Mavericks - snake oil?

Discussion in 'OS X Mavericks (10.9)' started by surjavarman, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. surjavarman macrumors 6502a

    Nov 24, 2007
    Are the improvements in Mavericks snake oil or real?

    I myself find it really hard to quantify the improvements. I seem to be getting the same battery life. I get about 5-7 hours on ML and Mavericks. Swap usage seems to be the same. Smoothness of scrolling is definitely the same.

    Since I am also experiencing more beach balls and bugs, I am more inclined to say that its snake oil and that its highly subjective.
  2. CBJammin103 macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2007
    Louisiana, United States
    Well the new listed features, APIs, etc. certainly do exist... and I for one see quantifiable usability and stability improvements when comparing my machines running Mavericks vs. Mountain Lion.

    Other than that, not 100% sure what "subjective" means but battery life improvements are probably being exaggerated by Apple by about 15-25% if I had to guess. There is definitely [again, in my experience] SOME battery life improvement but that's something that's always tough to quantify exactly.
  3. squeakr macrumors 68000


    Apr 22, 2010
    One thing I am definitely seeing is that the CPU usage is lower within Mavericks than ML. With the same environment in place I am definitely running lower in the CPU and staying cooler for the same comparable usage, which I am guessing has something to do with App Nap possibly.
  4. LV426 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 22, 2013
    The laptop is awake and the login box is on the screen before the lid is fully open. Maybe some snake oil in the hinge?
  5. dean1012 macrumors regular

    Jul 10, 2008
    The improvements are most definitely there!

    The multi monitor support is awesome.
    Extending display to appletv (versus mirroring) is awesome.
    I do like having iBooks as I don't have an iPad
    Maps is nice as well

    All in all the above improvements probably could have been part of Mountain Lion but since they didn't charge for the upgrade who cares.

    With that said, I've only had one negative experience since upgrading to Mavericks and that's Virtualbox. But, even that was fixed relatively easily.
  6. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Sep 19, 2003
    It's going to vary depending on what laptop you have. If you have a fast non-retina MBP I could see you not noticing differences in scrolling. Also, I believe apps need to be updated to use the new scrolling. Perhaps you don't use Apple apps? On my 2010 13" it's a massive improvement, especially in Safari.

    Battery life is of course dependent on use. If you are maxing out your computer's CPU all the time then you aren't going to notice any difference. I see about 1-2 extra hours with average use (web browsing/music/word processing.)

    The improvements are quite real. I recommend checking out the excellent Ars review, it goes into great detail on how they work.
  7. squeakr macrumors 68000


    Apr 22, 2010
    I wish that I could get the posted battery life that others are seeing, but then again I never get anything near the posted battery life. Of course I don't expect it, when running 3 VM's concurrently, 2 monitors and a slew of other applications. With the extra monitor alone that always kills my battery as to run the second monitor through the Thunderbolt port always turns the designated GPU on and that eats battery life, so I can never really comment on increased battery life as it seems I would only see about 30-45 minutes and maybe an hour added tops (and that would be stretching it).
  8. TsunamiTheClown macrumors 6502a


    Apr 28, 2011
    Yeah i think that the one feature that I appreciate most is the way that the multi monitor and Mission Control now work.

    I have also noticed more responsiveness on a lot of little things that access the file system. Memory and cpu usage have not really stood out to me, but the improved access times to the fils system have.
  9. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    I don't think Mavericks ever promised anything revolutionary, just some tweaks - e.g. they changed the network stack somewhat - but if you had a specific reason for upgrading I think that's when it really shows its stuff.

    Multi-monitor support - This was driving me nuts since they removed it from Lion, and finally it's back. I would have paid $20 for that alone.

    Maps and iBooks - I don't use iOS anymore, but for anyone who does it's useful. My girlfriend is happy about it.

    Aside from that, all it has are small tweaks and improvements. They are always welcome, but I wouldn't expect anything more.
  10. Mac.User macrumors 6502

    Aug 25, 2013
    I'll admit, it's many small things that can be hard to notice but I with they would do another OS like 10.6. Maybe 10.10 will just be a huge bug fix crunch, with very little changed otherwise other than refinements then that base can be used for OS XI.

    I just read that Linux 4.0 will be JUST bug fixes, or at least that's what Linus wants. Windows 8.1 has mostly been bug/UI fixes. When Apple did it it became widely regarded as the best version of OS X. So I hope they do it every few versions to keep things clean and bugs to a minimum.
  11. tywebb13 macrumors 68020

    Apr 21, 2012
    Well for me mavericks is definitely worth it and is not snake oil. I use airplay mirroring on my 2011 mba so improvements in this are definitely worth it. But I also tried it for a while on my 2010 mbp. I found the bugs a bit worse on the mbp. So I downgraded back to mountain lion on that one but also installed a mavericks partition on the mbp. So on my mbp I can dual boot mountain lion and mavericks.
  12. ElliottG macrumors member

    Sep 19, 2013
    The whole mavericks using 99% of RAM at all times thing is new I think...that wasn't in ML? It's definitely real, too...if you open activity monitor you can see it working.

    Can't say that I notice a difference myself, either, though...
  13. Asclepio macrumors 6502a


    Jul 11, 2011
    wow they should have called it "Os X Multiple Display"
  14. DGPMaluco macrumors regular

    Nov 16, 2012
    Have you done a clean install? I've made an upgrade and I wasn't feeling the differences nor the battery improvements, after a clean install all changed
  15. eas macrumors member

    Oct 7, 2005
    It has been a big improvement for my wife's 2008, pre-unibody Macbook Pro. Responsiveness is much better, and battery life seems better too. I appreciate the non-broken multimonitor support, and notice improved battery life on my 15" rMBP.

    I am curious, why are you running off battery in situations where you have an external monitor?
  16. pastrychef macrumors 601


    Sep 15, 2006
    New York City, NY
    The improvements are real.

    The new memory management of Mavericks is revolutionary and far better than what was in Mountain Lion. I believe that this feature alone is worth the upgrade.

    Unfortunately, my laptop is too old and can not run Mavericks so I can't comment on the benefits of App Nap and Timer Coalescing.

    Expanded OpenCL and improved OpenGL are also real. Already, Adobe has begun making use of OpenCL to help improve performance of their apps and I'm sure more software will follow suit.

    In my opinion, Mavericks is one of the most important upgrades to OS X ever.
  17. Candlelight macrumors 6502a


    Oct 12, 2011
    New Zealand
    Most of the new features I don't use but I still find it a stable OS for a .0 release.

    The two main issues I have at the moment are Compressor doesn't do multi-core anymore and the trackpad freezes occasionally.
  18. xspicer89x macrumors member

    Oct 28, 2013
    :D Have mavericks installed on my 13-inch mid-2012 non-retina macbookpro (750GB harddrive, 16GB ram, 2.9GHz i7 processor).

    +1 for the true multitasking on multiple monitors and the non-broken mission control, I agree that this alone makes the upgrade amazing (at least for those of us runnin multiple monitors often--and using multiple desktop/spaces). Mission control now works the way it should on two monitors and between spaces.

    +1 for app nap and lower CPU usage...Noticing big differences here. Laptop has been staying much much cooler during excessive usage..even while gaming--with all my other apps "open" in the background--my laptop has remained relatively cool (compared to ML).

    +1 for the RAM usage...on ML I rarely maxed out my 16GB (and often found myself asking why I had bothered upgrading from the stock 8GB)...on Mavericks, my RAM is actually used (whether its just file cache or not)...and I MOST CERTAINLY NOTICE THE DIFFERENCE. The responsiveness is absolutely amazing. What is a beach ball? Waiting for an app to load? Never lol. Windows and apps open as soon as I click them, its like flying with no really does feel like a revolutionary step forward (at least from previous experience with ML) +1 for going from sleep to wake before I finish opening the lid lol.

    As for the battery, the differences Ive experienced when gaming or watching/editing videos are nothing major (at most an extra 30-60mins). However, I have noticed fairly big differences when working at school; running ML, my laptop never had the hope of lasting all day at university working, studying and researching (so pretty much having bunch of Iwork apps, bunch of pdfs in preview, and safari with a million tabs lol) without a charge. Now on mavericks i can last the day (basically getting an extra 1-3hours) doing the same things I was doing without having to worry about my battery dying (im guessing the appnap of safari helps alot lol).
  19. squeakr macrumors 68000


    Apr 22, 2010

    I can't believe that I am the only one around that has to give presentations and might not be near an outlet, move to another cubicle or office to assist with / collaborate on an issue, but when arriving plug into an external monitor for easier viewing by all (and in both of these instances I am not always sure on the time frame that it will last, as sometimes things go awry and the meetings last longer than was scheduled but am scheduled for 2 hours or less), or in the rare instance that I am lazy to drag out the power cord and want to plug into a big screen tv to display pictures, videos, etc for the family and friends and they don't have airplay capabilities (as with dual GPU units, running an external through the ports causes the dedicated card to be used and that draws even that much more power).

    I have been asked this exact question in 2 different threads in as many days and am so surprised that people feel that if we need to plug into an external display device that we should immediately have to plug into a wall outlet as well even for shorter scheduled meetings? The idea behind having great battery life is that we can make it through presentations without having to plug in (yes I am the non-standard user, with OS X and all my apps running, and always 2 VMs, sometimes as many as 4 running) at the same time creating a closed network to recreate situations that I must for testing and support issues, but that shouldn't mean if I want to plug into a monitor that I need to drag my power cord with me, as the same situation in a non dedicated GPU machine will yield easily another 2 hours more than my situation as I have seen it done. I shouldn't have to sacrifice on CPU power and forego the dedicated because I like to use an external monitor while on battery occasionally, and yes I am plugged in most of the time while on external monitor, just hate to be tied by the cord.)

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