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  • tipoo - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Any info on that? Does this have the new fan as well? Reply
  • NCM - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Thermals shouldn't be much different than the previous model, since the internals are very similar, as is the TDP. See also the iFixit teardown here: < Reply
  • tipoo - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    The case design and airflow are different though. This doesn't have those side vents, more space for air though. And the whole heatsink design looks different. Reply
  • akfanta - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I think the side vents and different case design are only for retina mbp. Reply
  • tipoo - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I know. That's why I'm asking if the thermals and noise are different between the two. Reply
  • gnumantsc - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    For $2200 that is absolutely a waste of money on a machine that has a 1400x900 and poorly spec'd. I would rather get the Zenbook pro over Mac any day of the week. Reply
  • coder543 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    For $2200, you should get the Retina Pro which is better than any Zenbook Prime by a good margin, and I would say better than any laptop on the market. (if someone points out a 10lb desktop replacement gaming laptop with an hour of battery life, they are only considering raw number crunching performance. A product is not defined by one number or another, but by all numbers considered at once.) Reply
  • Ratman6161 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    $2200 or $1799 or even $1599. I'm just not going to pay those prices for a notebook (anyone's notebook) no matter how good it is. They are just outside the price range I'm willing to pay. Reply
  • michael2k - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Did you notice how the $2200 MBP compares to the 2008 8 core Xeon Mac Pro?

    You're paying for a portable workstation, here.
  • iSayuSay - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    A workstation from 2008 .. yeaah .. sure. Might as well say my iPhone is faster than Pentium III workstation box from 1998. I'm paying for a phone more capable than a full fledged computer 12 years ago. How can that be different? Reply
  • Samus - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I don't understand the pricing, either. These Macbook Pro's make the Retina model look like a steal at $2199... Reply
  • cyabud - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    That's kind of the point. If you're in the market for a new MBP, Apple are hoping you'll go for the Retina model. Reply
  • randinspace - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    >_< That's so illogical you're probably right. All I can say is, WTF Apple, WTF. Reply
  • ciabatta - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    For $2200, I'll get a Zenbook Prime for me and my wife! Reply
  • ciabatta - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Hah, that is, 2x Zenbook Prime can be a lot more useful to many people than 1x rMBP. Both good, but saying a $2200 laptop is better than a $1100 laptop is kinda missing the point. Reply
  • mavere - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    And what point is that? If I buy 2x Zenbook Primes, at least one would spend most of its life in its box.

    1) People have budgets. At times, they're higher than yours might be.

    2) Higher end features demand higher prices.

    Perhaps you should get comfortable with those facts.
  • Sunburn74 - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I think its dubuous to say that apple really is offering higher end features over the recent advances of their competitiors.

    Even if they are, this much higher is... well simply put outrageous, even compared to their OWN PRODUCTS!
  • darwinosx - Thursday, December 06, 2012 - link

    Then you need to read the retina MBP reviews. Reply
  • darwinosx - Thursday, December 06, 2012 - link

    Asus makes junk that they fail to support. Plus you are still running Windows. Life is too short for either. Reply
  • inplainview - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Then don't buy it for God's sake. It's not your money... Reply
  • Sunburn74 - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    What? you have to buy something in order to be able to rightfully criticize it these days? Reply
  • stimudent - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Another overpriced Apple product. Reply
  • stimudent - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Anything that gives us an alternative to Windows is a good thing. Now if only we could get away from Intel chips. Reply
  • Hendrix248 - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    Never heard of Linux? Why would you want to move away from the best chips on the market? Reply
  • Belard - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    As another has posted, its a standard design.... and it is a bit expensive. A ThinkPad T500 with the same specs that comes out of the same FOXCONN company sells for several hundred dollars less.

    okay, where is the full review on the Motorola Atrix HD?!
  • Belard - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    By the way... a physical Ethernet port is still very handy for those times when you cannot get WIFI... there are some hotels/motels who are still wired. Or if you are at a location or family place where the WIFI fails or they lose the WiFi Password.

    Or you are at a clients place and need quick access and they don't want to give your wifi access.
  • inplainview - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    It has Ethernet over Thunderbolt.... Reply
  • Hendrix248 - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    After you buy the adapter... Reply
  • Grok42 - Sunday, July 22, 2012 - link

    Wi-Fi is great for quickly connecting to the Internet and other casual usage but I think apple has really underestimated the need for a wired connection, at least with current Wi-Fi tech. The problem with Wi-Fi is that it has a MUCH higher latency than a wired connection. This is important for voice, video or remotely viewing desktops. Wi-Fi is also very prone to dropping connections if for only a split second. You would never notice when browsing the web as the connection is stateless. However, if you use any networking services that won't survive a dropped connection it can be frustrating. These services include copying files, SSH, RDP, VNC, etc.

    Probably the biggest need for Ethernet is when dealing with large files. I can transfer a 15GB file from our servers in a few seconds with a gigabit Ethernet port. I have had it take hours to copy the same file over Wi-Fi. That is unless the signal drops at which point you will want to throw things when you have to start over again.

    It seems that Apple or someone should be working on standardizing a slimmer version of the RJ-45 connector. Dongles go against everything Apple stands for on the design side.
  • sandro - Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - link

    This is something I have been wondering since some time. What is in the way of standardizing a slimmer RJ-45 connector? Adapters would be so inexpensive that they could be included with the product. I wonder why Apple went this way instead of making a thunderbolt to ethernet dongle, which by construction costs quite some money and takes away one (to become) precious port. Reply
  • dillettante - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    The superdrive can be replaced with more internal storage. I use a SSD for a fast system drive and supplement that with a large mechanical HDD for data storage.

  • chemist1 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Agreed, for many that might be the most significant advantage of the older form factor. Also, you would need the older form factor if you wanted a dual-SSD RAID configuration for better performance. Reply
  • Bonzauker - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Exactly the reason why I stay away from the retina, at least at the moment. I put one 256 GB as main drive and the 750GB replacing the DVD. For my job, a notebook with only 256GB is useless. Reply
  • GotThumbs - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    I choose to read this additional Apple review since it was written by a different reviewer, but feel it provides little value over just posting the spec comparison sheet directly from Apples website. This is simply a comparison between Apples past iterations of its own past parts bins. How much time was spent on this anyway?

    It would have been more informative if it had included other vendors similarly spec'd systems in the performance. While they won't have resolutions comparable to the Retina screen....Apples hardware is made up of many PC components available in the market place. Of course this excludes Apples proprietary designed reiterations of PC components (SSD).

    I think the only point that really needs to be made that if your an Apple is yet another version of the old case with overdue upgrades in the internals. Non-Apple users need not bother.

    I used to like to read Anandtech because It would provide an opportunity to learn about new technology and provided comparable performance information between components and systems in a clean and unbiased manner.

    From now on...maybe it would be best if any Apple product review begins with..This review sponsored by Apple.

    I'll still continue to read Anandtech, but know that any Apple review is just an advertisement/endorsement and thus read it with limited expectations of an unbiased comparison whats currently available in the marketplace.

    At least this reviewer provided readers with information on an option for savings by passing over Apples overpriced upgrades and go thought a vendor for the parts at a price savings. I'm sure Apple reps were not happy, but it helps provide a small sense of reader centric writing instead of pleasing Apple.

    $2,200 for a laptop...when there are PC alternatives available for hundreds less....yet no mention or comparison of those systems. If readers are only browsing, email and FB' this really worth the money? Only if your a tech-fashonista.

  • Sunburn74 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Well said. Pretty much a review for people who have already decided they want to buy a mac and nothing else. Reply
  • Sunburn74 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    In addition, in this day and age, to sell any machine costing over $1000 without a SSD is an absolute travesty. Reply
  • nevertell - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Anand has stated before that there is little to no cross shopping between apple and pc laptops.
    It is difficult to review different hardware with different OS's. Whilst many components may seem to be the same, apple has been known before to slip their own secret sauce into the hardware to be able to do things that just wouldn't be possible with the standard PC hardware, like the scaling hardware in the rMBP.
  • Freakie - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Scaling hardware? And I haven't really seem much secret sauce in Apple's hardware. I see lots of lazy sauce, and people confusing design flares with engineering prowess. Reply
  • pmhparis - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    So, in your opinion Apple didn't innovate with the rMBP+OSX scaling Where can i find it then? Not on any PC+Windows nor on any PC+Linux.

    You clearly refuse to see that its the whole package that makes the rMBPs scaling a class above everything else out today. Too much emotional investment in windows like so many others. At least it makes it easy to see that your complains are biased.
  • Super56K - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    I think it's more emotional investment in the hatred of Apple as a whole. Reply
  • dagamer34 - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    There is no scaling hardware in the rMBP. Apple instead uses custom software scaling algorithms. Did you really read Anand's review?

    Regardless, with a Mac, you are basically paying for support up front in the form of stores where you can easily get your Mac serviced, and if it's badly screwed up, totally replaced.
  • Sunburn74 - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    If thats true, how come with every windows laptop, anand is sure to include little macbook and macbook air jabs here and there? Reply
  • robco - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Most likely be cause Apple sweats the details in their designs while others don't. If they can't get something adequate for their goals off the shelf, they design their own. I've yet to see a review of an ultrabook where it manages to have a good display, good keyboard, solid build quality and, the big one - a trackpad that works well. Yet the MacBook Air hits all these points. The panel is decent (not the very best, but good), the keyboard is great to type on and backlit, the unibody design is solid and the multitouch trackpad works great. Battery life is also very good.

    I think it's the frustration that other companies are either unwilling or unable to design laptops with the same level of care and attention to detail. Apple provides a very good end-to-end consumer experience. It's a shame that so far few have come close to matching it.
  • Sunburn74 - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    No what I'm saying is, if anand truly believes there is no cross shopping between apple and windows machines, why with every windows machine review he has little jabs about how they pale compared to apple and he throws in an obligatory "you can buythis machine but for more money you can just buy apple", but with apple reviews he fails to mention that windows machines exist at all.

    You can't play both sides of the field at once.
  • seanleeforever - Thursday, August 02, 2012 - link

    because Anand is a Mac lover (i think he made similar statement in one of his apple product review) and as such, he felt obligated to point out how inferior other PC manufacture is in comparison.

    it is like, when you describe how smart a monkey is, you always list a human as a reference, but you never do the other way around.

    Me, on the other hand, don't care crap about apples' product. it is too limiting and i think OSX is (at least to me) less functional than windows, which fits college girl perfectly since all they do is facebook and youtube, and you don't have to worry as much when clicking randomly ads or fancy icon on the web.

    i have yet to see a serious programmer use mac. just saying.
  • mavere - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Considering that only Apple laptops can legitly run OSX, it means that if you're in the market for a Macbook, you're pretty much *only* in the market for a Macbook.

    The sparse comparisons to other Macbooks were warranted in context of a barely upgraded product, and the review even ends in an anti-endorsement!

    Honestly, you're just complaining because you have preconceived notions of the brand, and are just upset (for some reason) that the reviewer didn't build up on those biases, even if he didn't refute them at all.
  • Sunburn74 - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Not really. There are plenty of people who consider both macs and windows. I consider myself in that category. I'm willing to switch to a macbook air if the price is right, OS regardless. However, I just don't see why I should suffer through an OS switch at those prices compared to what comparable windows machines offer.

    But thats just the thing: when guys like us who have no problem putting bootcamp on say an iMac or something, or having 2 or 3 oses, or dare I say run linux if our mood so fits us read reviews like this, we get no actual information other than "drool anand loves macs... buy one....drool some more".

    How about some objectivity? Some comparisons for people who could buy a macbook pro or could end up going with a nice high end sony vaio or something.
  • ggathagan - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    But that has been done to death in so many other articles, it ends up with the reviewer essentially beating a dead horse.

    Seriously, do you really need the reviewer to state for the umpteenth time that if you are platform-neutral, you tend to get better value from a non-Apple product; that you pay extra for the Apple name and look?
  • Krane1 - Sunday, August 12, 2012 - link

    I doubt that. Maybe one half of 1%. Other than that, you either buy foreign or domestic Reply
  • ananduser - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    I am eagerly awaiting for the MBP 13" review. Reply
  • tipoo - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    If you want one, I'd advise waiting at least until the end of October, a few sources have been saying the 13" is next up on the Retina upgrade docket. If it's anything like the 15"s, that means a few hundred more for a far better screen, SSD, and more RAM.

    As for the current one, pretty easy to extrapolate, slightly better battery life, slightly better CPU performance, up to 60% better GPU.
  • secretmanofagent - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    That makes no sense to me. The 13" to my knowledge has never had a discrete graphics card, and it would be very close to the 13" MBA (and has never had quad core). It would make more sense to drop the 13" MBP and just do the updates on the MBA. Reply
  • joer80 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    I agree with this review. (Owner of rMBP.) Good job AnandTech! Reply
  • nikolayo - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Am I the only one who believes that in 2012 a 1440x900 screen is entirely inadequate for a top-tier notebook which MBP aspires to be? Reply
  • tipoo - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    On this site, probably. I love my 1920x1080 on 15". Reply
  • pmhparis - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I appreciated my Dell e6500s 15" 1920x1200 too but
    - it was heavy, & I carried it work-home half the time on my back
    - It had throttlegate problems where GPU use would throttle the CPU down to 10%
    - It's middle of the road build quality meant that it was coming apart at the seams.

    My daughter's 2009 MBP is in great shape even if has a few dents from being put in a bookbag that was dropped a couple times.

    I now have a rMBP that I'll certainly use 2 x longer than any PC I've had up to now. Why is it that some people believe that a PC that is cheaper but needs to be replaced more often is less expensive?
  • Death666Angel - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Wow, I don't see how you manage to engage in any of the conversations to which you replied. You just ended up bashing on Dell notebook, praising an Apple notebook and making a general statement that is (as most general statements) very flawed. Good job! :D Reply
  • tipoo - Thursday, August 16, 2012 - link

    Whoops, read OP as adequate, not inadequate. Reply
  • sudokill - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    If you buy a 2012 MBP, ditch the optical drive and put a 256GB SSD, upgrade to the higher res screen, you essentially get the rMBP price. But for losing the retina screen, you get completely replaceable parts (keep in mind the warranty is still the same at 1 year for both), over 1TB of total internal storage (you keep the original 750GB HDD), same SSD speed, ethernet port, FW port, and the ability to upgrade/change components. The retina screen is nice, but is it really worth all that??

    The most important is the peace of mind... if any little component goes bad on the rMBP after a year, you'll have to scrap the whole thing or pay an arm or leg to fix. With the regular MBP, you can easily replace your own parts.
  • inplainview - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    That is if you live in the US with the crappy warranty. However in Europe the warranty is two years... Reply
  • Death666Angel - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Please inform yourself before you make such statements. I don't know how this translates to the rest of Europe, but in Germany, Apple still only offers 1 year warranty (="Garantie"). Warranty is a voluntary service the manufacturer provides. The thing we get 2 years of is "Gewährleistung" which my online dictionary translates as "defects liability"/"guarantee"/"warranty". "Gewährleistung" is something you have with the retailer. However, after 6 months there is a shifting of the burden of proof which means you will have a hard time getting anything after that. Reply
  • repoman27 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Or you could shell out for AppleCare and be covered for 3 years.

    I never go for the extended warranties personally because I fix my own stuff. I reckon that in a couple years eBay will be awash with MBPR parts. The device essentially breaks down into 14 components, making repairs super simple—If you can find a Torx Plus Security screwdriver. Trash your $2199-$3749 laptop? Part it out and you could recoup a good deal of that.

    Apple stuff rarely just gets tossed in the trash. I see beige and black boxes in dumpsters and on the curb all the time, but not usually Macs unless they're more than 10 years old.
  • joos2000 - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Not cheap, but what is nowadays (if you want decent quality gear)?
  • pmhparis - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Not quite the same SSD speed, at present. Anand's numbers show that the SSD in the MBP is faster. Give it a few months & you may be able to get a faster SSD than the rMBP's but not right now. Reply
  • nevertell - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Ethernet is still a lot more reliable than Wi-Fi. Imagine if you have to do some stuff to your router, then there is no other way than using the ethernet port.
    I believe that networking for any kind of a functional computational device is essential nowadays, then again, this isn't a device that is targeted at people who use their laptop for administering other devices or coding.

    Still, I can't wait for the day that lenovo will finaly send you their latest X, T and W series laptops.
    I would just love a X230 with 16 hour battery life and Thunderbolt, so I could just have an external GPU to game on it at home and excellent battery life and portability.
  • Freakie - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Most routers come with USB ports so it's still manageable with a computer without ethernet. Though I do still think ethernet should stick around. Sometimes you find yourself in a place with crappy WiFi but a readily available ethernet port (office buildings, universities, ect.). Plus if you're doing online gaming on a laptop, getting yourself some CAT6e or CAT7 cables supposedly makes that little bit of difference xP Reply
  • pmhparis - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    What exactly is the point of your comment in an article about the non retina MBP given that it has an integrated ethernet port?

    Even for a rMBP all it takes is a $30 TBolt<>Ethernet cable? That's what make it too hard for you?
  • SongEmu - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Yup, did just that. Got a late 2011 MBP 15", put in an SSD and a hard drive caddy to replace the optical drive. Power button to login screen in 16 seconds, costs less than $1600 with no tax, no shipping. Got Parallels for free with it. Reply
  • olivebranch2006 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Just purchased a Thinkpad T530 with Full HD 1920x1080 display with 95% color accuracy, not this 67% on the MBP.
    Intel Core i7-3720QM Processor
    NVIDIA NVS 5400M Graphics with Optimus Technology, 1GB DDR3 Memory
    Keyboard Backlit - US English
    720p HD Camera with Microphone
    320GB Hard Disk Drive, 7200rpm
    DVD Recordable
    9 Cell Li-Ion TWL 70++
    Intel Centrino Ultimate-N 6300 AGN
    with 4 year onsite warranty with accidental protection. All this with the carbon fiber-reinforced plastic shell and internal magnesium roll cage the Thinkpad T series is famous for.

    Guess how much? $1,530 total with tax/shipping.

    Beat that apple. The Macbook is purchased for two reasons:

    1. You like OS X. Which is fine, I think OS X is a great OS with low level audio/video optimizations that windows can't beat. I prefer Windows better.
    2. A lifestyle choice.
  • dartox - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Maybe, but you haven't noticed that the 650m inside the MacBook Pro is far superior to the card you have there in the Thinkpad. In fact, last year's MacBook Pro still has faster graphics than the Thinkpad. Not to mention that (although Thinkpads are known for being durable/reliable), nothing can touch the unibody build quality of these MBPs. For a couple hundred dollars more, a Mac fills in all the (albeit minor) gaps that the Thinkpad has. Reply
  • snajk138 - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Well, the graphics in the MBP is faster when it comes to games and such, but the NVS is a professional grade card that is tuned for reliability in CAD/CAM applications and the like. Not really comparable to the consumer grade card in the mac.

    And you are mistaking perceived quality for actual quality. The MBP is one of the best when it comes to the perceived quality but it doesn't hold a candle to (real) thinkpads when it comes to actual quality. Iv'e dropped thinkpads on a concrete floor, spilled coffee in them and really just abused the hell out of them and I've still haven't had one break before their time. Try that with any mac and you'll see the difference between perceived quality and actual quality.

    I'm not saying that a MBP is a bad choice. I mean, it is thin, light and the performance isn't bad, and a lot of people seem to think they look nice in spite of the dated aluminium design. But a lot of people prioritize differently.
  • Malih - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    yeppp, a macbook is a brick once you spill liquid over it, for most people that have them. Reply
  • pmhparis - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    So, for the 0.01% of the people who need to perform CAD/CAM work on it the Lenovo is better. Good to know.

    As for build quality, It'd be nice if the series of lenovo's my company gave me that I
    passed of to my son would have been able to withstand the same level of abuse that my daughters MBP got. The Lenovos broke. The MBP just got dented for whet seemed to me to be worse treartment. I had to get the Lenovo's replaced 3 times but the MBP is still running solidly.

    I think your "percieved" is an artifact.
  • dartox - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    i've dropped my macbook pro several times, on hardwood here and the tile floors of india with no damage to the screen, just scratches and scuffs on the unibody casing. don't underestimate the build quality of a macbook pro. not to mention that non-unibody computers can have the casing compromised and parts start to come apart after drops. the "roll cage" is only good for saving the screen if you're lucky (and it's not perfect either). Reply
  • The0ne - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I whole heartily agree with you. Most members here have this perceived quality about Macs, Apple products in general, that they can't seem to think beyond it. The main reason for this perception is inexperience and, for some, ignorance. I should state that ignorance is from the lack of not knowing because you were too young, never read about it, never researched, etc. I don't mean it to be condescending. The other is because of personal, very subjective opinions such as your laptop, usually PC in this case, breaking down first before your Mac.

    Thinkpads are great industrial laptops and can stand whatever force you put on them. That is really why they are so popular. If you haven't used them you don't know how valuable they really are, more so than any review can do for you imo.

    Having said that though, the sheer amount of cheaply priced laptops nowadays should be avoided at all cost. They are horrendously made and it would be worthwhile for you to spend a little more for a good quality build laptop. If Mac makes you feel good and safe owing it by all means own one, just know that there are laptops on the PC side that are very very well made for professionals, especially for those that travel often.

    The MBP is good product and I absolutely love the retina display but for the price it is very difficult for me to make a purchase for myself or have reasons enough to persuade the company to consider them.

    Lastly, I agree that Mac reviews here are really left alone without comparisons to Windows counterparts. Whatever the case may be, it is the same for Windows base laptop reviews with the difference you have choices on the Windows side to actually have comparisons between them. This is the key difference in the reviews. While acceptable the way Anandtech does the Mac reviews, they are in some ways very limiting. You basically just have a review/update of a product with no choices to consider. As someone already said, when you consider a Mac you want a Mac and will get a Mac. There's no other choices when you dive in the Mac side.
  • The0ne - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    It seems other have responded before my post went live about the quality of MBP and thinkpads. Again, comparing what your daughters does to a thinkpad and MBP is ludicrous. You don't know what each has gone through to be broken with. Here's what you should be looking for when you shop, the tests and facts.

    Thinkpads are tested and qualified to sustain damage, to a certain high degree. I don't know about the MBP and whether it goes through the same types of test so I can't say much (my ignorance here). I've done my share of destructive testing on products and I don't doubt the MBP has gone through some. But these thinkpads are sturdy and are made to be that way.

    When you're making comparisons that is what you should be looking for, not making irrelevant justifications because your kids, your wife or the dog can break your windows laptop quicker than your Mac. That's just insane.
  • Super56K - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    So you say: "When you're making comparisons that is what you should be looking for, not making irrelevant justifications..."

    And you even began your initial post critiquing others on "perceived quality about Macs."

    But, aren't you yourself doing that? You say you don't know what kind of testing they go through, but that doesn't stop you from indirectly hinting that they're not durable. Seems like very contradictory reasoning.
  • snajk138 - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    The Thinkpads go through MIL-SPEC tests for use in field and vehicle semi-ruggedized computing environments such as in public safety, utilities, construction and the military. That is why they are used by the military, by NASA in space and so forth. Macs don't go hrough that kind of testing and therefore are not used in those types of environments. Reply
  • joelypolly - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Well the Thinkpad is 1.25~1.40" thick and heavier than the 15" MBP. Reply
  • KoolAidMan1 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    The GPU in that Thinkpad is much slower, plus you're also getting less storage. This is before we get into things like trackpad and keyboard quality, magsafe, an OS optimized for laptops, etc etc Reply
  • snajk138 - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    The GPU only matters for games though, and neither machine is really ment for that.

    Less storage depends on how you order it, the thinkpad can have an SSD in the m-SATA port, an SSD or HDD in the HDD-bay and an optical unit, SSD or HDD in the optical bay. So, more options.

    The trackpad is better on a mac but it doesn't offer a trackpoint (nub, nipple, clit or whatever you want to call it) that many prefer to any trackpad and Thinkpads have arguably the best keyboards of any laptops. Magsafe is mostly a gimmick, a solution to a problem that doesn't exist. OSX isn't more optimized for laptops than Windows.
  • cyabud - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    It is a shame that Apple hardware is so expensive and it's the primary reason that thousands of geeks out there are experimenting with hackintoshes.

    I run Windows and OS X on my machines (Windows for games, OS X for everything else) partly because I prefer OS X and partly because I use software (namely Logic and Final Cut) that only exist for OS X.

    I've been through my fair share of MBPs over the years but in 2009 I decided to build a desktop and go the hackintosh route. It is virtually identical to an Early 2009 Mac Pro (single CPU model) and I saved about €1000 in the process.

    When it comes to notebooks though, I will still cough up the extra cash for a Macbook because I know it'll run both OS X and Windows without a hitch. Getting OS X running on a PC is considerably harder when you don't get to pick and choose each individual component in the system.

    Although there are things I admire about Apple (tight integration between product lines, pushing high res displays into the consumer market and a lot of the very high quality software that comes bundled with Macs) it is a real shame that ultimately choice of hardware is so limited and you're pretty much obliged to pay a premium for it if you want OS X (and you're not a geek who's willing to get his hands dirty).

    If OS X isn't your cup of tea or vital to your workflow, there are very few reasons to justify buying a Mac.
  • ABR - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    When will we stop getting these tired old posts comparing specs? Yes, you can buy a Chevy Impala with the same horsepower, gas mileage, etc. as a BMW 3 Series. It'll probably last decently and be easier/cheaper for you to fix if something goes wrong. Does that mean you're willing to pay the same price as for the BMW? Folks, the whole is not the sum of the parts.

    Even if you somehow conclude that Windows with all of its need to manage anti-virus and anti-spyware spyware, hunt down media management/creation programs OS X gives you out of the box, deal with DOS legacy clunk, etc. is on parity with OS X, you are still missing the little things and the intangibles that bring the whole experience up to a different level. I could list these and you could laugh at them, just as you can laugh at BMW owners for wasting their money when half their cash would have gotten them equally well from point A to point B. But that's not going to stop people from buying them. A "lifestyle choice"? Heck yes!
  • cyabud - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Although I understand and agree with much of what you're saying about the intangibles of OS X; you're still assuming that OS X is "better" than Windows. Arguing over which system is better is pointless as it's completely subjective.

    In my opinion Windows is better for games and broad software compatibility. There are also some great features in Win 7 like window snapping which require the purchase of a cheap app if you want the same functionality in OS X.

    On the other hand, I find I work more efficiently in OS X and everything feels more fluid and fast. I run both systems off solid state storage, while all my media resides on hard drives, and I still find that OS X boots/sleeps/shuts down faster and generally feels more responsive overall.

    Have you ever tried sitting someone in front of a Mac who's never used on before? I think you'll find that most will tell you it's not as intuitive as fanboys like to make out and that Windows is "much easier to use". Ultimately it's all down to what you're used to and your personal preferences/needs when it comes to the software you use.

    If you run both systems you truly get the best of both worlds.
  • ABR - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I didn't mean just OS X, I meant the hardware also. Things like the feel of the machine, the way it clicks when you close it, the soft, analog pulsing of the sleep light, the battery indicator, the lack of cheesy Intel stickers, etc. etc.. The details of the experience are paid attention to by the engineers and designers, and it makes a difference to the QUALITY of the experience perceived by (some, not all) users.

    I agree with you about one OS or the other seeming "easier to use" based on experience, and in fact would even say 7 has brought Windows pretty close to the Mac in terms of a lot of this "quality" stuff from just the OS perspective. But it's the whole experience that matters, not just software or hardware alone.
  • uiane - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Man, the retina is a beauty!!
    the main issue is, FIREWIRE.
    We audio people are left with no option other than de 15" cheaper version + SSD + 16GB.
    and maybe swap the drive for a second HDD. (lossing the warranty)...
    Everytime I think in trading my Late 2011 15" I think on the retina with 512GB SSD and 16GB ram on, but then, NO FIREWIRE.
    Apple talked about a thunderbolt to firewire adapter in july... well, july is passing.
  • inplainview - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    On August 1st you have a valid gripe... Until then, not so much... Reply
  • Prism - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    In regards to the pricing comparison in this article:

    When I bring the base 15" MBP up to rMBP standards with an additional 4gigs of RAM and swap out the HDD for the 256gig SSD, it ends up being $200 MORE than the rMBP, not $100 less. Just wanted to point that out...
  • Death666Angel - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Let's see:
    We have the base MBP for
    then he adds a Samsung 830 256GB and 4GB RAM which he says cost
    ~$250 + ~~$50 => ~$300
    making the total
    $1799 + $300 = $2099
    Which is $100 less than the rMBP starting point of $2199.
    Then he say that if you are eligible for student discounts, the rMBP is priced not $100 higher but actually the same, since it is discounted more heavily.

    Maybe you are going by Apple upgrade prices?
  • Roland00Address - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Why did they went with the i7 dual core (3520m) with the 13 inch instead of the i7 quad core (3612qm). The tray price of the i7 dual core is $346, the i7 quad is $378 so that is a $32 dollar difference. Both chips are 35 watt tdp (this is a first for intel, some ivybridge i7 quad cores has a 35w tdp while sandybridge did not have such a chip in a laptop.) Only other possible reason besides $32 dollar cost is the dual core supports intel vt-d

    i7 3612qm
    2.1 ghz base speed
    2.8 ghz quad core max turbo
    2.8 ghz tri core max turbo
    3.0 ghz dual core max turbo
    3.1 ghz single core max turbo

    i7 3520m
    2.9 ghz base speed
    3.4 ghz dual core max turbo
    3.6 ghz single core max turbo
  • tipoo - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Maybe saving the quad for the Retina 13"? Reply
  • Death666Angel - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    TDP is the same, maybe actual power consumption and thermal development not? :-) Or they are saving it for the rumoured 13" rMBP. *spooky sound* Reply
  • SantaAna12 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Macbooks only compared to other Apples.......comon. Every once in awhile you guys do this.....shades of Toms antics. YOU ARE BETTER THEN THIS! Reply
  • juanml82 - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    People who have invested in Firewire external drives will need the firewire port. I see practical reasons for that port to remain, while there are no practical reasons to remove it other than FW800 not being new and flashy anymore.
    I just don't see the value in breaking backwards compatibility unless it adds to much to the final cost.
  • inplainview - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    People who invested in FW drives can use Firewire over Thunderbolt when the adapter drops. Did you really miss that part? Reply
  • Freakie - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Those who invested in firewire so heavily are usually Mac users and already have had a limited selection of devices to chose from compared to those rooted in USB which means there aren't many of them. Most people who are able to see an unpopular connection when it comes around were able to stay with USB/Ethernet and it's payed off just fine. If you want to make sure you aren't going to break backwards compatibility in the future again, then stick with USB 3.0. Thunderbolt wont gain all that much momentum, and the number of USB 3.0 ports on the rMBP shows that even Apple knows that it's not going far (not to mention they didn't exactly have much work to do since Intel made it possible for them... typically Apple laziness)

    But seriously, it's either just bad luck (being a Mac user and not having a wide range of devices to chose from, and so your professional devices often used firewire) or lack of forsight that got you (or anyone else) in that position. Now that you have two choices for high speed interface, it should be easy to avoid it happening again.
  • pmhparis - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    The subject of this article is the non-retina MBP.

    Where do you see that the FW port has been removed from the non-retina MBP?
  • Death666Angel - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Anand did talk quite a bit about how he would like those connection (ethernet, FW) to be done with in the next MBP redesign. And he praised the rMBP for doing just that. So the reader is just expressing his opinion vs Anand's.
    However, considering that there will be both ethernet and firewire adapters for thunderbolt, I see no reason to complain.
  • Bonzauker - Wednesday, July 18, 2012 - link

    Does anyone have an idea why the external display still requires the discreet card? It's the main reason for noisy operations but, as far as I know, Intel 4000 should be able to handle it. Reply
  • Death666Angel - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Maybe some channel muxing issues/how the external port is connected to the CPU/GPU. Reply
  • sambamac - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I've been thinking a lot about it. Ok, the retina is a fine screen. But I will go for the 2012 non retina non-glare 1650x1050, because I will put a 750 7200 rpm (only a additional 56$) and an extra 256 SSD for the system ( I will separate the system from the data ). When the 16GB Modules will be available I will upgrade the memory to 32Gb. I really work on an external monitor. 15" is just too small to do edit or retouch fotos. I really need the portable solution, because I travel a lot. And the possible 32Gb will help a lot to boost photoshop work based on dozens of layers. Reply
  • Freakie - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    16GB modules wont ever come for DDR3 in the 204 pin form factor (laptop), so give your hopes up now. If you really want the best photoshop performance then you should be switching to a Windows laptop especially since it's easy to put 32GB on a Windows laptop, create a RAMdisk with a good chunk of that and then put your Photoshop Scratch Disk directory on it. (instant 5GB/s transfer rate on your scratch disk by using your RAM instead of a mechanical or solid state drive). Or if you are dead-set on using OSX then you can easily hackintosh OSX on the laptop and still have the more powerful hardware. Reply
  • sambamac - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Why you know that 16GB modules won't ever come? Is there a technical problem?

    Yeah, it's a good idea with the Ram Disk....

    thanks for input!
  • Freakie - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Yeah basically. RAM follows standards and what-not, which means the people who make the RAM have to follow certain guidelines if their want to be able to use the DDR3 label for the RAM. That way RAM is as compatible as possible. As it stands, the DDR3 standards don't really allow 16GB sticks for laptops because the sticks are too small. They can't do 3D stacking of the memory without being out of spec, to my knowledge. And most RAM is still manufactured on large processes like 48-60nm and so they can't just pack more in on the area they have. We probably wont see 16GB sticks for laptops until DDR4. Reply
  • sambamac - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Ok, I see! Thank you for these explanations! Reply
  • arkweld - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I just made the same decision. Anandtech opts for the rMBP because it's better value? Really? What a ludicrous statement.

    For $2300 you get an MBP with hi-res, optical drive, ethernet, FireWire, more storage capacity, expandability and the exact same battery life, processor and RAM as the $2800 rMBP. A unit which has the only advantage of a arguably better display, negligible perfomance increase and a half-pound weight reduction. Anandtech opt to pay $500 more for less capability.

    If you want an SSD to boost your performance you can add one to an MBP at any time in any capacity.

    If the future is removing features for a screen of dubious value, then we are going backwards. Especially when you are paying $500 for the privilege.
  • The0ne - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Yea, your consideration for the type of work you do is inadequate. You should be considering Windows laptop for this. You want both the CPU performance and the GPU to handle the 2D/3D side of things. Sure it may not be as light, or any other reasons but you get your work done fast and "easy". Not entirely sure on the easy word but meh :) Reply
  • sambamac - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    And which system is adequate? Reply
  • jcannon1018 - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Any ideas on how the lower end model would graphically compare to the high-end model? Running at native 1440x900 with Diablo 3, 512 vs 1gig, huge difference? Reply
  • Deepcover96 - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I went back and forth on which one I would get. The Ethernet port almost pushed me towards the Pro, but the better display on the Air made up my mind. Like you said, The Air and the rMBP feel like the future. Reply
  • dwade123 - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Apple needs to redesign the 13" Pro. Get rid of optical drive, put in Quadcore, Retina, and at least a GT 640m. Reply
  • Airkol - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I've got the Retina but but I want to make this thing rock. I need a fast 512GB drive. This samsung drive is a slug.

    I see OWC just announced their upgrade for the MBA 2012. Any word on them having an upgrade fro the Retina?
  • EnerJi - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I was under the impression that Apple was now shipping pretty fast SSDs? So fast that most users (in most use cases) wouldn't be able to tell the difference between their SSD and a top-of-the-line model. Reply
  • Airkol - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    One of the drives used in the MBA is a Toshiba that uses the SandForce controller. That is pretty fast. The Retina uses Samsung based drives and they aren't as fast.

    I went with the base model Retina and the 256GB drive. I'm betting that OWC will have a 480GB drive and an external case for the drive I pull out for less than the difference between the next model up with a 512Gb drive.
  • Death666Angel - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link
    Depending on what you do with it, it's pretty fast. :D
  • Paapaa125 - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    Actually Samsung is the faster of the two AFAIK. It is essentially Samsung 830 SSD drive which is one of the fastest SSDs out there and very reliable. Still the best choice for almost all desktop users. You should feel lucky you got Samsung instead of Toshiba. Reply
  • dsumanik - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    C'mon Vivek, ethernet no longer relevant?

    I concede that using a thunderbolt port for an adapter is an appropriate substitute, i mean what does it matter if you are plugging in a cable with a dongle on the end, vs a plain old rj45 connector.

    But until wireless networking catches up with ethernet in the latency and STABILITY department, it will always be necessary.

    Wireless technology developments seems to keep pushing bandwidth...i want consistent 1ms ping throughput and a 500 meter range without bandwidth/connection loss.

    actually screw that, i want one nanosecond throughput...latency is the biggest holdup for all of us now, just like going from a mechanical HDD to a SSD drive, the difference on a wired vs wireless network is immediately noticeable....especially through apps like VNC or remote desktop.

    Imagine if the entire north american internet infrastructure went It would take 5 seconds just to ping this page and 30 seconds to load....after the third try.

    Eventually, wireless has the potential and will likely replace wired networks...but today is not that day, id say at least 10 years.
  • EnerJi - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    Everyone's needs are different. Is a wired connection objectively "better?" Yes. Is wireless considered "good enough" for the vast majority of people? Absolutely yes.

    I've used Ethernet *maybe* three or four times in the past three years for troubleshooting purposes. Will I miss it if I were to get an rMBP? Hard to say for sure, but I'm leaning towards probably not.
  • The0ne - Thursday, July 19, 2012 - link

    I haven't even touch my ethernet port at all. I've traveled quite often overseas as well and still don't even have a need. That is because wi-fi is so abundant and easy to set up that ethernet is just not useful as it once was. Sure it can have it uses when troubleshooting, the only thing I can see myself using it for, but other than that wi-fi serves the 99% fine. Reply
  • zephxiii - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    I definitely need this for large transfers to and from the server. Sure u can use an adapter...but i hate having to fumble with and carry around adapters.

    An optical drive is nice for when u *need* to burn something, or access a disc. Granted i rarely use mine but i like being able to burn something when needed without being inconvenienced.

    Seems like this *tool* has become less of a tool :(
  • CalaverasGrande - Friday, July 20, 2012 - link

    Two things, it may sound silly but in the workplace we still need to use wired connections 9 out of ten times. It simply isnt feasible or desirable to have enterprise level wifi installed in all locations.
    This, and the optical drive is still used as a handoff medium more often than thumb drives. There is a perception that thumb drives can carry viruses more than opticals. Of course they are both just as likely, but this does not change the perception.
    As far as "the high price of Apple". If you compare Apple gear to business grade dell and HP the prices are almost identical.
    And the bloatware on HP is much worse than the extras Apple gives you.
    Me personally I went with a Mac Book Pro because I can always instantiate a VM of Win 7 or XP on my Mac. Much more difficult to go the hackintosh route.
  • gochichi - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    I disagree that the most sensible reason to not get a rMBP is out of some theological conflict against soldered on memory.

    And yes, I look at my laptop from 2010 and how affordable it has been to upgrade it to a 128GB SSD and 8GB of RAM and it makes me wonder just how well exactly is the rMBP going to age. Its aging is so important because it's an advanced prototype right now. It needs to age. But I don't think it'll age well from the resale value perspective. I also don't believe it is very usable on actual software.

    Let's put it this way, when on the rMBP I would rather use TextEdit and have the text look properly than use Pages or Word. That's a problem, that's not Pro as in professional, that's pro as in prototype. You're holding the future, but not the present. I found it unusable for anything but elite ipad duty (or is it a chrome book... basically if you're on safari it's amazing) .

    Now the way it runs say Starcraft 2. Wow, on high settings it looks beyond amazing but too low a frame rate.

    I think the retina is just not ready for duty. I was excited to have it and sad to return it. I think if you're actually wanting to get something accomplished I would go with a 13 air or a 1680 by 1050 15" pro or a 17"pro (from 2011).

    The rMBP is wonderful but its not the most utilitarian device this year. I'm waiting for 2013 myself. Waiting for software support? You gotta be kidding me.
  • gochichi - Saturday, July 21, 2012 - link

    rMBP. The future, and really depending on how much money you have and/or how comfortable you are with the hassle of selling your used equipment at a good price it's not wrong at all to get it. I would even say that $/$ it's a pretty high value proposition in the lineup. For instance compared to a 13" Air with 256GB SSD and 8GB of RAM...

    The problem arises when you ask me yet again to upgrade all my software whether I want to or not. I've been a Mac user from PowerPC days, and interestingly enough the 15" Pro model laptop was the first Intel based Mac (just like this is the first Retina Mac). No matter how you got your software, it has a value, you're already good at using it and all that jazz and it is a big deal that the screen on the rMBP is basically emulating a compatible resolution on a ton of software. And much like Rosetta before, the emulation "works" but leaves a lot to be desired.

    It's an amazing value, and if you're comfortable with being a guinea pig waiting who knows how long to wait for compatible software for who knows what price then its great.

    In having returned it, it leaves me scratching my head for what to get instead. I have a lot of equipment but non of it is Mac. I've been toying around with 2011 MacBook Air (11" mind you) and I like using that more the rMBP because it runs everything natively and I can hook it up to my 27" Dell U2711 just fine. As I escalate the upgrade options and reach ever closer to the rMBP I hesitate. I don't think I should hesitate but I do. For the year is 2012 and if I'm going to spend a ton of money to get something done, for some end goal I guess. I think buying four shares of apple with the money and then selling those shares in 2013 would be a great way to go.

    I completely understand how the rMBP is a fantastic product and a brilliant move for Apple. But things are changing, some critical things appear to be changing. For instance, the resale value of Mac equipment is fluctuating more than it has in the past. The closed, cellphone-like equipment is creating a cellphone-like frenzy and sudden disinterest. My interest in a 2010 AIr is slim indeed, while a 2010 MacBook Pro with an SSD is still desirable.

    No Mac for me in 2012? I think this may be the answer for me. I passed up a used 2011 13" Air for $850 because "it wasn't good enough" and now I'm punching my throat about it. I also passed up a used 2011 11" Air with 256GB SSD for the same price. Why? Because I had to have the rMBP. Just to realize that even though the thermal/noise characteristics are amazing, the battery life also, everything is emulated through it. And it's not so easy to find a fantastic case for it either (it will be in 2013...) which is what you need when you have a $2,000 iPad/portable iMac without a screen. It has unique features, and I'm hardly the wealthiest guy on these forums so your mileage may vary.

    Also worth noting is that wealth is a huge thing in determining whether ANY 15" Pro is for you. (Enthusiasm goes a long way too, like in my case). So back to the wealth thing... my point is that a lot of the people justifying a $2,000 laptop are simply well off in their careers and likely in their 40's or 50's at which point I'm not sure the retina offers much value compared to the sheer brightness of the standard 15" (The low-res one at that). This may also be a mute point because those same eyes may not experience the level of frustration that I experienced while watching poorly emulated resolutions on the rMBP.

    I wanted a work horse, and in so many ways it's just an unsatisfying time to purchase. If unlike me you already have a Mac and a work horse, hold on to it for ten more months.

    Final comment on software. So you have say Office 2011... worth $100-$300 depending on who you ask. You have CS 5.5... you have all this stuff already, YOU should determine when you want to upgrade and not your hardware. Your hardware is at the service of your software.

    Last but not least, Windows 8 handled the rMBP display like a Pro. It also ran hot on Windows, but if Mac OS would handle the display Windows 8 does, I'd be too busy to tell you about how happy I was. Windows 8 isn't even out officially, so buying a $2k laptop on the promise that Windows 8 runs it well, seems impatient of me. And it doesn't fit the primary bullet point that I had when I set sail on all of this: To have a Mac on my technology repertoire.

    Oh nice firefighter selling your 2011 13" Air for $850... where are you now?

    Peace out. Hope this rambling helped (it's all I was trying to do).
  • LuckyKnight - Wednesday, July 25, 2012 - link

    If ASUS can offer a nvidia GPU in their 13", come on Apple get with it :) I would love something portable as a 13" that can play games. Reply
  • Les Likely - Tuesday, July 31, 2012 - link

    The 15.4" matte display is really nice but I'm dismayed to discover that the hardware is not capable of booting into Mac OS X 10.6.8 from either an internal or external HDD partition.

    I suffered with Mac OS X Lion for a year - definitely an unstable dog of a cat. Result: I still don't trust Mountain Lion. And now we have a crippled generation of hardware, to add injury to insult - but there's no way to rig a safety-net.

  • thecuber - Monday, August 06, 2012 - link

    How much difference in performance would the extra 512 MB on the GPU cause?

    It's the only thing holding me back from buying the MBP15
  • thecuber - Monday, August 06, 2012 - link

    How much of a differenece would the extra 512MB memory on the GPU make? Reply
  • thecuber - Monday, August 06, 2012 - link

    How much of a difference does the 512 MB in vRAM make a difference. It's the only thing holding me back from buying a MBP15. Reply
  • Systembolaget - Sunday, September 02, 2012 - link

    I'm much in favour of the reviews that show that the Retina MBP is not there yet and especially so under Windows, and on the other hand, the non-Retina MBPs are getting old. But, if you're into 3D CAD, rendering and FEM/CFD, what choice do you have now?

    These all have the same processors and are roughly in the same price bracket. The Apple is ageing and has no IPS panel. The Dell is plasticky and has no IPS panel. The Lenovo lost its fantastic keyboard and now proffers a terrible screen. The HP has a decent IPS panel, but is the most expensive. At the moment, it looks like one can only buy the wrong machine...

    - Apple MacBook Pro
    i7-3720QM quad-core 2,6 GHz 6 MB L3 cache
    8 GB 1600 MHz DDR3 SDRAM
    750 GB SATA 6 GB/s 7200 RPM
    1680 x 1050 NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M 1 GB GDDR5
    2.379,00 €

    - Dell Precision M4700
    i7-3720QM quad-core 2,6 GHz 6 MB L3 cache
    16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3 SDRAM
    750 GB SATA 6 GB/s 7200 RPM
    1920 x 1080 AMD FirePro M4000 Mobility Pro 1 GB GDDR5
    2.482,00 €

    - Lenovo ThinkPad W530
    i7-3720QM quad-core 2,6 GHz 6 MB L3 cache
    16 GB 1600 MHz DDR3 SDRAM
    500 GB SATA 6 GB/s 7200 RPM
    1920 x 1080 NVIDIA Quadro K2000M 2 GB GDDR3
    2.151,42 €

    - HP Elitebook 8560w
    i7-3720QM quad-core 2,5 GHz 8 MB L3 cache
    8 GB 1333 MHz DDR3 SDRAM
    750 GB SATA 3 GB/s 7200 RPM
    1920 x 1080 NVIDIA Quadro 2000M 2 GB GDDR3
    2.840,53 €
  • 1andrew - Friday, October 12, 2012 - link

    Great review by Vivek, but I have to disagree with him. I returned my MacBook Pro with Retina display for refurbished the 2012 MacBook Pro.

    The MacBook Pro with Retina display simply isn't ready yet. Vivek does say that it will take roughly 1 release cycle for software to catch up with the new display, but he doesn't emphasize this enough. As a student, I use Microsoft Work for hours a day. The blurry pixillated text strained my eyes and drove me insane (although Microsoft finally fixed that last week)

    I also enjoy playing games on my laptop. Install Windows via Bootcamp turned into a nightmare The bootcamp install kept failing to make a bootable USB drive, and without a DVD drive it was my only option. I eventually switched over to Windows computer to make the bootable USB drive. Furthermore, Windows 7 hasn't been upgraded for the retina display even with the 150% DPI scaling many of the user elements are too small. Finally, the MacBook Pro isn't fast enough to run most games at full resolution.

    The MacBook Pro with Retina display amazed. I loved the thinner form factor, but as my only computer I need a DVD drive. Life without ethernet was miserable. If only Apple included a Thunderbolt to Ethernet adapter or an external DVD drive.

    Simply put, there those of us who need a fully fledged laptop.
  • mjh483 - Sunday, February 17, 2013 - link

    The real advantage of normal MBP is that it has much more spacious storage. Reply
  • rich42 - Saturday, February 11, 2017 - link

    Hello , i am planning since some time to buy a 2012 MBP 15 with Hi-Res Display. Got since few days a 2006 Macbook Pro 15 inch and am quite shocked at how miserable the sound output is when compared to my Powerbook G4 15 1,67 - - hopefully the sound is better on the late 2012 - - could anyone confirm this or is it just this poor Intel Audio as in the 2006 MBP? thanks for this great site!

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