Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 30th Sep 2015 19:33 UTC
Mac OS X

All the reviews are already published, but today, Apple also actually, you know, released OS X El Capitan.

OS X El Capitan, the latest version of the Mac operating system, builds on the groundbreaking features and beautiful design introduced in OS X Yosemite, refining the experience and improving performance in lots of ways that you’ll enjoy everyday.

Y'all know where to get it!

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anti-climatic
by galvanash on Thu 1st Oct 2015 05:33 UTC
galvanash
Member since:
2006-01-25

Did an in place upgrade on a 12" Macbook...

Kinda boring. I can barely tell the difference as far as the new system font goes - its pretty subtle. The new Notes app is the most noticeable thing to me, and I really don't use Notes much. I use Outlook 2016 so the mail changes are invisible to me.

I switched from Total Terminal to iTerm2 in advance, since TT is known not to work with SIP (may it rest in peace, it was a great utility - sad to see it go).

No drama, everything just worked. Probably what you want in an OS upgrade, but I was hoping for something at least mildly interesting to pop up...

Really does seem like a pretty minor update.

ps. I was in many a flame war over the practicality of the 12" Macbook's single USB-C port. I got one. Best ultra portable I've owned (so far - fingers crossed holds up as well as my Air did). Its a tad slower than the i7 Air I had on CPU intensive stuff, but not by much. Nice laptop if small is what you are after.

Reply Score: 4

RE: anti-climatic
by avgalen on Thu 1st Oct 2015 08:36 UTC in reply to "anti-climatic"
avgalen Member since:
2010-09-23

Best ultra portable I've owned

..how many ultra portables have you owned and how do you even define "ultra portable"?

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: anti-climatic
by galvanash on Thu 1st Oct 2015 09:33 UTC in reply to "RE: anti-climatic"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

..how many ultra portables have you owned and how do you even define "ultra portable"?


1. Less than 12x8 inches, less than .75 inches thick, less than 3 pounds. Give or take a bit here and there... In other words fits is most bags made for tablets and is easy to lug around.

2. Not a pure tablet (i.e. it has a keyboard and runs a desktop OS).

Machines I have owned:

Asus Zenbook 11" (the original one)
Macbook Air 11"
Macbook 12"

Machines I have borrowed and tried out:

Surface Pro
Dell XPS 13" (very thin bezel, just makes the cut)

Out of those I far prefer the Macbook 12", the Dell being a very, very, close 2nd. I prefer conventional clam-shell design, so the Surface, while a very nice machine, doesn't do it for me. I do prefer OSX so of course I have a Mac bias, but I use Windows pretty much daily so I'm not a snob about it. The Macbook 12" runs Windows 10 just fine.

If I wanted to run Windows and didn't care at all about OSX I would still probably get the Macbook 12", I like the feel of it and the sturdiness of a unibody design. But the Dell can be spec'd better, has a touch screen (I don't care, but some do), and is definitely a nice Windows laptop. Price is about the same for the most part. (when spec'd with 8GB Ram, SSD, and HiDPI display)

There are lots of other ones too, but most are things like the HP Stream and various low-end laptops that are plastic garbage with creaky hinges and mushy keyboards (which the Asus Zenbook suffered from). At this size the build quality matters a great deal (imo)...

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: anti-climatic
by avgalen on Fri 2nd Oct 2015 14:19 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: anti-climatic"
avgalen Member since:
2010-09-23

Thanks for answering.
I don't know which original Zenbook you mean, but if that is the one from the Windows 7 era that was a nice machine for the time but not really matching up with the newer machines of course.
The MacBook air...way underspecced for me and only "cheap" when you are talking about Apple prices.
So yes, from those 3 machines I would prefer the Macbook if I had crazy money to spend on such a machine (they are even more expensive in Europe than in the US)
But I don't understand why you prefer it to the similar priced Dell (or the Surface Pro 3, the older ones are too small and limited)

Can you get by without adapters or do you carry those separately when you expect to need them?
Is that Core-M CPU holding up with the rest of the machine when you are doing demanding work?
Do you get somewhat decent batterylife in Windows or are the BootCamp drivers still crappy for that?

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: anti-climatic
by galvanash on Sat 3rd Oct 2015 09:33 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: anti-climatic"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

But I don't understand why you prefer it to the similar priced Dell (or the Surface Pro 3, the older ones are too small and limited)


1. I like the keyboard better than the one on the Dell. The Dell keyboard is actually pretty good, it just isn't as good as the Macbook one (to me - this is admittedly a preference kind of thing). I absolutely hate the Surface keyboard, its awful (at least to me), I can't get used to it. Even if the keyboard was great I don't care for the kickstand business.

2. The Macbook 12" is much lighter and thinner than the Dell. The Surface of course is very light and thin, but the kickstand thing...

3. No fan. Totally silent. Not a deal breaker at all, my Air had a fan and it did not bother me... But its nice.

Can you get by without adapters or do you carry those separately when you expect to need them?


I carry a regular USB adapter in my bag. Don't really use any USB stuff to be honest, its just in case I need it. Have a hub at work with ethernet and an external monitor - keyboard is wireless USB and mouse is bluetooth.

I actually like the single port more - with my Air I had to plug 3 things in every day (power, USB, thunderbolt for the display), now I only have to plug in one cable...

Is that Core-M CPU holding up with the rest of the machine when you are doing demanding work?


It is slightly slower than my Air was (which was an i7 model). Not enough that it bothers me, but you can tell when doing stuff like unzipping large files or running a big compile (Im a web developer). Its fast enough for me though, but I did get the 1.3Ghz option. I would say it is just about the same speed as the entry level Air (i5 1.6ghz), as they both have exactly the same turbo boost frequency (2.7Ghz). But if you really want speed I would buy something else (the Dell can be bought with a much faster processor).

Do you get somewhat decent batterylife in Windows or are the BootCamp drivers still crappy for that?


I have not run Windows enough to say for sure yet... My Air did get much better battery life in OSX, but I had Windows 7 on that one. Windows 10 supposedly does much better in bootcamp as far as battery life goes. Under OSX in practice I get about 7-8 hours, which is the same as my 11" Air.

Edited 2015-10-03 09:42 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: anti-climatic
by avgalen on Sun 4th Oct 2015 14:31 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: anti-climatic"
avgalen Member since:
2010-09-23

Thanks again for all your answers. Can you tell me which hub you are using?

The Core-M seems fast enough...for a moment for me. If it can use the turbo it matches up with an I5 so for example starting a program or game is quite quick. But after a few seconds it reaches its thermal peak and has to throttle down to really unacceptable levels, hence the slow unzipping and compiling. It basically gives a snappy feeling to everything, until I start to actually need performance and then it collapses. I haven't tried the new Skylake Core-M3/5/7 yet though.

Battery life in Bootcamp has always been awful for me. Not because of the differences between Windows 7/8/8.1/10 but simply because the drivers are really not optimized. 8 hours on OSX, 4 hours on Windows was what I used to get.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: anti-climatic
by galvanash on Mon 5th Oct 2015 03:49 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: anti-climatic"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

Thanks again for all your answers. Can you tell me which hub you are using?


I have the Apple USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter and a conventional USB 3 hub (don't know brand - cheap one from Best Buy). Monitor is plugged into HDMI port, and the hub is on the USB port.

One thing worth noting though - if you want higher than 1080p on your external monitor (mine is 1440p), you need a monitor that does HDMI 2.0 - many older ones don't. I knew this going in but many people don't realize it and get burned.

If you want display port (or 4k at higher than 30hz) you'll have to wait for this to hit the market, assuming it ever does and it works as advertised:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/nonda/get-your-macbook-ports-ba...

How Apple released this thing without a proper display port adapter from day one is beyond me...

Reply Score: 2