What did you think of the new MacBook? I think they are nice, I don’t want a new one bad enough to upgrade. I bought my MacBook last month knowing full well that they were going to release the new models on the 14th of this month, but the advancements would not be enough for me to wait. Most of the articles & analysis I read were a little harsh, with much of the focus on the price drop, or lack of drop, when I was focused on usability. Maybe they are right, and with the economic slowdown the price reduction is not enough to capture larger appeal and Apple will get hammered.

Still, I think this is a nice advancement. I had seen the leaked photos of the Aluminum case and that looked a lot nicer and more durable that the plastic one; when you travel as much as I do, that seems to be a very nice upgrade. And as it has proven to be with my aluminum desktop cases, I am sure that the heat loss through the case itself will be valuable in keeping the machine cooler with faster processors that we will be made available in the future. If you have ever over-clocked machines before, you know how much Aluminum cases help dissipate heat and improve the lifespan of electronic components.

The biggest problem I have with my MacBook is the mediocre video quality. It’s not just that the graphics card in the current model is under-powered, rather the color, contrast and sharpness it is just ‘Blah’! The new LED backlit display should solve much f this problem. Yeah, the graphics engine is a big boost as well, but really, what hard core gamer is going to use a laptop for a first person shooter? I thought not.

I am going to call the Mini-display port a wash. Why? It will be awesome when attached to the new 24 inch monitor, no doubt about that. But how many MacBook owners are going to buy a $900.00 Monitor? If the analysts are complaining the price $999.00 point is too high for the MacBook, doubling the price makes this option miss the target buyer. Nice technology, perhaps not appropriate for the current generation of buyers.

Personally I am glad that the BluRay player was not included in the new MB. This, in my opinion, is the current generation of Laserdisc players. Yes it offers better performance, but few want it. Did you see that only some 8 million Blu-Ray disks have been sold this year? They have sold almost that many Blu-Ray players if you take into account the current generation of Playstations; this is a dismal adoption rate. And if you are like me, I would rather have video on demand as it seems like a more dynamic & efficient way to get movies and television. And I am not lugging around Blu-Ray player that will probably be obsolete within months. All of which is in line with Apple’s strategy (http://www.apple.com/appletv/whatson/movies.html).

That takes us to my one disappointment: Firewire. This is how I will hook up my Drobo. This is how I hook up my camera. This is how I update the maps on my Garmin. It’s fast. It’s nice to have the option. Sure I can get adaptor cables and use USB, but I would have preferred a dedicated port. Removing this was probably not such a good idea, and I wonder if we will see its return in future models.

All in all, I think the MacBook made three steps forward and one back; couple that with a price drop and I say that is pretty darn good!