The Macbook Air was originally released in 2008 and featured the title of the “world’s thinnest notebook.” Years later, while that claim may not be exactly true, the Macbook Air is still a remarkably thin, light and powerful laptop. Starting at just $999, the Macbook Air can be a cheap way to experience OS X without comprimising your experience.
Design and Form
Since its redesign in 2010, the Macbook Air has not changed significantly in design. But the Air’s then aluminum body has not gone out of style, and many Ultrabooks are beginning to copy the Air’s design.
The weight of the Macbook Air is only 2.38 pounds (11 inch) or 2.98 pounds (13 inch). In your hand, the Air lives up to its name: it’s extremely light.
If you need ultimately portibility or spend a lot of time on a plane, the 11 inch Air fits perfectly on the seat back tray tables. However, as mentioned below, you will only grt around 5 hours of battery life. That’s enough for a flight half way across the US, but not for a trip to Europe or Asia.
Power and Speed
With Intel’s new Ivy Bridge processors, the Macbook Air is extremely powerful. In fact, because of its use of solid state flash memory chips instead of a spinning hard drive, it will feel faster than a Macbook Pro in some cases. If you’re browsing the web, editing vacation photos in iPhoto, or doing another task that doesn’t require a ton of power, the Macbook Air will often beat out the 13 inch Macbook Pro.
Screen and Battery
The 13 inch Macbook Air runs for approximately 7 hours on battery. The 11 inch Air will run for about 5 hours. These are optimistic measurements, and while you will often get the full 7 hours, it is likely you will get less if you’re doing intensive tasks.
Because of the difference between the 11 inch and 13 inch battery life times, it is recommended that you buy the 13 inch Macbook Air if you need to use it away from a power socket for a long period of time.
The Macbook Air is a valuable tool for the traveler and student due to its light weight. The battery lasts long enough for a flight or an entire day of classes– especially if you have the 13 inch version.
Personally, if you are debating whether to get a 13 inch Macbook Pro or 13 inch Macbook Air, I strongly recommend the Air unless you fit under one of the following categories:
- You need an optical drive
- You need ethernet without carrying an adapter
- You need more than 500 GB of storage and do not want an external drive
If you don’t need any of the above, you should definitely get the Air. It’s light, fast, and a beautiful machine.
If you want to buy the Macbook Air, you can buy the new, 2012 edition on Amazon.com at a small discount from the Apple Store.