or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › Mac Hardware › Future Apple Hardware › New MacBook Air?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

New MacBook Air?

post #1 of 53
Thread Starter 
It might be time for a major redesign of the MacBook Air. Adopting the trackpad of the MacBook and MacBook Pro would require a case redesign. Apple could reduce the thickness by about 25% by dropping the HD option and putting the SSD directly on the motherboard.

I would like to see the following specs:

Low end model:
i7-620LM
4GB ram
128GB SSD
1280x800

High end model:
i7-640LM
4GB ram
256GB SSD
1520x950 (similar pixel density to the HD 15" and 17" MBPs)
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
post #2 of 53
Oh wow, an Air with an i7? That'd make up for the incredible cost, but I'd rather see more ports and a smaller screen. Turn it into a netbook.
post #3 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momus View Post

Oh wow, an Air with an i7? That'd make up for the incredible cost, but I'd rather see more ports and a smaller screen. Turn it into a netbook.

The apple netbook is the iPad
post #4 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by REM#1 View Post

The apple netbook is the iPad

Then the iPad is a bad netbook.
post #5 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momus View Post

Then the iPad is a bad netbook.

if you define a Netbook as a computer that does most of what most people need then I disagree.

Most people are using netbooks to surf the web, check their e-mail, facebook, etc. in addition they can do word processing, spreadsheet work and do presentations using iWork. Their are graphics programs and many games. They can also read books and magazines not something I would want to do on the average netbook screen.

So why is the iPad a bad netbook?
post #6 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momus View Post

netbooks are bad.

fixed
post #7 of 53
Love i7 Air, if it's in hands.
post #8 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momus View Post

Oh wow, an Air with an i7? That'd make up for the incredible cost, but I'd rather see more ports and a smaller screen. Turn it into a netbook.

I love mine just the way it is. Never need more ports. Love the big screen. Love the full keyboard. I'll be getting an iPad for when I want a Net Book- sized device.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #9 of 53
Don't see why changing the trackpad over would require much more than an incremental case redesign.

An i7 would be impractical in something as thin as the Air - there would be no room for a battery big enough to power it, and the associated cooling.

i5, maybe.

Imho, Air should have a top end Atom CPU (dual core, low voltage, great battery life, 'enough' power), 2 gb of ram minimum, SSD/HD options and start at about $1k.

Ditch the original macbook if you have to - there isn't enough seperating it from the 13" MBP, and that white plastic looks cheap.

But then again, I could be wrong. It's happened before, once. On a thursday.
I DONT trust your haircut.

MBP 13"/22" 2.26ghz/2gb/160gb/7400M.
Windows 7 24"/2.00ghz/2.5gb/250gb/9800GT.
Ubuntu 10.04 Dell Latitude D620.
Xbox 360 Projector
WHS 2.5tb.
Reply
I DONT trust your haircut.

MBP 13"/22" 2.26ghz/2gb/160gb/7400M.
Windows 7 24"/2.00ghz/2.5gb/250gb/9800GT.
Ubuntu 10.04 Dell Latitude D620.
Xbox 360 Projector
WHS 2.5tb.
Reply
post #10 of 53
How about just keeping it the same and cutting the price in half?

Netbooks are great. MBA is old. Must be at least half profit for Apple by now. $1499 for a netbook is a joke. Or at least make it $999 and just give it a minimal upgrades. It's like the Cube. Not priced correctly. If it was priced a bit better I think my fiancee would go for one, but instead she will probably be getting the better (yet cheaper??) MacBook PRO. The 13" MBP blows the Air away and it's hundreds less! It's just a few centimeters thicker! Why does extra little space savings cost so much more?
"Overpopulation and climate change are serious shit." Gilsch
"I was really curious how they had managed such fine granularity of alienation." addabox
Reply
"Overpopulation and climate change are serious shit." Gilsch
"I was really curious how they had managed such fine granularity of alienation." addabox
Reply
post #11 of 53
Still the thinnest and lightest Mac notebook, the new MacBook Air has a bigger hard drive, better graphics, and even more power.
post #12 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by SelahJadenCaldwell View Post

Still the thinnest and lightest Mac notebook, the new MacBook Air has a bigger hard drive, better graphics, and even more power.

Take a look at the Dell Adamo is the thinnest notebook... all aluminum made.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AJRg8s_rQD4
post #13 of 53
For sure, it is high time that the MacBook Air was updated. I tend to agree with other posters who suggest that the current case design may have come to the end of its useful lifespan.

In terms of my own wishlist of features, It would be great if a new MBA had a Core i5 processor, but only if it had the battery capacity required to support it for at least 10 hours. Given that such a machine is meant to be an ultra mobile machine, a longer battery life would be even better. I'd like to see cutting edge performance in this area. of course, there is still a substantial trade-off between battery life and weight.

I like the idea of attaching an SSD directly to the main circuit board, but such a device should kick-in at nothing less than 512 Gb. A higher-resolution display would also be cool.

I suspect that Apple will update the design of this machine. When it does, I think it will probably look like a slimmer 13" MacBook Pro. If it is lighter with a broadly similar performance, it could signal the end of the optical drive.

Whatever Apple does, it needs a minimum of two USB slots.
post #14 of 53
I've been a happy Air user since the Rev 1 machine... upgraded to the new SSD model last year and love it. It has been very productive and has gone with me many times my 15" MBP wasn't an option and, honestly neither was my wife's 13" MBP. The Air is lighter than the 13 even with a Wacom tablet slipped into the bag. Never has the single USB been a problem for me. The only complaint I have with the machine is with the flip out port: for some connectors, it is a tight squeeze, but honestly it hasn't been a real problem. When I travel, I always carry my Airport Express, so I don't need ports for internet and tablet. Guess I sound a little reluctant to criticize the Air... must come from being a very satisfied user and also from enduring a constant and violent onslaught of Air bashers over the years.

Though I am content, I also believe in upgrades each year to make it better, so, here goes (some have already been suggested):

- improve the flip port design to give it slightly more space around the USB port
- give it 2 USB ports (lots of people have fussed over this so giving it 2 will quiet that complaint and should't be hard at all)
- give it longer battery life (I currently average 4.5 hours per charge which is great - especially coming from an older 15" that gets 3 - but with other devices and machines reaching 10, the Air should see a big improvement, too)
- the above being more more important, a bigger, meaner CPU and graphics system
- ditch the HD and only offer two SSD models (the speed difference is worth the reduced space)
- add an SD card slot that lets the card mount flush so you can leave it in
- an even lighter weight power adapter than now (I think they're called switching adapters). This would add a little cost, but make the Air experience even greater.
- 4GB RAM standard would be terrific
- keep the current screen and keyboard size; if people want something smaller, they can get a iPad (I plan to)
- get rid of the track pad button, make the pad larger and give more touch gestures to the OS, including the ability to assign functions to certain areas of the pad. I'd love to be able to leave my Wacom Bamboo Touch at home.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #15 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

I've been a happy Air user since the Rev 1 machine... upgraded to the new SSD model last year and love it. It has been very productive and has gone with me many times my 15" MBP wasn't an option and, honestly neither was my wife's 13" MBP.

I consider this to be bogus because if you didn't have an AIR one of the others would have went.
Quote:
The Air is lighter than the 13 even with a Wacom tablet slipped into the bag. Never has the single USB been a problem for me. The only complaint I have with the machine is with the flip out port: for some connectors, it is a tight squeeze, but honestly it hasn't been a real problem.

I find the flip out port to be very bothersome and un Apple like. It would be a far better place for an SD slot as you allude to below. A place to put the card and to not have to worry about it.
Quote:
When I travel, I always carry my Airport Express, so I don't need ports for internet and tablet.

That is an interesting comment and maybe something I should look into. Like wise the so called MiFi devices have an appeal. The problem is these devices take up a lot of space that could be handled by a direct Ethernet connection. With many chip sets Ethernet is virtually free as are your USB ports.

That is additional silicon isn't required as the chip set will support a number of USB channels for instance. This is really what bothers me about the AIR, the hardware is there Apple just choose design over function. Mind you design is good, as is seen in many Apple products, but so is functionality.
Quote:
Guess I sound a little reluctant to criticize the Air... must come from being a very satisfied user and also from enduring a constant and violent onslaught of Air bashers over the years.

Remeber if someone bashes AIR it is because the machine doesn't meet their needs. It is not a comment on you. For many of us the AIR is a frustrating example of Apple at it's worst.

It is sort of like the original Mini which was a great concept. It however shipped with a minimal number of ports. Years ago I can remember what I believe where Apple engineers, asking people about improvements to the Mini on one of the online forums. I know I and many others hit upon the lack of USB ports, well wouldn't you know it all revs of the Mini since have had a nice compliment of USB ports. Apparently this has helped sales considerably well that and the Intel hardware.

Now being a laptop I don't expect AIR to have that many ports. But I do expect a complement to handle my normal needs. It is just frustrating to see that Apple has been so shortsighted.
Quote:
Though I am content, I also believe in upgrades each year to make it better, so, here goes (some have already been suggested):

Upgrades are beautiful.
Quote:
- improve the flip port design to give it slightly more space around the USB port

USB in my opinion needs to be externally accessible. As I mentioned above the flip port is a good place for an SD slot.
Quote:
- give it 2 USB ports (lots of people have fussed over this so giving it 2 will quiet that complaint and should't be hard at all)

Two would be minimal if you are going to supply an Ethernet port.
Quote:
- give it longer battery life (I currently average 4.5 hours per charge which is great - especially coming from an older 15" that gets 3 - but with other devices and machines reaching 10, the Air should see a big improvement, too)

This may be possible if Intel ever gets it's new ULV processors out the door. The big problem though is the lack of space for the battery.
Quote:
- the above being more more important, a bigger, meaner CPU and graphics system

Actually graphics could be tough if they have to go with embedded Intel graphics. You are right they need improvements here but the options are thin. Maybe an AMD solution would work.
Quote:
- ditch the HD and only offer two SSD models (the speed difference is worth the reduced space)

This is another shortcoming if AIR, far to little internal storage. I'd really like to see Apple move to PCI Express storage cards for thinnest.
Quote:
- add an SD card slot that lets the card mount flush so you can leave it in
- an even lighter weight power adapter than now (I think they're called switching adapters). This would add a little cost, but make the Air experience even greater.

I think all Apple power supplies are switching. Improvements in technology make them lighter.
Quote:
- 4GB RAM standard would be terrific
- keep the current screen and keyboard size; if people want something smaller, they can get a iPad (I plan to)

I'd love to hear from you in a year or so after getting that iPad. Just to get feed back on the AIRs usage. I suspect that the AIR would not be traveling as much as it does now.
Quote:
- get rid of the track pad button, make the pad larger and give more touch gestures to the OS, including the ability to assign functions to certain areas of the pad. I'd love to be able to leave my Wacom Bamboo Touch at home.

That is an idea!

Remember many of us don't think the AIR is a bad idea, we just think it is a poor implementation of an idea. Alot of that has to do with the ports. Rationally we can understand the technology limitations and accept that Apple has constraints to work within. It is when design becomes more important than functionality that we get concerned.


Dave
post #16 of 53
Dave / Wizard69,

What processor(s) do you envisage being offered for the next-gen MBA?

Do you think that Apple will change the case design?

I so nearly bought the Air, but in the end i plumped for the 13" MacBook Pro. My reasons were:
- i wanted the most powerful processor I could get in a 13" machine
- I wanted two USB ports
- I preferred the new track pad
- i wanted an in-built optical drive

I have been absolutely delighted with the 13" MBP, but have found that I seldom use the optical drive. So, if a more powerful MBA was available with a decent processor, battery life and SSD capacity, then I'd almost certainly go for it.

I guess what I'm saying is that it would be great if you could use an MBA as a single primary computer.
post #17 of 53
I have the external drive for the MBA and use it, though not very often. I've installed 10.6 from it and burned a couple of DVDs and CDs. Depending on what your work is, the Air could serve as a sole computer. Personally, I primarily use mine for writing, note taking, presentations, and sketching rough artwork (using a Wacom tablet) that I redo later on my Cintiq at the office.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #18 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

Dave / Wizard69,

What processor(s) do you envisage being offered for the next-gen MBA?

That is a very good question which I probably should dodge . In any event the big problem is that no body has the correct hardware on the market yet. So an ultra low power Arrandale is a possibility but we also have AMDs APUs coming soon. To say the least AMDs chips will be very interesting in this context.
Quote:
Do you think that Apple will change the case design?

That depends upon what you mean by change! Minor changes are a given such as an updated track pad. Major changes such as addressing the ports issues are not so certain.
Quote:
I so nearly bought the Air, but in the end i plumped for the 13" MacBook Pro. My reasons were:
- i wanted the most powerful processor I could get in a 13" machine
- I wanted two USB ports

The two USB ports are bigger than alot of people realize. As to CPU power I got an early 2008 MBP (15") and it is already slower than I'd like. This is what makes the projections for the next CPU so difficult as Apple needs a rather hefty performance increase for AIR to keep it viable on future OS's. It is also why AMD might have a chance.
Quote:
- I preferred the new track pad
- i wanted an in-built optical drive

I have been absolutely delighted with the 13" MBP, but have found that I seldom use the optical drive.

The reason I want to see the optical deleted internally is based on my experience also, plus what I see around me. Currently I travel every where with an external HD to meet my storage needs. Being able to EASILY install multiple storage devices into my next laptop would be a huge advantage.
Quote:
So, if a more powerful MBA was available with a decent processor, battery life and SSD capacity, then I'd almost certainly go for it.

By design the MBA will always have a trailing processor performance wise. That mostly due to the case design. The case design also impacts battery performance. So while the MBA will continue to improve I think it will be sometime before it catches up to MBPs.
Quote:

I guess what I'm saying is that it would be great if you could use an MBA as a single primary computer.

Yes I would be great and frankly some people do do that. But I'm not the patient sort so I'm most likely to want more performance than the AIR will likely deliver anytime soon. Like I said my MBP is more laggy than I'd like.

By the way I'm not even certain my next computer will be a laptop as there is a possibility of a desktop and a next generation iPad serving my needs. I find a big screen on a desk to be very conducive to productive use of the platform.

Other issues that make projecting which processor Apple will use to be so difficult is that Intel has plans to roll out a second generation 32nm process to improve on the current crappy 32nm process. Intel could decide to integrate Arrandale onto a single chip for a rather vast power savings. AMD is getting very respectable 40nm performance and 32nm is coming along. Plus I could see Apple and AMD playing hardball with Intel with Apple (Intrinsity) teaming up with AMD to make extremely low power APUs. Or for that matter vastly improving AMDs mobile platform performance. With the Intrinsity IP Apple has a lot of options. The question of course is this can AMDs designs be reworked with Intrinsity's tools.

All that speculation aside Apple does need a near term upgrade to AIR. Honestly I'd be surprised if they went with Arrandale mostly because of OpenCL.

Dave
post #19 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

I have the external drive for the MBA and use it, though not very often. I've installed 10.6 from it and burned a couple of DVDs and CDs. Depending on what your work is, the Air could serve as a sole computer. Personally, I primarily use mine for writing, note taking, presentations, and sketching rough artwork (using a Wacom tablet) that I redo later on my Cintiq at the office.

Due to considerable short comings in the hardware the current iPad would likely fail. The thing is I can see the next machine being far more capable especially if Apple moves to the latest Cortex cores and most importantly expand the RAM significantly.

Personally I've been thinking of taking that approach though admittedly iPad isn't there yet in the current revision. Plus the iPad software library has to grow a bit. In a year or so though it may be very viable.

Dave
post #20 of 53
Oh, I should add, though I am a very happy Air owner, I am intensely awaiting the arrival of my iPad later this month (I don't live in the US) and look forward to putting it to use at times when I can do without some of the power of the Air. Have been reading around and it will suit my needs very well (my iPhone does a pretty good job but I would like the extra screen space).

I think that for some people, an Air and an iPad would be all they need. Not everybody, of course and there will always be detractors (you could put 8 i7 cores into the thing, 12 USB ports, and a thought controlled typing system and somebody would still find fault with it. Two years ago when the Air came out, the bashers attacked it with all their might, and they will again with any new revision. Ditto for the iPad. No product is designed for everybody.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #21 of 53
I'm holding off on purchasing a MBA, hoping that they improve the stats a bit more. 4GB of RAM these days is a joke. Who are they kidding? I'm not even doing anything "power-user-ish" with my MacPro and I'm already using just under 4.5 GB of RAM. If they want to keep 4GB as a starting point, so be it, but allow us to drop 8GB in it. I shouldn't have to use a far more bulky laptop just to get more than a minuscule 4GB of RAM.

SSD Storage is progressing, albeit at the pace of molasses on a glacier. 256GB ought to be the starting point, 512 GB ought to be the upgrade option. The MBA is for people who travel (or are otherwise away from home) a lot. It's for that very reason that storage is so important. I'm not going to be bringing along an external drive just to have a decent iTunes and iPhoto library along with me for all the times I'm gone. I genuinely LOATHE HDD's in laptops as they are the #1 reason for my laptop failures. In my laptops, I've lost five hard drives! I'm not sure who Apple gets them from, but I'd love five minutes in a room with them alone. SSD's are where it's at. They just need to kick it in gear and offer them in a MBA as a build to order option.

I'm hoping there's a redesign of the MBA. I love the current design, but a redesign would mean that they are possibly providing more options. I don't want a MacBook or a MBP, as they are bricks of lead when compared to the MBA.
Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat
Reply
Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat
Reply
post #22 of 53
Wizard69/ Dave,

Thanks for your comments. I think the lack of an obvious new processor says it all. The original concept of the MacBook Air is probably now redundant, i.e. low power chip in thin and light enclosure. What is eminently 'do-able' is a MacBook Pro Lite, i.e. a MBP without the DVD drive.

If i were Apple, I would make just such a machine, giving it a high-end Core 2 Duo chip and excellent battery life in the lightest possible package. If it could support 8 Gb plus of RAM, so much the better. The way I see it, the only major technical challenge is keeping the weight of the enclosure down.

Having thought about it, I am sure that such a machine must be somewhere on the horizon. I guess it would migrate to being a regular MBP as everyone realises that the DVD is history.

Your comment about a Desktop iMac and an IPad serving just about all your needs is interesting. When Office for the Mac ports successfully to the iPad and a voice recognition program allows reliable speech input, you could be right. I certainly think that the iPad could be the blueprint for all future laptop computers.

In the meantime, I find myself running a MacBook Pro 13" connected to a 24" screen when not travelling, an iPad and an iPhone. I'd prefer just to have an IPad and an IPhone.
post #23 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by pyriX View Post

An i7 would be impractical in something as thin as the Air - there would be no room for a battery big enough to power it, and the associated cooling.

These are LV Core i7's, which are 25 W (including GPU). That's competitive with current 17 W CPU + ~12 W GPU setup.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carniphage

Putting Mac OS X on a tablet is like putting a steering wheel on a motorcycle.
Reply
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carniphage

Putting Mac OS X on a tablet is like putting a steering wheel on a motorcycle.
Reply
post #24 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

Wizard69/ Dave,

Thanks for your comments. I think the lack of an obvious new processor says it all. The original concept of the MacBook Air is probably now redundant, i.e. low power chip in thin and light enclosure. What is eminently 'do-able' is a MacBook Pro Lite, i.e. a MBP without the DVD drive.

All of the recent talk regarding AMD has me wondering if Apple will be using one of their chips (and ATI graphics) in the next MBA. We've seen the processing strategy go from GHz to being one demanding more cores to split up the work at lower power. Perhaps AMD gave Apple a glimpse at something coming up that's multicore, and doesn't limit them to the Intel chipsets. It would seem to me that they are waiting on something. iMacmatician mentioned the LV Core i7's in the post above and we might be waiting for those. It all could be Apple choosing to make sure the iPad launch is successfully spun-up prior to announcing the new MBA. If it's something revolutionary, and a huge change, we'll not see it until Steve walks out on stage in June.

Quote:
If i were Apple, I would make just such a machine, giving it a high-end Core 2 Duo chip and excellent battery life in the lightest possible package. If it could support 8 Gb plus of RAM, so much the better. The way I see it, the only major technical challenge is keeping the weight of the enclosure down.

Exactly! The weight is everything for people who truly travel a lot. I love the new MBP, but the weight when compared to the MBA is a deal breaker. There are many great reasons to have the MBP, but when weight is a prominent deciding factor, the MBA is the only solution. Personally, I'd rather see them go to a four core chip that's under powered, still giving better performance than the current C2D chips, due to the divide-and-conquer abilities of GCD. The 8GB of RAM is a must as far as I'm concerned and annoys me to no end with the current 4GB limits. I'm all for light weight, but sluggish performance is sub-par.

Quote:
Having thought about it, I am sure that such a machine must be somewhere on the horizon. I guess it would migrate to being a regular MBP as everyone realises that the DVD is history.

And the DVD can be history if they give us the storage to drop our iTunes library into it and still have elbow room. Just for fun, and a point of reference, go into your Music folder in your profile and CMD+I the Music folder to see how big it is. Mine is 309.26GB. And people wonder why I'm unsatisfied with a 256GB SSD. If they can figure out how to get two SSD's into the MBA, or get a 512GB one in there, then I can downsize my iTunes library and get most of what I want onto the MBA. Even if I cut down my iTunes library to 150GB, and then my iPhoto library to 100GB ( it's at 141.53GB on my MacPro), that's still 250GB from just those two Apps, not to mention all of the Keynote presentations I have to bring along (though, those aren't really space hogs). And PLEASE, let's hope Apple comes up with a solution for people who have a home computer and a laptop and need to sync their iPhone to both. You'd think they'd have made it seamless over the Internet by now, but no. End rant, back to the MBA :-)

Quote:
Your comment about a Desktop iMac and an IPad serving just about all your needs is interesting. When Office for the Mac ports successfully to the iPad and a voice recognition program allows reliable speech input, you could be right. I certainly think that the iPad could be the blueprint for all future laptop computers.

I use Siri regularly on my iPhone, and it's REALLY good at speech-to-text. I have only had a few times where it doesn't understand what I'm saying, and those times were due to them being the names of places like "Puyallup", or "Pend Oreille". Otherwise, Siri gets it right every time, and Apple just bought Siri. I'm hoping that it'll get folded into the full & mobile OSX and we'll be able to use our Apple headphones to dictate text to an iPad, iMac, or iPhone. We already have the great voice they put together "Alex" that can talk to us rather close to human, so we're on our way to that kind of spoken interaction (and for the record, he can't say those two names correctly either).

Quote:
In the meantime, I find myself running a MacBook Pro 13" connected to a 24" screen when not travelling, an iPad and an iPhone. I'd prefer just to have an IPad and an IPhone.

I've played around with an iPad, and I like where they are going with it, but I'll wait for a version or two increase before buying one. I hopped on the iPhone bandwagon the day they were released (Ver. 1) and saw just how much they changed between then and the 3G, I'm now the happy user of a 3Gs. As for the iPad, it's still not a MBA. I'll keep my MBA (and hopefully be upgrading soon into a far superior one when they are released). I'd just like to be able to bring along more more of my iTunes & iPhoto libraries (though iPhoto isn't a huge issue for me because I use iWeb for all of my photo and video sharing and can pull it down from the web whenever I want to see the pics).
Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat
Reply
Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat
Reply
post #25 of 53
Just noticed this ClamCase which turns iPad into laptop
Member
Registered: Dec. 98
Reply
Member
Registered: Dec. 98
Reply
post #26 of 53
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

I think the lack of an obvious new processor says it all.

Huh?!? What lack of an obvious new processor?

The obvious new processors available for a new MacBook Air are the i7-620LM, the i7-640LM and, soon, the i7-660LM. They are the successors of the current MBA processors.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

The original concept of the MacBook Air is probably now redundant, i.e. low power chip in thin and light enclosure. What is eminently 'do-able' is a MacBook Pro Lite, i.e. a MBP without the DVD drive.

I think it's time for the MacBook to lose the optical drive, but I don't think it's quite yet time for the MacBook Pro to lose the optical drive. However, a MacBook Air has so much more potential than a MacBook Pro without an optical drive. A new MacBook Air could do away with the drive bay completely by putting SSD directly on the motherboard. That will not be an option for the MacBook Pro for another several years. Apple could make the next MacBook Air 14mm. Dropping the optical drive from the MacBook Pro probably cannot be thinner than 23mm because of the need to accommodate a hard drive.
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
post #27 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post

Huh?!? What lack of an obvious new processor?

The obvious new processors available for a new MacBook Air are the i7-620LM, the i7-640LM and, soon, the i7-660LM. They are the successors of the current MBA processors.

Thanks for that. I had discounted these processors because they are rated 25 W not 17 W. How do they compare to what is in the latest 13" MBP? If they're in the same ballpark more or less then fine (can i play Call of Duty 4 being the crucial test) then great. Othwerwise, simply use the same chip set as the 13" MBP.

I still maintain what I originally said: just give me a lighter 13" MacBook Pro without the DVD drive. Of course, Brian Green in Seattle is exactly right: you need a larger hard drive to compensate.

The one thing I absolutely love about iTunes now is the ability to download movies. I have well over 100 loaded onto my machine. (I much prefer watching my own movies with my own computer when flying.) The problem is that iTunes movies chew up disk space. I am not sure that even a 512 Gb SSD would be enough. i kinda think that 2 Terabytes would do nicely.
post #28 of 53
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

Thanks for that. I had discounted these processors because they are rated 25 W not 17 W. How do they compare to what is in the latest 13" MBP?

They are better than the processors in the latest 13" MBP. However, the GPU performance would be weaker than that of the new 13" MBP. It would be much better than that of the Rev A MBA, but it's not clear how it would compare with the GPU performance of the current MBA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

If they're in the same ballpark more or less then fine (can i play Call of Duty 4 being the crucial test) then great. Othwerwise, simply use the same chip set as the 13" MBP.

I don't believe the GPU in the new 13" MBP is compatible with Arrandale processors.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

I still maintain what I originally said: just give me a lighter 13" MacBook Pro without the DVD drive. Of course, Brian Green in Seattle is exactly right: you need a larger hard drive to compensate.

The one thing I absolutely love about iTunes now is the ability to download movies. I have well over 100 loaded onto my machine. (I much prefer watching my own movies with my own computer when flying.) The problem is that iTunes movies chew up disk space. I am not sure that even a 512 Gb SSD would be enough. i kinda think that 2 Terabytes would do nicely.

I would suggest that you get a 2TB Time Capsule, keep your movie collection on it, and transfer 20 or so onto your MBA before each trip.
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
post #29 of 53
It'll be interesting to see what they do with the changes. The flap for the USB port is interesting, but getting the USB from my scanner into it is difficult. My guess is that they measured for the iPod USB chord and didn't factor in that there are thicker USB chords out there. I've never used the minidisplay port so I don't know how it works. It seems to me that there's very little they could remove from the MBA that would make it lighter. I suppose there's always the option of making the aluminum thinner, yet figuring out how to keep the rigidity there. There's always different grades of aluminum.

The mobo is already little when compared to other ones. I suppose there's always a way to compact it more, but there's going to come a time when that's just not possible while keeping performance. I still have a feeling that combining chips is going to be something that'll make it lighter. Whether it's something new from AMD that we haven't seen yet, or the i7, we'll just have to wait to see. The screen can't get much thinner than it is right now, and the biggest elements to the whole thing are the battery and the SSD. I'm sure Apple is always working to find more efficient battery designs, and who knows, they may be able to put in more battery life for the i7, which everyone is saying is 25W. Maybe there's a GPU that ATI can deliver that is light on power and great with graphics, or NVIDIA has something that will work well that we haven't seen yet.

Perhaps we won't see a form factor change at all, and only internal components changed. The only thing I think they could change is the sloped design of it. If they brought the edges out like the pictures of the new iPhone, they would have more real estate that would house more SSD's or a different mobo design and battery configuration. I guess we'll just have to wait and see. I have my credit card ready and waiting for it.
Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat
Reply
Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat
Reply
post #30 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Green View Post

It'll be interesting to see what they do with the changes. The flap for the USB port is interesting, but getting the USB from my scanner into it is difficult. My guess is that they measured for the iPod USB chord and didn't factor in that there are thicker USB chords out there.

I suspect that they didn't factor in a lot of things or expected people not to use the port. It isn't just the cord but a host of dongles that have trouble with the port door and general location of the ports. It is just very poor design from the usability standpoint.
Quote:
I've never used the minidisplay port so I don't know how it works. It seems to me that there's very little they could remove from the MBA that would make it lighter. I suppose there's always the option of making the aluminum thinner, yet figuring out how to keep the rigidity there. There's always different grades of aluminum.

If anything the mods we want in this guy will make it heavier. Especially if Apple wants to recycle the machine.
Quote:
The mobo is already little when compared to other ones. I suppose there's always a way to compact it more, but there's going to come a time when that's just not possible while keeping performance.

That remains to be seen. At 32nm it is possible to do a good portion of the motherboard on one chip. See AMDs Fusion line for ideas. Even if it isn't the entire PC having the GPU on die with the CPU gives you space and performance benefits. The first generation Fusions might not be that impressive but they should mature rapidly.
Quote:
I still have a feeling that combining chips is going to be something that'll make it lighter. Whether it's something new from AMD that we haven't seen yet, or the i7, we'll just have to wait to see. The screen can't get much thinner than it is right now, and the biggest elements to the whole thing are the battery and the SSD. I'm sure Apple is always working to find more efficient battery designs, and who knows, they may be able to put in more battery life for the i7, which everyone is saying is 25W. Maybe there's a GPU that ATI can deliver that is light on power and great with graphics, or NVIDIA has something that will work well that we haven't seen yet.

The ideal AMD chip for this machine isn't out yet. Fir the SSD Apple needs to implement that on a PCI -Express card.
Quote:

Perhaps we won't see a form factor change at all, and only internal components changed. The only thing I think they could change is the sloped design of it. If they brought the edges out like the pictures of the new iPhone, they would have more real estate that would house more SSD's or a different mobo design and battery configuration. I guess we'll just have to wait and see. I have my credit card ready and waiting for it.

Yep wait and see. Consider though making the entire unit more wedge like with the thick end towards the hinge. That would provide for room for ports at the back of the machine.



Dave
post #31 of 53
Whatever chip upgrade goes in the next MacBook Air, I think they have to change the form factor if only to align the trackpad with that in the MacBook and MacBook Pro models. I will do without Firewire and Ethernet ports, but i sure as hell want two USB ports, a mini-display port and an SD card slot.

What I envisage is simply a much thinner 13" MacBook Pro without the DVD drive. Sleek and slim, it should be significantly lighter than the MBP. That said, I too am beginning to wonder whether the iPad is in fact the new MacBook Air. IWork is incredible. Email is great. I don't plan on taking my macBook Pro with me when i go on vacation this summer. I won't need to.
post #32 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailpipe View Post

Whatever chip upgrade goes in the next MacBook Air, I think they have to change the form factor if only to align the trackpad with that in the MacBook and MacBook Pro models. I will do without Firewire and Ethernet ports, but i sure as hell want two USB ports, a mini-display port and an SD card slot.

It really shouldn't be that difficult to deliver some of those features with minor changes to the AIR. The ultimate mix of ports isn't so much of an issues as is having enough to cover a variety of use cases. For example an extra USB port could handle an Ethernet dongle. As to the SD card there are a number of ways for Apple to handle that port standard and frankly getting to the SD slot via a trap door is less of an issue than trying to plug USB devices into the trap door arrangement they currently have.
Quote:

What I envisage is simply a much thinner 13" MacBook Pro without the DVD drive. Sleek and slim, it should be significantly lighter than the MBP. That said, I too am beginning to wonder whether the iPad is in fact the new MacBook Air.

Even I don't believe that and I honestly see the iPad replacing a lot of laptops. Ultra light laptops have their place and frankly it is still hard to beat a real keyboard. However not everybody needs that thus iPad becomes a viable alternative.
Quote:
IWork is incredible. Email is great. I don't plan on taking my macBook Pro with me when i go on vacation this summer. I won't need to.

I've been saying for some time that I expect to see a slow down in laptop sales as people move back to desktop machines in the home and iPad everywhere else. In general it results in a much better experience for those that don't need the heavy text input capabilities of the laptops. The current iPad is somewhat wanting here as it needs more RAM and a USB port so I expect the next rev to address these things. The RAM simply to better enable the features of OS 4.0 and the USB port for web cams of all things. Even now though iPad can be extremely useful for people on the go.



Thanks
Dave
post #33 of 53
I'd be very surprised if the next MacBook Air is nothing more than a bump in the Core 2 Duo speeds, HD and SSD bumps or drops in prices for SSD, and a switch to Nvidia 320M.

In the midst of everything going on Apple is not going to tweak the MacBook Air form factor, IMHO. I estimate a 90% chance they won't do it. Not when iPad is in the headlines for the next several months.
post #34 of 53
No MacBook Air update today. Just MacBook update (320M, 10hour battery, Glass multitouch trackpad etc).
post #35 of 53
i7 not possible, i5 or i3.

iPod nano 5th Gen 8GB Orange, iPad 3rd Gen WiFi 32GB White
MacBook Pro 15" Core i7 2.66GHz 8GB RAM 120GB Intel 320M
Mac mini Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz 8GB RAM, iPhone 5 32GB Black

Reply

iPod nano 5th Gen 8GB Orange, iPad 3rd Gen WiFi 32GB White
MacBook Pro 15" Core i7 2.66GHz 8GB RAM 120GB Intel 320M
Mac mini Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz 8GB RAM, iPhone 5 32GB Black

Reply
post #36 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aizmov View Post

i7 not possible, i5 or i3.

There is an 18W i5, but it's only 1067MHz. All the rest of the i5 mobile chips are 35W. The i3 GPU is worse than what currently resides in the MBA. I don't think there is currently an Intel solution that improves on the current chips while maintaining the current low power level. If Apple has figured how they can have a 35W part in the Air and keep it cooled sufficiently, then there are plenty of options, such as the i5-430M. If the i3 GPU was supported in Open CL they could look at the i3 330 for both the 13" MBP and the MBA.
post #37 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post

I'd be very surprised if the next MacBook Air is nothing more than a bump in the Core 2 Duo speeds, HD and SSD bumps or drops in prices for SSD, and a switch to Nvidia 320M.

In the midst of everything going on Apple is not going to tweak the MacBook Air form factor, IMHO. I estimate a 90% chance they won't do it. Not when iPad is in the headlines for the next several months.

And that's pretty much what I'm hoping for. If they can stick 4gb RAM and say, a 2.4ghz version of the CPU in the SSD Air for the same price as current then I'm there. It'd be nice if the Gfx and HDD got a kick too of course.
post #38 of 53
In retrospect, the Macbook Air may have been nothing more than a test bed of Apple's experimentation with the new chassis design that they are now using across all their aluminum notebooks. When it was first introduced, it was the ONLY notebook to have the unibody design and the integrated battery. Maybe it's served its purpose and is now ready for retirement?
post #39 of 53
As a very happy Air user, I hope they don't retired it. It's a good machine. Yes, you might be right in saying it was a sort of test platform (size of keyboard/screen and overall physical size, body build, battery, reduced number of ports), but I think it was one that carved its own niche, better than did the Apple TV, and that it certainly paid off well for Apple.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #40 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

As a very happy Air user, I hope they don't retired it. It's a good machine. Yes, you might be right in saying it was a sort of test platform (size of keyboard/screen and overall physical size, body build, battery, reduced number of ports), but I think it was one that carved its own niche, better than did the Apple TV, and that it certainly paid off well for Apple.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dudley View Post

And that's pretty much what I'm hoping for. If they can stick 4gb RAM and say, a 2.4ghz version of the CPU in the SSD Air for the same price as current then I'm there. It'd be nice if the Gfx and HDD got a kick too of course.

I don't think the Macbook Air will be retired. I don't think they'll fiddle with the design as much though, with everything else going on. They could squeeze in another USB port, people would love that, but, who knows.

@Dudley yeah, a faster CPU with 4GB RAM on the higher-end SSD model for the same price as the current and that will consolidate the MacBook Air line going through the end of the year.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Future Apple Hardware
AppleInsider › Forums › Mac Hardware › Future Apple Hardware › New MacBook Air?