My experience with my new Macbook Pro

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Jaimi, Mar 6, 2011.

  1. Jaimi macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2009
    There's a lot of conjecture, wondering, griping, etc going on about the new MBP's here in the forums. Sometimes people are disappointed, sometimes people get lemons, and those people are usually the ones to post the most. So this post is a "My macbook is working great post" for those of you who want a random sampling from someone who is happy and having no problems.

    I have the following specs:

    • 15" 2.2Ghz Sandy Bridge
    • HD 6750 GPU
    • 256 GB SSD
    • Glossy 1680x1050 Screen
    • 8GB RAM (I upgraded this myself)

    First - Speed. This machine is smoking fast. My geekbench score is over 10,000. But I'm not just talking scores - It boots in about 15 seconds - about 3 times faster than my old machine. I recently installed Unity3D (v. 3.3). The install dialog informed me it would take "about 4 minutes". It finished in less than 15 seconds. Seriously. I can boot a Windows 7 VM (fusion) in about 15 seconds (to the desktop), and have Visual Studio 2010 completely loaded and running in another 10 seconds. Anyone who has ever booted windows and used Visual Studio knows that this is amazing.

    Second - Temperature. My machine does not run hot. Not even when I'm running a VM with windows (notorious for using a lot of CPU). My friend, who has the high end late 2010 MBP has remarked how much cooler mine is to the touch. His is literally uncomfortable to rest your hand on while typing when under heavy load. Mine can get warm, but never uncomfortable. Both of my friends with Late 2010 MBP's are jealous of how cool it is comparatively.

    Third - Graphics. The graphics on this machine are almost as fast as my nVidia 9800GT. Yes, thats a few years older. But it's also a desktop card. I have not played any game that has had any problem at 1650x1080 in high settings with multiple light sources and full shadows everywhere. (Usually I do not play at this high of resolution - I prefer 1280x800)

    Fourth - Noise. This mbp is quieter in general. The DVD is around the same noise level, but the fans are quieter than my old C2D mbp. Unless the fans are on, you can't hear a thing. And when the fan does come on, it's a low hum as opposed to the jet engine noise my old MBP ( and my work thinkpad) makes.

    Fifth - The glossy screen. The colors look great, they're deep and rich, the contrast is amazing. I prefer glossy screens over matte screens (they used to be the premium option!). You may not like it if you work outside, or sit with your back to a southern facing window. For most people, you may get some reflections in some cases - but it's the same as a window, you just look through them and don't notice it. Matte is OK too, so this is really a subjective call.

    So how is the general feel?

    Snappy. Things load fast. And when they're loaded, they run fast. The previous version did not seem like a very big step up from the C2D mbps. This version is literally 3 times faster (yes, just by geekbench score alone, 3400 vs 10100)

    Win 7 in VMWare fusion runs faster than it did on my old C2D mac booted natively. I'm not trying to sell people on fusion, but it is extremely usable on this box. Way faster than my work thinkpad runs natively. I dedicated 4GB to fusion, and left 4GB for my Mac.

    Am I happy and would I change anything?

    Yes indeed I'm happy. I probably wouldn't change anything, unless money was no object. If that were the case, I would upgrade to the 512gb SSD and get the 2.3 Ghz CPU. But I had to keep everything under a certain budget.

    There you go.
  2. icbreeze macrumors member

    Feb 17, 2008

    Thanks man!! Great review

    I just ordered my MBP, not expecting shipment until sometime mid next week...

    2.2GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7
    4GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x2GB
    128GB Solid State Drive
    8x Double-Layer SuperDrive
    MBP 15"HR Antiglare WS Display

    I'm a designer which is why it's on Anti-Glare. I have an 27" i5 iMac at home already with the glassy screen. I find the colours are over saturated and to unrealistic for my liking + it hurts me eyes, haha.

    Do you know if your computer is able to run 2010/11 Solidworks + Photoworks smoothly?

    Also has anybody tried using it for rendering on Keyshot2? I know that the 2010 MBP models cranked up the fans like crazy..

    Thanks again!

    Would love to know how it copes
  3. Looon macrumors 6502a


    Jul 10, 2009
    So you're saying your band new $2000 computer has a video card that's a good as a 3 year old card and that we're supposed to be impressed by that
    ...something seems wrong here
  4. Jaimi thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2009
    Only until you realize I'm comparing it to a desktop card. Didn't I say that? Yes, it seems I did.
  5. Kyzelios macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2011
    Glad to hear your new MacBook Pro is meeting your expectations, it sounds like you'll get quite a few years of solid use out of it!

    I just wanted to say that anyone out there who is looking at purchasing one of these machines and is basing their decision upon what posts are contained within various forums, please keep in mind that you will find more negative posts (with various issues) compared to positive posts as there is a higher ratio of users looking for help with problems they may be encountering. It's a lot like going to a hospital, when you look around you're not going to see a bunch of perfectly healthy people...
  6. evro50 macrumors newbie

    Feb 25, 2011
    Roughly how much battery life are you getting via general surfing etc?

    I've got the same specs as you (+2.3 & 512ssd), seem to be only getting around 3 hours with "moderate use" i.e. word processing/web browsing/youtube etc
  7. Jaimi thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2009
    I've never ran the battery out, so i don't actually know. The lowest I've seen it say is "3 hours" when I was playing a 3D game in a VM (drakensang river of time) when I knocked my cable off. Usually under normal load it says something like 6-7 hours. Once it said 10 hours, but it wasn't doing anything but sitting there.

    Note: drakensang ran at a very high speed in the VM, but wasn't actually playable--Some problem with rendering the text.
  8. Jaimi thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2009
    I'm sorry, I don't really know. I can run 3DSMax in a VM quickly, so perhaps it would be fine. The CPU and graphics are really fast.
  9. Lumpydog macrumors 6502

    Aug 3, 2007
    Thank you for this review! I just ordered this EXACT MBP.

    I'm moving off of a 2008 Macbook Air with SSD and am looking forward to a more capable laptop that has the benefits of a SSD hard drive.

    Great writeup.
  10. Lumpydog macrumors 6502

    Aug 3, 2007
    Um, yes - be impressed. A desktop vs a laptop. An early 2008 Mac Pro can post similar geekbench scores. But, um... you cant take that with you wherever you go.

    And by the way, this configuration is more like $3000. And in case you missed most online reviews (like PC mag's) this laptop is the fastest shipping right now.

    Again, be impressed.

    "As it stands, however, the Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch (Thunderbolt) is the fastest and fastest shipping laptop to date"
  11. koruki macrumors 65816


    Aug 16, 2009
    New Zealand
    considering the so called 3 year old PC DESKTOP card is twice as thick as the laptop itself I think we are comparing apples to oranges. In general we know what we are buying, I have a pair of watercooled GTX480's in SLI but I won't be crying the graphics when I get my new MBP.

    Glad you enjoy your new MBP, can't wait my one arrives this week!
  12. evro50 macrumors newbie

    Feb 25, 2011
    I was under the impression that it was "bad" to run the laptop off the power source...i.e. it was better for the battery to run out before you put it back on power? Or am I mistaken?

    Don't get me wrong it's a great machine so far (still getting used to osx though!), I just think somethings up with the battery as my 3 year old dell crapxps had a longer battery life!
  13. Jaimi thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2009
    Yeah, that's not really good for your battery. It's better to run with it plugged in as much as possible. Your battery loses efficiency every time it's "cycled" -- that is, depleted and recharged. You can check your battery status in "About this Mac" under Power:

    Charge Information:
    Charge Remaining (mAh): 6791
    Fully Charged: Yes
    Charging: No
    Full Charge Capacity (mAh): 6937
    Health Information:
    Cycle Count: 1
    Condition: Normal
    Battery Installed: Yes
    Amperage (mA): 0
    Voltage (mV): 12453

    The Capacity will go down a little bit every time it's cycled. What do your numbers look like? If they look the same as mine, then something is happening on your box, perhaps some applications running in the background not letting your HD sleep or something?
  14. Benito macrumors 6502a


    Jan 5, 2010
    Toronto, Canada
    I'm another happy camper with my new 2011 MBP. I'm coming from a 2007 15" MBP. My new MBP is also a 15", with 2.3 ghz i7 processor, 750 gb HD, 4 G RAM (I have 8 G on order arriving this week I hope) and the matte high resolution screen. I couldn't be happier with this new Mac. Build quality is excellent and the processor is fast. The battery life is outstanding, I am getting about 8-9 hr with wifi on and websurfing, if not more.

    I am hoping to eventually put a good sized SSD in it if I can get a reasonably sized SSD that is roomy enough so I can keep the optical drive in. If I can afford a great SSD around 300-400 G I'll go for it and then this MBP will really fly.
  15. AppleGoat macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2010
  16. Miss Terri macrumors 6502

    Nov 11, 2010
    US East Coast
    I don't believe that is true. I think that Apple recommends that for best battery life you should NOT use it plugged in all the time, but should instead vary your usage, so that the battery does get used on a regular basis. Not all the time of course, but also not plugged in all the time.
  17. Jaimi thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 22, 2009
    You would be wrong.

    Standard Charging
    Most lithium-ion polymer batteries use a fast charge to charge your device to 80% battery capacity, then switch to trickle charging. That’s about two hours of charge time to power an iPod to 80% capacity, then another two hours to fully charge it, if you are not using the iPod while charging. You can charge all lithium-ion batteries a large but finite number of times, as defined by charge cycle.

    Charge Cycle. Using and recharging 100% of battery capacity equals one full charge cycle.
    A charge cycle means using all of the battery’s power, but that doesn’t necessarily mean a single charge. For instance, you could listen to your iPod for a few hours one day, using half its power, and then recharge it fully. If you did the same thing the next day, it would count as one charge cycle, not two, so you may take several days to complete a cycle. Each time you complete a charge cycle, it diminishes battery capacity slightly, but you can put notebook, iPod, and iPhone batteries through many charge cycles before they will only hold 80% of original battery capacity. As with other rechargeable batteries, you may eventually need to replace your battery.
  18. ranviper macrumors 6502a


    Oct 10, 2010
    Adirondacks, NY
    Aye, but this article has a link that tells you how to care for your notebooks battery, and it says NOT to leave it plugged it all the time.

    "Standard Maintenance
    For proper maintenance of a lithium-based battery, it’s important to keep the electrons in it moving occasionally. Apple does not recommend leaving your portable plugged in all the time. An ideal use would be a commuter who uses her notebook on the train, then plugs it in at the office to charge. This keeps the battery juices flowing. If on the other hand, you use a desktop computer at work, and save a notebook for infrequent travel, Apple recommends charging and discharging its battery at least once per month. Need a reminder? Add an event to your desktop’s iCal. When your battery no longer holds sufficient charge to meet your needs, you may choose to replace it. If your notebook came with a built-in battery, you should have the battery replaced only by an Apple Authorized Service Provider."

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