New Gear: MacBook Pro

With the Little-MacBook-That-Could getting long in the tooth, and my desire to help the economy, I have purchased a new 15″ MBP, and I couldn’t be more pleased.

So, if you haven’t heard about the construction, the main body is carved out of a single piece of aluminum, like some crazy person would do with a bar of Ivory soap and a whittlin’ knife. It’s soft on the hands, feels light, and has a crazy nice feel compared to the lil’ ol’ MacBook. However, it seems that it could be a bit more prone to having marrs from jewelry or other metal-to-metal impacts. Still, it’s a sweet, sweet feel.

Tonight I’ve been working on it for an hour or two, with it sitting in my lap, and it definitely feels cooler… generally. My iStat info indicates that the processor temperature is just a little higher than the BlackBook, but I noticed it more in my lap. There are points along the back part of the bottom of the base — near the hinge — that seem kinda warm. It’s not crazy hot, but there are definitely some places where the rig is warmer than others.

Now the screen. The glorious, glorious screen. It’s new tech — an LED screen — and it’s beautiful. The color is really brilliant, the surface is glossy, and I haven’t seen anything yet that wasn’t just flat amazing on-screen. This is the same tech that the new Apple 24″ monitor will have when it’s released in a week or so. It ain’t cheap, but man is it pretty.

From a speeds-n-feeds perspective, this box is 25% faster at the processor complex, 50% faster across the memory bus, and gazillions faster on the GPU side. The crazy thing about the GPU is that the new MBP has two video cards — one “high performance” NVidia GeForce 9600M GT with 512MB of discrete memory, and an NVidia GeForce 9400M with 256MB of shared memory, designed for lower power consumption. I don’t run on batteries a lot, so I’ve got it configured to use the 9600 — dunno that I’d notice the difference, but the battery’s rechargeable. 🙂

I also really like the backlit keyboard. What I didn’t like was the fact that it was somewhat uncontrollable — it lit up when ever the machine thought it needed to be lit. However, I found a little application out of Germany called Lab Tick that allows me to set the backlighting to the level I want, and leave it there. Way cool.

I’m real pleased with this little box, and it looks like a new love affair in progress. Stay tuned for more!