How to fix the new 16-inch MacBook Pro’s clicking speakers

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Apple added an Escape button, but broke the speakers. Find out how to fix MacBook Pro clicking speakers.
Apple added an Escape button, but broke the speakers.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

The new 16-inch MacBook Pro ships with a serious problem. If you listen to sound — any sound — through its speakers, they can click. It sounds like a stuttery, glitchy crackle. You can hear it when the Mac makes an alert sound, or when you listen to music. The problem is not limited to the new 16-inch MacBook Pro, either. It’s a long-standing bug that affected previous models as well.

The good news is that there’s a workaround. The problem isn’t the speakers. They work fine. It’s the operating system. More specifically, it’s the sample rate of the audio device. Here’s how to fix the clicking speakers on your brand new MacBook Pro.

10 best skateboard stickers for defiling your new 16-inch MacBook Pro

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It takes years of professional training to place MacBook stickers this badly.
It takes years of professional training to place stickers this badly.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Stickers are great, and skateboard stickers are the best of all. Which is why, when it comes to decorating/ruining/improving your new 16-inch MacBook Pro, you should be covering it with badass skate designs.

Even if you’re not a sticker kind of person, there’s an argument to be made that the MacBook needs at least one sticker, just to fix the stupid upside-down Apple logo on its lid. So, without further rambling, here are the 10 best skateboards stickers to stick on any MacBook.

How to add a Dark Mode toggle to the MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar

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The homemade Dark Mode button lets you toggle between Dark Mode and the MacBook Pro's regular appearance, right from your Touch Bar.
The homemade Dark Mode button.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

The Mac’s Dark Mode isn’t bad. It’s definitely a better view when quickly checking something on your Mac late in the evening. But unless you have it set to switch automatically, toggling Dark Mode on and off is a pain. So, with a shiny new MacBook Pro in front of me, I decided to put the Touch Bar to use.

Did you know you can add your own buttons to the Touch Bar? You can, and it’s totally rad.

6 ways to charge your iPhone

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iPhone charge
Charging -- not just about cables any more.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Charging an iPhone used to be so simple. You’d grab your 30-pin dock connector cable, the one that was almost as big as an AirPods charging case, and you’d jam it into the huge slot on the bottom of your iPhone. Then you’d wait.

Today, the kids don’t know how easy they have it. They can plug in a svelte, skinny Lightning cable to charge their iPhones, but they can also opt for several other ultra-modern (and probably fashionable) charging methods. Hell, even the olde worlde cable method has some high-tech, high-speed alternatives.

Let’s get right into it. Here are six different ways you can charge your iPhone.

Drag almost anything to create a new window in iPadOS

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Drag windows
As many windows as you like.
Photo: Pierre Châtel-Innnocenti/Unsplash

By now, you know that you can use multiple windows from the same app in iPadOS 13, just like you can on the Mac. And you probably also know that it’s a pain to open a new window from scratch. You have to open the app, then slide the Dock up from the bottom of the screen, then tap the app icon again, then tap the little + icon at the top right.

But did you know that there’s an easier way to open a new window in iPadOS? You can just drag an item to the edge of the screen, and drop it there to open it in a brand-new Split View window. Let’s check it out.

The 16-inch MacBook Pro is amazing, but it’s still a Mac [Review]

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MacBook Pro review
The MacBook Pro, on the very edge of a table.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

There’s a great Steve Jobs story that somehow seems relevant in a 2019 MacBook Pro review. You probably know it, but I’ll tell it anyway. After the iPad launch, Jobs supposedly walked into a meeting with the Mac team, carrying an iPad. He woke up the iPad, which happened instantaneously. Then he woke up a Mac, which took a while to come out of sleep. Then he asked something like, “Why doesn’t this do that?”

Today, he might take the iPad Pro, and the brand new top-of-the-line MacBook Pro, start them both editing a few images, and wait for the fans to spin up on the Mac. While it cranks up to leaf-blower levels, he’d point at the silent iPad, and make some scathing quip.

The new 16-inch MacBook Pro is an incredible computer that’s let down by the red-hot Intel chips inside. Apple’s cool, fast, super-powerful A-series ARM chips can’t come to the Mac soon enough. Using this Intel machine after using an ARM-powered iPad for several years, the Mac feels like there’s something wrong with it. And yet, barely 24 hours into owning one, I absolutely love it.

Hold down the Option key to unlock Mac’s hidden menu bar actions

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menu widgets
Not that kind of menu item.
Photo: Croissant/Unsplash

The Option key (sometimes marked ⌥ on your Mac’s keyboard) offers you extra options, whether you’re using the keyboard or the mouse. Hold it down while dragging a file, for example, and it will create a duplicate of that file, instead of just moving it1. The Option key works everywhere — in menus, too. Today, we’re going to see what happens when you Option-click on the status menu icons up on the right side of your Mac’s menu bar. The Bluetooth, volume, Wi-Fi, Time Machine and Notification Center widgets, to be precise.

Option-clicking on these icons gives you far greater control of some of your Mac’s core functionality. You might be surprised at what you can do up there.

How to set a strong passcode on Apple Watch

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Keep your Apple Watch safe with a proper, long, strong passcode.
Keep your Apple Watch safe with a proper, long, strong passcode.
Photo: Chuttersnap/Unsplash

The default passcode length on the Apple Watch is just four digits. And while it’s true that you don’t keep as much sensitive data on the smartwatch as you do on an iPhone, and that your Apple Watch is arguably safer from bad actors because it is always strapped to your wrist, it’s still worth making this passcode more secure. After all, it’s not like you have to enter your strong passcode very often, right?

Today we’ll see how to change your Apple Watch passcode to a longer one. And we’ll also check out a neat feature that lets you skip entering the passcode altogether.

How to highlight text and add post-its in Safari

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Highlighter for Safari.
Highlight in Safari.
Photo: Denise Jans/Unsplash

There are a handful of webpages I keep referring back to, often reading the same parts over and over. They may be part of an instruction manual, or other reference material1. And sometimes, while researching an article, I want to highlight sections and phrases to find them more easily. Just like using a highlighter marker on a sheet of paper.

Until now, I’ve never found good way to do it. Apps required me to sign up for an account, or store my highlights on their servers, or pay a subscription. Or the app was just plain clunky. Then I found Highlighter for Safari.