My First MacBook Experience -- A First Timers Review So Far

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by WannaGoMac, Sep 15, 2007.

  1. WannaGoMac macrumors 68000

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    #1
    Well, I was given a Macbook C2D to do some work on. After a few days with it here are some observations.

    1) OS is nice. No surprise.

    2) Why is this thing so damn hot? Are all Core 2 Duo so hot you can't put them in your lap??

    This thing should be recalled.

    3) I still hate touchpads. But, the two finger scrolling is very cool and saves time for me since, for me, touchpads are much slower than the "finger pointers."

    4) HEAVY. My god!! Admittedly I am used to a sub-notebook. The way the weight is distributed in the damn thing is just plain awful. It's all in the back.

    5) Did I mention it is so hot I can't even leave it in my lap?

    6) Text is blurry. I just can't stand the Apple font rendering. To me it is blurry. I don't care if it doesn't accurately represent the font as it will appear on paper. What I care about is that in my browser all the text is blurry. I adjusted the smoothing both from high to low, no difference. ClearType IMHO is better.

    Basically, I still "WannaGoMac" but the hardware just is not a match for me. Maybe Apple will release a sub-notebook that will address the weight and heat issue so I can finally buy an Apple laptop.

    After this experience (the font blurriness) I am now hesitant at buying the Mac Mini next month (waiting for Leopard) as I was planning.
     
  2. psychofreak Retired

    psychofreak

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    #2
    Most Macbooks aren't too hot. This one has a fault. At first I had a problem with the text rendering, now I prefer it. Its just a matter of getting used to.
     
  3. WannaGoMac thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #3
    Possibly. But I don't think so given I have read about this a lot here.

    Maybe the C2D is just a lot hotter than my mobile Pentium (IV) 1.5GHZ
     
  4. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

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    #4
    I have never noticed what you are experiencing. Is it all over the OS or just when you surf the net? (Maybe it's the browser?)

    Why are you considering switching?
     
  5. CalBoy macrumors 604

    CalBoy

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    #5
    I don't know how hot your macbook got (temps would help), but a lot of notebooks these days are hot. I had a Vaio in my hands the other day, a 12 or 11" one, and the thing was burning. The only app that was running was Word. I've heard similar things from other PC users, so this isn't a "Mac-only" thing. It looks to be an Intel problem.

    The weight of the macbook is one major concern. Since the macbooks don't use aluminum, it becomes hard to decrease the weight of those things. I suppose we might see some aluminum come to the macbooks, and that would probably lower the weight by a good 1.5lb or so, but until that day comes, I guess you're stuck with it.
     
  6. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #6
    From what I can see, the MacBook is one of the lightest notebooks with a C2D around.
     
  7. WannaGoMac thread starter macrumors 68000

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  8. WannaGoMac thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #8
    Thanks for the info on C2D. Wow, guess I will stick with the Pentium IV Mobiles for less heat.

    The weight is just strange in how there is so much weight just on the back part. I have to be really careful when I lift it as I almost dropped it a few times because of the poor weight distribution.

    1) Blurry text -- It is in Firefox and Safari, as well as the desktop icons. The text DOES look better in Safari than Firefox. TextEdit looks different as well. Weird, the fonts look different in each program. However, consistently when I compare my Windows XP desktop to the Macbook, the text is much much much sharper on my Windows XP computer. Granted my windows XP computer is running on a 20" LCD at 1600x1200....

    2) Switching -- Because I became a fan of OS X. I really like the idea of Unix based OS. But, the form factors I want (sub-notebook and mini-tower) are not available. As a nerd, I kinda think it would be fun too. Thus, why i was considering a Mini to place on top my Windows tower.
     
  9. WannaGoMac thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #9
    Heat

    Let me report back the heat after I turn it on and use it for a bit. I would like to know if this is normal or if there is something wrong with this brand new Macbook.

    Thanks!
     
  10. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

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    #10
    Hmmm.

    I have a 17" MBP and I think it runs 1600 x 1200 too... so mine must be sharper than the XP since it is smaller. Maybe that is why I haven't experienced the blurriness you see. :confused:
     
  11. iBunny macrumors 65816

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    #11
    I am primarily a windows user, and I know what you are talking about. The text is not "blurry" but its smoothed out.

    If you enable "Cleartype" in XP / Vista its the same way.
     
  12. CalBoy macrumors 604

    CalBoy

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    #12
    The weight distribution is due to the battery. You'll adjust;)
     
  13. Sesshi macrumors G3

    Sesshi

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    #13
    Don't make the assumption that just because it's a good looking product, it's been engineered well or it's a quality machine. Carwise, think Alfa Romeo ten or twenty years ago.

    - Cleartype is clearly superior to OS X's type rendering in terms of legibility, especially on notebook screens.

    - A lot of notebooks are hot these days, but most never approach the levels of the Macbooks and Macbook Pros. Use smcFancontrol, or work around it another way by the numerous lap-protection solutions.

    - The weight is an issue, but portable Macs have not pushed the weight envelope recently. The reduced-function 12" 'ultraportable' Powerbook that many on this board nostalgically waxes about weighs nearly a pound more than a Sony SZ and twice as much as the current machine that it has more in common with in terms of display area, relative power, etc, the Sony G11.

    You should consider the any Mac hardware these days as the only way to run OS X properly. If you like or need to run OS X, this is what you should have. You should not be expecting a standout machine in terms of performance, quality for the money, weight, battery life or in fact anything beyond how it looks. For many that seems to be enough. Is it for you?
     
  14. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

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    BINGO!

    I see a lot of people switching to Macs because they like the "artfulness" of the designs. To me, they are switching for the wrong reason.
     
  15. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #15
    Don't forget the MacBook is now around 1 1/2 years old. In technology terms it is really yesterdays news. When an Apple product comes out it is generally cutting edge stuff so the new MB (due anytime between Leopard and MWSF 2008) will probably follow this tradition.

    I don't think thats a valid analogy. More like a Mercedes from 10 years ago. Well engineered at the time.
     
  16. WannaGoMac thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #16
    Heat

    Here are the temperature readings after playing a movie for about 20 minutes.
     

    Attached Files:

  17. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    #17
    Those are lower than mine by 2 or 3 degrees.
     
  18. WannaGoMac thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #18
    A shame isn't it? Such a great OS paired with such bad form factors and designs.

    I like them because of the OS. It is why i have helped switch several people. (and AppleCare helps too!!)


    Yep. It is old at this point. Heavy, bad heat management etc

    Wow, guess it is just the C2D chip is crazy hot (or the macbook design materials suck, or both)


    Oh, and thanks everyone for not jumping down my throat for posting some complaints :).
    Guess the crazy fanboy fanatics aren't up yet eh? :p
     
  19. majordude macrumors 68020

    majordude

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    #19
    That is fine. Not too hot at all.

    I think it can go into the 80s when you are ripping something. Now that is hot!
     
  20. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    From what I can tell, the heat is on par with similarly sized C2D PC laptops. Its just difficult to pack that much CPU into that small a space without a tradeoff or two.
     
  21. Sesshi macrumors G3

    Sesshi

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    #21
    Try telling that to my merely warm Dell XPS M1330. Or my merely warm Samsung Q35 which matches the spec, is a pound lighter than the Macbook, and goes for an hour longer. I could go on and on really...

    Ultimately they're not unusably bad, but the half-truths that many have to tell themselves (and if on a forum, to others) to convince themselves that they made the right decision is a little... irksome, perhaps.
     
  22. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    and came out when? and cost how much? like I said, tradeoffs.
     
  23. taylorwilsdon macrumors 68000

    taylorwilsdon

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    #23
    Probably the same time as the latest Macbook rev, costs as little as $1400 (same as high end macbook) but it has santa rosa, dedicated graphics, led screen, weighs less, better battery and doesn't get as hot. M1330 destroys the macbook except for the os.
     
  24. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

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    Actually, the M1330 came out in the beginning of July, long after the MB speed bump. Companies leap frog each other all the time. Comparing specs on a day-to-day basis is a waste of time.
     
  25. Artagra macrumors member

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    #25
    Hmmmm - I can identify with some of your complaints. I just went from a Sony S-360 (1.7ghz Pentium M) to a Macbook 2.0ghz.

    - Font rendering. OMW, I think Apple really needs to fix this. Yes, on high resolution screens (with high dpi) it doesn't look that bad (my 20" widescreen at 1680x1050, sitting pretty far from my eyes, looks great) but on the 13.3" screen at 1280x800 sitting on my lap it looks a bit dodgy :(

    - Temperature. The temps on this are definitely a bit higher than the Sony, but not unbearable. I often use it on my lap for everything from watching videos to playing games to web browsing etc, and it never gets "too hot to keep there". Having said that, it definitely runs hotter idling than the Sony did, but is a bit cooler in games. A tip: either use SMC fan controller, or get Coolbook Controller (allows undervolting), or both. Depending on how lucky you are in terms of your chip and how daring you are, you can get a big noise / temperature drop and a big increase in battery life by undervolting.

    - Form factor / weight distribution. I'm surprised you are having issues with this - personally, it's one of my favorite things about the macbook. I can grab it at a corner, open, and hold it without the machine flexing at all. 90% of laptops on the market you can't do this with. I agree you can't hold the laptop "tray style" underneath as easily with others, but I've realised that holding a $1000+ piece of equipment that way is just a bad idea - my sister killed a 3g Cellular card dropping her laptop holding it like that.

    - Size / weight / performance. I agree 100% that Apple is behing the curve overall - they don't have a machine to compete with the Sony SZ (13.3, lighter than the macbook, dedicated graphics) or with the new TX's, or with the Dell M1330. All these machines are a bit more expensive, though. If you compare the Macbook with other $1000 to $1500 laptops with similar specs, suddenly it's on the better side in terms of weight and size. Unfortunately I think a lot of Macbook buyers are buying it as the closest thing to an ultra-portable OS X machine, rather than as a budget laptop. Apple - please! where's the Macbook Thin / MBP 13.3" ?
     

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