MacBook Pro Retina vs. Old Anti-Glare Screens

ChrisJChrisJ Major grinsPosts: 2,159Registered Users Major grins
edited March 17, 2014 in Digital Darkroom
I currently have a 17" MacBook Pro with an Anti-Glare screen (or Matte, as most people would call it), which is now 5 years old. It's a great system, I love having a nice face on top of a Unix OS, and Time Machine is the best.

However, it's about time to upgrade. My main concern with getting a new MacBook Pro is going from Anti-Glare to Retina. I've read a some reviews, but very few first-hand experiences of photographers who have made the switch.

So, anyone out there? I know I can still get Windows laptops with large matte screens, but I really like having OS X under the hood. I don't think a Hackintosh would be a great long term solution. I could dual boot Windows/Linux, or VM a Linux system under Windows, but it's just not as elegant.

Have you regretted getting a Retina display because of the glare? Or is it a non-issue?

Thanks...
Chris

Comments

  • CatOneCatOne A man, sans canal or plan Posts: 957Registered Users Major grins
    edited March 17, 2014
    I have not regretted the Retina screen for a second. It is FANTASTIC. The colors and sharpness of the screen are markedly better than anything previous.

    Glare is not really an issue. I think Apple quotes a 70% reduction in glare from the old "standard" (i.e. non-matte) displays with the Retina display. I don't know about the numbers but I will say that I pretty much never notice glare. And I did formerly get the anti-glare displays all the time. Maybe if you have a bunch of HUGE lights behind you there could be an issue, but other than that...

    The Retina display (and the new, 1 Gb/sec storage) on the latest MacBook Pros are the biggest advancements in laptop performance that I've seen in the past 8 years. Not kidding.
  • jheftijhefti Hyperope Posts: 734Registered Users Major grins
    edited March 17, 2014
    I've been using a 15" MacBook Pro with Retina display for about 1.5 years, and overall I am very happy with it. It is (or was when I bought it) by far the best IQ I could find on a notebook. Since I shoot on assignment with live submission all the time, it is a godsend.

    That said, here are my few complaints:

    1. Glare: Yup, it's a problem when you are shooting on a sunny day and trying to edit live. If you have the luxury of editing at your leisure in a controlled light environment, it's no issue at all. I've learned to wear black when shooting day games, so that light from my shirt does not get reflected off the screen; a seriously real problem!

    2. Crushing the quarter tones: The display significantly crushes the quarter tones and below, resulting in a tendency to bring up the dark tones too much. Once you get used to it, you can compensate. Still, I've blown a few edits because of this.

    3. Cost: This is just a personal thing, but it galls me to pay $2700 for a machine that is no better (display notwithstanding) than a PC-based machine that costs half as much. Overall I just prefer the PC platform, mainly because a do a lot of programming and have used the various OS versions for decades.

    Overall it's a great workhorse. It has survived being dropped on wet asphalt while I was running to an assignment. It had the screen smashed at AT&T Park during a baseball game ($750 to replace). It gets tossed around and abused like any pro piece of equipment does, and keeps on working. And it holds a calibration really well!
  • ChrisJChrisJ Major grins Posts: 2,159Registered Users Major grins
    edited March 17, 2014
    CatOne wrote: »
    I have not regretted the Retina screen for a second. It is FANTASTIC.
    CatOne wrote: »
    The Retina display (and the new, 1 Gb/sec storage) on the latest MacBook Pros are the biggest advancements in laptop performance that I've seen in the past 8 years. Not kidding.

    Thanks, that's good to hear. I will mostly be using it indoors, while not a particularly controlled environment, it is very similar most of the time (and I have the bulbs over my desk turned off).

    Another thing I'm not wild about is the new "disk" arrangements. I'd much prefer to be able to upgrade my disk if I really wanted to. That being said, I have never upgraded the 128 Gig SSD in my current system. But I have been able to remove and troubleshoot it on a couple of occasions. It was replaced once under Applecare.
    Chris
  • ChrisJChrisJ Major grins Posts: 2,159Registered Users Major grins
    edited March 17, 2014
    jhefti wrote: »
    Since I shoot on assignment with live submission all the time, it is a godsend.

    2. Crushing the quarter tones

    I hadn't heard of this one. What colorimeter do you use, it doesn't compensate for this?
    jhefti wrote: »
    3. Cost

    I agree somewhat with this, but since I don't have to buy it myself, I'm not as concerned as I should be. I've had two laptops at my current job, and both have lasted about 5 years. So I like the durability aspect. In fact, I'm still using my original IBM ThinkPad (another great system) as a Windows terminal.

    I'm OS agnostic; I'm comfortable with Windows, OS X, or Linux. I've found it worth the money to have a Mac and the Unix underpinnings. As I said in the last post, it will be used in a somewhat controlled environment, so I'm mostly interested in the differences in an office space. But I can't stand glare!

    Thanks for the detail!
    Chris
  • jheftijhefti Hyperope Posts: 734Registered Users Major grins
    edited March 17, 2014
    ChrisJ wrote: »
    I hadn't heard of this one. What colorimeter do you use, it doesn't compensate for this?

    I use a spyder 4, which works fine on all my other monitors. It's really a subtle thing; perhaps I'm making too big a deal out of it.

    I'm OS-agnostic as well. I just hate paying for the Apple 'experience' (as some devotees call it). Must just be the frugal part of me objecting.
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