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18 hours ago, Angry the Clown said:

Think this truly has to be the year that I replace my iPhone 6. Performance has been feeling incredibly sluggish switching between apps, and even in Safari these past few weeks. 

 

I’m uncertain what I will do on the iPad Pro and Mac front. Difficult to forsee being able to afford all three this year, despite my MBP starting to show its age now. My 9.7” iPad Pro is still speedy, but I long for the larger display now. We’ll have to see how the year plays out and what the 2019 product updates bring. Hopefully we’re not too far from an iMac refresh.

 

same here!

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Are you thinking X or XR? Rumours suggest there will be no size differences this year compared with the 2018 models, which is a shame as I’d be happy with an XR in a regular X size.

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I'm deal watching right now, since I have two active 6's to upgrade.  I like the oled, but I think I'd be fine with the xr too.  

 

Just waiting on a new customer deal to show up somewhere. :)

 

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I missed a few on the XS recently. In fact Apple seemed to be directly targeting 6 owners with trade in offers which was interesting. We’ll see how rumours play out on 2019 model revisions. Could be wiser to get a cheaper 2018 phone come October. With general sales levelling out perhaps the new X models will be priced a little cheaper this year (lol...etc), also the UK is about to implode economically anyway so a 2018 X may be the better choice for me.

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Interesting to read that Apple will be a year late to 5G following news that Intels chipsets will not be ready until 2020. That does put a potential dampener on the prospect of getting a 2019 iPhone, if primarily due to thought of how it will affect resale value in several years. 

 

https://www.macrumors.com/2019/02/23/intel-5g-2020-iphones/

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I bought the Rotor Riot MFi controller over the weekend. It's the first MFi controller that supports clickable analog sticks (L3/R3) that Apple added support for sometime in iOS 12. It includes a detachable mount for holding your iPhone (I've read it can hold iPhones as large as the X Max). It is a wired controller that plugs into (and gets power from) the lightning port of the iPhone/iPad. The cord is about 2 feet long and the mount has little hooks to wrap the cord around (it also includes a Velcro strap to keep the cord wound up when the mount isn't attached).

 

The controller looks like an Xbox One controller. I would say the build quality is a step lower but still acceptable. It is significantly lighter than an Xbox One controller because there are no batteries or rumble mechanisms in it. This does make the Rotor Riot controller feel top heavy when the iPhone is attached via the mount. I mainly use it with my iPad Pro so it's not an issue for me but if you're only interested in it for use with an iPhone, it may bother you. The controller links to the free Ludu Mapp app which has links to all the games on the App Store that support the Rotor Riot (and all other MFi controllers I believe). The firmware update process occurs through the Ludu Mapp as well.

 

So far, most iOS games/apps do not support the L3/R3 buttons since they were added to the MFi spec not too long ago. Right now, I believe the only apps that support these additional buttons are apps for playing PC/console games via streaming. Fortnite mobile recently added controller support and a "Limited" controller scheme that makes the game playable without L3/R3 support (sprint is set to auto-run and crouch is set to a d-pad direction) for the more popular MFi controllers without L3/R3 support like the SteelSeries Nimbus. Mark Rein, the VP/co-founder of Epic Games tweeted this out though:

 

In case you were wondering, starting a match in Fortnite with the controller attached will place you into a lobby with other controller players on consoles, not in the mobile/touch lobby. You also cannot start a match with the controller disconnected and try to reconnect and play with a controller after you are put into a match with mobile/touch users. With the recent additions of 60FPS, controller support, career/stats, Fortnite mobile has caught up to and surpassed the Switch for a portable way to play Fortnite.

 

The Rotor Riot is $49.99 at Best Buy/Amazon.

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I had a really good experience with Apple support this past week.  I made an appointment at the Apple Store for last Thursday because some of the keys on my late 2016 MacBook Pro were either sticking or repeating when I typed.  I hated to turn in my laptop for repair, as I use it all the time.  They took my Mac at about 2 pm and Thursday, it was shipped to Apple, repaired on Friday, and back to the Apple Store by Saturday morning.  Fast turnaround!!  Because of the modular design of the laptop, the keyboard, trackpad, and battery were all replaced.  I'm pretty sure it is now the 2017 model's keyboard, and you can never do wrong with a new battery!

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Sluggishness of my iPhone 6 is really starting to become agonisingly buggy. Aside from a naturally expected slowdown in opening apps, and multi-tasking between one and another, as one would expect of an ageing computer it occasionally hangs when I start typing into the Safari search bar sometimes then quickly catches up with itself.

 

I can put up with it until October I’m sure (though Apple keep taunting me with trade in offers against 2018 models), but it’s curious that it has so suddenly become increasingly unresponsive.

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Do you have the setting turned off to throttle the cpu to maximize battery life?  That could speed it up, though I don't know how much.

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3 hours ago, Eldorado said:

Do you have the setting turned off to throttle the cpu to maximize battery life?  That could speed it up, though I don't know how much.

 

I’m at 100% peak health on my battery since getting Apple to replace it in December. I believe it needs to drop below 80 or 90% before the throttling kicks in and the option to disable it becomes visible.

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Invites to a March 25th event are going out:

 

Quote

Apple today sent out invites for a media event that will be held on Monday, March 25 at the Steve Jobs Theater on the Apple Park Campus. As with most Apple events, it will start at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time or 1:00 p.m. Eastern Time. 

The event features the tagline "It's Show Time," which is in line with rumors suggesting it will focus on services rather than hardware. Apple is expected to use the event to unveil its rumored Apple News service and a streaming TV service. 

 

New iMacs had better be worth it whenever they do surface because they sure are taking their sweet time with them. 

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I picked up the SteelSeries Nimbus MFi controller. It has a nice weight to it as, unlike the Rotor Riot controller, it has a battery (that will last up to 40 hours). Overall, the look and feel of it is more premium than the Rotor Riot. The triggers have less tension and the analog thumb sticks are slightly more stiff (both positives). The d-pad is the cross type (the Rotor Riot has the disc type) so I feel like I accidentally press the wrong direction less with it. The Nimbus is comfortable to hold with grips that extend down farther than an Xbox One controller (more similar to a PS4 controller). The analog thumb stick layout is in line with each other, similar to a PS4 controller. On Fortnite mobile, I prefer the Xbox One-style offset analog thumb stick layout better as the control scheme Epic created to re-map the game's actions to compensate for the lack of L3/R3 buttons sometimes requires me to move the left analog thumb stick and press down on the d-pad at the same time (which I could do with my right thumb on an offset analog thumb stick layout).

 

The Nimbus pairs easily with an iPhone/iPad/Apple TV and auto-reconnects when you flip the on/off switch on it (I like that it has an on/off switch as my joy-cons/Switch pro controller are always turning on and wasting battery whenever any of the buttons are accidentally pressed during transport). If you have it paired to multiple devices, you will have to manually connect the Nimbus in your device's Bluetooth settings though. Unlike the Rotor Riot, you can play your iPhone/iPad while it is charging (this is a particular issue with Fortnite mobile as it drains the battery pretty quickly on my iPad Pro) . The Nimbus has a lightning port to charge it but it does not come with either a lightning cable or wall adapter.

 

The only drawback with the Nimbus so far is that the analog thumb sticks are not clickable so it does not support any L3/R3 functionality. In that way, the Rotor Riot is more future-proof. If you want a phone mount, there are some available on Amazon for the Nimbus for around $11-12 (this comes included with the Rotor Riot).

 

Overall, I think the Nimbus is better than the Rotor Riot in every way, except for the lack of L3/R3 functionality and phone mount. Not very many apps support L3/R3 functionality, but as that increases, the lack of support for it will become a bigger issue. I would expect SteelSeries to release an updated Nimbus with this functionality but so far, nothing has been announced.

 

The SteelSeries Nimbus is $49.99 at Best Buy/Amazon/Apple Store.

 

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So Apple put up a new iPad Air and a new iPad mini without any formal announcement. Think my tax return will be put to good use.

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There’s some talk new iMacs could surface without any fanfare too. I hope that’s not the case. 

 

The 10.5” Air has likely trashed the value of my 9.7” Pro (particularly since the new Air has seen the 10.5” Pro discontinued). 😬 

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Funny, I just bought a new 9.7-inch iPad this weekend for my youngest. Target had the 32GB model on sale last week for $249.99 (regularly $329.99), and I figured it was about time to finally replace the old third gen iPad he had been using. In case you don't remember, that was the first Retina iPad, which was so terrible that Apple replaced it a mere six months later. It still worked for the most part, but it was incredibly slow, and it couldn't be updated any more. Often times, apps would freeze or not respond to touch inputs right away. We did get about 7 years or use out of it though, so I guess I got my money's worth. 

 

That said, my oldest boy is rocking an iPad Air 2, which he received as a hand-me-down after I bought my 10.5-inch iPad Pro back in 2017. Even though it was released in late 2014--only about two-and-a-half years after the third gen iPad--it's still going strong. You wouldn't know from using it that it is almost four-and-a-half years old now. It still feels fast and responsive and is still shockingly thin and light. It's amazing how much progress Apple made in its mobile chip designs in such a short period of time.

 

$499 for a new iPad Air looks like a pretty sweet deal. Based on what I see from Apple's website, it looks like it's essentially my 10.5-inch iPad Pro from 2017, but with the A12 instead of the A11 chip. As much as I would love to get a new iPad Pro, I can't think of anything the new models would do for me that my current iPad Pro can't. FaceID would be cool, as would a bigger, screen, but it's not enough for me to jump ship and pick up a new model.

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1 minute ago, JoeyN said:

I’m still using an Air 1. It’s still working great, I just want to get Touch ID.

 

Yeah, lack of TouchID is what prompted me to wait on replacing the ol' 3rd gen model back in the day. Thankfully, they added it in the Air 2.

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Still rocking my 3rd gen, outside basic web browsing there's not much I do on it as apps are no longer updating. The new Air is nice, like that they upped the min memory from 32 to 64GB. I can wait until later this year for an upgrade, either to Air or a new pro that hopefully won't bend.

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My 9.7” Pro still runs perfectly smooth, I’d just like the largest display now the reduced bezels/faceID have made the form factor of the 12.9” more practical, and I’d like the 2nd gen Apple Pencil.

 

Admitedly the pad is still probably third on my list of Apple devices I will seek to upgrade this year (2014 Macbook Pro to 2019 iMac and iPhone 6 to XS or 2019 X likely to take priority).

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Aaaand new iMacs have indeed received an update without fanfare. Specs are appealing, however.

 

 

Quote

Apple today announced that its iMac lineup has been updated with Intel's latest 8th-generation and 9th-generation Core processors, including up to a six-core 8th-generation Core i7 for the 21.5-inch 4K iMac and up to an eight-core 9th-generation Core i9 with Turbo Boost up to 5.0GHz for the 27-inch 5K iMac. 

Apple says the new 21.5-inch iMac models deliver up to 60 percent faster performance than the previous generation, while the new 27-inch iMac models deliver up to 2.4 times faster performance than the previous generation, narrowing the gap between the high-end standard iMac and the iMac Pro workstation. 

Following in the footsteps of the 2018 MacBook Pro, Radeon Pro Vega graphics options are now available across the new iMac lineup, including Vega 20 for 21.5-inch models and Vega 48 for 27-inch models. Apple advertises up to 80 percent faster graphics performance compared to the previous iMac lineup. 

 
The new iMac lineup also offers faster 2,666MHz DDR4 memory, while the base model 21.5-inch 4K iMac has new 32GB memory and 1TB SSD options. 

 

 

Guess I should price up a custom 27" and start saving. 😩

 

 

*edit*

 

27" 3.7Ghz 6-core (9th gen) i5

512GB SSD

Radeon Pro Vega 48 GPU

Magic Trackpad 2

 = £2794

       + whatever 32GB of third party DD4 ram would set me back.

 

That's not too awful. It goes up to £3154 if I opt for the above but with a 1TB SSD (+ added cost of 32GB of third party Ram again). I've really no need for the 8-core CPU.

 

Do we know what the Vega 48 Pro is roughly equivalent to performance wise?

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Man, new iPads and new iMacs within a day of each other? It's like Apple is speaking directly to me.

 

I currently have a baseline late-2015 5K iMac configured with 32GB of third-party RAM and a 512GB SSD. I bought it a little over three years ago, which is usually the amount of time I wait before replacing a computer. But, like my iPad Pro, I can't think of anything that the new iMac would do for me that my old one can't. It still runs great,thanks in no small part to those memory and SSD upgrades. Do I try to sell my current model and upgrade to a new one? Would it make that much of a difference? What kind of price could I get for selling my old computer?

 

If it's worth it, I may seriously look into selling the old iMac. I love this product, and would like to keep as up-to-date on it as possible. More to come...

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3 hours ago, Angry the Clown said:

 

Do we know what the Vega 48 Pro is roughly equivalent to performance wise?

 

Looks like around GTX-1080 performance.

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Really? Because I'm inferring from the name that it's less fast than the Radeon Pro Vega 56, and that was about GTX 1070 Mobile speed - I'd guess it's going to end up about 1060ish.

 

Which is fine, really.

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