back to article New MacBook Pro: What's actually new, here?

The new iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display weren't the only bits of Apple kit that were revealed at Tuesday's product rollout in San Francisco; there were also upgraded versions of the 13-inch and 15-inch Retina display MacBook Pros to talk about. Apple's 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Pros as announced on October 22, 2013 …

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No upgrades... ever

They get rather expensive to purchase when one cannot upgrade anything in them; the memory's soldered to the motherboard and the "disc" is proprietary. Over the life of, say, three years, it's not uncommon to replace at least the "disc" with something larger/faster. Not in this case.

Very nice, but all the costs are up-front. A fully-specced 15" is £2800. Ouch.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: No upgrades... ever

Upgrade = sell and buy another. Given the market for used Apple products, maybe not that much of a financial hit.

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Re: No upgrades... ever

I decided to abandon Mac OS and grudgingly return to the Windows fold when I got frustrated at not being able to upgrade my iMac. However, I was pleased that a four year old iMac with broken DVD drive still got me £400 on ebay which made a decent contribution to my PC build!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: No upgrades... ever

You can upgrade iMacs - memory is simple, hard drives are possible or use an external. Basically they are what they are - an all in one and suspect most cannot be significantly upgraded.

Sounds like a Mac Mini and separate monitor would be a better option for you.

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Re: No upgrades... ever

You can upgrade the RAM on the bigger iMacs easily via a panel, but not on the smaller iMacs.

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Re: No upgrades... ever

Er, why the downvote on something that is factually correct? The RAM on the 27" model is easily upgraded, the RAM on the 21" model can be updated but not easily, since you have to take the display off first:

...after the "Late 2012" 21.5-Inch iMac models shipped, site sponsor Other World Computing disassembled one and discovered that it has two internal SO-DIMM slots (and subsequent "Early 2013" and "Late 2013" models are the same). Unfortunately, accessing these slots requires one to gingerly pry off the adhesive-attached display and remove the motherboard. By contrast, the 27-Inch models have a small panel that "pops off" the back with the press of a button. Needless to say, pressing a button to access the four SO-DIMM slots in the 27-Inch models is quick and easy.

- http://www.everymac.com/systems/apple/imac/imac-aluminum-tapered-edge-faq/how-to-upgrade-imac-ram-aluminum-2012.html

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Re: No upgrades... ever

Other World Computing (OWC) has been quite creative in figuring out how to upgrade Macs of various flavors (http://www.macsales.com). We haven't finished our analysis of the new systems, but if you have any of their previous releases the odds are quite good that we can upgrade them and improve their performance quite substantially.

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FAIL

Looks like Apple

being down with the kids is failling? The Black Knight?

Oh dear thats certainly not attention to detail...

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Re: Looks like Apple

I wondered that - I'm assuming he means Dark Knight unless I'm missing something?

He's quite the kewl "dude"

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Thumb Down

And with no fanfare a Macbook Pro was removed from the line-up

The only models with a DVD drive left are... 1 (one) 13" non-retina Pro.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: And with no fanfare a Macbook Pro was removed from the line-up

Why would Apple want you to have a DVD drive? DVD drives mean that you can rip your CDs and play your DVDs, denying Apple more iTunes revenue!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: And with no fanfare a Macbook Pro was removed from the line-up

Good riddance. Hardly use the things, and they've been the first component to fail in any computer I've built. Now I have a single external USB DVD drive for all my computers, and if it breaks, I spent $25 to buy another.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: And with no fanfare a Macbook Pro was removed from the line-up

Or buy a Apple DVD drive or 3rd party USB drive for £20-30.

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Re: And with no fanfare a Macbook Pro was removed from the line-up

>The only models with a DVD drive left are... 1 (one) 13" non-retina Pro.

That is made non-obvious on the Apple website, and it's poor value compared to their other Macbook models. Just get an external DVD drive, it's easier to replace when it fails.

Having an extra bit of kit might not be neat, but a DVD drive presupposes you're carrying DVDs with you; an external drive isn't much bigger than a DVD case these days.

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Joke

Re: And with no fanfare a Macbook Pro was removed from the line-up

"Or buy a Apple DVD drive or 3rd party USB drive for £20-30."
I'm sorry your post came in a bit garbled there. Did you say I could buy an Apple DVD drive for £2030 or a 3rd party drive for £20? I'll have the 3rd party drive, thanks :)

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Re: And with no fanfare... @AC good riddance

It used to be a very common mod to remove the DVD drive, put a flash disk in place of the old HD and put the HD, or even bigger one into the DVD bay. Gives you a very nice fast responsive machine, but that you can still fit Gigs of photos onto. (e.g. a days shooting with 2 photographers will get you >100GB of RAWs, so by the time you want to process them for previews, you've run out of storage)

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Re: And with no fanfare... @AC good riddance

I'm not sure that you would want to trust your 100GB of RAW files to a single spinning-rust HDD - if it goes 'kaput', you've wasted the day of everybody involved (each of them likely on a substantial day-rate i.e financial corner-cutting on your storage is not worth the risk). You'd at least want those files on a second external disk ASAP, so two external HDDs isn't much of an inconvenience.

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Anonymous Coward

still no touch on the pros and air?

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Re: still no touch on the pros and air?

Trackpad still there last time I checked

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Oh, as in lift my hand off the desk or laptop it's resting on, move away from the mouse or touch pad, lean forwards and poke the screen with my fingernail ('cos the screen's at the wrong angle)? That's such an odd thing to do on a laptop; fine on a tablet, ridiculous on a desktop.

This touch-centric trend is just a fashion. Thankfully Apple have moved through the "one interface fits all" trials and have two optimised interfaces; one mouse-centric, the other touch centric.

Microsoft, on the other hand, are yet to learn that touch-centric operations on a desktop/laptop is sub-optimal to put it mildly. But hey, Microsoft aren't interested in listening to their customers as, apparently, Microsoft knows best.

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JDX
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Re: still no touch on the pros and air?

I am slightly surprised Apple haven't "invented" touch-screen PCs yet.

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JDX
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@wibble

I see nothing ridiculous about it. Most PC workers are not glued to the keyboard/mouse - certainly not the keyboard.

I have tried the motion of raising my hand to do this and it feels quite natural, as long as the screen isn't too far away. At a trendy standing desk - which I am currently trialling - it actually feels quite natural.

Granted I wouldn't want to KEEP my arm outstretched but some use cases fit it quite well. I don't think it's necessary, but I think it has SOME merit - if someone can work out the kinks. And sorting out the kinks so it can be slick would suit Apple.

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Re: @wibble

I don't have a touchscreen PC, and I don't like when people I'm working with jab my laptop's screen with their finger.

Let's see if these mini-'Kinects' or 'Leapmotion' touch-free devices take off (or get incorporated into laptops and OSs).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @wibble

"I have tried the motion of raising my hand to do this and it feels quite natural, as long as the screen isn't too far away. At a trendy standing desk - which I am currently trialling - it actually feels quite natural."

I know people who bought touchscreen laptops recently. They touched them all the time in the first week or two. Now they basically never do it.

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Re: touch-centric operations on a desktop/laptop is sub-optimal

MSFT doesn't give a damn about desktop ergonomics - they just want their traditional users to get used to Notro, which then encourages them to buy MSFT mobile products.

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Anti-glare screen?

Before you say look; The Apple site decides I'm on a mobile device here so I can't see it.

Do the new retina Pro15" models have an option of anti-glare screen? It's the one feature on the old 15" that I couldn't ever do without. (It's a shame not being able to fit 2 drives in the new ones though).

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Is Apple losing it?

I noticed that all the new iMac entry level units are Intel graphics only. That is NOT the excellence people pay Apple prices to get. That's the kind of cheepo chipset you find in a POS Walmart $350 computer. It just stopped me from buying one.

Apple can step back up to the quality we expect with at least an ATI graphics if not an nVidia else I'm waiting to see if this is the beginning of a longer term quality slide by them. I don't want to get hooked into an Apple ecosystem and find it's suddenly all turning to crap on me.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Is Apple losing it?

I would pay a premium to NOT have dedicated graphics. I don't play 3-D video games and I don't do any GPGPU scientific computing work, so I'd rather not have an extra chip in my computer with the same TDP as my CPU.

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Last macbook pro I had was one from 2010 - Is there still

1) no way to turn that terrible start up noise off? (apart from the vol down - very inconvenient)

2) that horrible clunky trackpad that makes a horrible clunk every time you click it?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Last macbook pro I had was one from 2010 - Is there still

My Mac-owning mate keeps asking me how to turn the noise off, too. I suggested to him that he doesn't need to reboot everyday, so a 'taadaa!' once a week isn't too bad.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Last macbook pro I had was one from 2010 - Is there still

"2) that horrible clunky trackpad that makes a horrible clunk every time you click it?"

I don't know why they even let you click the trackpad. They make it hard enough to do that I would go insane if I had to do it hundreds/thousands of times per day. Just enable "tap to click" in the control panel. Works great.

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startup silence

exexpat, if you’re comfortable with the command line, open Terminal and use the nvram command with the SystemAudioVolume parameter. (The exact value that accompanies this parameter can vary according to the particular hardware, so check the nvram man page or do some searching online.) Alternatively, you could download the StartNinja program for Mac OS X 10.7 or later, or the Startup Sound System Preference pane for Mac OS X 10.4 through 10.6.

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Bronze badge

Re: startup silence

Can you not just replace the audio file with a silent one? Or is it not present as a separate file?

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My macbook pro trackpad is silent, always has been. I rarely shut down, just let it sleep, restart occasionally when changing settings. I have an earlier version (2008). I seem to be writing you from 2008, too. Oh the stuff I do on the computer, would make you all plotz.

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Mushroom

@JDX

> I see nothing ridiculous about it. Most PC workers are not glued to the keyboard/mouse - certainly not the keyboard.

Oh perrlleease... If you're sitting coding, writing documents, planning projects, analysing data... you know, work, you're spending the day with your hands rested on the desk, fingers on the keyboard and using a mouse to move the various windows around the screen and focus on the *accuracy* you need to point at elements of a high-res screen.

Sod your idea of a mouse free interface; you'd end up with arms like Popeye and aching shoulders by elevensies. It's bad enough trying to raise your arms to point at the screen without the additional issue of *accuracy*. Then there's the issue of "resetting" your hands back to the keyboard: with a mouse, one moves one's hand to exactly the same place on the desk and use your fingers to manipulate the mouse, therefore one gets "muscle memory" to return your fingers to the keyboard.

OTOH, if you're flinging birds at pigs then there's no doubt a touch screen is better, 'cos Angry Birds is crap on my 27" Mac screen. But I suppose Angry Birds is designed for touch.

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