A Quick Look At The MacBook Air
Prior to Apple’s recent MacBook product line upgrade announcements, the MacBook Air was grossly overpriced compared to its competition and lacked many features that had become a standard in the Ultrabook form factor months ago; however, the newly refreshed MacBook Air is a force to be reckoned with, and actually made this article quite difficult to write.
The MacBook Air is still overpriced, but Apple isn’t the only one overcharging for Ultrabooks. When performance is paired with ultra-portability, it’s considered a premium, and just about all of the Ultrabook vendors are taking advantage of that fact – it’s not just Apple anymore.
|Apple MacBook Air|
|Processor||3rd Gen Intel Core i5 or Core i7|
|Graphics||Intel HD Graphics 4000|
|Display||11-inch (1366x768) or 13-inch (1440x900)|
|I/O Ports & Etc.||2x USB 3.0, Thunderbolt, SD Card Reader, Headphone|
|Battery Life||Up to 5 Hours (11-inch), 7 Hours (13-inch)|
|Dimensions (inches)||11-inch: 11.8 x 7.56 x 0.68; 13-inch: 12.8 x 8.94 x 0.68|
|Weight||11-inch: 2.38 Lbs; 13-Inch: 2.96 Lbs|
|Price||Starting at $999 (11-inch), $1199 (13-inch)|
The biggest improvement the Air product line saw was the upgrade to Intel’s 3rd generation “Ivy Bridge” Core processors. CPU performance increases are pretty marginal, especially for real world use, but the benefit of the accompanying Intel HD Graphics 4000 opens a lot of doors, allowing for things like light gaming and high-resolution multi-display setups.
The new MacBook Air also now features USB 3.0, a considerable oversight in the last model. Intel’s Thunderbolt port (present in last year’s model as well) is just another mountainous feature the competition has to compete against, though Thunderbolt accessories are both uncommon and prohibitively expensive.
It doesn’t offer everything, though, and if you have a specific purpose in mind, there’s a very good chance you’ll find a better fit if you don’t go Mac.