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First HDD-based MacBook Air reviews hit the wires - Page 2

post #41 of 133
No one is buying UMPC's so they are really irrelevant. There may be some crack-pipe incuced notion of where a UMPC might be of use but its' quite different in form and function from the Air. There isn't even a real argument to be made here in comparing the Air to an UMPC.

The air is overall basically a laptop, just a very thin one. Like it or not, it's very likely (right, wrong or otherwise) to be judged on its merits as one. You can kick and scream and it won't change that a bit. People will judge for themselves whether a couple pounds and the sacrifices it demands are worth it to them. Some here in this thread said it's fine for them, and others think the Macbook is a better value overall.
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post #42 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by His Dudeness View Post

I guess you can use some good iPod headphones, or if you have a big enough bag, pack some external speakers. Probably not a good idea if you travel via plane, but if you have a car it would be worhtwhile.

Packing portable speakers seems to defeat the point of trying to stay light and compact.
post #43 of 133
Personally, I'm waiting for Nintendo to enter this arena with a Super DS to crush all the current players...

The Current DS lite would look great in a gunmetal anodized aluminum finish.
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post #44 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Packing portable speakers seems to defeat the point of trying to stay light and compact.


Well, maybe for some people. If you are 6'2" and 240 pounds and have a good sized computer backpack, you could pack a pair if wanted to. I don't have speakers, but I found some iPod headphones in my desk the other day. I guess some people will and some people won't. Now with huge footprint of the Macbook Air, you'd need a Ford Expedition to pack it in.
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post #45 of 133
Remote disc looks kinda disappointing. It's certainly not what I'd expected...
(text stolen from Engadget)

Bummer for media:
You can browse the file contents of DVD discs, but you cannot actually play that media back over the network.
You can't rip DVDs over the network using a tool like Handbrake.
You can't even browse a music CD or listen to tracks.
Don't even think about burning a disc remotely.
Remote Disc appears only to be able to share CD / DVD drives and CD / DVD discs, not high capacity / HD optical drives.
We tested sharing a regular DVD over an HD DVD drive, no luck. Data CDs on DVD drives worked fine though.
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post #46 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Packing portable speakers seems to defeat the point of trying to stay light and compact.

Most airlines supply headphones free or charge that use a mini-stereo jack. I have never once had to use the airline adapter for the noise-canceling headphones.

If someone was watching a movie or listening to music on their notebook without headphones I would ask them to stop. If they didn't I would close there machine. I'm not sure what I'd do after that as it's never came up. The use of the Air for frequent flyers seems pretty ubiquitous so the fact there is one pathetic speaker is perfectly alright by me. After all, headphones take up very little room in ones pocket.
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post #47 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bancho View Post

Remote disc looks kinda disappointing. It's certainly not what I'd expected...
(text stolen from Engadget)

Bummer for media:
You can browse the file contents of DVD discs, but you cannot actually play that media back over the network.
You can't rip DVDs over the network using a tool like Handbrake.
You can't even browse a music CD or listen to tracks.
Don't even think about burning a disc remotely.
Remote Disc appears only to be able to share CD / DVD drives and CD / DVD discs, not high capacity / HD optical drives.
We tested sharing a regular DVD over an HD DVD drive, no luck. Data CDs on DVD drives worked fine though.

I wouldn't be doing a remote burn or re-encoding anyway. If I had an optical drive in another computer it would most likely be faster than the Air and therefore be better using Handbrake on that end.

But can you copy the Video_TS over the network and watch them locally using DVD Player or VLC player, or you can copy your files to the other computer and then burn your disc?
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post #48 of 133
Why can't people find something positive to say about anything Apple does, hmmm? Apple has a way to install software onto the Macbook Air using another computer, for crying out loud. Find something positive to say, instead of it's crap because you can't do this...
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post #49 of 133
I like the engineering and it's a nice machine. It's just not my cup of tea.

Here's another oddity:
The magsafe connector is also incompatible with other machines using magsafe so there's no possibility of sharing powerbricks. Why?
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post #50 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandro View Post

Mossberg is a genius! If you turn all the power saving features off, the battery life goes to crap. What a discovery. No wonder he's the Tech columnist fot the WSJ.[/sarcasm]


I think you're being too harsh. That's the way he reviews all notebooks. He wants to be able to compare across product offerings that way, and it's perfectly fine with me.

Many people - including me - use their notebooks without the power-saving features off. That may not be the smartest thing to do, but what many in the real world do.
post #51 of 133
How big is the power cable connector on a macbook pro? Would it fit underneath the Air?
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post #52 of 133
No, but theone from the air won't work with the pro or normal macbooks either. I'm curious to check that out in person.
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post #53 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by aresee View Post

While the MBA bashing is starting to get pathetic. Most have gotten caught on one or two issues and complain that the MBA is absolutely worthless because of it. All it means is that the MBA is not for them.

I on the other hand am finding the MBA very intriguing and very close to my wants. I am looking to replace my aging 15" Powerbook that I use at home to surf the net, check email and other low intensity tasks. My concerns are the screen size (I find that 15" is not always enough), processor speed and cost. I can't wait to see one in person to see if the form factor will overrule my concerns.

I agree wholeheartedly. The nay-sayers are only saying - legitimately - that it does not suit their needs, but then they project that sentiment - quite arrogantly, and even naively - to the whole world.

Unfortunately, there is a self-selection bias in the type of person that chooses to post in forums like these. It tends to be the complainers/naysayers/hard-to-please/nitpickers etc. (I am each of those at various times). That's the nature of the beast.
post #54 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bancho View Post

The magsafe connector is also incompatible with other machines using magsafe so there's no possibility of sharing powerbricks. Why?

The powerbricks output different power so they wouldn't work, but the only difference I see with the MagSafe adapter is the positioning of the cable. MB and MBPs have the cable running straight out while the MBA has it running to the side. the connector looks the same.
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post #55 of 133
It's been reported that though the connectors look the same, they aren't interchangeable.
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post #56 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bancho View Post

It's been reported that though the connectors look the same, they aren't interchangeable.

What is different about them: reversed magnetic attraction, size, shape, something else?

edit: I just found the Gizmodo site explaining the MagSafe connectors do match up and are intercahngable, though not completely ideal.

"We just confirmed for ourselves that the MacBook Air's small MagSafe charger

does work with the MacBook and MacBook Pro, but the MagSafe charger on the latter two don't work with the slot on the MacBook Air when you lay it flat on a table. It works fine on a lap, or if you slide it to the edge of your table."
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post #57 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cory Bauer View Post

$1,799 is way too much money for what can, by design, only be a secondary computer.

I think you mean "...way too much money..." for you (and perhaps people you know).
post #58 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

What is different about them: reversed magnetic attraction, size, shape, something else?

Ok, the article I read earlier has been corrected. Apparently, the connectors are compatible.

I'm glad to hear that because if they hadn't, it would really have bothered me (just from a WTF? standpoint).

(My info regarding that came from Gizmodo)

On a remote disc note, I wonder if you can use it to map iTunes to a drive on another machine?
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post #59 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

If someone was watching a movie or listening to music on their notebook without headphones I would ask them to stop. If they didn't I would close there machine. I'm not sure what I'd do after that as it's never came up. The use of the Air for frequent flyers seems pretty ubiquitous so the fact there is one pathetic speaker is perfectly alright by me. After all, headphones take up very little room in ones pocket.

I think the point of caring about sound is more relevant when you are at home alone on the couch or better yet sitting in a hotel bed in Tokyo trying to watch a movie or something streaming.
post #60 of 133
Anyone else notice how they mention only pointless pros, yet very substantional cons? And the cons are exactly what I and everybody else have been saying for the past few days.
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post #61 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by heaven or las vegas View Post

It's obvious that Air was designed for SSD, not HDD. Just wait until the price drops.

In the mean time, Jobs is happy to foist a b grade product on you.

He always does this with early adopters. And then tries to make them spend even more money later to upgrade.
post #62 of 133
All this banter about Pros and Cons.... Let's just wait and see what the "above average Joe" does. If he / she does not like the features verses the price point then the sales figures will show it and Apple will fix the shortcomings or kill it off a la the Cube.

My money is Apple will add those connectivity ports to open the MPA to a wider audience and very soon at that. I don't see a price drop.
post #63 of 133
Hey is it true that there is no built in microphone in the air, and no line/mic/any sound input?

I had heard the rumour, but wasn't sure
post #64 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by NYCMacFan View Post

I think the point of caring about sound is more relevant when you are at home alone on the couch or better yet sitting in a hotel bed in Tokyo trying to watch a movie or something streaming.

Good point. I, like all the naysayers, was looking it from the POV that I'd be using it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jules View Post

Hey is it true that there is no built in microphone in the air, and no line/mic/any sound input?

I had heard the rumour, but wasn't sure

There is an internal mic, there just isn't a mini-stereo jack for an external mic.
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post #65 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by random bob, a.r.c. View Post

I know it's got that "Wow" factor in the form of ultra-thinness, but overall I think the cons far outweigh the pros.

Extremely limited storage, lack of ports, no optical drive making you dependent on another computer (what if you're away from your "home" computer but you need to load something to the MBA? No computers around you have the wireless drive feature installed? man you're screwed), non-removable battery, etc etc.

But hey you DO get backlit keys, right? And for all these lacking features, Apple wants you to pay $500+ more than a more capable (and same footprint) MacBook? Me thinks not.

Seriously, as someone pointed out above, if you can't stand the extra 2lbs, $500 for a gym membership ain't that bad an idea. And crap, if you spend just $200 more, you can have a MBP, with all the bonuses of the MBA (casing, keys, etc), and none of the drawbacks (save for 1.2 pounds or so).

It's nothing more than a status symbol. Serious people are going to opt for the MBA, and price-conscious consumers are going to opt for the MacBook. People worried about their status are going to opt for the MBA.


That's the breakdown.

$1,800 ($2,000 after tax in many places) for a laptop with those specs is ridiculous! I don't care if it's made out of balsa wood and solar powered. What does it take to make Apple realize that they need to produce something affordable for the average consumer. This is their biggest blunder by far. A beautiful machine, mind you, but then so was the DeLorean.
post #66 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


Originally Posted by NYCMacFan
I think the point of caring about sound is more relevant when you are at home alone on the couch or better yet sitting in a hotel bed in Tokyo trying to watch a movie or something streaming.

Good point. I, like all the naysayers, was looking it from the POV that I'd be using it.


I had not thought about this until the last few weeks when I have seen just how many TV shows and films are available streaming for free (e.g. moviesister.com/nabolister.com) or via downloads from itunes. Using headphones or plugging it is unattractive as you move from room to room or when you are on the road or just in your office with the door closed.

Again, I don't know that it is bad and I am not expecting an Altec Lansing experience. But I am curious what 1 speaker under a keyboard sounds like.
post #67 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

$1,800 ($2,000 after tax in many places) for a laptop with those specs is ridiculous! I don't care if it's made out of balsa wood and solar powered. What does it take to make Apple realize that they need to produce something affordable for the average consumer. This is their biggest blunder by far. A beautiful machine, mind you, but then so was the DeLorean.

Not that market for this laptop. That is the entry macbook (which is 999 with ed discount right?). What if it were carbon fiber and even lighter? Personally, I'd love balsa wood.
post #68 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by NYCMacFan View Post

Not that market for this laptop. That is the entry macbook (which is 999 with ed discount right?). What if it were carbon fiber and even lighter? Personally, I'd love balsa wood.

Is carbon fiber a better choice for structural integrity with such thin pieces. Polycarbonate is very strong but the MB casing seems thicker than the aluminium on the MBP.

Balsa is the my favorite hardwood.
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post #69 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

$1,800 ($2,000 after tax in many places) for a laptop with those specs is ridiculous! I don't care if it's made out of balsa wood and solar powered. What does it take to make Apple realize that they need to produce something affordable for the average consumer. This is their biggest blunder by far. A beautiful machine, mind you, but then so was the DeLorean.

In defense of Apple, they already have something affordable for the average consumer, the Macbook.
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post #70 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bancho View Post

In defense of Apple, they already have something affordable for the average consumer, the Macbook.

Maybe he wants Apple to produce a Celeron based notebook for $400 that comes with excessive trialware that keeps popping up subsidized adverts to buy software.
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post #71 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Is carbon fiber a better choice for structural integrity with such thin pieces. Polycarbonate is very strong but the MB casing seems thicker than the aluminium on the MBP.

I wouldn't think so, it's very flexible in thin sheets, you'd have to build it up at least as thick as the plastic to get that kind of rigidity. Carbon fiber seems to need to be in a continuous curve to be strong.

Quote:
Balsa is the my favorite hardwood.

Balsa is a hardwood?
post #72 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Maybe he wants Apple to produce a Celeron based notebook for $400 that comes with excessive trialware that keeps popping up subsidized adverts to buy software.

I totally overlooked that possibility...

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post #73 of 133
The MBA has a target market and suits their needs just perfect. Im just curious as to how many units people expect Apple to shift for the MBA.

So far i've worked out that its a

a. expensive computer for a secondary computer, or an average joe
b. unparalleled design and form features as well as brilliant weight
c. designed primarily for the road warrior and traveller where weight is a premium
d. designed for hip people who take style over comprimise at any price (young high net income individuals)
e. seems to work in conjunction with a home network that is already set up and on average seem to have at least one high level functioning computer (I would the imac is the benchmark here).

I know there are alot of people that fit these requirements out there. But in terms of the actual market its probably really small. I would hazard a guess that most people are looking for a more powerful MB type laptop at a slightly higher price. Or a slightly thinner MB with a light high to performance.
post #74 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I wouldn't think so, it's very flexible in thin sheets, you'd have to build it up at least as thick as the plastic to get that kind of rigidity. Carbon fiber seems to need to be in a continuous curve to be strong.

That is what I was thinking.

Quote:
Balsa is a hardwood?

It's the softest of the commercial hardwoods. The definition of soft and hard wood originally referred to conifers (cones) and angiosperms (flowering), respectively. Since Balsa is found in South America the definition was set well before the Europeans reach the Americas.
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post #75 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Is carbon fiber a better choice for structural integrity with such thin pieces. Polycarbonate is very strong but the MB casing seems thicker than the aluminium on the MBP.

Balsa is the my favorite hardwood.

I don't know, but guess the advantage with carbon fiber would be if they had adopted a more box like shape I think. Could be thicker, but light. Thickness would not matter so much. The carbon fiber in planes and race cars is often surprisingly thin given the weight and stress it is under.

I was actually wondering about magnesium vs. aluminum as well.

My ibook 12inch is pretty pristine (only minor scratches), but kind of heavy compared to the pbook inch. Thought it was 5.1 vs. 4.6 or something like that. Not huge, but about a 10% weight penalty.
post #76 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

It's the softest of the commercial hardwoods. The definition of soft and hard wood originally referred to conifers (cones) and angiosperms (flowering), respectively. Since Balsa is found in South America the definition was set well before the Europeans reach the Americas.

It's erudite comments like this that make me feel better to be on this website. Too bad we all seem to disagree so much.

With luck I will get a quick intro on carbon fiber and magnesium in the next 10 minutes as well, even if I won't see them in a laptop anytime soon.
post #77 of 133
I was particularly heartened by Mossberg's comments that it ran speedily.I've made up my mind, I'm definitely getting one.

By the end of July. I'm neither crazy (First run Apple notebook? No thanks) nor rich (I'm gonna need to save up a little cash...)

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post #78 of 133
Endgadet lists some nice results.
http://www.engadget.com/2008/01/24/f...-machine-on-th Surely we know it will be slower than the rest of the Mac line, but what is interesting is how well a 1.6GHz MBA fairs against a 2.16GHz MBP that was being sold only 8 months ago.
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post #79 of 133
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

And UMPCs that cost as much are made to be one's primary computer?

UMPCs that cost as much have more features than the Air. Some UMPCs with an SSD are the same price as the base price of the Air with a regular HD.
post #80 of 133
I feel that most everyone here has a valid point, some expressing it more civilly than others.

A common theme that I am seeing here in some of the negative reviews is that this sub-notebook is being rated as though it were meant to be a catch-all people-pleaser capable of being a stand-alone device.

There are a lot of "what if's" involved in these port/drive arguements.
If the answer to even one of those "what if's" is yes, then one should do the logical thing and reconsider this as the device that meets one's needs.

Some of the more apt reviews praise its convenience in its purpose, and simply warn that it is most suited as a companion for travelers or for lighter users looking for simplicity, not for power-users.
Of course, this is more obvious, but some choose to pick and pick at "flaws" in design.

I get that price and ports and drives are all important.
There are other devices, like the MacBook, that meet the demands of all of the above. Even most Windows machines meet these demands. What the MacBook and the others don't meet is a form factor demand. Granted, it is not a huge difference in size and weight, but for some, it is.
I know that I am by no means a power user, currently. On the Black MacBook I borrow from my school, I may have the display set to about one third brightness, just so that I can see my typed words. I may only be using MS Word, and possibly iTunes, with headphones on, with WiFi off. And I still may only get about 3.5 hours out of it if I'm lucky.
Now, imagine if I applied these same circumstances to the MacBook Air. I am guessing I could probably get near, if not more than the 5 hours of battery life promised by Apple.

There is, of course, compromise: form factor > power draining features, as well as, price, to complicate the mix.
Anyone with a simple understanding of business can appreciate why the price is high for what is, admittedly, "less". Higher initial research and development cost paired with higher initial component cost begets higher price per manufactured unit cost, which ultimately means a higher retail cost for consumers.
For those who do not follow, the reason a MacBook with "more" is less expensive, is because its components are less expensive, and now that the initial development is over for that model, expense per unit goes down, which Apple then uses to use more updated components as their prices go down.
I think it is reasonable to assume that the MacBook Air will receive similar treatment, and will be appropriately updated when updated technology becomes less expensive.


Now, if anyone has learned anything from history, it is that today's flaws may be tomorrow's standards.

This device is a bit early for those who are not forward-thinkers. For those of who are, the constant bickering about ports and drives are irksome, to say the least.

Honestly, I don't think anyone has a problem with a view expressed well with supportive reasoning. A simple "It's not for me because I need [this] for [this certain reason]", or something similar, could even suffice. It is easier to respect an honest opinion than a blatant insult or exaggeration, and it attracts less negative response.
Individual opinion is great, but expressing it poorly without support, especially for more brazen statements, will only trigger anger and annoyance, in which case, the comments should just be omitted.
Other users, like anantksundaram, seem to hold my same sentiments in regards to this.
My opinion on the given topic was stated above with support, in a diplomatic manner.
I would hope that anyone with with even a high school education could do the same.
If not, don't post until you can, please.
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