Retina MacBook: What is it?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Cobalt50, Dec 13, 2015.

  1. Cobalt50 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    #1
    Is it a quirky niche product? Is it the new direction of Apple's laptops? I sense no juice from Apple on this. It just seems like it got stuck out there. Redesigning the Airs by reducing the screen bezel and putting in better screens in them would give that line some longevity. After that Apple could force us to the wireless world.
     
  2. xmichaelp macrumors 68000

    xmichaelp

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2012
    #2
    It's the machine for the majority of people, and the new direction of Apple laptops. Fanless and ultraportable are where everything is going.

    The Air is clunky now, they shouldn't have just given the Air a retina display and called it a day. The MacBook is awesome.
     
  3. Admiral, Dec 13, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2015

    Admiral macrumors regular

    Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    #3
    It's difficult to overstate the difference in consumer experience made possible by taking out the fan. It's a whole other world. Similar to the Retina screen, once you use a computer without the continuous droning noise of the cooling fan, it's very difficult to go back to a machine with a fan in it.

    I'm hoping Apple will redesign the Mac mini to take out the fan. Maybe by using one of the 15W TDP processors that have been going into MacBook Airs, bringing the logic board to the top of the machine and using the case as a heatsink. Mac mini's not a power-user machine either.
     
  4. boltjames macrumors 68030

    boltjames

    Joined:
    May 2, 2010
    #4
    It's not "forcing us to the wireless world".

    Apple outboarded the ports to a small optional adapter so as to make the RMB as thin/light as it is. It's not some revolution, no one is trying to overthrow the almighty SD card. Apple is merely taking the alternate approach to its other notebooks so as to entice a new class of customer. Instead of requiring wireless consumers to live with thick, heavy, battery-sucking ports they don't need, they are requiring wired consumers to consider adapters. It's refreshing that Apple is finally offering something new for those of us who don't use antique thumb drives or monitors.

    BJ
     
  5. Admiral macrumors regular

    Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    #5
    Speaking for myself, I haven't touched an SD card in five years.
     
  6. Elise macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    Location:
    London
    #6
    It's one of the most delightful laptops I've ever used. The lightness and portability of thing has to be experienced to be realised and that's before you even talk about its beauty. My friend was laughing at its 'crap spec' but it's been able to manage everything that I've thrown at it, gaming included. A really good decision on my part...
     
  7. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #7
    I think its a niche product, given the following factors.
    The price is relatively high for a product that is aimed at the majority of consumers. Given the high price its lacking a number of basic elements that would appeal to the majority of consumers, including ports.

    It is a laptop aimed at those people who want an additional computer and have fairly high mobility needs, i.e., road warriors.

    Apple had to make a number of sacrifices in designing this laptop as thin and small as possible, could that with its high price, means its not for everyone.
     
  8. burgman macrumors 65816

    burgman

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2013
    #8
    What you call "sacrifices" others call them smart design choices. The OP using the word forced about a consumer product is just laughable.
     
  9. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #9
    Correct, some think its a great computer, others do not.

    My point is that the design choices apple made limits its mass appeal, and couple that with the premium price, means its a niche product.
     
  10. Newtons Apple macrumors Pentium

    Newtons Apple

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #10
    I think it was a shot at how thin Apple can make a device with compromises that are past what I am willing to accept. I like my ports and SD card read built right in. Thin is not worth that to me and I have never had a cooling fan disturb me what so ever.

    Glad Apple still gives us choice!
     
  11. Nychot macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2011
    #11
    Aside from when I work on my mac mini desktop, which is daily, from a few hours to the entire day, i've practically retired my 2014 mba and rarely touch my 15' 2010 mbp in favor of my go-to base gold rmb. it's just a jewel of a laptop. I could use it for any and all of the work that I do, but find myself using it mostly for research, email, forum browsing, streaming movies, youtube, etc. to me it really is a powerful tablet, but with a full-blown operating system. my samsung android tablets are rarely touched now. the rmb does it all.
     
  12. whodatrr macrumors 6502a

    whodatrr

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2004
    #12
    +1... my experience as well.

    For me, it's the ideal laptop. I have a behemoth desktop, for when I want to do some really heavy lifting, but when I'm on the go, the rMB is perfect. It flies through teh MS Office and Web stuff that I do like a hot knife through butter, while being the most portable laptop that I've ever owned. It's a joy to use.

     
  13. burgman macrumors 65816

    burgman

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2013
    #13
    If you cross out MacBook and pencil in IPad Pro I would agree with your statement.
     
  14. Z3man macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    #14
    The rMB is just perfect, i couldn't get my mid 2014 rMBP on eBay quick enough once i got the rMB. Don't get men wrong the rMBP is an excellent laptop put the rMB is just better. Its design and build quality are just better than the rMBP, thats why it is so expensive, there is a reason for it. The rMB is the future, and luckily for us the future is here now.

    I absolutely love mine it just feels special, and thats what Apple is all about, thats what they built the company on.
     
  15. zamboni52 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Colorado Springs
    #15
    This laptop is not for everyone. There are other laptops out there that have more processing power (MBP) and better battery life (Air). Depending on what your daily use is, this could be your perfect laptop if you value extreme portability, good battery life and an excellent 12" retina screen over processing power that could rip a DVD in 10 mins or last 13 hours on battery. For portability you give up some battery life, but 7-8 hours is a good compromise for me. Also, it is a no-brainer to bring this everywhere with me. I don't have to think..."will I need my laptop on this trip"...I just bring it. It is not much bigger than my Air 2, but gives me full OS X capability when I need it.

    Since I've had mine, I've used it for my online classes using Java, MS Office (word, powerpoint, excel), Virtual Box (c++ programming), Xcode, watching iTunes movies and playing music (best speakers ever for a laptop this size or almost any size). My experience thus far has been no different that using them on the MBP and 13"MBA that I returned for this machine.

    It is relatively expensive, but depending on how you prioritize you needs or wants: Portability, CPU power or battery life, it may be worth it to you.
     
  16. whodatrr macrumors 6502a

    whodatrr

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2004
    #16
    Another nice thing about the little rMB is that you can recharge it from USB chargers, or even some PCs. While they won't recharge as fast as the 45w brick that came with the system, they'll still get the job done, provide you shell out ~$7 on Amazon for a USB-C to USB3 cable. Not saying the battery life in the little rMB is bad, just that you have lots of options for recharging it. And, should you forget to bring your adapter or lose it on a trip, you have a lot of flexibility. heck, I recently even used one of those portable USB batts, not because I had to, but because I could.

    And USB-C does look like it's the future. My little XPS13 has a port, and quite a few new or upcoming systems will have it.
     
  17. Cobalt50 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    #17
    You know, you are absolutely right. As it stands, the rMB is a niche product. The question becomes, will Apple do something like produce a 14" or 15" rMB, reduce the line's price, and obsolesce the MBA line? Some of the rMB technology will undoubtedly migrate to the MBP line. That probably means thinner for one thing. What will Apple do with the ports in that case?

    I feel that, through design change, Apple intends to push at least the portable industry to wireless. By eliminating the CD/DVDs on their laptops long ago that is what they did relative to CD/DVDs in portables. Of course, they facilitated that, in their ecosystem, by starting to sell downloadable software from their own store.

    I don't know what Apple could do to facilitate more wireless operation in the absence of a lot of ports. Make iCloud dirt-cheap? Have they plans for some kind of "Thunderbolt" wireless transfer system?

    With one port per portable, that gives Apple a lot of design leeway. Another year or so should tell a lot.
     
  18. Admiral macrumors regular

    Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2015
    #18
    It's a 28W brick, which serves to underscore your point. When USB-C power adapters become ubiquitous for all devices, there will be many more charging possibilities.
     
  19. Robstevo macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2014
    #19
    Making the only port on the machine, also the charger, is not bloody smart by anyone's standards but The fanboys, it's a universal pretty much agreed "problem".
     
  20. Amazing Ox Space Monkey macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2015
    #20
    I always love it when people call the rMB niche and expensive. First of all, all Apple notebooks are expensive and may be categorised as "overpriced" based only on processor speed. Many a time my colleagues point out their ultra fast 4 core i7. When asked, what do they use the processor for, I never get a definitive answer. Most of the time they like the possibility to be able to run this or that program smoothly. In return, they end up with a 3-4kg brick and subpar screen, which they use to browse the Facebook and listen to MP3s.
    Apple laptops offer convenience and who said convenience is cheap. So we have a beautiful retina screen, quick SSD, a processor that is more than capable of running the everyday programs. And all of this in a compact featherweight package. I'd say that, disregarding the price, the target audience for this laptop is quite large. So I expect it to become mainstream in the coming years.
    Next, the ports, Apple is known to be avant guard regarding the technology. Please correct me if I am wrong but as far as I remember Apple was the first to introduce USB and to remove the floppy drive. Also the first to remove the CD/DVD drive.
    And finally, the price, if we configure a 13" MBA 256/8 we will arrive exactly at the price of rMB with the same amount of memory. If Apple provided a rMB with 4/128 we'd get much less expensive laptop. They do not do this for the sake of market segmentation, up selling and others. If they did offer rMB 4/128 I'd get one in a heartbeat. Time will tell what the Marketing executives of Apple have decided about the retina MB.
     
  21. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #21
    I agree, Apple does try to push the envelope and add (or drop) technology which makes it a head of the industry. Sometime this works, and sometimes this doesn't. I think the single port is overly aggressive, but with that said, I here a number of people (quite a number of them) that the single port is not an issue.
     
  22. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #22
    It's a small, slim, light, silent computer.
     
  23. Z3man macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    #23
    Single port is definitely not an issue for me, i have had about 5 MacBooks over the years now and i can only ever remember using the usb port, and only one at a time. In this wireless day and age i am even less like to need more than one.
     
  24. crsh1976 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2011
    #24
    I think it's a design exercise and a direction for future notebooks; super thin and light, fanless, small footprint, no frill. The current model is definitely a rev A to me tho, meaning it's not for everybody - if current price, horsepower, lack of ports, whatever it is, are deal-breakers, then the rMB is not the right computer for you.
     
  25. toddzrx macrumors 6502a

    toddzrx

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    #25
    Agreed: not hard to see the Mini follow this design path.
     

Share This Page