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Review: Apple's new 11-inch MacBook Air (Mid-2013)

post #1 of 72
Thread Starter 
Apple unveiled the latest incarnation of its hot-selling MacBook Air lineup at WWDC 2013, taking somewhat of a gamble in concentrating on greatly extended battery life in lieu of a more conventional performance boost. But did that bet pay off?

MBA


When it was introduced in 2008, the MacBook Air was viewed as somewhat of a niche product. Paltry battery life, mediocre performance and a hefty price tag forced the ultraportable into a niche category reserved for road warriors who valued portability above all else. The introduction of the 11-inch model in 2010 further muddied the waters, as it came just months after the launch of Apple's iPad in April.

However, subsequent updates have made the MacBook Air one of Apple's most popular computer lines.

In 2013, Apple could have stuck with a normal refresh cycle to release new models with the usual speed and minor battery life buffs. Instead, the company surprised and chose to go all in on endurance.

Design



This entire section can be summed up in two words: dual microphones.

Apple made zero changes to the Air's exterior aside from adding a second tiny hole for a two-mic setup similar to the one seen on the pricier MacBook Pro with Retina display. The change is hardly noticeable aesthetically, but makes a world of difference in use. More on that later.

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Other than that, the 2013 MacBook Air is completely identical to the 2012 model. This is a good thing, as Apple's ultraportable is one the most impeccably designed and solidly built laptops on the market. The unibody chassis adds incredible torsional rigidity, while the 0.68 inch-to-0.11 inch (1.7cm-0.3cm) taper lends just enough tilt for typing.

Weight remains the same as last year's model at 2.38 pounds, meaning less than one pound separates the 11-inch Air from the 1.46-pound 9.7-inch iPad with Wi-Fi + Cellular.

Other niceties carried over from the previous iteration are stereo speakers, a large multitouch trackpad, one Thunderbolt and two USB 3.0 ports, and a "full-size" backlit keyboard.

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As with previous 11-inch MacBook Airs, the letter and number chiclet keys are indeed full size, but the top and bottom rows are more narrow than the 13-inch model. Despite their size, Apple has found a way to make the scissor-type key mechanisms work, with adequate depth and feedback for touch typists.

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Internals



With a winning product design already in place, Apple focused on the internals of its diminutive laptop lineup for 2013. In such a compact chassis, the company could have conceivably gone one of two routes: greater performance or greater efficiency.

After reading the spec sheet, it was clear that Apple was willing to sacrifice all-out speed for extended battery life with Intel's next-generation Haswell ULT processors. Everything about the platform is tailored to be energy efficient. There is a moderate bump in performance, at least for some versions, but the significant power savings far outweighs the small speed boost.

MBA


Apple's standard configuration for the 11-inch MacBook Air comes with a 1.3GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 CPU with Turbo Boost up to 2.6GHz, and 4GB of memory.

Our review unit came kitted out with a 1.7GHz dual-core Core i7 CPU with Turbo Boost up to 3.3GHz, and 8GB of LPDDR3 RAM running at 1600MHz. The LPDDR3 memory standard is the latest in low-power tech, offering considerable efficiency improvements compared to the DDR3L RAM found in the last generation Air.

As for storage, Apple chose to do something special and switched to PCI Express as a bus for its solid state drives. The 2013 MacBook Air is the first Apple product to ship with PCIe SSDs, in our case a SanDisk component, and is among the first consumer grade computers to use the technology.

Apple now offers a 128GB SSD as standard across the MacBook Air line, with 256GB and 512GB options available for the pricier 1.7 GHz 11-inch model.

In addition to faster PCIe storage, Apple also bulked up the Air's battery to a 38Whr package, up from 35Whr last year. Despite the extra juice, the six-cell battery arrangement is still compact enough to fit inside the super thin chassis.


Performance



Obviously the first thing to test was battery life. Apple's claims are lofty, saying the 11-inch Air can run 9 hours on a charge, up from 5 hours in the 2012 version. Video watching is supposed to bring that number down to 8 hours, which is still a considerable feat given the power needed to drive the 1,366 pixel-by-768 pixel display.

MBA


Not only did Apple deliver on the advertised battery life, but surpassed it by quite a measure.

In our short time with the Air, we were able to coax a little under 7 hours of life for daily work duties like writing, conducting online research, running multiple processor-intensive apps, light image editing and multimedia playback. Under a more "normal" load, like surfing the Web, listening to music and switching between two or three apps, runtime hit just below the 9 hour mark. With display dimmed to 50 percent and Power Nap turned off, that number jumped to well beyond 9 hours.

Most impressive, however, was video playback. We played a 1080p MP4 version of "Skyfall" saved to the Air's SSD, full screen with backlight and volume settings set to max, as a sort of torture test. The battery lasted for almost 10 hours.

In fact, our video playback test had to be repeated because the first trial ended up running past 1 a.m., with the battery still holding a 31 percent charge. Upon cycling the battery and retesting, starting from the morning this time, the Air lasted for exactly 9 hours and 47 minutes.

Recharging the Air takes 1 hour and 15 minutes, roughly equivalent to some iOS devices, and much faster than the latest full size iPad. Apple's claims the Air can be in sleep mode for a month, and we tend to agree considering the machine lost only two or three percent of battery life overnight.

Second on the new features hit list was the MacBook Air's 802.11ac Wi-Fi capabilities. Although not yet widely adopted, the protocol promises a theoretical throughput of up to 1300 Mbps if used with Apple's latest AirPort Extreme. There are already other routers on the market that bring claimed speeds of 1700 Mbps, but those numbers too are theoretical.

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As for the Extreme, the unit itself looks like a wider AirPort Express that has been extruded, reaching 6.6 inches tall. Apple says the new model's footprint is 64 percent smaller than the previous flat version, but the greatly increased height means users may have to find a new place to set it up.

The revamped design isn't just for style, however, as the Extreme now carries a total of six antennas near the top of the tower, three for the 2.4GHz band and three for 5GHz, which supposedly widens the station's area of coverage. Beamforming is also included in the redesign, though we found only slight connectivity enhancements at extended ranges.

Because 802.11n on 5GHz MIMO already pegs the needle for our 50Mbps down/5Mbps up Internet connection, we set up a personal LAN network with an external SSD drive feeding data through the AirPort's Ethernet connection. We also performed tests via the Extreme's USB ports.

Transfer rates were significantly better than 11n, but nowhere near the theoretical 1300Mbps limit. It would be faster to connect to a USB 2.0 HDD than use 11ac, but the bandwidth promised by the tech is promising. Once other OEMs start churning out compatible hardware, the standard should hit its stride and Apple will already have worked out the kinks in its system.

Another first for Apple is a PCIe based SSD, in our case the standard 256GB version. Performance was beyond impressive with Blackmagic's Disk Speed Test clocking read/write speeds at 722 MB/s and 575MB/s, respectively. This far outclasses any SATA system Apple has ever released, including the current MacBook Pro with Retina display's SSD outfit.

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Apple's inclusion of PCIe is one of the main reasons the system feels so snappy despite being low-voltage, a major improvement over last year's Air. OS X doesn't feel weighty or overbearing, and is now just as comfortable on the ultralight as it is on a Pro machine. This goes a long way in separating the Air from competing Windows devices, which run bloated operating systems that quickly bog down the hardware.

Graphics received a minor boost with Haswell, which, in the Air's energy-sipping setup, uses integrated Intel HD Graphics 5000. The new chipset is quite capable, especially for an ultraportable computer. We experienced some "wobble" when quickly swiping between full-screen apps and spaces, likely due to the screen's refresh rate, but under normal use everything was silky smooth.

As mentioned above, video playback is incredible. Movies and TV shows saved to the SSD started immediately and scrubbed smoothly, while streamed content showed little lag thanks in part to the efficient 802.11ac card. Expectedly, streaming video greatly affects battery life, bringing the almost 10-hour limit seen with "Skyfall" down to roughly 8 hours. Still, for HD content, those numbers are more than acceptable.

Running processor-intensive programs like Adobe Photoshop CS6 was better than anticipated, but hardly ideal. The 11-inch Air isn't designed to be an image editing beast, though it faired well and we would consider its performance "passable" for quick, non-comprehensive adjustments.

Lighter weight photo management and editing tools like Pixelmator performed much better, though graphics-intensive operations were a bit choppy.

MBA


Audio output was passable, with audible distortion coming in at around 85 percent of maximum. The 11-inch Air was never a strong player in the audio department, and there isn't much change from previous models, but the under-keyboard speakers are a lot better than the stereo setup found in the iPad min.

Audio input was a completely different story. Compared to our single-microphone late-201115-inch MacBook Pro testbed, the new dual-mic setup brings a tangible difference in both clarity and presence. We tested out the system over FaceTime and found the second mic to make a huge difference in wiping out ambient noise like fans and the din of a busy street intersection.

Apple says the two mics create an adaptive audio beam to home in on your voice when using OS X Mountain Lion's Dictation speech-to-text feature. We can confirm recognition was slightly better in a side-by-side comparison, though it's hard to say whether it was beamforming or simply the location of the microphone.

In an unscientific test, we brought up the OS X audio input options in Settings and measured levels from a constant tone, rotating the laptop from left to right. The results were interesting. Initial levels were strong, then dropped down about 50 percent when the Air was rotated 45 degrees to the right, only to pick back up to the original volume after about one second. While suggestive of dynamic audio tech, the results are far from conclusive.

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Apple's 11" MacBook Air sitting atop a 2011 15" MacBook Pro.


Conclusion



Apple's 11-inch MacBook Air has always been a featherweight, giving up both the power and endurance of its slightly larger sibling for portability. The specs used to be such that the laptop was compared to the iPad, which out of the gate boasted long battery life and perks like an instant-on operating system.

Almost everything has changed with this year's model. Realistic all-day battery life, more than acceptable performance and speed thanks to PCIe, and future-proof 802.11ac, all in a super portable form factor.

Some consumers were disappointed that Apple didn't move the Air lineup over to high-resolution Retina displays, but it is almost guaranteed that such a change would negate all the power savings squeezed out by Haswell. A Retina display would be nice, but for many the vast improvement in battery life far outweighs the extra pixels.

Going into 2013, the MacBook lineup has become less crowded with the deprecation of non-Retina display Pros, leaving a wide gap between Apple's tablet offerings and its top-of-the-line laptops. The Airs fit nicely into that new space, and the new 11-inch version's hardware definitely creates separation from the company's tablets.

In 2013, Apple's smallest ultraportable has finally come into its own.

Score: 4.5


ratings_hl_45.png

Pros



  • Extreme battery life
  • Speedy Wi-Fi and SSD
  • Ultra quiet, near zero fan noise

Cons:


  • Power savings come at cost of processor speed
  • No Retina display?yet
  • Audio still needs work


Base Price: $999
Price as tested: $1,449

How to save when Buying



AppleInsider readers interested in picking up the latest MacBook Air can always find the lowest pricing on Apple produces in our Price Guides. Currently, using the MacMall links in those guides -- or those included in the Price Guide insert below -- will active the Promo Code field on MacMall's product pages for all MacBook Airs, MacBook Pros and iMacs that they stock. Entering Promo Code APPLEINSIDER01 and then clicking "Apply" will take an additional 3 percent off MacMall's already discounted pricing on these Macs, yielding what is almost always the lowest price available for that Mac.

The 3% discount is available only when ordering online and online orders are processed in the order they are received. It's also worth noting that unlike stores like Apple, Wal-Mart, and Target, MacMall only collects sales tax in CA, IL, NY, TN, MN, GA, NC, WI. (Models highlighted in green were in stock as of press time and the remaining shipping within a business week.)

New MacBook Airs



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Meanwhile, readers who are looking to bundle their new MacBook Air with 3-years of AppleCare Extended Warranty Protection can also use the links in our New Macs + AppleCare Price Guide for exclusive pricing on MacBook Air+AppleCare bundles from B&H (segment below). The Manhattan-based super store is the largest authorized Mac reseller by volume in all of Manhattan, and also only charges sales tax on orders shipped to its home operating state of New York. The prices in this price guide are for Macs with the cost of the discounted 3-Year AppleCare protection plan factored in.
post #2 of 72
With regards to the battery life, I think Apple is about the only company who actually understates their duration.
post #3 of 72
Nice review, but I'd rather read up on the 13" model. Oh well.
I’d rather have a better product than a better price.
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I’d rather have a better product than a better price.
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post #4 of 72
"...move the Air lineup over to high-resolution Retina displays, but it is almost guaranteed that such a change would negate all the power savings squeezed out by Haswell."

But samsung just introduced an SAMSUNG ATIV Book 9 Plus with kind of a retina display resolution and they promised 50 % higher brightness than a ordinary notebook display (they call SUPERBrightPlus screen) and also a 12 hour battery life in a profile that is 3,6 mm thinner than Mac book Air plus they used i5 at higher clock speed then Apple (1,3 vs 1,6 Ghz).
If samsung could do that, why not Apple ?
post #5 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by jusephe View Post

But samsung just introduced .... with kind of a ...

If samsung could do that, why not Apple ?

Apple doesn't do 'kind of a'
I’d rather have a better product than a better price.
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I’d rather have a better product than a better price.
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post #6 of 72

The battery life in the new 11" is amazing. I just wonder how much of it is due to Haswell, and therefore the PC notebooks will get it too. However hopefully with the Mavericks changes the Mac will pull ahead even further.

post #7 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

In 2013, Apple could have stuck with a normal refresh cycle to release new models with the usual speed and minor battery life buffs. Instead, the company surprised and chose to go all in on endurance.

Was this a surprise to anyone? Every review and preview of the Haswell chips has said the same thing: fantastic boosts in power efficiency but very little extra performance.
post #8 of 72

Well call me fickle, but I am so keen on getting the smaller 11" form factor, I have decided to sell my 13" MBA (only bought three months ago) and should get my new 11" this week from Apple. The only reason I didn't buy the 11" three months ago was due to the battery life. Now with the much improved life, I get what I want. Lightweight, longevity and quick start-up. I think Apple have got this absolutely correct. Would love retina display, but not if it means I can't get a full days work out of my laptop.

 

Can't wait to see what Mavericks does for this new laptop.

post #9 of 72

"Apple now offers a 128GB SSD as standard across the MacBook Air line, with 256GB and 512GB options available for the pricier 11-inch model."

 

It's the pricier 13-inch model, not 11-inch.

post #10 of 72

You have scored it 4.5 but given it 3.5 stars. Which is it?

post #11 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by jusephe View Post

"...move the Air lineup over to high-resolution Retina displays, but it is almost guaranteed that such a change would negate all the power savings squeezed out by Haswell."

But samsung just introduced an SAMSUNG ATIV Book 9 Plus with kind of a retina display resolution and they promised 50 % higher brightness than a ordinary notebook display (they call SUPERBrightPlus screen) and also a 12 hour battery life in a profile that is 3,6 mm thinner than Mac book Air plus they used i5 at higher clock speed then Apple (1,3 vs 1,6 Ghz).
If samsung could do that, why not Apple ?

Simple.

 

You won't get 12 hours, but rather 7 or 8 under the same conditions, or even less.

The computer itself is thinner than the biggest part of the air, but not thinner overall.

Stop taking what samsung says as fact, they are a criminal company after all.

 

Mavericks will give another kick.

post #12 of 72
Perhaps in a year or two high-res displays will need less power. With few mods to the case, it seems like they really nailed the design
post #13 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by ifij775 View Post

Perhaps in a year or two high-res displays will need less power. With few mods to the case, it seems like they really nailed the design

Well, their margins will certainly grow. But is that necessary? They have so much money already.

Why not bring the price down (even more) or, if they want to keep the "premium", why not 8gb ram minimum and less expansive upgrades?

 

Then you have the IPS screen, even at the same resolution. I don't get it. 

post #14 of 72
Apple favoring battery life over CPU power by choosing to go with a slower Haswell chip and no Retina display makes good marketing sense and, in this case, good marketing means the most happy customers. Keep in mind that Apple never splatters computers all over the marketplace like Dell. It carefully targets specific segments with a particular computer.

* The MacBook Air targets those who don't need a powerful computer at all, as well as those who need a second, on-the-go computer with a long battery life to use alongside the more powerful computer they use at the office or home.

* The MacBook Pro targets those who need added power, either in every context or for home and office use, often with an external monitor. And given their greater needs, the greater cost and battery-life limitations of Retina matter less.

I illustrate the situation. I use a new Mac mini with two large displays in my home office to layout and edit books using Adobe's new Creative Cloud. For that, I need a lot of CPU power, a fast Internet connection, and lots of screen space. No laptop could ever meet that need, and I'm not carrying work between an office to a home office.

On the other hand, to keep from going nuts, I need to write someplace other than that home office, typically in libraries. For that, my six-year-old MacBook works fine. CPU power isn't a factor. Writing in Scrivener never raises my CPU above a few percent nor does researching on the web. Given that its six-year-old battery is still strong, I've had little reason to upgrade to a MacBook Air. Why spend over $1000, to save a few pounds and add maybe 40% more battery life? None of that will change how I work.

But the new MBA changes that equation by changing how I can work. I can't work all day anywhere away from the home office on that old MacBook. I have to go someplace where I can get AC power. But with the new MBA and three times the battery life, I can kick off that AC-power limitation.And since I can't manage to write for 12 hours a day, charging overnight means I essentially have infinite battery life.

Mavericks, which is likely to increase that battery life by about 20%, makes that move to a MBA even more sensible. I'll probably wait until 10.9 comes out to upgrade, but with the latest, battery-sipping MBA, Apple finally has my attention. And with my writer's budget, I'm a hard person to sell.

The only thing that would have gotten more attention would have been adding a low-end GPS chip and location capabilities to this MBA. I think Apple should do that with all their laptops, so OS X becomes as location-aware as iOS. The chips, designed for cell phones, aren't that expensive. But that doesn't seem to be a priority with Apple.

--Michael W. Perry, Inkling Books, Seattle
post #15 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by dinoone View Post

"Apple now offers a 128GB SSD as standard across the MacBook Air line, with 256GB and 512GB options available for the pricier 11-inch model."

 

It's the pricier 13-inch model, not 11-inch.

 

Actually, you're both wrong (kinda).

 

The fact is that for the first time Apple introduced a product line with no gimmicks and no restrictions related to what combinations of features are available.  You can get a MBA with any combination of the following:

11" or 13"

1.3GHz i5 or 1.7GHz i7

128GB, 256GB, or 512GB

4GB RAM or 8GB RAM

 

And the price difference is exactly the same no matter what combo you choose.  For example the 13" costs $100 more; the faster processor costs $150 more.

 

In the past, if you wanted the best processor or the most storage you had to choose a model with other pricey options.  For example, you couldn't get a 11" with 4GB of RAM but the fastest processor.  Now you can get whatever you want.  And the price differences are very reasonable.

 

All in all this is a very attractive product line.

post #16 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by abazigal View Post

With regards to the battery life, I think Apple is about the only company who actually understates their duration.

Actually Motorola has better battery life on their phones than anybody else but these are the best battery life specs of any computer right now...

 

We should see a huge improvement when we start using 3D lithography and super capacitors on them. They'll last days and charge in seconds.

iTunes Radio - Apple TV with Wifi AC - Gold Anodized Aluminum iPhone - Mac Pro: September - November 2013

 

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iTunes Radio - Apple TV with Wifi AC - Gold Anodized Aluminum iPhone - Mac Pro: September - November 2013

 

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post #17 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Score: 4.5

ratings_hl_35.png

 

 

Errm, what!

post #18 of 72
There are a couple of performance reviews here for the 13" and 11":




The performance comes close to a 13" Macbook Pro and the GPU exceeds it. This is quite impressive considering it's a 15W CPU vs 35W CPU in the MBP.

The standard Haswell CPUs for the 13" MBP don't make sense at all. They are all listed here with 4600 graphics and higher TDPs than before:

http://www.anandtech.com/show/7021/introducing-the-dualcore-haswell-skus

It looks like it would make more sense to put the Iris ULV CPUs in them as they have 5100 graphics. The CPU in the supposed MBP Geekbench test was ULV:

http://browser.primatelabs.com/geekbench2/2060983
http://ark.intel.com/products/75990/Intel-Core-i5-4258U-Processor-3M-Cache-up-to-2_90-GHz

It's a more expensive CPU by over $100 but it will save power being 28W vs 35W. It should perform about the same CPU-wise but have a significantly faster GPU. Because SSD prices dropped, rather than double the storage like the Air, they just absorb the extra cost of the CPU.

What's weird is that the CPU above is listed as launched but the launch date is Q3 2013, which isn't here yet.
post #19 of 72

'the MacBook lineup has become less crowded with the deprecation of non-Retina display Pros, leaving a wide gap between Apple's tablet offerings and its top-of-the-line laptops.'

 

Agreed, but while the MacBook range is clearly differentiated from the iPad, the differentiation between the MacBook Pro and MacBook Air seems less clear. The non-retina MBP has a Firewire port, dedicated graphics, an IR receiver and the user documentation actively encouraged you to take the back off and upgrade the RAM and storage, all of which I took advantage of with my 2011 MBP (top up the RAM and put the Crucial M500 SSD in your old MBP and it just flies!). I can live without the optical drive in the MBP but, while thin and light are nice, if I valued them over connectivity and functionality I'd get an MBA so I hope Apple will put the 'Pro' back into the next generation of MacBook Pros and let us have a retina display AND all the bells and whistles too.

post #20 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by abazigal View Post

With regards to the battery life, I think Apple is about the only company who actually understates their duration.


Despite of my hate of Samsung , to be honest, their Ativ book laptop with 3200x1800 display, more powerful cpu options,
12 hour battery life, and comparable thickness, makes the new MBAs immediately outdated. Was saving money for a 13", guess will have to wait for another year
post #21 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason98 View Post

...3200x1800 display, more powerful cpu options, 12 hour battery life, and comparable thickness, makes the new MBAs immediately outdated.

It's a Samsung product running Windows. Outdated; that's a laugh!
post #22 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by jusephe View Post

"...move the Air lineup over to high-resolution Retina displays, but it is almost guaranteed that such a change would negate all the power savings squeezed out by Haswell."

But samsung just introduced an SAMSUNG ATIV Book 9 Plus with kind of a retina display resolution and they promised 50 % higher brightness than a ordinary notebook display (they call SUPERBrightPlus screen) and also a 12 hour battery life in a profile that is 3,6 mm thinner than Mac book Air plus they used i5 at higher clock speed then Apple (1,3 vs 1,6 Ghz).
If samsung could do that, why not Apple ?


Samsung has shown time-and-time again that everything coming out of its mouth should be taking with a grain of salt.  I'd bet that even if the 12-hour battery life even comes close to being remotely true, it will only be accomplished with every setting set to zombie-status and essentially being useless in real-world use.  At least Apple publishes more real-world battery life.

post #23 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason98 View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by abazigal View Post

With regards to the battery life, I think Apple is about the only company who actually understates their duration.


Despite of my hate of Samsung , to be honest, their Ativ book laptop with 3200x1800 display, more powerful cpu options,
12 hour battery life, and comparable thickness, makes the new MBAs immediately outdated. Was saving money for a 13", guess will have to wait for another year

Proof about the battery life on any real life test?

 

Proof about the computer itself being faster?

 

Proof about similar build quality?

 

Proof about similar price?

 

Proof about similar graphics card?

 

Thanks.

post #24 of 72
First, has anyone actually used or reviewed the new Samsung laptop to confirm their claims? Second, has Samsung given a price? And third, since we don't have Haswell rMBPS to compare to how do we know its more impressive than Apple's offerings?
post #25 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

First, has anyone actually used or reviewed the new Samsung laptop to confirm their claims? Second, has Samsung given a price? And third, since we don't have Haswell rMBPS to compare to how do we know its more impressive than Apple's offerings?

Samsung is just giving material to trolls, using the Pixel approach.

 

They know the machine in itself is inferior, but they just wanted to have a higher resolution screen even if worse, so trolls can use it to try and talk smack about Apple.

post #26 of 72
Great product. Now, the new Intel microprocessors allow to make a much lighter Mac (400 to 600 g), as proven by these Windows computers:

Acer Iconia W3 (540 g - 8 h battery)
Samsung ATIV Tab 3 (550 g - 10 h battery)

Not for heavy work, but great for Keynote and PowerPoint presentations.
post #27 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by pedromartins View Post

Samsung is just giving material to trolls, using the Pixel approach.

They know the machine in itself is inferior, but they just wanted to have a higher resolution screen even if worse, so trolls can use it to try and talk smack about Apple.
Well I don't think it makes sense to comment on a product that no one (outside of Samsung) has used. Lets wait and see when it comes out later this year and the tech sites review it. My guess is the Haswell rMBPs will be out this fall too so we'll have an even better comparison.
post #28 of 72
My new 11" is only lasting 3h40m running an external monitor and moderate use of Chrome Browser.
post #29 of 72

This "my specs are better than your specs" crap is just stupidly idiotic. To argue specs as a reason to prefer one product over another is a truly nerd herd phenomenon. There are so many more valid reasons to choose one product over another, including design, the operating system, the value, the customer service, the quality of manufacture, the list goes on. It appears to be one of the biggest straw man arguments used by tech posers because they simply cannot digest the other not-so-objective factors.

 

Faster is better, cheaper is better, more is better? It's all baloney.

post #30 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmccall View Post

My new 11" is only lasting 3h40m running an external monitor and moderate use of Chrome Browser.

 

So what is that supposed to mean? Apple is lying? Your unique experience invalidates everything Apple claims? You joined just to post your displeasure? What?

post #31 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmccall View Post

My new 11" is only lasting 3h40m running an external monitor and moderate use of Chrome Browser.

Sure it is.

Also, you need to condition your battery when you first buy it.
post #32 of 72

These new Macbook Airs look great! The best models ever! And that battery time is just off the charts!

 

And what kind of a fool mentions anything about any Samsung Windows 8 vaporvare, that will no doubt suck. Who gives a shit about Windows 8 and who gives a shit about a Samsung product that is not even released? What a joke. Were you just born yesterday?

post #33 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inkling View Post

I illustrate the situation. I use a new Mac mini with two large displays in my home office to layout and edit books using Adobe's new Creative Cloud. For that, I need a lot of CPU power, a fast Internet connection, and lots of screen space. No laptop could ever meet that need, and I'm not carrying work between an office to a home office.
 

Can't you get more CPU power out of a MBP Retina, better built-in graphics, and still drive the two large displays?

post #34 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post

First, has anyone actually used or reviewed the new Samsung laptop to confirm their claims? Second, has Samsung given a price? And third, since we don't have Haswell rMBPS to compare to how do we know its more impressive than Apple's offerings?

Samsung's doesn't ship until later on in Q3 but it'll probably be similar to the series 9:

http://www.cnet.com/laptops/samsung-series-9-13/4505-3121_7-35374674-2.html

That one is $1299 and the 13" Air now starts at $1099. After adding a high-res touch screen, I expect best-case Samsung will hit the same $1299 price. The 2012 review says:

"Upgrading to Windows 7 Professional costs an extra $100.
Based on our video-playback battery drain test, the Series 9's battery life was shockingly impressive: it lasted 6 hours and 55 minutes. The 13-inch MacBook Air outlasted it by over half an hour.
being smaller and lighter than a MacBook Air is no easy feat, and yet this laptop seems to do it without breaking a sweat."

It's in the same class of machine as the Air and has similar specs. I expect the high res touch screen will impact battery life but they might have put in a bigger battery - this is likely as it's now slightly heavier than the Air.

It's going to come with Intel 4400 graphics unlike the 5000 in the Air. If Apple can get the Retina MBPs down to $1299 in order to eliminate the old model, that would make it the more appropriate comparison for price and display. This would be with the i5-4258U processor, which has Iris 5100 graphics in it.

Some reports say Samsung's maxes out at 256GB SSD. I'm not sure why they'd do that. There's a video of it here:

http://www.theverge.com/2013/6/20/4449124/samsung-ativ-book-lite-notebook

It's clearly heavily influenced by the Air (surprising, it's not like Samsung to copy Apple), unibody metal design, large trackpad, magnetic latch and so on.

It's a nice enough laptop and has competitive features - the display is higher-res than the rMBP and if it's PLS, it'll have similar quality to the IPS display in the rMBP. I bet Samsung has lower margins than Apple though. If Apple would have to increase the price of the Air by $200 or more to get that kind of display, it's not worth doing just now.
post #35 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


It's clearly heavily influenced by the Air (surprising, it's not like Samsung to copy Apple), unibody metal design, large trackpad, magnetic latch and so on.

 

One thing it could never do is run Mac OS X, while the Macbook Air can run OS X and other OS'es.

 

And it's a convertible. Convertibles are horrible and I hope that Apple never attempts to make such a dreadful device.

post #36 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post

 

One thing it could never do is run Mac OS X, while the Macbook Air can run OS X and other OS'es.

 

And it's a convertible. Convertibles are horrible and I hope that Apple never attempts to make such a dreadful device.

I think you should say "never do with Apple support is run Mac OS X..,".  The Hackintosh program is alive and well, and there are plenty of folks running OS X ML as a VM (VMware, Hyper-V, and Virtualbox).

 

Also - I don't believe that the new Samsungs are convertibles.


Edited by runbuh - 6/23/13 at 1:51pm
post #37 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


Samsung's doesn't ship until later on in Q3 but it'll probably be similar to the series 9: ...

 

You gotta love how the shills/trolls/whatever come on here and declare that Samsung already has a better laptop, that the MBA's are obsolete before they were released, but conveniently forget to mention that Samsung's "better" laptop doesn't actually exist yet, so, at present, doesn't actually have any battery life.

post #38 of 72
proximityeffect got it first - you score 4.5 but stars are 3.5 - which is it?
post #39 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider 

Going into 2013, the MacBook lineup has become less crowded with the deprecation of non-Retina display Pros, leaving a wide gap between Apple's tablet offerings and its top-of-the-line laptops. The Airs fit nicely into that new space, and the new 11-inch version's hardware definitely creates separation from the company's tablets.

The MBP's are gone, or not being upgraded with the latest CPUs?  I still see them in the Apple store online, but I'm just wondering if I need to go grab one before they're gone...

post #40 of 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmccall View Post

My new 11" is only lasting 3h40m running an external monitor and moderate use of Chrome Browser.
Hmm...why do I not believe this since most reviews equaled or exceeded Apple's battery clams?
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