MacBook Pro Late 2008: Glass Trackpad and Loud Clicking Noise

Oct 21 2008

Early reviews found that the late 2008 MacBook Pro had a much louder mouse click than older MBP models. My own tests confirm these findings and I’ve captured the excessive ‘snapping’ sound in the video below. Although it is difficult to capture on camera, I would say that the clicking noise from the new MBP is about 2-3x louder and has an unpleasant, higher tone.

Fortunately, tap clicking, where you lightly tap the trackpad without actually making it click, still works fine, but sometimes this method is less precise, such as when attempting to click without moving the cursor, highlighting text, or click-and-dragging objects.

As for the larger trackpad surface and the absence of a mouse button, it is another refinement in this model that I’m greatly liking. I use the trackpad for everything—I refuse to plug in a mouse—so the larger control surface only stands to improve my accuracy and freedom when controlling the cursor. It just boggles my mind how PC makers have fallen behind on improving the trackpad. I doubt they will continue dragging their feet for long…

Finally, a lot has been said about Apple’s use of glass in their new trackpads. It’s true, it doesn’t actually feel like glass, but this is probably a good thing. A quick test using my iPhone’s touchscreen and it’s obvious that the smooth glass surface actually provides quite a bit more resistance than one might expect. The late 2008 MacBook Pros feature a slight grit on the glass, which makes them feel similar to the early 2008 MBP models. But after a side-by-side comparison, it’s apparent that the new glass trackpads feature much less resistance. The fingers just seem to glide more and there’s hardly a jump or stutter when moving around or changing directions. The new glass trackpad is not just hype!

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