Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 23rd Jun 2012 14:45 UTC
Apple The only review that matters - as detailed and in-depth as ever. "I'm giving the MacBook Pro with Retina Display our bronze Editor's Choice award. Making it the first Mac to ever receive one. It would have been a silver had the software story been even stronger (iWork, Mountain Lion, Office and Photoshop being ready at launch would have been a feat worth rewarding). And it would have been a gold had Apple been able to deliver all of that but without sacrificing end-user upgradability." The device has performance issues which Mountain Lion will address (to a degree), but for the rest, AnandTech's review details - without being pro or anti-anything - just how good this new MBP really is. As a sidenote, Windows 8 on the retina display further confirms the classic desktop is dead to Microsoft: it still can't handle high-DPI displays properly. With the desktop going the way of the dodo, why would the company make it so?
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winter skies
Member since:
2009-08-21

I humbly think the impossibility to perform simple substitutions, such as changing the RAM, or swapping the SSD for something standard to be easily purchased on the market - as opposed to chips using proprietary, non-standard connectors - are shortcomings that shouldn't be eclipsed by the achievings in the fields of display crispness and ultimate portability.
We are dealing with 2 or 3k$ machines which are becoming more and more like disposable appliances you have to send to service everytime a minor, non-vital component breaks. I think it is utter insanity and will never support such behaviour on part of companies as long as freer, more-easily-fixable products continue to exist.
This new MBPr is really beautiful and light, but I know I won't care about portability at all when SSD's will have become much cheaper and the original 256GB will have shown all their limits, or when my RAM will fry and I'll have to send my work tool to Apple with all my private data inside. It's not acceptable and I hope many customers will voice their opinion by choosing products that do not suspend even such basic forms of freedom.

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2012/06/opinion-apple-retina-displa/

Reply Score: 8

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

I humbly think the impossibility to perform simple substitutions, such as changing the RAM, or swapping the SSD for something standard to be easily purchased on the market - as opposed to chips using proprietary, non-standard connectors - are shortcomings that shouldn't be eclipsed by the achievings in the fields of display crispness and ultimate portability.


Hard to disagree with that. On the other hand, if I traveled a lot for business and needed something as light and portable as I could get, I might be willing to sacrifice the upgradability of the thing, especially if I had a lot of money and upgrading it every few years didn't hurt the pocketbook that much.

That is about the only instance I could see this machine being acceptable to anyone.

Reply Score: 2

bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

Data privacy...not being forced to send you private company data to apple to be mined...trumps everything. If someone's mac breaks that has upcoming IPO data for the company on it that gets out who do you think goes fined/goes to jail? Same for a lawyer with sensitive data.

Stupid, stupid.

Reply Score: 2

redshift Member since:
2006-05-06

Data privacy...not being forced to send you private company data to apple to be mined...trumps everything. If someone's mac breaks that has upcoming IPO data for the company on it that gets out who do you think goes fined/goes to jail? Same for a lawyer with sensitive data.

Stupid, stupid.



If your data is that sensitive, it should be encrypted. You have options built in to OSX already. There are also 3rd party full disk encryption options that work with OSX like truecrypt.

Edited 2012-06-23 19:09 UTC

Reply Score: 3

demetrioussharpe Member since:
2009-01-09

Data privacy...not being forced to send you private company data to apple to be mined...trumps everything. If someone's mac breaks that has upcoming IPO data for the company on it that gets out who do you think goes fined/goes to jail? Same for a lawyer with sensitive data.

Stupid, stupid.


What idiot is walking around with IPO data on his laptop? In fact, if you're about to IPO, why don't you have a server with that data stored in it? Why aren't you accessing it from a secured network connection? Why isn't the data encrypted?

Blaming an OEM for a user's bad computer habits -Stupid, stupid!

Reply Score: 2

darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

It's not acceptable and I hope many customers will voice their opinion by choosing products that do not suspend even such basic forms of freedom.


Ah, but there in lies the problem. Most people don't care, I am sorry to say. The average person seems to be perfectly willing to believe any hype they're told, and doesn't want to view the long term. Think about it, if most people cared about easy serviceability, would we even be debating this now? The sad fact is that most people don't know how to service their own machines, don't wish to learn, and consequently couldn't care less about it. I am in complete agreement, I will never buy a machine that doesn't have even basic serviceability. Even a Mac Mini is serviceable by the user (in this case me) although a bit cramped and more complicated than it really ought to be. Sadly, it seems even Windows laptop OEMs are beginning to take up this trend.

Reply Score: 2

redshift Member since:
2006-05-06

The SSD is on a connector similar to how the macbook air is. Companies did come up with 3rd party SSD's for the Air, so I expect there will be upgrade options for these too. The soldered ram is disappointing. There was a news article I read last week that quoted Tim Cook as saying that there may be upgradeable ram in a future minor revision of the Mac pro. I hope that is true.

Overall, I am far more disappointed at the demise of the 17" macbook pro. I love my 17" mbp at work. I like a lot of actual desktop space, not just crisp detail. It has been so much lighter to haul around than the dell equivalent I had prior to it.

Edited 2012-06-23 19:10 UTC

Reply Score: 1

jptros Member since:
2005-08-26

I haven't read the review in this article but I did read the review on ars the other day which talks about the different resolutions you can achieve with the retina display. You can get 1920x1200 albeit it might not be that usable on a 15" display. Doesn't negate the soldered ram, just saying it can achieve a pretty big workspace.

http://arstechnica.com/apple/2012/06/pixelpalooza-ars-reviews-the-1...

Reply Score: 2

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

That connector was designed by Toshiba, not Apple.

Reply Score: 2

moondevil Member since:
2005-07-08

I am with you on this.

It seems that companies want to return to the 8 and 16 bit days, when software+hardware were tightly coupled together, and all expansions were only possible via external devices.

If the trend continues, we will be back to the Amiga 500/Atari ST/Apple II form factors.

Reply Score: 4

PieterGen Member since:
2012-01-13

Recently I was on a laptop hunt, and I found there are very few servicable laptops on the market. I finally bought a Lenovo Thinkpad, which is the only servicable laptop left. It doesn't have the super high resolution of the newer Apples though ;)

Maybe this is the dark side of consumerisation. Brands aim at the 'brain dead' consumer. GUIs are dumbed down (Metro, OSX, Unity), hardware is locked (Apple, the MS/UEFI scam).

Reply Score: 2

tidux Member since:
2011-08-13

It's pathetic, really. You'd never buy a car that required a tool only used by one small auto body shop in California to pop the hood, even if you had no interest in servicing it yourself. Why do people lose all common sense when it comes to computers?

Reply Score: 2

kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

1. I - and most consumers - own a car we cannot service. The thing under the hood is a thing of beauty but I honestly don't even know where to put in the oil.

2. It's not a small shop in CA that services your Mac. It's the largest company (by market cap) on Planet Earth with hundreds of locations globally (and in my case, one is 10 minutes walk from my office, another 20 minutes drive from my house).

Better yet, said company won't actually service your new retinal Mac, they will simply give you a new one, that day, while you wait, and they will helpfully transfer all your stuff for you for free!

I do wish I could upgrade the ram but, well, I ordered the 16 gb version last week - have to wait 3 more weeks.

Reply Score: 2

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

I find both arguments to be a bit weak...

1/Without arguing that everyone should know everything about his car, a minimum of technical knowledge is required to drive safely, which is why it is a requirement in order to get a driver's license in many countries. Otherwise, you become like these people who never inflate their tires and have a spectacular car accident one day on the highway. Or, less dramatically, like this high school philosophy teacher who once arrived half an hour late because his bike gear shifter has derailed and he didn't know how to fix it, and so had to wait for someone who knew to pass by on a small forest road.

2/Hundreds of shops is actually not a lot in the grand scheme of thing. I live in one of the richest cities of France, and the nearest Apple store is about two hours away, in the middle of a crowded mall. In contrast, I have nice small computer shops 10 minutes of walk away from home, and know of one who specializes in Macs about 30 minutes of walk and tram away. No company, no matter how big it is, can beat the omnipresence and calm environment of a large network of independent actors. (Although, as you mentioned, they can try to compensate for that with more expensive services)

Edited 2012-06-25 05:16 UTC

Reply Score: 2

kristoph Member since:
2006-01-01

1. Operating a car is not the same as modifying or otherwise fixing the car. Tire pressure (much like charing a laptop) is operating the car. Modifying some facet of the car to change it's performance characteristics is beyond the vast majority of car users. The same applies to cell phones, refrigerators, toasters, microwave ovens, and virtually all other appliances. Why are computers in a separate category? The reality is their not, not to most people anyway, just those of us who can do such things.

2. I'll certainly accept your point on this. If your away from an Apple store then your service experience is much weaker. In fairness though, if your talking about fixing the device, then most manufacturers - certainly Dell and IBM which I have used for years - will either require you to send in the device or (given the right warranty) send people out to you. I've not gone to 'local shop' to service a computer for decades. (Though I do appreciate the experience might differ in other countries it was much the same when I lived in London and Brussels.)

I do think that, as inevitable as this may be, we are heading towards a PC market where consumer devices will be essentially disposable (refurbishable) rather than maintainable.

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Reply Score: 2

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

1. I agree with that line of thought, to a degree. I do not think that all users should know how to service their hardware, but I also think that being tied to the manufacturer of a device for servicing is a bad idea.

To go back to vehicle analogies, I know tons of people who are happy owners of cars and bikes which have not been produced for years, and in some case whose manufacturer does not exist anymore. If these had been produced as a soldered black box, forbidding them to request help from a local mechanic, they would probably have had to throw them away as soon as something minor would break down inside after the end of the manufacturer support period, which is a waste of money and natural resources.

If Apple had their say, I bet I wouldn't have been able to fix that iMac G4 which I have ended up working on for the past few months while my team was waiting for funding to buy new computers ;)

2. It depends on the damage done or the complexity of the modification. I agree that you will always need manufacturer help to fix major problems (like a motherboard breakage for example). But for small issues, such as a dirty fan or a lack of ram, I honestly think that unless your hardware is still under warranty, asking the manufacturer is a waste of time and money and shouldn't be needed.

Most of the time, I don't ask a local computer shops for these small repairs either because I know how to do it myself anyway. But few people have this knowledge. And even for me, there is stuff which I don't know how to do and am not eager to learn, but which the guy next door can do for a very attractive price, such as replacing a laptop hinge or finding where the CMOS battery is located and changing it. What's more, these shops are also a good place to buy hardware such as mice or RAM, since you have someone near you to yell at if it breaks after a few days.

Edited 2012-06-25 06:38 UTC

Reply Score: 2

scarr Member since:
2010-11-07

Being on a tech news site, not surprising the majority of us want to "play inside". However, we are most definitely in a very small minority here. Most people I see are scared to even install an Application on their computer! Forget even opening it...

But forget that for a second... User upgradability is really overrated. I've bought so many systems thinking "oh, I'll save some money now on part xyz and upgrade it later", only to find when I need the new piece, I need a lot more new pieces.

You remember a "few years ago" when you thought your parents were old and out to lunch for some of their behaviours? Well, this one is dating us. People buy computers for specific reasons now, not to hack with the hardware. You can still get hardware to hack around (raspberry pi), but don't spend 2k on a notebook and expect to customize the insides of it.

Reply Score: 3

Win8
by Nelson on Sun 24th Jun 2012 04:45 UTC
Nelson
Member since:
2005-11-29

Can we cut the bullshit already? During the review nvidea hadn't released video drivers which coincided with the gpu in the laptop. Because of this, it was not scaling correctly.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Win8
by No it isnt on Sun 24th Jun 2012 09:58 UTC in reply to "Win8"
No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

So it's a driver problem? That sounds weird, but unless it's supported by Win8, the most affordable source for high DPI displays is going to be Apple for the foreseeable future.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Win8
by Nelson on Sun 24th Jun 2012 23:57 UTC in reply to "RE: Win8"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

So it's a driver problem? That sounds weird, but unless it's supported by Win8, the most affordable source for high DPI displays is going to be Apple for the foreseeable future.


A driver came out about a week and a half after the review. Anyone with a retina MBP can try it now.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by ansidotsys
by ansidotsys on Tue 26th Jun 2012 19:28 UTC
ansidotsys
Member since:
2008-08-15

As a sidenote, Windows 8 on the retina display further confirms the classic desktop is dead to Microsoft: it still can't handle high-DPI displays properly. With the desktop going the way of the dodo, why would the company make it so?


Perhaps I missed it, but please explain how Microsoft handles high-DPI scenarios any worse than Mac OS X.

Are you not aware that the Mac OS X interface is, by default, rendered at 1440x900? The native 2880x1800 resolution is not even selectable in Mac OS X and the highest resolution you can run is 1920x1200. And of course, running at 1920x1200 is not a pixel perfect match to the screen's native resolution, so there will be a image quality hit. If you wish to have the same effect in Windows, simply set the resolution to 1440x900. The display will put 4 pixels to 1, just like in Mac OS X.

In Anandtech's review of Windows 8 on Retina, they were actually able to select the native resolution and use 150% DPI scaling. Mac OS X doesn't even attempt to use DPI scaling at the screen's native resolution because it's not even an option. This is no bash at Mac OS X though, I can clearly understand why they chose to run 1440x900 as default. But don't get that confused with proper high-DPI scaling when running at the real native resolution.

Reply Score: 2

v 1
by Anonymous on Mon 2nd Jul 2012 15:52 UTC