You may have read my previous post about not liking the new Apple MacBook Pro with TouchBar… it was fairly “screw them, they aren’t pro any more” and a bit of “I can get more for less elsewhere, vote with your wallet people!” … well… yeah… turns out I was wrong. Put the resistance on hold.
Part of my move away from MacOS (I don’t like the small m Apple, please stop it) was going to involve having a dedicated Linux machine with a native install, as I did a lot of development using Ubuntu and had become really comfortable using the OS and thought I could use it as a daily driver. I still believe I could do that, and I could live with the small issues I had if the hardware worked a treat. But it didn’t …
Now, I have a big iMac 27″ with a 5k display, so I don’t need another desktop, it’s a gorgeous machine, but I wanted portable power. I also didn’t want a 15″ beast, I wanted as capable as possible a machine in a modern 13″ enclosure (which is closer to the 11″ MacBook air of old). The onus is on LAP in laptop here for me. That involves trackpads working really well… I had so many issues with the trackpad on the linux machine, that I ended up sitting at my desk and using a mouse with it. I had hacked lots of files, tweaked lots of settings, and got it as usable as I could (why anyone would enable top left/right of the pad for copy paste by default baffles me) but frequently it just shit it’s pants and became annoying, missing clicks, losing cursors and pissing me off. Fine… I’ve got Windows 10 on here, I’ll use that… Nope.
Windows update swooped in and ruined my graphics drivers, meaning that the display was totally ruined, I had to roll back drivers and fight with it to ignore that update. Which pisses me off, I like to keep everything as up to date as possible (if you have 24 App Updates needed on your phone… I will try and update them when you aren’t looking).
It was at this stage that I thought… This was £1,500 worth of laptop.. I shouldn’t have to fight this hard with it! That was my hard earned cash. I was talking to a friend, and the conversation veered into a rant on my part, by the end of it, without him having suggested anything I had decided to sell the thing, and order something else…. something Appley.
Decision to change
I took a hit and sold it on eBay for £1000, which was a £300 loss (I saved £200 off retail when I bought it) and ordered about £1,800 worth of 13″ tbMBP. 16GB RAM, 3.1 GHz dual core i5 (6th Gen) and 256GB of SSD Storage. Nowhere near as powerful as the Dell offering, but wow, what a breath of fresh air to use after fighting for months.
I don’t even feel bad about it, I really gave the Dell a chance, in both Windows and Linux, I fought hard with the configs, and lost a fair bit of cash in trading it in. But when push comes to shove, spending a bit more for a machine that I look forward to using, is better than wasting £1,300 on something that I basically avoided using.
I am almost glad I fought with the Dell, if I had just got the Mac first, I might have not realised how much better it was (for me) than the alternative, and may have thought I had spent too much for another Apple device. But now I really appreciate my new machine.
It’s a gorgeous machine to work with, I LOVE the new keyboard, I don’t really care about the touchbar, I would rather the fn keys if I was honest, it doesn’t add any value, but I can live with it. The Dell’s main port was a Thunderbolt USBC so I already had the cables I needed to use with the Mac’s ports. Lesson learned, think twice before moving out of your comfort zone with technology you are investing a lot in, and don’t let internet opinions sway you (including this one, I guess). Try things out, think how they will work in your workflow, go with what makes you happy, and you will actually use.