Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Macbook Pro First Impressions

Well, it finally arrived. Was it worth the wait. F**K YES!

I have owned PC's in various guises since my first 386SX-20Mhz in 1991. Since then I have owned and used literally hundreds of PC's. I got my first laptop in 1999, it was an IBM Thinkpad and I thought it was Christmas. I have used every version of Windows since 3.0, and Dos 3.3 before that. I am a professional programmer who makes a living off using Microsoft products, and developing for Microsoft OS's.

So in summation, I am not some blatant Apple fan boy. I know the ins and outs of PC's better than most. The reason I am relaying this information is because I think from here on in, this post could get a little Pro Mac.

First Impressions:

The packaging is first class. Every little thing is thought of. The styrafoam packaging is classy, and laid out well. There is nothing in the box that doesn't need to be there. The power cables and adapter are a nice designer white. All in all the packaging is brilliant.

You turn the laptop on, and OSX comes up straight away. That is nice. Usually with a PC laptop, there is still some final installation that is required. Once the obligatory sign on stuff is dealt to, you are away.

Nice touches

It's the little things that make the difference. The power connector is magnetic so it doesn't rip the side of the laptop off, if someone trips over it. It also has a little LED on it that is red when charging and green when finished.
The Apple logo on the back glows, as does the keyboard when it gets dark. This is so you can use it in the dark and still see the keys.

Oh and the other cool feature I noticed right away - you push the off switch and it realises you want to shut down and brings up the shutdown/restart menu. Nice.

The touchpad understands gestures too. For example you can push down with one finger and scroll up and down with another, and it acts like a scroll wheel. Again just a little thing but nice feature non the less.

I haven't played enough yet to give a full appraisal, but so far I like it. Again it's the little things I like. The fact you don't need to click "OK/Cancel/Apply" when you change something in the System Panel. It realises that if you changed it, you meant it and you don't want to be bothered again.

The integration between OSX and things like iTunes and PDF documents is much better than Windows. I guess this shouldn't be a shock. The great thing about the MBP, is that it comes with a remote, that you can use when using iTunes, or playing a DVD, or showing a photo slide show. It swaps seemlessly between the fullscreen applet and normal OSX. It is instantaneous. I have seen a few other PC makers try this. My work Dell for example has a Media Centre, but it is slow and switching between Media Centre and Windows takes several seconds.

The single mouse button is taking a little to get used to, as is the command key. Also the touch pad seems to freeze when switching applications from time to time.

That's it so far!

It just works. That is the overwhelming feeling I am getting so far. It just works.

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