I love the Mac. I feel no need to replace it with one of Apple’s other devices, like iPad, nor would I think of replacing it with another type of Windows-based computer. While Apple has focused a lot of attention and resources on mobile over the past few years, it has also made quite a number of significant improvements to the Mac. That fact is often overlooked by many people in the industry.
One of my favorite Macs ever is the gold 12-inch MacBook. This computer shows that Apple’s forward thinking design is not limited to iPhone and iPad. It also maintains Apple’s vision of giving consumers what they need before they even know they need it.
There are two features of the MacBook that drew criticism, and praise, when the laptop was released: The keyboard and the USB-C port.
If you told me just a couple of years ago that I’d be using a laptop with just one port that controlled charging and that I’d use the same port for all my peripherals, I would have said you were crazy. Yet, here I am.
Just like when Apple did away with the floppy disk, and later the CD drive, eliminating the extra ports on the MacBook made sense. That doesn’t mean people liked it at first—they didn’t. But as history shows for the floppy and CD, it was the right move.
I had some of the same questions as other people: How will I charge my iPhone? Where will I plugin the peripherals I need? How can I make this work?
Apple had been answering the iPhone question for the past few years by giving that device so much extra battery life. I noticed that I no longer needed to plugin my iPhone as much as I did in the past, and when I did, I plugged it into the wall charger. Turns out I wasn’t using my laptop to charge my iPhone anyway.
The only peripherals I use with my computer are music related: Audio interfaces and the like, so I could plug my guitar into my laptop and record. Let’s face it, that’s not what the MacBook was made for. While I have done it, and it worked just fine, that is not why I wanted a MacBook—that’s why I wanted an iMac1.
The 12-inch MacBook has the best keyboard I’ve ever used. Yes, it took a couple of days to get used to it, but once I did, I never wanted to go back.
Here’s what I wrote in my initial review of the keyboard:
Apple redesigned the key mechanism, going from a scissor design found on other computers, to a butterfly design. The end result of the change is that the keys are pressed more easily and precisely, and they don’t go down as far as the old mechanism did. In fact, they go down about half as far as the old keyboard.
When you first start using the keyboard, you may get the feeling that you didn’t actually hit the key, but you really did. This is what will take some getting used to—I am typing very quickly with the MacBook now, but it took a day or two in order for my mind to trust my fingers were hitting all the keys.
I like the keyboard even more now.
MacBook is incredibly small and light, but it has really long battery life—this is thanks to the newly redesigned batteries, made specifically for this computer. The batteries are layered, meaning that every space in the computer, except for the CPU, is reserved for a battery.
Usually when a computer gets smaller, the trade-off is battery and CPU power, but Apple managed to get it all right with MacBook. Of course, MacBook also has a Retina Display and Force Touch trackpad—like I said, they got it right with this laptop.
I remember years ago traveling with a backpack full of peripherals, backup drives, and a heavy laptop. My backpack weighed as much as my suitcase sometimes, but I needed it all—or at least I think I did.
When I travel these days, I throw my MacBook into the carry-on bag with the power adapter and leave. There is really nothing else I need anymore. It’s powerful, and portable, enough to take anywhere without much planning.
I know there are people that need, or want, a laptop with a variety of ports for peripherals. If that’s the case, then MacBook may not be the right laptop for you. However, if you want a powerful, versatile laptop that you can take anywhere, I can’t think of a better computer than MacBook. It’s my goto computer.
I have a story in the works about building a home recording studio using a 21-inch iMac. ↩