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  #1  
Old 01-12-2011, 09:30 PM
Jason Dunn
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Default Apple's Macbook Air 13 (2010 Model): The Future of Laptops?

<p><object width="600" height="360" data="http://www.youtube.com/v/vzbZvVdXANg&amp;ap=&amp;fmt=18" type="application/x-shockwave-flash"><param name="src" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/vzbZvVdXANg&amp;ap=&amp;fmt=18" /></object></p><p>This is my review video of the Macbook Air 13 (2010 model). This version has the 2.16 Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, 4 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, NVIDIA GeForce 320M GPU, Bluetooth, 802.11b/g/n WiFi. It has no CD/DVD drive. The <a href="http://www.laptopthoughts.com/news/show/101569/apple-s-macbook-air-13-2010-model-unboxing-first-impressions.html" target="_blank">unboxing video can be found here</a>; I kept this laptop for the full two weeks before returning it to Apple. Returning it was a hard decision, because there were so many things I liked about the Macbook Air. <MORE /></p><p>The screen - oh, that SCREEN - was truly excellent.&nbsp;High-quality screens are so hard to find on Windows laptops, but Apple takes screens seriously and I've yet to see any Apple product with a screen that looked pale and washed out, which is sadly typical on many Windows laptops. The best screens on Windows laptops are usually only found on larger laptops, and even then often only on business/enterprise models. I will say though that the screen on the Sony Vaio Z looked quite good; good screens are out there on Windows laptops, but they're hard to find on a laptop that also meets <a href="http://www.laptopthoughts.com/news/show/101151/" target="_blank">the other requirements I was looking for</a> as a buyer.</p><p>The physical design of the product is quite impressive - it's amazingly thin at&nbsp;0.3-1.7cm (0.11-0.68 inch) - and feels fairly light in the hands at&nbsp;1.32 kg (2.9 pounds). Being a Windows user, the keyboard button layout gave me headaches, but I can't fault the tactile feel of the keys, or the fact that Apple - much to their credit - lets users pick if they want an English or French/English keyboard when they buy the product. That means a full-sized left shift key. Are you listening HP? Sony? Acer? Asus? Stop forcing French/English keyboards on Canadian users.</p><p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com//lpt/auto/1296756131.usr1.png" style="border: 1px solid #d2d2bb;" /></p><p><em>Figure 1: The Windows Experience Index score, as measured under Windows 7.</em></p><p>I published this video on YouTube a bit over a week ago, and I've been surprised by two things as I've read and responded <a href="http://www.youtube.com/comment_servlet?all_comments=1&amp;v=vzbZvVdXANg" target="_blank">to the comments</a>. First, that some people really appreciate the length of the video - I really dove into a lot of detail, especially about the battery life on OS X vs. Windows, but I wasn't sure how many people would be interested in that. I'll be publishing a&nbsp;separate&nbsp;article on that topic, because I find it quite fascinating.</p><p>The second thing that surprised me was how <em>offended</em> - for lack of a better word - some people got that I was pushing the Macbook Air to see what it could and could not do. That I would even <em>try</em> to edit HD videos or raw photos on this thin and light notebook was somehow ludicrous and upset people. I stand by my decision: while the 13" Macbook Air that I bought might be thinner and lighter than a netbook, it still packs a 2.13 Ghz Core 2 Duo CPU - a CPU that far outstrips anything shipping in a netbook today. This isn't an Atom processor after all; it's perfectly reasonable for a reviewer to see what the combination of that CPU and the SSD can and can't do.</p><p>I in no way fault the Macbook Air for not being able to measure up to my needs; for 95% of the people out there, the performance this laptop has would be more than sufficient for anything they wanted to do. For me though, it didn't quite measure up when compared to the $1800 price tag, so I'll be keeping a keen eye on Apple's next refresh of the Macbook Pro line. Ultimately something with a Core i5 or Core i7 is likely what I need. I also saw some interesting laptops at CES 2011 that caught my attention.</p><p>I've since returned the Macbook Air for a refund - the employee I was dealing with at the Apple store really wanted to hit me with the 10% restocking fee, but I talked my way out of it - but I'm happy to answer any questions about it that you might have if I can.</p><p>Further, be sure to check out <a href="http://www.reallyrefreshing.com" target="_blank">Really Refreshing</a> to benchmark the battery life on your own laptop. We'll be changing the sites we're using on that soon, but for now, it's still an interesting test of battery endurance.</p><p>Want to buy one? You can support Apple Thoughts and Laptop Thoughts by&nbsp;<a href="http://is.gd/iwhjL" target="_blank">purchasing via our Amazon.com affiliate store</a>.</p><p><em>Jason Dunn owns and operates&nbsp;</em><em><a href="http://www.thoughtsmedia.com/" target="_blank">Thoughts Media Inc.</a></em><em>, a company dedicated to creating the best in online communities. He enjoys&nbsp;</em><em><a href="http://photos.jasondunn.com/" target="_blank">photography</a></em><em>, mobile devices,&nbsp;</em><em><a href="http://www.jasondunn.com/" target="_blank">blogging</a></em><em>, digital media content creation/editing, and pretty much all technology. He lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with his lovely wife, his wonderful son Logan, and his sometimes obedient dog. He wishes more Windows laptop OEMs cared about creating iconic hardware designs.</em></p><p><em></em><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com//ppct/auto/1240336793.usr1.gif" /></p><p><strong>Do you enjoy using new hardware,&nbsp;<a class="iAs" href="http://www.digitalhomethoughts.com/news/show/93798/dell-s-inspiron-mini-10-reviewed.html" target="_blank">software</a>&nbsp;and accessories, then sharing your experience with others? Then join us on the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.thoughtsmedia.com/reviewteam.php" target="_blank">Thoughts Media Review Team</a>! We're looking for individuals who find it fun to test new gear and give their honest opinions about the experience. It's a volunteer role with some great perks. Interested?&nbsp;<a href="http://www.thoughtsmedia.com/reviewteam.php" target="_blank">Then click here for more information.</a></strong></p><p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com//ppct/auto/1240336793.usr1.gif" /></p>
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  #2  
Old 01-13-2011, 12:00 AM
crimsonsky
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Thanks for the review, Jason. For the record, you don't have to use System Preferences to boot into Windows. Just hold down the Alt/Option key when the system is booting and you'll get a choice of which OS to start. Something to keep in mind if you do ever buy an upcoming MacBook model.

I agree that Apple is going to incorporate a lot of what they did in the MBA into future laptops. In fact, I expect that the white plastic MacBook is history and that all Apple laptops in the future will be aluminum. I also suspect that SSDs and larger batteries are going to be a standard feature in at least some MacBook Pro models in the future.

I'm actually now considering the 11 inch MBA to replace my wife's 4.5 year old MacBook when it kicks the bucket (which could be years yet at the rate it's chugging along). The 13" is still a bit pricey for my taste, but the 11" at $999 is perfect in size and weight and even features (it'd be used primarily for web surfing and office type stuff - nothing heavyweight at all).

Again, thanks for the review. 'Twas a tad bit long but interesting enough that the length wasn't a deterrent to watching.
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  #3  
Old 01-13-2011, 09:20 AM
Lee Yuan Sheng
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Dunn View Post
<p>The second thing that surprised me was how <em>offended</em> - for lack of a better word - some people got that I was pushing the Macbook Air to see what it could and could not do.</p>
You criticised a Mac, what were you expecting? They make religious fundamentalists seem tame in comparison.
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Old 01-15-2012, 07:23 PM
Macguy59
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I suspect you might have a different opinion on the Core i5 MBA's
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  #5  
Old 01-15-2012, 11:17 PM
Jason Dunn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Macguy59 View Post
I suspect you might have a different opinion on the Core i5 MBA's
Indeed, I've been more than a little tempted...
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  #6  
Old 03-05-2012, 02:40 PM
WizzardOz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng View Post
You criticised a Mac, what were you expecting? They make religious fundamentalists seem tame in comparison.
Yeah when you speak negatively about Mac - beware
 
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  #7  
Old 05-27-2012, 05:24 AM
Clue
Join Date: May 2012
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Wink Hello.

Hey guys, im new to this, but..

My birthday is coming up and i dont know what labtop should i get?

Macbook Pro '13 or Macbook Air '13?

I do GFX and editing, mostly on forums and stuff?
 
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