General Question

Spargett's avatar

New Macbook Pro's, crazy super stiff?

Asked by Spargett (5395points) October 19th, 2008

I just purchased the new Macbook Pro. I’m incredibly disappointed by how insanely stiff the key’s and trackpad button are.

Its the most uncomfortable thing ever. Not to mention loud, especially the trackpad button CLICK-CLACK. I have no idea how I’m going to use this at a coffee shop without getting dirty looks.

Are you guys experiencing the same things? Does it loosen up?

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25 Answers

Arick's avatar

I bought mine in July. I’m disappointed at the keyboard also. I don’t find them stiff, on mine you have to hit them really hard. Like the “T” key I always have to hit twice. Same with the caps lock key. Its very annoying. My trackpad buttons don’t bother me much.

osakarob's avatar

I suspect that you are being OVERLY sensitive about the noise from typing on the keys. I highly doubt that you are going to get dirty looks from anyone in a coffee shop.

As for the trackpad, why not just get used to using the double click function on the pad instead of clicking the button. Didn’t apple get rid of that button on the new pros anyway?

richardhenry's avatar

@Arick: I’m assuming Spargett refers to the ones they released a few days ago. I bought my MPB about the same time, and am happy to say that it’s fine. I love typing on the keyboard, it’s super comfortable.

Spargett's avatar


I’m referring specifically to the new design that released on Tuesday with glass trackpad and “pop-up”, Macbook style keys. Its the trackpad depression that is by far the noisiest thing that requires the most effort to depress. Imagine multiplying that by thousands and thousands of times each day.


I designer for a living. There’s a thousands things that prevent you from the ability to just use the trackpad click. Such as creating a new vector mass, you have to click as you draw. This is for professionals after all isn’t it?

I’ve had the Powerbook and Macbook Pro ever since they came out, and the keyboards and trackpads have always been smooth, silky, and quiet. Important when you work on one all day.

It just reminds me of a computer from the 90’s. CLACK CLACK CLACK CLACK CLACK CLACK CLACK CLACK CLACK CLACK CLACK .

richardhenry's avatar

@Spargett: What were you typing on before?

Oh, and I never do illustration on the trackpad. I find it impossible, no matter what trackpad or laptop. I don’t think the new Macbooks necessarily make it any harder, since I couldn’t do it anyway. The trackpad is great for day to day tasks, but it’s simply too inaccurate for drawing.

sndfreQ's avatar

Yeah, I tried the MBP at the Apple Store this week; the trackpad is clickety-clack, although, you can set the trackpad to click just on a single touch with one finger…I could see how the click (pressing down on the lower half of the trackpad) would be embarrassing in public.

As for the keyboard, I believe it loosens up over time…I have the same “chicklet” keyboard on my iMac, and the Bluetooth remote keyboard for the MBP…they both seemed stiff at first, but either I got used to it and/or they actually loosened up. But it is a different sort of resistance as compared to the previous “curved” keys of the all-metal colored MBP.

Other than that-it is sooo freakin’ cool! The faster graphics card is so smooth and precise, HD LED screen crisp, black bezel…the stuff.

robmandu's avatar

Ah… @spargett, I’m guessing you’re not the kind of person to seek out one of these positive-feedback, buckling-spring monsters then.

aidje's avatar

I haven’t tried the new MBP yet, but it looks like they’ve made some significant mistakes with it.

iwamoto's avatar

i actually had the same thing with the mouse button of my MBP, i clicked it, and i could feel it double clicking in some way, it’s gone now, so i guess it just “heals” over time

so, spargett, how’s the rest of the machine handling, is the glass do’able, or is it like the glossy MBP’s ? (what where they thinking?)

Spargett's avatar

Just an update for you all. I returned the machine. They were very sympathetic to my reasoning, expressing that many of the employees didn’t purchase one for that very reason. They even waved the restocking fee. No matter how much I wanted it to be, it just wasn’t for me.

I could have lived with new keyboard, which was also stiff and rather noisy, or the glossy, which made me appreciate the comforting matte display, but the trackpad button noise was unacceptable.

Overall, it was a very uncomfortable computer for. Other may enjoy it, but I’ll be surpised if any professional uses it as their work computer.

The previous MBP was so sleek, smooth, and quiet.

The only thing I really liked about it was how sturdy the case was because of the new one piece design. Not worthy of justifying another $2,000. I’m curious to see how this design evolves.

I personally feel like this model suffered at the hands of Apple’s concept of a universal theme.

richardhenry's avatar

@Spargett: On the plus side to anyone looking, the old models are going really cheap now.

Spargett's avatar

Yeah, thanks Richard. That’s my plan of attack : )

aidje's avatar

I hope they fix this model up soon, offering a real mouse button and a matte screen.

Spargett's avatar

I’m not against the concept of “no button”. They just need to execute it effectivly.

I also felt the glass trackpad wasn’t AS acurate as the previous model, and I missed the slightly grainy texture. They tried, but it just felt too smooth.

aidje's avatar

If they execute it well enough that I like it, then I’ll like it. :-)

But they end up just “perfecting” one of those tap-to-click things… well, I never use that. I don’t like it at all.

robmandu's avatar

@aidje… if you had to make a choice to only manufacture matte or glossy, the smart choice would be to go glossy.

Matte film for screens is available, cheap, and easy to apply.

But there is no film that can make a matte screen glossy.

The benefit to Apple is decreased manufacturing costs, simpler product distribution and supply, lower warranty costs, etc.

aidje's avatar

If I’m ever forced into purchasing a laptop with a glossy screen, I’ll have to look into that matte film stuff (so thanks for the link). I absolutely hate glossy screens. I’d rather not have some plastic film stuck onto my screen, but if it works properly, I imagine it would be better than using a glossy. Still, I would much rather have the option of an actual matte screen. Easier on the eyes, less glare, easier to keep clean, more accurate color… I just don’t see the point of a glossy. I can’t think of one advantage.

sndfreQ's avatar

@aidje: glossy screens apparently disperse light more accurately without diffusing it, and the visual result is that the colors appear more saturated. This is especially visible in viewing film/video media, as high contrast translates to “vibrancy” in the picture quality.

There are glossy screen protectors out there, although they don’t specify in their description that they are. One such screen protector:

aidje's avatar

I’m not sure what you’re getting at. Are you saying that’s an advantage, since I said I couldn’t think of one? Because I don’t tend to think of that as an advantage. It seems like the visual equivalent of listening to music on speakers with a big bass boost. A lot of people like that. They think it sounds better. I prefer to use studio monitors and headphones with a flat response.

sndfreQ's avatar

well, as do I (I work in pro audio) and I prefer accuracy versus “enhanced” media. Ultimately, the MBP’s glossy screen is in part to support true display resolution. The video is not enhanced with a glossy screen, but it is degraded by a surface that diffracts the light (as in a matte display).

I would think the primary purpose is for supporting HD resolution video (although the max output res is not HD, it’s only 1440×900); yet and still, the video experience changes when the blacks are “true black” versus a slightly paler hue with the matte displays. This would also be applicable for gaming.

delirium's avatar

This helped me not want one so dang much. I can wait until they fix a few things up. But goddamn, they’re so sexy. I love the idea of the glass. Mmm

iwa: Mine does that double click thing too, sometimes. It absolutely drives me crazy. I find I can fix it by sliding back and forth a few times on the click pad. Usually.

I don’t know if I could deal with a non-click button. My thumb always rests on my button while tracking. Its just how my hand rests. The finger lifting required would be annoying. Seriously annoying.

robmandu's avatar

@del, I tried the new MB.

I left my thumb in the “normal” position (basically hanging out at the bottom of the trackpad while my index finger dragged around). When I needed a click, I just pushed down with my thumb like “always”. Worked great. Had to keep looking down because it was hard to believe.

Right-clicking is programmable, but by default (I think), it’s set to the lower-right corner of the trackpad.

All in all, I found the new MB to be gorgeous… and personally would prefer a solid hunk-of-metal feel as compared to the craptacular P.O.S I’m driving around now.

delirium's avatar

My current mbp has right clicking programmed as two fingers on trackpad and clicking. I’m almost sure they have that for the new one.
And yeeeek. Scary. I fear dell.

robmandu's avatar

Yah, you can rig the multi-touch like you want. Point was just that you need not really change up your accustomed mode of work.

I was able to work seamlessly, intuitively using my “Dell” muscle memory for mouse movement. That’s actually rather amazing considering the MB’s new trackpad is so radically different.

PaloAltoShawn's avatar

Great catch on the matte screen protector. Ordered the ViewGuard Anti-Glare Matte Screen Protector for my 15” Unibody MacBook. Great stuff. I did see that they had some products that turn a matte screen into a glossy one on but I didn’t really check them out in detail.

Palo Alto

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