We all knew when mobile Nehalem processors were coming out. I kept referencing Q1 2010 as when you're going to want to replace your MacBook Pro. As far as I was concerned, there was nothing Apple could do to make me recommend anything but wait.

Then this happened:

From the outside it looks like the same unibody MacBook Pro Apple launched at the end of 2008. Look a little closer and you'll realize it's actually a little worse:

The original unibody MacBook Pro

The original unibody MacBook Pro had an easily accessible hard drive bay, a first for Apple's aluminum notebook line. I feel bad for the engineers that worked to make that bay both functional and sleek, because in the updated unibody MacBook Pro it's gone. A brand new feature only sticking around for one generation, that’s gotta hurt. Replacing a hard drive now requires removing no less than 16 screws (10 on the chassis, 2 holding the drive in place and 4 on the drive itself). In the original unibody MacBook Pro it only took five.

The mid 2009 unibody MacBook Pro

The easily accessible HDD bay was a side effect, the point of the sleek removable panel on the elder unibody was to house the replaceable battery. Something that also vanished from the new MacBook Pro.

The new integrated battery (lower right)

Apple did something that no mainstream notebook vendor had dared to do before: kill the removable battery. The rationale was simple: new battery technology allowed batteries to take virtually any shape, and making them fit into user replaceable containers proved to waste a lot of space. Wasted space amounted to larger and heavier notebooks.

It all started with the 17-inch MacBook Pro.

And The Story Begins


View All Comments

  • michael2k - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    Yeah, if you mean "good code" like longer battery life in OS X than Windows?

    I mean, if you really believe that, buy a Mac, install Windows in VM, and get the hours of battery life of the Mac and the ability to run "good code" whenever you need it.
  • fitten - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    You get all that battery life when you aren't actually doing anything with the machine (it's sitting idle). As the article says... start actually, you know, using the thing instead of having it as a fashion accessory and there isn't much difference. Reply
  • slashbinslashbash - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    No, it's not "sitting idle." Anand got those times with Safari set to load a new page every 20 seconds, and iTunes playing music constantly. It is light usage, granted, but it's not sitting there doing nothing. Of course the CPU goes to an idle when it's not doing anything, and that's what makes the difference, because apparently Apple is handling this better than Microsoft. Reply
  • fitten - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    Get an iPhone... mine does all that and more! Reply
  • darwinosx - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    Apple doesn't know how to write code? Alllllrighty then... Reply
  • sprockkets - Tuesday, November 10, 2009 - link

    God's don't talk to humans, even you Anand. So much for getting them to admit they are fallible.

    That being said, their 13" laptop is nice. Paying $2500 for a non i7 cpu isn't really a deal.

    Oh, and if you are going to benchmark them, why not benchmark the Dell and HP while you are at it?
  • marraco - Sunday, November 15, 2009 - link

    And something to add:

    This image on this article:


    Shows why this line of obsolete hardware is not worth his 2.5X price:

    You can't use them as portable computers, because reflections on each place don't let you see the screen. You only see reflections.

    in the image we see the lights put to take the photos.

    you can't go to a park and use the apples, because of reflections.
    you see only your own face on bright days.

    you can't focus on the screen, and soon get a headache.

    of course, ANY laptop manufacturer knows that shinny screens are a health he11, and apple knows. But apple only care about taking the innocent consumer money. For the screen problem: pay to your doctor.
  • The0ne - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    I'm also shocked, a bit, at how Anand loves his $2500 macbook :/ My fully spec'ed Vostro 17" ran me $800 with the Anand hot deal at the time. That's 3-4 times less than the macbook. Even being 2lbs more isn't going to justify spending that much on it.

    Sometimes even I don't understand why people prefer one product over even when it's at the extreme end. I love gadgets, I love designing, I love computing and I love retro-gaming but I think $2500 for a 17" laptop with "little" benefit over the competition is a bit much, especially here where most of us also use hot deals to help with our shopping.

  • The0ne - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    replying to my post since I'm not at work and using my Vostro. Here's the spec on it...

    T7500, 4Gig, 320GB, 8400M, WUXGA, DVDRW, SD reader, webcam, wireless.

    I have Windows 7 Ultimate running XP SP3 and Fedora under VMWare with no hiccups. How much versatility, power, performance does Anand really need? That is subjective, being my point. And as Anand pointed out 2GB of RAM is laughable meaning 4 would be nice and 8 is ideal. But trying getting 8GB without adding a few more hundred dollars to it the price. Mind you, this was 2 years ago to boot, although not much has changed in the offering :D

    Sure it's a heavier at 2lbs more but I can live with that for 1/3 the price. Wouldn't I want it lighter? Of course, anyone would if they can afford the luxury. Would I like the extended battery life? Hell yea! But how many situations call for me to use the laptop in areas without an outlet? < 10%

    I'm not sure why Anand didn't include the Vostro in 17" comparison. The WUXGA screen is extremely nice. And while the Apple might be nicer if I were to working in photo's and stuff it's barely needed for "writing." As Anand said, it's the increase in workspace that is the most important.

    I'm not trying to bash the review. I think it's justified one one end but on the other it seems like Anand is all giddy with the new toy :) I know I would be too hahaha But I like to put things in perspective on price/performance.
  • BSMonitor - Wednesday, November 11, 2009 - link

    Uhhh try reading the article..

    As a writer, light browsing, word documents, etc gets him around 7 - 8 hours without being stuck next to an outlet. You on the other would have to visit one 3-4 times in those 8 hours with your Vostro.

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now