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Episodes

Home of the most recent episodes of The CultCast including links to topics discussed and coupons from our beloved sponsors.

345: 2018 MacBook Pro: The good, the great, the UGLY

Chris C.

  Photo:  Apple

Photo:  Apple

This Week!

  • The 2018 MacBook Pro is both a beauty AND a beast. In fact, it's one of the most exciting MBP refreshes in years. The benchmarks are in and they’re impressive.
  • A popular tech reviewer warns that the i9 processor upgrade in the MBP has a major flaw, and his video proof is compelling. We’ll fill you in.
  • We also bring back Matthew Taylor, creator of the very popular butterfly keyboard recall petition, now with over 32,000 signatures, to have a frank discussion on the state of the 2018 MBP keyboard. Has Apple fixed the issues plaguing their butterfly key design?
  • And stay tuned for a strange new HomeKit controller and the best insulated water bottle on the market in an all-new Under Review!


This episode supported by:

  • CultCloth will keep your iPhone 8/X, Apple Watch, Mac and iPad sparkling clean, and for a limited time use code CULTCAST at checkout to score a free CleanCloth with any order at CultCloth.co.


  • Easily create a website by yourself, at Squarespace.com/cultcast. Use offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.



  • We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at Incompetech.com a thanks for the great music you hear on today’s show.


Come say hellooooo!

@erfon / Erfon's YouTube Channel / @bst3r / Buster on Instagram / @lewiswallace / @lkahney


The BEST subreddit you are going to read, ALL week long! thecultcast.reddit.com



2018 MacBook Pro performance shows dramatic improvement

  • The 15- and 13-inch MacBook Pro models launching this week boast significantly faster processors. Tests with the Geekbench benchmarking tool show speed increases as high as 86 percent.
  • The improvements come from faster Turbo Burst frequencies and more processor cores.
  • “For the 15-inch models, single-core performance is up 12-15%, and multi-core performance is up 39-46%
  • “For the 13-inch models, single-core performance is up 3%-11%, and multi-core performance is up 81%-86%

2018 MacBook Pro review roundup: Apple unleashes a speed demon

  • Majorly faster CPU
  • Much faster SSDs
  • Faster DD4 RAM

    • CPU:
      • John Poole from Geekbench: “The 2018 MacBook Pro is the most substantial upgrade (at least regarding performance) since the introduction of the quad-core processors in 2011 MacBook Pro,”
      • Photography Austin Mann did to covert a 4K Mavic Pro video file to 1080p H.265 (HEVC) using QuickTime Player.
        • 2013 MBP with 16GB RAM = 33 minutes
        • Maxed out 2016 MBP = 99 seconds
        • Maxed out 2018 MBP = 24 seconds
    • SSD
      • Laptop Mag: “It’s rare that I don’t believe the results coming out of our lab, but in this case I had to do a double take,” explains Mark. It took the system just 2 seconds to duplicate 4.97GB worth of files, which translates to 2,519 megabytes per second
    • TrueTone:
    • TechCrunch: “I have two 15-inch MacBooks in front of me right now (that’s just how I roll), and it’s like night and day. You’ve got no idea how blue the screen you’ve been staring at is until you see it up against another True Tone-enabled display.”
    • The most expensive laps Apple’s ever made.

Teardown reveals MacBook Pro keyboard is redesigned to prevent keys sticking

  • Apple made potential buyers of the new MacBook Pro models very nervous when it said no effort had been made to fix the problems plaguing the keyboards in earlier versions.
  • They even told the Verge that, though it made the Keyboard quieter, the keyboard was constructed to address the myriad issues they say are affecting only “a tiny" fraction of users.
  • But, IFIXIT took apart they keyboard of the new 2018 MacBook Pro, and discovered “Apple has cocooned their butterfly switches in a thin, silicone barrier”
  • And as it turns out, Apple has a patent for just this kind of debris cover...

Beware serious thermal throttling with new Core i9 MacBook Pro

  • No good deed goes unpunished
  • Early tests have revealed that the i9 chip in Apple’s new MBP suffers severe thermal throttling under heavy loads, which dramatically reduces its clock speed and performance.
  • Dave Lee from Youtube has tests illustrating the issue.
  • He did a render in Adobe Premiere that took the MBP 39 minutes to complete. In that test he monitored the CPU speed temp and saw that the chip was being throttled to BELOW base clock speed just to stay cool.
  • In his tests, Lee found that it averaged at around 2.2GHz with a temperature of 90°C.
  • So he tried the test again, this time with his MacBook Pro in... the freezer.
  • This time, the same test, which took 39 minutes before, took only 27 minutes. That’s a 44% improvement…
  • Not just Apple’s fault
    • There are other laptops on the market that use this chip, and they snuggle to keep the chip cooled as well. But most of these machines are beefier with better ventilation.

Apple won’t give your older MacBook an improved keyboard

  • Unfortunately for existing MacBook and MacBook Pro owners, Apple won’t fit its newer 3rd gen butterfly keyboard into older machines — not even if yours is in need of repair.
  • Earlier machines will be repaired with the same keyboard components they originally shipped with. Apple does not offer the option to upgrade for a fee, either. Only the 2018 MacBook Pro will get the new design if a repair is required.

Apple: Recall MacBook Pro w/ Defective Keyboard, Replace with DIFFERENT Working Keyboard

Under Review!

Nanoleaf Remote

Camelbak Chute

344: The MacBook Pros we’ve been waiting for!

Chris C.

  Photo:  Apple

Photo:  Apple

This Week!

It’s the best update in YEARS. We’ll tell you everything you need to know about Apple’s very powerful new MacBook Pros. Plus: new Mac Minis are on the way; Ming-Chi Kuo confirms Apple’s about to update their entire product line; how Coke-heads use Apple watch to maximize their high; and we talk Killer Whale attacks, port wines, and the story of Saturday Night Live's world renowned sax player on an all-new Under Review.


This episode supported by:

  • CultCloth will keep your iPhone 8/X, Apple Watch, Mac and iPad sparkling clean, and for a limited time use code CULTCAST at checkout to score a free CleanCloth with any order at CultCloth.co.



  • We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at Incompetech.com a thanks for the great music you hear on today’s show.


Come say hellooooo!

@erfon / Erfon's YouTube Channel / @bst3r / Buster on Instagram / @lewiswallace / @lkahney


The BEST subreddit you are going to read, ALL week long! thecultcast.reddit.com



Apple updates MacBook Pros with 8th gen Intel Coffee Lake CPUs and ”quieter” keyboards

  • 13” gets 4 cores
  • 15” get six cores with options
  • i7s on both machines with faster i9 chip available on 15”
  • Apple says that the 15-inch model will have a 70 percent performance increase, and the 13-inch model should double in speed.
  • Keyboards have been made quieter, but Apple told The Verge that this 3rd gen keyboard has not been designed to alleviate the issues they say are only affecting a “tiny portion” of buyers
  • 32GB RAM and 4TB SSD option now available on 15” model for a mere $6700
  • Both models come with True Tone displays, which allows the screen to change its color temperature based on the color temperature of the room.
  • Interestingly, the Touch Bar will also support True Tone
  • These will also be Apple’s first laptops to support “Hey Siri”

New Mac mini and cheaper MacBook might finally land this fall

  • Ming Chi Kuo has basically just confirmed what I’ve been saying the last couple of weeks: Apple is about to drop an orgasmic amount of updated hardware products on us.
  • Yes, according to Kuo’s new report, Apple is getting ready to update almost their entire hardware line.
  • iPhone - There are three iPhones in the works, two OLED models in 5.8 and 6.5-inch sizes and one lower-cost LED model that will be available in a 6.1-inch size. All three will feature Face ID and upgraded A12 processors. While the two OLED models will have dual-lens cameras, the lower-cost model will feature a single-lens camera.
  • iPad Pro - Apple is working on two new 11 and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models that are equipped with a full-screen design similar to the iPhone X and no Home button, with Apple to replace Touch ID with Face ID.
  • Mac mini - Kuo didn't have a lot of information to share on this one, but he did say a processor upgrade is expected. He did not say if additional upgrades would be included, like as a redesigned body.
  • It’s been over 3 and a half years since the Mac Mini was updated, and they’re still charging full price for it.
  • MacBook - Processor upgrades expected.
  • New Low-Priced Notebook - Ming Chi believes Apple is designing a new low-priced notebook fo some kind. He originally said it would be part in the MacBook Air family, but now he seems to not be so sure. We’ll soon know.
  • iMac - Kuo says he expect a significant display performance upgrade, and a processor refresh.
  • Apple Watch - Apple is working on two new Apple Watch models for 2018 that will have bigger displays and enhanced heart rate detection features. The two Apple Watch models will measure in at 1.57 inches (39.9mm) and 1.78 inches (45.2mm), roughly 15 percent bigger than in the current models. Rumors have not been clear on whether the Apple Watch itself will be larger or if the bigger display will come from a reduction in bezels.

Doctors worry that cocaine users rely on Apple Watch as a lifesaver

  • According to a new report, medical experts are concerned that some drug users, particularly people taking cocaine, are using their Apple Watches and other wearables to monitor their heart rate while imbibing.
  • From the users’ perspective, the idea is that doing this could alert them to dangerously high heart rates while taking drugs such as cocaine. However, doctors point out that the technology does not protect people against the dangers of drug use.
  • The article details the story of several semi-regular cocaine users. One describes monitoring drug use as the only reason they wear a heart rate-tracking wearable. “I want an early warning system for when my heart’s going to explode,” one person wrote in a thread on Reddit.
  • “If someone says, ‘Let’s do a line,’ I’ll look at my watch,” says one of the people interviewed. “If I see I’m at [heart rates of] 150 or 160, I’ll say, ‘I’m good.’

What we’re INTO

Kahney Klan Vs. KILLER SHARK!

Repair anything with Bondic plastic weld

The great woodsman, Lenny Picket (Clinic 1 of 5)

The browner the better! The rich history of port wine

343: Mac refresh, incoming

Chris C.

  Photo:  Apple

Photo:  Apple

This Week!

  • New evidence just today that Apple has a big Mac refresh right around the corner.
  • MacBook Pro is about to get the new feature we’ve all been wanting.
  • Apple is rebuilding their maps app from the ground up, and it looks magnificent.
  • Erfon visited Apple’s new Seattle flagship store it was STUNNING.
  • We pitch a wood-wrapped iPhone case, waterproof camping lights, and a great new reading app an all-new Under Review!


This episode supported by:

  • Act quick! Until July 9th, you can save up to $245 on one of Casper’s American-made award-winning mattresses, at Casper.com/savings.


  • Easily create a website by yourself, at Squarespace.com/cultcast. Use offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.


  • CultCloth will keep your iPhone 8/X, Apple Watch, Mac and iPad sparkling clean, and for a limited time use code CULTCAST at checkout to score a free CleanCloth with any order at CultCloth.co.



  • We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at Incompetech.com a thanks for the great music you hear on today’s show.


Come say hellooooo!

@erfon / Erfon's YouTube Channel / @bst3r / Buster on Instagram / @lewiswallace / @lkahney


The BEST subreddit you are going to read, ALL week long! thecultcast.reddit.com



Apple paves the way for new iPads and Macs to arrive in Europe

  • Apple has this week registered new iPads and Macs with the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC). The filings hint that a big refresh could be just around the corner.
  • Five new Macs with the model numbers has been registered with the commission.
  • Looking at the model numbers it looks like three of the machines will be MBPs, and then one will be a MBA and A MB.
  • There are five iPad model numbers, too, meaning we’ll likely be seeing an iPad Pro refresh very soon.
  • What’s particularly interesting about the filings is that the Apple lists macOS 10.13 and iOS 11 as the software for these devices, which suggests it might be planning to launch them before macOS Mojave and iOS 12

‘Coffee Lake’ chips could give 2018 MacBook Pro a jolt

  • Apple may soon be planning to upgrade the MacBook Pro line to the latest generation of Intel processors. Benchmarks for a macOS laptop running a “Coffee Lake” chip showed up on Geekbench.
  • Why’s that exciting? More cores and a huge 40-50% increase in multitasking performance.
  • If this isn’t a fake, what’s interesting is the machine tested was likely a 13” MBP, but its processor had 4 cores (8 with hyper threading) instead of just two (what current 13” MBPs have)
  • This would probably also mean the 15 would have SIX cores.

Apple is rebuilding Maps from the ground up

Apple Maps getting revamped to suck less

  • For the last 4 years, Apple has been working on totally rebuilding Apple Maps, in an effort to make it the best maps app in the world. They now have hundreds of map editors working furiously, and thousands of employees.
  • Talking to TechCrunch, Eddie Cue, now heading up the project, said they realized maps was at the heart of everything; people use their phones for navigation, apps use GPS to location information, so Apple needed to take ownership of it, and they’re doing it in two ways:

Our Under Review picks

Rustek Inlay iPhone case

Libby reading app

Luminoodle Camping lights

342: New AirPods! New iPhones! New HomePod!

Chris C.

  Photo:  Apple

Photo:  Apple

This Week!

Apple plans new, improved AirPods, HomePod and over-ear headphones; Apple finally acknowledges its new MacBook keyboards suck, and they’re going to make it right; a top Apple analyst drops a bunch of details on Apple’s 2018 product pipeline; and Apple is tries to solve a fascinating issue with autonomous vehicles.


This episode supported by:

  • Print postage from your office and take advantage of special shipping discounts at pb.com/cultcast, and beat the postage rate increase with exclusive discounts on letters. Plans start at just $5 a month!


  • Easily create a website by yourself, at Squarespace.com/cultcast. Use offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain.


  • CultCloth will keep your iPhone 8/X, Apple Watch, Mac and iPad sparkling clean, and for a limited time use code CULTCAST at checkout to score a free CleanCloth with any order at CultCloth.co.



  • We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at Incompetech.com a thanks for the great music you hear on today’s show.


Come say hellooooo!

@erfon / Erfon's YouTube Channel / @bst3r / Buster on Instagram / @lewiswallace / @lkahney


The BEST subreddit you are going to read, ALL week long! thecultcast.reddit.com



Apple finally acknowledges its new MacBook keyboards suck

  • The butterfly keyboards on the new MacBook and MacBook Pro are officially defective.
  • After months of outcry from angry customers, Apple has finally acknowledged that the new keyboards have some serious problems. The company says the issues are limited to a small percentage of MacBooks, but its offering free repairs.

Apple plans new, improved AirPods, HomePod and over-ear headphones

  • Bloomberg has a new report out that says we could have some exciting new Apple audio products in 2019.

Top Apple analyst drops a ton of details on Apple’s 2018 product pipeline

  • First: Ming still expects three new iPhones in 2018: a second-generation iPhone X, a massive 6.5-inch version dubbed the iPhone X Plus, and a 6.1-inch version that will essentially be a budget iPhone X.

Apple is trying to solve a very interest problem with autonomous vehicles, and they’ve hired a fascinating guy to help solve it. Engineer and YouTuber Mark Rober Working on Anti-Motion Sickness VR Technology for Use in Autonomous Vehicles

  • Engineer and popular YouTuber Mark Rober is, accordingly Variety, working for Apple as an engineer in their special projects group.
  • More specifically, Rober has been working on Apple's virtual reality projects, including "using VR as on-board entertainment for self-driving cars.”
  • His most recent patent addresses an interesting problem:
    • "Many passengers in vehicles may experience motion sickness. Typically, this is not the case for the driver. However, with the arrival of autonomous vehicles, the driver becomes a passenger, and thus may want to occupy themselves while, for example, riding to work. Passengers in conventional or autonomous vehicles may, for example, want to read a book, or work on their notebook computer.

Meet Mark Rober, the creative dynamo working on Apple’s autonomous car project

Jon Olsson is a young rich guy with a great YouTube channel

Dr. DisRespect is the most dominating streamer in the online gaming community