Curious about the new MacBook's with the M1 chip

Discussion in 'Technical Corner' started by AggieMike88, Feb 20, 2021.

  1. AggieMike88

    AggieMike88 Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The original "I don't know it all" of aviation.
    I also have a MBP with touch bar. Had thought it would be a good feature to use. It's not.
     
  2. flyingron

    flyingron Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    I don't know why Apple is reticent to put in a touch screen. Most of the comparable PC laptops have them.
     
  3. Everskyward

    Everskyward Experimenter PoA Supporter

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    I have the new iMac with an M1 chip. I think it's great, but I'm comparing it to my old 2011 iMac...
     
  4. FastEddieB

    FastEddieB Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I think the logic is that with your hands on the keyboard with the trackpad right there, its easier and more efficient to point to things on the screen with your trackpad as opposed to lifting up your arm and actually touching the screen. I agree with that logic for most use cases.

    But...it sure would be nice to have the option of a touchscreen, especially if one could fold the laptop to put the touchscreen on top with it folded to use as a tablet. I'm sure other manufacturers already do this. In that case a touchscreen could be invaluable for artists and those using Photoshop and the like. One could make the case that an iPad Pro with an appropriate keyboard case is very close to that ideal, but not quite there since some people like being in the MacOS rather than iOS for serious work.
     
  5. asicer

    asicer Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    If I were in that situation, I'd prefer to use the iPad as a remote screen for the MacBook (Sidecar).
     
  6. DaleB

    DaleB Final Approach

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    I’ve been using an Intel MacBook Air since late June as my work laptop. It’s self inflicted, sort of… I asked for an M1 and got the older one instead. Total time to adjust from Windows to Mac was in the low hours range. I haven’t noticed that it’s really any more stable than Windows, especially where the USB camera is concerned. It's... OK. Having a proper shell in the terminal is nice, but it's not like you can't do that with Windows anyway. I've bought a dozen or so new Dells for new hires at my company, and as soon as I can pawn the Macbook off on a developer I'll probably swap it for one of those.
     
  7. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg En-Route

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    I've been driving an m1 mini for a few weeks now. I like it better than my i9 MBP.

    Amazon Music stutters on it though, but otherwise, no real compat problems with the thing. Everything I care about just works. $599 at costco right now. includes 90 day return if you hate it. Worth a spin, IMHO.
     
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  8. denverpilot

    denverpilot Tied Down PoA Supporter

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    We have a number in the fleet now.

    Security vendors have finally half assed their kernel extension required software and we can stay regulatory compliant (barely) with these now.

    (We still need better commercial use controls with a LOT less user interaction to "approve" what corporate IT is *required by law* to do and prove it's done and never disabled... And buying an MDM that costs three times what the comparable MSFT ecosystem MDM costs, is hideous...)

    Main complaint is both i7 and M1 laptops are blowing speakers regularly. Hey ... Either put the correct size speakers in for the power amp, or limit the power amp power... Whichever... Sending expensive machines away -- oh yeah, when y'all going to offer on site repair like all our other vendors? -- is a huge productivity problem in a regulatory environment where no loaner machines are allowed and if a machine is issued to an individual it MUST be fully wiped before it's reissued.

    In other words, Macs continue to be an order of magnitude more annoying in the required security business environment. (Talking with many other admins they're simply lying on audits. Education sector usually isn't but they're using JAMF and maintain a fleet of JAMF admins that we can't afford. Tsk tsk.)
     
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  9. murphey

    murphey Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    When there's more than 8GB or when I can open the box and add memory, I'll consider an M1 system. I needed a new one earlier this year, bought the MacMini 2019/2020 with 8 GB, got it home, swapped out memory and now have 32 GB memory.

    I'll need a new laptop after the first of the year. Mine is the MacBook Air early 2015 with only 4 GB memory. Not enough for some of the apps I use. Hence the MacMini.

    Like a new model line of cars, don't get the first releases.
     
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  10. TheGolfPilot

    TheGolfPilot Line Up and Wait

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    I have a MB with a M1 chip. Its a great processing chip. General issue with Macs is the GPU power just isn't there though.
     
  11. schmookeeg

    schmookeeg En-Route

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    One of my
    Yeah the soldered memory is rude. $200 for 8gb more is criminal. So I just bought the lame base mac mini m1. When I outgrow it, I'll sell it, and because it's apple, I'll probably get a full $525 for it, so no real harm done.

    And yes, if I'm building something on XCode, it brings the little M1 8gb to its knees. Like my mp3 player skips during the build. None of my intel boxes do that. But it still outperforms my Hackintosh VMWare VMs :)
     
  12. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Uh, nope. Not today! Today was all mobile.

    To me, an esc key with a touch bar is the preferred configuration...

    But... Honestly, it's not a minus either. Who the heck ever uses F-keys? And I really like some of the things that can be done with it. I can even make text bold here on PoA with it. Not earth shattering but more useful than F keys.

    Admittedly, I probably use the touch bar for emojis more often than anything else, but I do like it and I hope they keep it on the Pro models - WITH the caveat that they give the escape key back. That one's nice to have, and seems to be most people's biggest gripe with the touch bar. It's at least still there, tho... And I'd rather have the full touch bar with the esc key depicted on it, than a row of useless keys just to get a physical escape key.

    Yup... Though Apple goes after younger users, who are far more used to touch interfaces. My 4-year-old has tried to touch things on the screen. To be fair, he does that to the TV too. :rofl:

    The M1 is actually moving things in that direction. You can run most iOS apps on the M1 Macs now, and since those are designed for touch, it would seem to be a good addition.

    Also, they've gone in the other direction and you can use a keyboard with trackpad on some of the iPads. I used that for the first time the other day at the Apple store (My iPad is a Mini and can't do it), and I was quite impressed with how it worked. It was NOT just "let's put a pointer on the screen and a trackpad under it," it really seemed well thought out and was more "If we were going to start from scratch adding a trackpad to a touch interface, how would we do it best?"

    There is. I just ordered a 13" MBP with 16GB for a new user.

    That won't ever happen - The architecture of the M1 pretty much precludes it, but that's also part of what makes the M1 so fast and power-efficient is that the RAM is part of the M1 SoC (system-on-chip). It also means it can be used more efficiently. There is no longer discrete DRAM and VRAM. If the CPU needs a lot of RAM, it gets it - If the GPU needs a lot, it gets it. It's all in the same pool.

    This is really an inflection point in desktop computer architecture, and as a geek I find it pretty exciting.

    Honestly, at this point I wouldn't hesitate to get an M1 Mac. They're a huge step up. Surely there will be some additional improvements in the next generation, but IMO this is a great time to buy - There really haven't been a whole lot of big headaches with them, likely because it's not a first-generation chip, Apple has been making their own chips for the mobile devices for over a decade and has applied all the lessons they learned from that as well as from the previous two major architecture changes they made in the Mac line (Motorola 680x0 -> PowerPC -> Intel). Having used the M1 machines and seen the difference, I'm probably going to replace all of our home machines with them fairly soon too.
     
  13. asicer

    asicer Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    Frankly, I'm a little surprised they even announced the iPad mini today. Usually iPads get a separate event in October.
    And windows and walls too? :D
    And then there's Sidecar mode, which melds the two.
     
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  14. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I was too. But, as there weren't any Macs announced today, maybe there'll still be an October event. They really need to get some of the higher end Macs onto Apple silicon. I know they said they'd take two years (in June 2020) but when they originally transitioned to Intel it took them a year and three months from the announcement even though they had said it'd be 2.5 years.

    Good point. And the new Mac OS/iPadOS that should be out very soon have Universal Control, where you can use the mouse/keyboard on the Mac to do things on the iPad as well. It's quite compelling. You can drag and drop things back and forth, there's zero setup, and you can use multiple devices. Really really slick.