O'Grady's PowerPage » MacBook

Hyper launches Indiegogo campaign to create world’s only USB Type C-compatible battery pack, adapter

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015, 08:11
Category: Hardware, MacBook, News, USB-C


This could turn into something cool.

Hyper, the makers of the HyperJuice battery, have put together an Indiegogo fundraiser to raise US$50,000 to create a HyperJuice battery that will effectively charge Apple’s 12-inch MacBook with a USB Type C power adapter interface.

The Magic Box units being worked on will allow conventional battery packs to charge the notebook at 29 watts and will allow you to safely charge the 12-inch MacBook at 12 watts with any USB battery, sending the right current along without risk of damaging the battery over time.


New details revealed as to Skylake processors that may be geared towards Retina MacBooks

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Date: Friday, August 28th, 2015, 12:28
Category: Hardware, MacBook, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, News, Processors


New information for the Intel Skylake processors that are most likely to wind up in a MacBook Air has been released.

The Skylake processors, which may be branded the “Core m3”, “Core m5” and “Core m7” offer the following specs:

The low-end Core m3 6Y30 has a 900 MHz dual-core processor with Turbo Boost up to 2.2 GHz. The chip has 4MB of L3 cache, HD 515 graphics, a maximum GPU frequency of 850 MHz and 4.5 watt thermal design power (TDP). This chip would likely be suited for the base model 12-inch MacBook sold for US$1,299.


12-inch MacBook inventory numbers rise, device now available for Apple Store Personal Pickup

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Date: Thursday, August 6th, 2015, 06:52
Category: MacBook, News, retail


You can now snag the 12-inch MacBook via the Apple Store Personal Pickup plan.

Nearly four months after its release, the 12-inch MacBook notebook now has a strong enough inventory presence to qualify for Apple’s Personal Pickup plan.

The personal pickup option isn’t universal yet however, with only select configurations at select stores being available. For example, the 256 GB Silver MacBook is not available for personal pickup in New York, NY while the 256 GB Space Gray is widely available.


Researchers demonstrate proof of concept for firmware worm that can directly target Macs

Posted by:
Date: Monday, August 3rd, 2015, 16:00
Category: Hack, MacBook, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, News, security, Software


It’s generally been accepted that Apple’s computers are much more secure than their Windows PC counterparts.

This isn’t entirely true, as a part of researchers have found that several known vulnerabilities affecting the firmware of all the top PC makers can also hit the firmware of Macs. The researchers have designed a proof-of-concept worm for the first time that would allow a firmware attack to spread automatically from MacBook to MacBook, without the need for them to be networked.


Apple releases FaceTime Camera Driver Update for all 2015 notebooks

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, July 29th, 2015, 09:43
Category: MacBook, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, News, Software


It’s not a huge update, but if could help out if the camera on your new 2015 Apple notebook is being a bit weird.

On Wednesday, Apple has released a FaceTime Camera Driver Update for all 2015 MacBook, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro notebooks that improves FaceTime camera compatibility with Windows.

The software update was released for the following notebooks:


12-inch MacBook notebooks essentially chained to Apple Store tables, may make browsing difficult

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, July 7th, 2015, 08:48
Category: MacBook, retail, security, Uncategorized


You know how people sometimes go to outlandish (and destructive) lengths to steal things from Apple Store locations?

This, combined with the new 12-inch MacBook’s light weight, may be why they’re literally chaining the new notebook to the display tables.

Apparently the new MacBook, which weighs all of 2.0 pounds, is essentially chained/cabled to the display tables as opposed to letting customers lift it off the table to test its weight, as Apple usually does with its other notebook models.


My MacBook runs a little toasty… 109 degrees to be exact

Posted by:
Date: Monday, May 4th, 2015, 20:19
Category: Hardware, MacBook

I was using my new 2015 MacBook (the 12-inch model) for about 30 minutes tonight when it got uncomfortably hot on my lap. Instead of reaching for a laptop riser/cooling stand I grabbed my favorite tool – an IR thermometer (a Fluke 561).

Here’s what I found:

My MacBook is a little toasty... 109 degrees - Jason O'Grady


My love-hate relationship with Apple’s new USB-C port

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015, 08:25
Category: Hardware, MacBook, Review, USB-C

My love-hate relationship with Apple's new USB-C port

Apple began shipping the new 12-inch Retina MacBook this week (more on it in a future post) and with it, a totally redesigned power adapter based on USB-C. (There are a lot of opinions about Apple’s roll in developing USB-C, which you can read here, here and here, but they’re outside the scope of this post.) As with most things in life, USB-C comes with a number of benefits and compromises which were undoubtedly debated ad nauseam in Cupertino for months. Here are my thoughts on USB-C after using it for a few days.

The positive

  1. The USB-C connector is small, which allows it to fit in small places (like the side of the MacBook 12-inch). It could conceivably end up on other Apple hardware in the future, but don’t recycle your Lightning cables just yet.
  2. The Apple 29 Watt USB-C Power Adapter is smaller than other MacBook power supplies, but it’s a one-trick pony. Apple also missed the opportunity to add a couple of female USB-A jacks on it which would have addressed the MacBook’s “one port” criticisms and earned Apple a ton of good will in the process.
  3. It’s a standard (part of the USB 3.1 specification) which means that third parties can make USB-C cables and dongles without having to worry about being sued by Apple. This should increase competition and lower prices. Eventually.
  4. When you plug in the MacBook’s USB-C power adapter it makes a satisfying “dong” sound – just like the iPhone does. While it’s a nice touch, it doesn’t respect the MacBook’s mute setting, which puts it dangerously close to the neutral category. The iPhone vibrates when connected to power while muted and I’ve heard that Apple could fix the MacBook behavior in a software update.

Read more about the things that drive me crazy about the new USB-C port…


Apple support article offers workaround for recent issues with Setup Assistant on 12-inch MacBook

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, April 22nd, 2015, 07:21
Category: MacBook, News, Software


As nifty as the new 12-inch MacBook is, a number of users have encountered an issue using the Setup Assistant during the initial setup of the notebook. The bug apparently has the spinning beach ball appear during setup, putting the user in an endless cycle.

Apple recently shared a support article that offers users of the new 12-inch MacBook assistance getting around the issue.


iFixit posts teardown of 12-inch MacBook

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, April 15th, 2015, 08:07
Category: Hardware, MacBook, News


The teardown you’ve been waiting for has been completed.

And it shows off some really nifty stuff.

The coolest of cats at iFixit have published a teardown of the new 12-inch MacBook. The feature shows just how tiny the notebook’s logic board is, coming in at 67 percent smaller than that of the MacBook Air. The piece also shows a new terraced battery design for the MacBook, allowing more batteries to be efficiently fit into a small space.