new MacBook (Pro and Air)

PumpingtonSteel

Active Member
It's time for a new computer. i have my heart set on a specific model but wanted to run my lingering doubts past some of you experts please

My last purchase was an MBA11 that's over 5 years old now.....still in great nick and in use every day at home and away. it isn't that powerful and i feel i could do with an upgrade. possibly not essential, but would be nice. mainly because i've bought a few toys and that's convincing me to get a new machine to run them through.....a high end DJ controller, some music equipment & associated software. I am intending on running photoshop and lightroom too. Again I intend for it to last at least 5 years but realistically more like 7-8

the model i have in mind is the 13" MBP with touch bar, with the HD, processor and RAM boost (16gb and 2.7GHz quad-core 8th‑generation Intel Core i7 processor, Turbo Boost up to 4.5GHz, 512gb) at a total of £2400
MacBook Pro (13-inch Mid 2018) Benchmarks - Geekbench Browser
currently on 0% finance and I get a bit of a discount (~9%) through work/associated scheme

the questions I'm asking myself are:

- should i commit now because people are talking about i9.......
this would delay my purchase by 9 months though because they likely won't be out until the refresh in sept/oct. Am I really missing out because I'm not doing any processor intensive tasks....

- should i stick to mac? i've been using it for a decade and my love and patience is withering.....although i'm not sure the gap between os x and windows has narrowed enough to make me jump platforms.

- there is one program i was intending on at some point in the future that's windows only (namely deep sky stacker). how easy is it to do this without a full on subscription to parallels and licence?

- there have been reports of key failures with the new butterfly design and fixes being expensive.....
I've also had a MBP15 retina screen die on me due to a known large scale problem, although i may have missed the boat on repair (i'm sure i put it through the system at the time and i was ineligible)
i DON'T want to spend an obscene amount of money on a machine then be liable for further costs due to known issues. does anyone have experience with repairs these days? should i be concerned?

- is the touch bar a bit gimmicky? seems quite nice and i hear good things, although you could say the same about animojis and i've used them once

- this would be my first device with these new fangled USB C type connectors. I don't really have any legacy devices i intend to use with this. I appreciate this is the way we're moving and i'll have to transition at some point. Just wondering if there are any issues - specifically compatibility - I should be aware of that may bite me later on (I did check the DJ controller and despite official advice saying not to use with a hub, it does work with the official adapter)

anything else you think may be worth considering before committing?
 

ascender

Active Member
The current MBPs are very fast and powerful, so that spec you're looking at should be more than capable of handling what you're going to throw at it for many years to come. The SSDs they've been using recently are also lightning fast.

I have to use Windows machines daily for different clients and for me there's still no compelling reason to switch from macOS. Especially now I can run Windows easily on my Mac as a VM or natively with boot camp.

You don't have to subscribe to VMware or parallels - you can just buy a one-off copy although you might want to check how they are for supporting new versions of macOS. I seem to remember having to upgrade Parallels at some point although its not big money. I just bought an OEM Win10 key for the Windows side of things at a cost of £8.

They've extended keyboard warranties on the pre-2018 models to 4 years. The new design seems to have two issues, failures due to dust getting inside (which they've tried to fix with a membrane in their 2018+ models) and keys failing due to the mechanism used. I think its totally unacceptable, but obviously the extra warranty is a bit of peace of mind and for what its worth, I do really like the feel of the keys.

I didn't mind the Touch Bar, but never really grew to love it. I quite liked the feel of being able to adjust volume with the slider and quickly got used to not having physical keys. If I had the option of buying a MBP with or without it, I'd probably go for traditional keys. However, if you get a TB model, you're also getting a bit of a spec bump as part of the money.

I've not had anything usb-a which wouldn't work via a usb-c to a adapter. What does seem to be a bit of a pain with usb-c is the compatibility of certain hubs with random peripherals, particularly monitors. If you look at reviews of third party hubs on Amazon, you'll see one person saying it works a treat with their laptop, whilst someone else says it doesn't. Of course, you might not need a hub as the MBP has four ports, any of which can be used for anything. But check out a forum like Macrumors for feedback on hubs if you go down that route.

I really liked my 13" MBP, its a great combination of power v portability.
 
D

Deleted member 27989

Guest
I have the 15” i9 32GB 1Tb version. Many of my colleagues have the 13” version. I would be just as happy with that one.

The keyboard is nothing to be concerned about. I use touchbar all the tome. Very useful in many circumstances.

I bought a midi usb to USB c cable. Works well with keyboards and Pioneer DJ controller.
 

PumpingtonSteel

Active Member
thanks for the answers. awesome in-depth info, much appreciated
i had another play in-store and fell in love with it. was on the fence the first time round. I have ordered it now (final day for 0% credit today), will receive it in a couple of weeks
 

PumpingtonSteel

Active Member
I'm loving it. I haven't used it much because i'm saving it for specific tasks like music and photo editing which I haven't quite had time to sink my teeth into.
Even though my 2013 MBA, my portable workhorse, is still working fine, I'm so tempted by the new MBA13 as a premature upgrade. It's really disappointing the new range is not available in 11 but the new 13's overall size and weight isn't too much more than the old bezel 11s.
Going to have a look in-store and I expect I'll succumb to my weakness
 

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