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cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

I'm not sure if this is a software question or a hardware one, but here goes:

At some point, are refurbished MBPs going to start coming with Lion pre-installed? I know you get a download toke, but that's not practical for my sister, who is looking into getting one soon.

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cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Mex posted:

Does she have any problems accessing the app store? Other than the couple of hours wait, Lion OSX upgrade is seriously, retarded easy. I think you have to click Accept like 3 times and you just wait 30 minutes. It's honestly very smooth.

She is in the boonies on satellite internet with a 200MB/day cap.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

The $799 Mini really seems like the way to go, just because you're going to spend some amount to upgrade the base model to 4GB of RAM anyway.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

The 13 inch MBP could certainly disappear, but I'm really hoping it becomes something much more deserving of the name "Pro". Ditch the optical drive for a HDD/SDD combo, and put in a proper graphics chip like the new Mac Mini. It can be priced at a premium compared to the cheaper Air - perhaps $1500 or so for the base model.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

illcendiary posted:

What's the difference between this:

http://amzn.to/qXYOTb

and this:

http://amzn.to/n7eaa5

One's available immediately, and one doesn't ship for 2 to 5 weeks. I'm guessing the only difference is the new icons for Launchpad and Mission Control?

I'm thinking of buying a Mac Mini to use as an HTPC, and then buying an Apple Keyboard and Trackpad to navigate from the couch. Has anyone used a Magicwand to combine the two into one convenient unit? Seems like it'd be a nice couch surfing solution: http://amzn.to/pTme8F

I think the best solution is an iOS device with Touchpad installed. http://www.edovia.com/touchpad

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

My Magic Trackpad is feeling a little sticky thanks to the AC going out. What's the best way to clean this guy?

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

There were some refurb 2011 minis very briefly sometime last week, according to this: http://refurb-tracker.com/

Prices were $519 for the low end, $699 for the high end.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Pixel-doubled web sites are going to look so bad on that screen.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Bob Morales posted:

It's like Firewire all over again: Nobody buys it because it's too expensive and it's expensive because nobody buys it.

I really liked Firewire. My Sony laptop had it, my G4 Powerbook had it, my Dell laptop had it. I had a DVD-RW and external HD chained up to it. One plug for both devices and I could connect my camcorder without ruining that. Much better than USB 2.0.

If Apple would at least give us USB 3.0 so we didn't have to deal with 25MB/s external hard drives...

Sure, for the people who really -need- 2TB of fast storage can afford it because they can make the cost back in 1-2 jobs using the equipment. That seems like it's been standard forever. $2699 for a dual G4 tower? Sure I'll just pay for it by shooting 2 weddings.

But for home users or the Average Joe, you're stuck with poo poo.

Don't write it off quite yet. If I've understood these crazy hardware sites correctly, Intel's Thunderbolt support starts on the new Ivy Bridge boards, so it really hasn't had a full industry-wide launch. Apple should also get USB 3.0 once they start using Ivy Bridge parts, since it's built into the chipset.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

I am not sure if it would affect the sound quality, but this (pretty decent) Logitech headset comes with this little doodad, which does exactly what it looks like it does:



If you are attached to your current headset, you could get it and just plug in yours instead.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

chupacabraTERROR posted:

I'd like to do it this way, since I want to leave my desk speakers plugged into the "audio out" plug and the headset plugged into the "audio in", as if it were just a standalone microphone.

A USB mic is definitely the best option for this, since you can just leave it plugged in all the time, and switch what is active by option-clicking on the sound menulet.



(Though, confusingly, OS X refers to the audio out jack as 'headphones,' even on a desktop Mac.)

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Star War Sex Butt posted:

Ivy Bridge which will be ~15% better performance, and probably a bit better battery. Radeon 7000M series. Possible chassis change finally? 13" MBP will probably get the Air's resolution, and maybe the hi-res option on the 15" becomes stock, but that's wishful thinking at this point.

Now that the Air has the low end covered, I really hope the 13" Pro continues to exist, but with actual advantages over the Air. The screen and discrete graphics, at least, and perhaps space for the Air-style SSD stick along with a standard hard drive. I have no interest in a 15-inch laptop, but really want the added horsepower/storage.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

The version of Civ V on the Mac is pretty poorly optimized. It runs orders of magnitude better in boot camp.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Casao posted:

What's the outlook on the mini? Mac rumors says don't buy, but they don't show any rumors about updates and it's only about halfway through its usual cycle.

It's waiting on Ivy Bridge, like the rest of the line.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

FlashBangBob posted:

Or, we're going to install the operating system on built in 64-128GB SSDs and give you a spinning drive for storage, standard across all laptops.

It would be great if an unannounced feature of Mountain Lion made this simple. They're not going to tell normal people they have to manage storage in the way it would currently be set up.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

How do the Momentus drives work if you use Boot Camp? It seems like the caching would get reset every time you switch OSes.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Sinestro posted:

He is saying that it would be useless for a while after you switched OSes because it would be caching all the files for the other OS.

This is what I was wondering about - it seems like time spent on another OS would uncache files for the primary OS. I just wasn't sure how quickly the drive decided that the files (or just sectors of the hard drive) cached were no longer useful.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

That's a mockup made by some lovely website, not the real thing.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

If Apple ditches ethernet, they may decide to include two Thunderbolt ports instead, which should allow for two standard monitors with adapters?

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Mercurius posted:

I'm kind of hoping that 2560x1600 resolution isn't correct for the 15" MBP, because that's only effectively 1280x800 in HiDPI mode.

This is why the 13" still has a 1280x800 screen!

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

AlternateAccount posted:

HiDPI needs to really have a 50% or 75% mode which is smoother, but doesn't outright double. Would probably increase the size of apps way too much to have 3-4 different sets of their graphic assets, but it would be nice. You could even run the different apps in different HiDPI modes. That would be superkeen.

The reason HiDPI and 2x mode on iOS work so easily is that they simply double the number of pixels. Any app that doesn't support HiDPI will just look ugly, but function the same, since they can just multiply it by two.

I am not sure a retina Mac will be a very pleasant experience for the period just after it's released, and potentially much longer. Lots of older Mac apps that aren't being actively developed will probably never get retina updates, and there's no good way to deliver retina images on the web, so almost any picture or graphic online is going to look like crap.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

I wonder if you can actually plug three monitors into the new MBP. It has HDMI and two Thunderbolt ports.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

badjohny posted:

I thought thunderbolt was two monitors each. So couldn't you have five monitors hooked up? Two on each TB and one in the HDMI?

True! I was thinking purely of non-$800 monitors.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

chupacabraTERROR posted:

Oh no, they're not immediately updating their massive creative suite for your first generation high-end laptop?! A few months until an update? Definitely getting hosed here.

If they don't update the version released just a few months ago, as implied by Apple in the WWDC keynote, and instead wait until CS7, then you'll have to shell out hundreds or thousands of dollars for an upgrade that is probably a year or more away. So yeah, you would be getting hosed.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Bob Morales posted:

Amazon, NewEgg, wherever there is a sale. Watch slickdeals

There's a thread in Deals, too: http://forums.somethingawful.com/sh...hreadid=3475459

Just don't buy OCZ.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

I really hope that a Mac Mini refresh keeps the dedicated graphics on the higher-end model.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Bob Morales posted:

They wouldn't have any justification for going to the new, proprietary SSD other than 'gently caress users who upgrade themselves', right?

Economies of scale?

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

RIP, Mac Mini with dedicated graphics. 2011-2012. You will be missed.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Oxford Comma posted:

How does it compare to the GPU in the 2011 Mac Mini? The 6630M?

It's a big improvement over the base 2011 Mini, but well behind the 6630M.

2011 base
2011 with 6630M
2012

Edit: beaten, but I've got links

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

"Fusion Drive" is entirely a software thing.

quote:

For starters, the 128GB of NAND is simply an SSD on a custom form factor PCB with the same connector that's used in the new MacBook Air and rMBP models. I would expect this SSD to use the same Toshiba or Samsung controllers we've seen in other Macs. The iMac I played with had a Samsung based SSD inside.

Total volume size is the sum of both parts. In the case of the 128GB + 1TB option, the total available storage is ~1.1TB. The same is true for the 128GB + 3TB option (~3.1TB total storage).

By default the OS and all preloaded applications are physically stored on the 128GB of NAND flash. But what happens when you go to write to the array?

With Fusion Drive enabled, Apple creates a 4GB write buffer on the NAND itself. Any writes that come in to the array hit this 4GB buffer first, which acts as sort of a write cache. Any additional writes cause the buffer to spill over to the hard disk. The idea here is that hopefully 4GB will be enough to accommodate any small file random writes which could otherwise significantly bog down performance. Having those writes buffer in NAND helps deliver SSD-like performance for light use workloads.

http://www.anandtech.com/show/6406/...es-fusion-drive

Cheap SSDs won't be getting anywhere near this kind of space for the foreseeable future. I assume Fusion drive is a major part of whatever Mac Pro plans Apple has next year.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Electric Bugaloo posted:

I'm going to add that I signed up for iTunes match in September, and it's been amazing. I still haven't wiped the music from my Air- and I'll probably replace it before I'd do that just out of habit (and also because I frequently travel to areas without fast wifi for long stretches and I want to have my music)- but it's a fantastic option for people with small capacity drives. You could easily get by- especially if you're always on campus during the school year- with uploading everything to Match, backing it all up on an external drive (or better, keeping it on another computer), wiping the music from- let's say- your MBA, and just streaming it all. Just remember to always pay your annual $25 fee and you should be set.

iTunes match has been mostly great, but there's definitely some weird edge cases you have to watch out for. I've had trouble with getting clean versions of explicit songs, and the mono versions of the Beatles albums are downloaded elsewhere as stereo.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Daric posted:

Does anyone here use a Mac Mini for a media center? I have a giant desktop I built a few years ago. It was my only computer until i got a Macbook Pro in June. Now I just use to as a media center for the house. I'm thinking about switching it out with the Mac Mini because it'll take up way less room and be compatible with my Pro.

Anyone else doing this? It seems like a good idea on paper.

If you are already on board with having a complicated-rear end computer involved in playing videos, and don't find it to be a bit much, the mini makes for a fine media center, considering how tiny and quiet they are. If you buy a recent one, you can even play some basic games.

But, I think I'm about to sell my 2006 mini and switch over to an AppleTV, because I just want things to be simple.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

I always thought this was a convenient-looking Macbook Air storage solution: http://theniftyminidrive.com

Unfortunately, the 11-inch lacks the SD card slot.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

So this is what Disk Utility says after I format my new Intel 330 SSD: http://db.tt/bXmxETZJ

But this happens after anything tries to put stuff on it: http://db.tt/KBP1Hlqa

Seems like I have a bad SSD?

(Apologies for Dropbox image links, posting from iPad)

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

I wonder if Apple/someone else might ever build a video card into a Thunderbolt display, which would streamline things significantly.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Logikv9 posted:

It's totally subjective but I just don't know how to use it. I haven't spent a lot of time on an macbook, but I use my university's iMacs a lot (with a keyboard and mouse) and I try to do things and I feel that I'm doing it slower than I would be normally on a windows machine.

I think you'd be fine as long as you go in with an open mind. There are things that are different, but as long as you're willing to go with the flow and accept that things are going to work differently, you should be okay. (Also, having a machine that is yours alone should help immensely. I can never really feel comfortable on a someone else's computer, Mac or otherwise.)

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

I like Cmd because I can hit it with my thumb easily. Ctrl requires me to contort my pinky in unnatural ways.

This, however, renders the argument moot:

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

SourKraut posted:

Why? Someone can both like Apple products and want to customize them to suit their needs.

There's customizing to suit your needs, and then there's thinking you know how to manage temperatures in a laptop better than Apple engineers.

cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

Maniblack posted:

My girlfriend has a 15 inch rMBP and she complains constantly about websites and applications that are "blurry". I have taken a look at what she is describing and sometimes I can see it, but sometimes I can't. Is this a common problem, and what have you guys done to resolve it?

I would guess she is just seeing websites and apps that have not been properly optimized for the retina display.

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cbirdsong
Sep 8, 2004

Commodore of the Apocalypso

Lipstick Apathy

I don't really see them releasing a retina 13" Air in the next few years, now that the retina 13" Pro exists. If they both had retina displays, they'd be almost identical, and if they could sell the retina machines for the price of the Air, they wouldn't be selling them alongside the non-retina machines in the first place. It makes much more sense to keep the Airs as non-retina machines that prioritize battery life, and keep pushing the price down.

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