. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Believe it or not, on my iBook, I thought the smudges were irreversible, and then a mister clean magic eraser, of all things, made the screen look as good as new. You have to be gentle with it, and I have no idea if it's safe for glossy screens, having only ever tried it on a matte one, but it honestly was perfect in getting rid of keyboard smudges.

    I will just add that some minor denting is not uncommon if you're not gentle with it. A neoprene sleeve like the ones Tucano, etc, make is probably advisable. More significant denting and case warping are fairly rare, but it's pretty common to see a few dents on an aluminum PB/MBP, by the time it's 2-3 years old, just in my experience. The small dents arise, from what I've seen, from smaller forces than it would take to crack say a plastic case -- so I'm not talking about dropping the notebook on a hard floor or anything. I suspect that if it's kept in a sleeve, even that kind of denting would be minimal.
  7. Sirobin macrumors 6502


    May 6, 2008
    My 2005 Powerbook is still more or less flawless. Like others said, treat it right, it'll be fine.
  8. doctoree thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 28, 2008
    Secret lair/ Earthmiddlepoint
    Thank you guys so far. Thats what I hoped. I am using a Neoprene sleeve and a special bag for my transports and Im opening and closing the lid very carefully.
    So I don't need the Mac Pro (the performance of the maxed out MBP is imho just enough for even the most hardcore matte painting, 3d animation and hdv editing)

    Thanks again!
  9. zflauaus macrumors 65816

    Nov 19, 2004
    Wirelessly posted (BlackBerry Pearl 8130: BlackBerry8130/4.3.0 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 VendorID/105)

    Woah... I knew the Magic Eraser worked on the outside but it worked on the screen? Any damage/discoloration?
  10. nsbio macrumors 6502a


    Aug 8, 2006
    My 2005 G4 PB body has been fine - pretty sturdy, with an exception that small objects dropped on it over the course of these years (such as keys etc) do leave small indentations.

    On the other hand, those G4 PBs have been finicky in terms of their guts, with a couple of major problems with their logic boards, but the latest Intel Macs seem to be less fragile in that regard.
  11. macworkerbee macrumors 6502

    Jun 14, 2008
    I know many people still using old tibooks without any problems. I think as long as you take care of your MBP it will last you 5 years or more easily.
  12. tdhurst macrumors 68040


    Dec 27, 2003
    Phoenix, AZ

    I have a 15" PB that's almost four years old and a 12" PB that's nearly three. Both have been heavily used and carted around every single day (in booq backpacks). Minor dents (totally my fault) and the paint is starting to wear off where my palms sit on the 12", but it's only cosmetic.

    I have heard and noticed that the MBP don't have quite the same build quality as the PBs did (keys don't feel as sturdy, case seems flimsier) but I don't foresee a problem.

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