Writing on the MBP 13”

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by MultiBat, Jan 25, 2011.

  1. MultiBat macrumors member

    MultiBat

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    #1
    I have decided to get my first mac and up until yesterday I was pretty set on getting a MBA 13”. The revelation that came to me yesterday was when I went to a store and tried typing on both the MBA and the MBP. For me personally, the MBP keyboard felt a lot better.

    What I would like to get more input on is experience on writing extended periods of time on the MBP 13”.
    I have been to stores and tried it out, but I couldn't really sit there for several hours and just type.
    I read the following in a review (http://www.notebookcheck.net/Review-Apple-MacBook-Pro-13-2010-04-2-66-GHz-Notebook.33236.0.html):

    A further point of criticism levied on the previous unibody-models remains the same: the sharp front angle is uncomfortable to the underarm after periods of long use at a desk.

    I can't really understand that, but on the other hand I just typed for 15 minutes or so.

    So please post your experience regarding typing for longer periods of time on the MBP 13”.
     
  2. wordoflife macrumors 604

    wordoflife

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    #2
    The sharp wrist thing only hits me when I lie down and type. Otherwise, I don't have an issue.
     
  3. Resist macrumors 68030

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    #3
    I agree that the sharp edge issue can be annoying at times. Not sure what Apple was thinking there.
     
  4. DirtySocks85 macrumors 65816

    DirtySocks85

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    #4
    I actually seem to have more issues with the sharp wrist thing when I'm gaming rather than typing, because my hands don't move to type, but I have to slide down a bit to hit obscure keys more often when I play some games, or because I'm using the trackpad more. I'm not a professional writer by any means, but I did use my 13" MBP to do NaNoWriMo back in November, and I wrote about 50k words during the month of November on my novel alone (so that doesn't count forum posts, other writing projects, etc), and I never had any issues doing writing work on it.
     
  5. entatlrg macrumors 68040

    entatlrg

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    #5
    As a writer you should be buying the MacBook air and realize you'll adjust to the different keyboard in a day or two....

    As a writer you'll love the light weight take anywhere and instant on features etc etc that the MBA offers
     
  6. MultiBat thread starter macrumors member

    MultiBat

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    #6
    Well. Since You are a (MacRumors) Demi-God, You have to be correct! ;)

    I have decided to get a mac, but I have a really hard time deciding between the MBA 13" and MBP 13".
    I swing between the MBP and MBA almost on a daily basis.
    I will probably wait for the MBP refresh before making the buy.

    Your post just swung me back to MBA. :D
     
  7. altecXP macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    #7
    [joke]
    As a Writer he should know that he will get another 3 hours out of the MBP, and that text will be easier to see on the larger resolution.
    [/joke]
     
  8. trigonometry macrumors 6502

    trigonometry

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    #8
    I don't know if this will help with your decision but I find the 13" MBP a pure joy to type on. For years I would hunt and peck until I purchased it. Now I'm a 50 wpm touch typist and that's using the entire keyboard. Maybe that's not impressive to any true typist but for me it's almost unbelievable. The backlit keyboard is nice (even though I don't need it anymore) and makes me want to type. I know that's silly but its true. I even bought a cheap computer stand that tilts to allow you to achieve the perfect angle while on the couch or in bed. Either way you go I think you'll be happy.
     
  9. INEEDANOTEBOOK, Jan 26, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2011

    INEEDANOTEBOOK macrumors member

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    #9
    It was also an issue for me. I type a lot, and usually for a long time, and the keyboard of the MBA I have tested always seemed too soft for me. The keyboard of my MBP 13 feels just right and is exactly like the keyboard of my Imac (the keyboard of the MBA is slightly different) - so no problem to adjust and it is truly a joy to use. I completely agree with trigonometry on this point.

    As for the edge - apparently, I got lucky: I don't have the rough edge many users are complaining about. See my pics on this post:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=925608
    Typing is very comfortable, even after hours of typing. So before buying your machine, you should check the edge. There are apparently huge variations in built quality across MBPs.

    I don't need the backlit simply because I never type in the dark (my eyes would get sore very quickly). Likewise, the lighter weight of the MBA is not an argument for me, because I can't type for a very long time with a notebook on my lap. I just need a good stable (and preferably wooden) table.

    But there are more issues relevant for someone that has to type a lot, I think. Such as the screen. Current MBPs come with glossy screen, and many people can't tolerate it. MBA have higher resolution too. Personally, I don't like it because it makes everything smaller, but maybe it can be adjusted, I don't know.

    Hope this helps...
     
  10. MultiBat thread starter macrumors member

    MultiBat

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    #10
    Thanks for the input! You know, I think a backlit keyboard would make me want to write as well. The letter glowing and urging you to write. Thats actually +1 for the MBP.

    Thanks!
    When I went to the store I forgot to check that (in)famous sharp edge, but since I did not notice it I guess it was not an issue for me.

    Too soft! That's a very good descripton on how the MBA keyboard felt. I agree.

    I had not thought about the screen resolution. The text felt a bit small on the screen when i tried the MBA out, but since only the native text editor was available I did not know if that would be different with another font size. It would be silly though if I had to use a larger font size just to be able to avoid strain on the eyes.
    I think this is another +1 for the MBP.

    I guess Apple might increase the screen resolution on the MPB in the upcoming refresh, so I might want to go for a 2010 MBP.

    So the only thing I can think of that speaks for the MBA is the SSD (which I could add to the MBP anyway).
    The portability of the MBA is not important for me. I almost use my laptops as desktops anyway.
     
  11. Miss Terri macrumors 6502

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    US East Coast
    #11
    For myself, I've found many of the "recent" Mac laptop designs to have edges that are sharper than I would like. The un-unibody plastic Macbook and the new Macbook and Macbook Pro among them. There do seem to be variations in sharpness on the new Macbook Pros, but none of them are really rounded, to my mind. Although I looked for one with the least-sharp edge, I still think it's a pity they aren't rounder by design.

    (That said, perhaps the Air's edges are rounded; I have not tried one.)

    Now, if you are sitting at a typing table in an office chair, and using the keyboard, it may not be much of an issue, as your wrists would not then typically be touching the edge of the computer.

    BUT.... if you are websurfing, and just using the trackpad with one hand (how I web surf anyway), then the sharp edge can be a real pain.

    I also notice it if I'm not typing in "perfect" position, which happens when sitting at non-perfect-ergonomic tables (coffee shops, etc.), on couches, lying in bed computing, etc.

    I still got a Macbook Pro because I needed a new computer and it best fit my needs other than "the edge." At this point, with it being my sole computer, I felt that an "equivalent" MBA would be close to double the price (granted they are not strictly equivalent but I mean comparing the MBP I would buy to the MBA I would buy), so I decided to go MBP for now, and if I have to put tape on the edge, or a Speck case (then round the edge of the Speck case) so be it. Actually, my previous Macbook has somewhat trained me to avoid the edge (although I used my old iBook in the short gap between MB and MBP, and ahhhhh, what a nice edge).

    I'm hoping a new design will bring back a more rounded edge (or maybe an MBA next time if certain things change).
     
  12. MultiBat thread starter macrumors member

    MultiBat

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    #12
    Second test of typing on the MBP.

    Just following up on my own thread... :)

    I went back to the store today and tried typing on the MBP 13". This time I focused part of the testing on issues with the sharp edge on the MBP.

    I really tried to get the edge to be a problem, but I guess I am lucky with my typing postion. I had no issues what so ever with the sharp edge. If you are scared with the sharp edge thing I really recommend trying it out in person.

    The MBP 15" is too big for my taste, but when I tried typing on that one I could at least get the edge to be more of an issue.

    One thing that factors in on this is that I have big hands. Have no clue how that factors in, but I am sure it does... :D

    I also compared the typing experience of the MBA 11", MBA 13" and MBP 13" again. For my taste the MBP 13" keyboard simply feels better to type on.
     
  13. jgould macrumors regular

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    Columbus Ohio
    #13
    Not to come in and hijack a thread, but I'm facing the same dilemma as you when it comes to the purchase of a new laptop.

    I've done NaNoWriMo 6 times, (Won 5 of them... Not bad...) 5 of the times have been on my 2006 MacBook, and I have to say that even though this thing has a rather sharp edge (it's a design flaw on this model. It has to do with the way the machine is built.)

    I have been in the store, and played with the 11.6" Air, the 13.3" Air and the 13.3" MBP. To me all three of the keyboards felt funny to me, but I think it was because of what ever they use to clean them in the stores to try to disinfect them.

    I'm leaning toward the 11.6" Air with 4GB of RAM and the 128GB SSD. I'm still torn on the processor speed. My current MacBook has a 2.0GHz CD, and I'm not sure that I would actually notice 600 MHz of speed...

    My wife wishes that I'd just make a decision and get one, but that won't be until I have figured out which one...
     
  14. orfeas0 macrumors 6502a

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    Athens, Greece
    #14
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    I want to point out 2 things for you.
    1st) wait for the update , then decide ;)
    2nd) consider the white macbook too, its a lot less sharp than the pro (i dont know about the air).
    You should try the white too next time youre in an apple store.

    Sorry for the grammar, im on an iphone.
    Peace.
     
  15. ZebOfMac macrumors regular

    ZebOfMac

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    Feb 13, 2010
    #15

    Personally you should purchase the one you think is best for your needs. Everyones needs are different and well that good.

    If you do a lot of typing at home I would go after a usb keyboard that one can connect tot the system. This is something I do as I do not like typing all day on the notebook itself. But again that is me.

    In the end and when you are at the checkout it you and the store employee swapping money. Get what you think is best and not worry about others telling you what to get.
     
  16. jgould macrumors regular

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    #16
    +1

    I agree with this, and it will probably be what I do when I replace my MacBook. The biggest factors for me are battery life and weight. Given what my general work load on my current MacBook is, I am fairly certain that an 11.6" Air would be perfect for my needs. The only thing I'm not sure of would be using Aperture on the Air, but then again, I would only use it for import and basic sorting, every other task would be handled by the Mac Mini...
     
  17. thinkinblue613 macrumors 6502

    thinkinblue613

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    #17
  18. MultiBat thread starter macrumors member

    MultiBat

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    #18
    True.
    I think the MBP 13" is best for my needs. I don't know what it is about the MBA. Something about the design that draws me to it. Strange... :eek:

    I like typing on a laptop, but thanks for the tip about the keyboard.

    I think many who post to these forums on which mac to get does it to get support for what they really want. They want to be reassured that the mac they want the most is a good one and to get approval from others.
    That's in the human nature I guess.
    Human beings are after all pack animals, right?
     
  19. jgould macrumors regular

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    Columbus Ohio
    #19

    I know that this thread is a little on the old side, but I want to state that I picked up an 11" Air Friday, and then returned it for a 13" MBP today. I think the keyboard on the MBP feels better than the board on the Air, and I also felt fatigue in my neck after using the Air on the couch for an hour or so. Also, the angle on the display seemed wrong... I still haven't figured out that part yet, but I may never figure that out. I just hope that there is nothing in the refresh that makes me want to take this machine back and exchange it for the newest one...
     
  20. Miss Terri macrumors 6502

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    #20
    Couple of notes:

    1) The edge on the unibody plastic Macbook is about as sharp as that on the MBP, in my experience.

    2) I mostly notice the sharpness when web surfing, not typing. I don't know about other people but when I'm web surfing my hand is near the trackpad down near the front of the top case, and so my wrist is at the sharp edge. It's hard to hold your hand "up" like you would for typing when you are just using the trackpad. So the sharp edge comes into play.

    Will be interesting to see what happens with the refresh. What would make me sell my new MBP.... probably a rounded edge and/or a matte screen option on the 13" new model. Anything else I would be able to easily skip over for my uses.
     
  21. jgould macrumors regular

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    #21
    I don't think this late 2010 MBP that i picked up yesterday has as sharp of an edge as the 2006 MacBook that it replaced.

    I've always noticed the edge when typing, and after knocking out a chapter on the new machine, I've not noticed the edge today.
     
  22. MultiBat thread starter macrumors member

    MultiBat

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    #22
    This thread ain't old until Thursday. That's what I hope at least. :)
    I really hope that the refresh won't mean they slim the MBP 13" too much. I would not be pleased if they put an MBA keyboard in there...

    I guess the 16:9 aspect ration of the 11" MBA could make things feel strange until you get used to it that is.

    I think you did the right thing switching to the MBP.

    Regarding the MB. I tried ot out in a store recently, but abandoned it rapidly. I just couldn't stand those white keys.

    I guess the sharp edge issue could have a lot to do with the physical setup where you use the laptop. I tend to rest my elbows on the table with the laptop far infront of me. Maybe if I had the MBP close to the table edge my elbows would drop and the wrists would then rest on the edge instead?
    Well, as I stated before in this thread. I could not place my hands in any position where I would rest on the edge without it feeling uncomfortable.
     
  23. SerrQ macrumors member

    SerrQ

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    #23
    The sharp edge isn't bothering me, I think it depends on person, just pick the one that you like.

    Wait till the refresh and then go to the apple store and try :þ I'd pick the MBP over MBA anytime.
     
  24. jgould macrumors regular

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    #24
    Ironically enough, I'm looking at picking up an 11" Air again as I've gone back to school. While the 4.5 pounds of the MBP isn't that much on it's own, when you add in text books, it becomes a lot...

    I'm not sure if my wife will care or not, but she'll get over it soon enough. We just replaced her aging laptop with a netbook. That thing is funny to type on. I'm glad that Apple hasn't gone with a less capable processor for the Air like so many of the other manufacturers...
     
  25. jesterscourt macrumors regular

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    Mar 4, 2009
    #25
    As a fellow writer, may I recommend Scrivener if you write fiction? There is a trial available I believe. Great program, you can organize your thoughts on notecards, and then shuffle everything around as needed.
     

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