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MacBook Air (HDD model): an in-depth review - Page 3

post #81 of 154
Right,

A long standing reader on this forum, but now I must speak.

I am of the opinion that this was not indeed 'an in-depth review'. Look, I love Apple products, and was looking forward to reading a well written article, but this 'review' is such a let down.

As has been commented, there are so many questions left without answers.

I get the impression that the reviewer received a nice free MBA for this article. I also wonder if the reviewer was the person spotted on the aircraft with the screen at an unusable angle?

As a brit, I have still not managed to have a look at a MBA in person. I may get one, who knows. I'm still relying on good reviews to tell me what its like to live with on a day to day basis.
post #82 of 154
I was looking forward to the Air being my secondary computer. But now (since it lacks FireWire) I'm anticipating the next generation MacBook Pro to be my main computer and the iPhone to be my secondary "computer". A little shift in strategy. It'll be a heavier burden on my sholders, and I won't bring it around as spontainiously as I would with the Air, but I guess that's just fine. For simple tasks I'll just use the iPhone.
post #83 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by tuneman07 View Post

A few of you need to learn the definition of a troll- it is someone who posts things which are just ignorant statements to rile people up- not someone who simply states a realistic opinion that may go against Apple.

There have been a lot of the former since the Air was released.

 

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post #84 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by palegolas View Post

I was looking forward to the Air being my secondary computer. But now (since it lacks FireWire) I'm anticipating the next generation MacBook Pro to be my main computer and the iPhone to be my secondary "computer". A little shift in strategy. It'll be a heavier burden on my sholders, and I won't bring it around as spontainiously as I would with the Air, but I guess that's just fine. For simple tasks I'll just use the iPhone.

Why does the lack of FW keep you from buying the Air? Just asking as I have almost graduated away from FW except for my system at home that is going on three years old. Even my new Canon HD video camera comes with USB only, so I have little need (though I am not saying desire) for FW.

 

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."

 

 

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post #85 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

Why does the lack of FW keep you from buying the Air? Just asking as I have almost graduated away from FW except for my system at home that is going on three years old. Even my new Canon HD video camera comes with USB only, so I have little need (though I am not saying desire) for FW.

I was using FW for DV, but not anymore.. since I'm shooting directly to SD card, so this is not an issue. But I was planning to use the laptop frontmost as a stage computer for performing music, and on the go uses. My current audio interface (and in my opinion the best audio interfaces out there) are currently FW, so it's important to me to have FW. I'll eventually have to get a new audio card anyway, but I'd rather get a FW one. Also most of my external disks are FW. Almost all FW periferals sport the posibility to chain them together, virtually terminating the need of a FireWire hub, which is just perfect. This isn't possible with USB disks and audio interfaces so there I will always need a USB hub if I'm connecting more than one device.

And also... my experience with USB on my old 12" powerbook is that shortly after I plug in ANY USB device, the fan kicks in. Which means there's a lot of circuit activity generating heat and drawing power. Even though I know it's better on newer machines, it's a fact that FW is less heavy on circuit activity, and more sophisticated when it comes to chaining devices etc.
post #86 of 154
That qualifies as a good answer!

The chaining of FW is a boost; I have my backup drive system on my main work machine set up with FW 800 to several drives; it is sweet.

Indeed, I was surprised when the newest Canons dropped FW; FW 800 is faster for video, but very few PCs actually have 800 (that I am aware of).

I'd like to see them add HDMI to the Air; several offices I visit recently don't have projectors anymore (I carry my own anyway); they all have huge plasma displays that have HDMI inputs that look great and carry sound all in one compact cable. If the Apple TV can have it, I think at least one of the MacBook line should, too, or a BTO option. Maybe next year.

 

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 #87 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by crampy20 View Post

But noone can justify why this product is so pricey - ultra protables are $400 - $750 for pretty similar functionality to the air.

Please provide list that support your claim
post #88 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by ros3ntan View Post

i dont think the media is cheerleading MBA. I know at least 3 or 4 article about how MBA will not be successful. But most of the time, These articles are written because the writers are getting paid to write what they think. So you cant be mad for someone stating their opinion

Could you please provide references?
post #89 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by bbjai View Post

the battery life sounds a bit weak to be honest.

I always thought the ultra portable market strived for a laptop that could go the full working day without a charge. Like that was the holy grail. The way i hear many of the people here they only use their ultra portable for 2 hours a day or something..........

Well you thought right. They are striving, but no body is successful. However, Sony, for example, claims up to 10 hours using a horse of a battery and playing MP3 files only.

Battery life is primarily a 'physics-depending' issue. Cripes, we are not running a flashlight.
post #90 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by crampy20 View Post

But noone can justify why this product is so pricey - ultra protables are $400 - $750 for pretty similar functionality to the air. I admit that other apple computers are priced aggresivley.

The Air is NOT comparable to anything like the Asus EEE, the OLBC XO or anything in that price class if that's what you're thinking.

The Air's competition is stuff like the Sony TZ, Lenovo X61, the Business class ToughBooks and such.
post #91 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Urban Splash View Post

Right,

A long standing reader on this forum, but now I must speak.

I am of the opinion that this was not indeed 'an in-depth review'. Look, I love Apple products, and was looking forward to reading a well written article, but this 'review' is such a let down.

As has been commented, there are so many questions left without answers.

I get the impression that the reviewer received a nice free MBA for this article. I also wonder if the reviewer was the person spotted on the aircraft with the screen at an unusable angle?

As a brit, I have still not managed to have a look at a MBA in person. I may get one, who knows. I'm still relying on good reviews to tell me what its like to live with on a day to day basis.

I agree, Urban Splash, that this review is a let down. It looks like an actual in-depth review may be on its way from Anandtech. They have opened their MBA and taken photos that do not appear to have come from Apple marketing: http://www.anandtech.com/mac/showdoc.aspx?i=3217 I plan to point them towards the questions asked in preparation for this article in the hopes that they will answer them in their review.
post #92 of 154
Finally saw one at the local BestBuy. Luv it. I can imagine it crashing to the floor when someone in a hurry grabs it by the tapered edge and it slips out of his/her grasp. That's the problem with smooth surfaces that tape towards its edge. But I'm just being extremely nitpicky.
post #93 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post

Please provide list that support your claim


I'll provide one:

http://tech.msn.com/products/Top5Ult...leLaptops.aspx
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post #94 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by heulenwolf View Post

I agree, Urban Splash, that this review is a let down. It looks like an actual in-depth review may be on its way from Anandtech. They have opened their MBA and taken photos that do not appear to have come from Apple marketing: http://www.anandtech.com/mac/showdoc.aspx?i=3217 I plan to point them towards the questions asked in preparation for this article in the hopes that they will answer them in their review.

Heulenwolf, thanks for the article link. anandtech indicates the hard drive actually is replaceable, perhaps even with an SSD. If this turns out to be true that is good news for me and would remove the biggest obstacle I have in purchasing the existing MBA. Then, if I could eventually add more RAM . .
post #95 of 154
I have been trying to like this thing I really have but...\

I just look at the price and think it's amazing to pay all this money for something that just looks cool but does nothing well. A macbook is a much better buy than this Air, and it has the same footprint too.
post #96 of 154
I take it back...I DO find something about it I like: the use of flash-based storage. Gotta love not having to worry about a moving harddrive. But still...the price is something else.
post #97 of 154
Yep, I agree. Looking at the smoking Lenovo machines on the link posted by His Dudeness (http://tech.msn.com/products/Top5Ult...leLaptops.aspx) makes me feel especially lonely with my trusty ol' 12" PB G4. I've been waiting a looong time for a similar Mac to come along.

But His Steveness will apparently go to the grave proud of having killed the approx. 12"-size portable Mac computer. Like some others I suspect he's leaving room for a tablet, but that is another topic.
post #98 of 154
The lack of WANN make this a 3 pound paperweight for me. I guess I keep using my IBM T-61 (Verizon Internal WANN), and my Macbook. I need a real Ultra Portable laptop that works anywhere and not this shiny new toy.
post #99 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by His Dudeness View Post

I'll provide one:

http://tech.msn.com/products/Top5Ult...leLaptops.aspx

Suggest you better find a better one. Not one on the page you linked to supports the claim, i.e.,

"Originally Posted by crampy20
But noone can justify why this product is so pricey - ultra protables are $400 - $750 for pretty similar functionality to the air."

Can you read? These machines don't come anywhere near the price or the functionality.

I love the first Bottom Line…, "The 9-cell battery on this indoor/outdoor model lasts forever,…"
post #100 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by macmovieman View Post

The lack of WANN make this a 3 pound paperweight for me. I guess I keep using my IBM T-61 (Verizon Internal WANN), and my Macbook. I need a real Ultra Portable laptop that works anywhere and not this shiny new toy.

There are many people for whom the "toy" will be an excellent computer; it doesn't have some things because it simply doesn't need them. Obviously, if you need something it doesn't have, then it isn't for you, a point that has required repeating many, many times in this and other threads about the Air. That's life.

 

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 #101 of 154
Great job!

Here is another review with benchmarks for both SSD and HHD versions running under both OS X and Vista:

http://www.mobiletechreview.com/note...acBook-Air.htm
post #102 of 154
... and here is another one.

Note the low PC Mark scores for the MBA's 1.6Ghz P7500, now look at the scores for the VAIO's 1.2Ghz U7600. Interesting...
post #103 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by macmovieman View Post

The lack of WANN make this a 3 pound paperweight for me. I guess I keep using my IBM T-61 (Verizon Internal WANN), and my Macbook. I need a real Ultra Portable laptop that works anywhere and not this shiny new toy.

Excuse my ignorance, but what is Verizon Internal WANN?
post #104 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post

Excuse my ignorance, but what is Verizon Internal WANN?

Cellular-based internet service.
post #105 of 154
Sounds like that SSD upgrade is just a huge waste of money on top of another huge waste of money.

Quote:
In a series of benchmarks, both Macbook Air variants had their asses handed to them by their beefier cousins, the Macbook and the Macbook Pro. But even when just comparing the two Macbook Air models there was such a tiny difference in performance as to make it unnoticeable. Booting up was quicker (about 12 seconds quicker, to be exact), yes, but still slower than a Santa Rosa Macbook Pro. And while random disk tests and reading from the disk was a bit faster on the SSD model, due to slower read times than the HDD, it actually performed worse when it came to sequential disk tests and general writing to the disk.

But what about battery life, that had to be way better, right? Nope. Battery life wasn't affected at all, strangely enough, with the SSD model providing a paltry 2.5 hours of use before needing to be recharged.

What a joke. Basically, you could buy a whole freakin' MacBook for the cost of the SSD upgrade, and the MacBook would actually be faster still.
post #106 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by BenRoethig View Post

Cellular-based internet service.

Could you supply me with a link?

Thank you.
post #107 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cory Bauer View Post

Sounds like that SSD upgrade is just a huge waste of money on top of another huge waste of money.

What a joke. Basically, you could buy a whole freakin' MacBook for the cost of the SSD upgrade, and the MacBook would actually be faster still.

"But it doesn't care if you shake the computer up and down all day long since there are no moving parts. SSD drives are found in some ThinkPad, Vaio and Dell notebooks but they're still relatively new to the market. They cost an arm and a leg: the 64 gig drive used in the Air costs between $900 and $1,000 if purchased separately. Is it worth it? At the current price point, it's not worth it to me, but for those who literally use the notebook on the go bouncing and bumping or need that speed boost, the answer might be yes."

It is all relative, and there is nothing wrong with that. Just because you can't afford it doesn't preclude the fact that others can.
post #108 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post

Could you supply me with a link?

Thank you.

http://b2b.vzw.com/productsservices/wirelessinternet/
post #109 of 154
Quote:

Let's try again. What does the acronym WANN stand for? Reference please.
post #110 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post

Excuse my ignorance, but what is Verizon Internal WANN?

Googling for it doesn't produce much, certainly no direct link to Verizon's homepage... either it doesn't exist or it almost doesn't exist, to the point that it is seemingly irrelevant.

---

SSDs are still expensive; Steve said so himself in the Keynote. However, they are now an option, one that was not available (on Macs at least) until now. Prices will drop over the coming years and then nobody will be able to complain. I can remember the first HD I bought because it set me back over 300 bucks for a whopping 20 MB. Now I can get 1TB for that price. That's life.

 

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 #111 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

SSDs are still expensive; Steve said so himself in the Keynote. However, they are now an option, one that was not available (on Macs at least) until now. Prices will drop over the coming years and then nobody will be able to complain. I can remember the first HD I bought because it set me back over 300 bucks for a whopping 20 MB. Now I can get 1TB for that price. That's life.

But that doesn't say how quickly prices will drop. The unit prices on the drives you compared must be 15 to 20 years apart.

While the offering didn't even remotely live up to the absurdly unrealistic hype, it at least shifted the complaining about Apple not offering it to complaining about it being too expensive.
post #112 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post

Let's try again. What does the acronym WANN stand for? Reference please.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

Googling for it doesn't produce much, certainly no direct link to Verizon's homepage... either it doesn't exist or it almost doesn't exist, to the point that it is seemingly irrelevant.

WWAN is the correct acronym and it stands for Wireless Wide Area Network.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WWAN
post #113 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by heulenwolf View Post

I agree, Urban Splash, that this review is a let down. It looks like an actual in-depth review may be on its way from Anandtech. They have opened their MBA and taken photos that do not appear to have come from Apple marketing: http://www.anandtech.com/mac/showdoc.aspx?i=3217 I plan to point them towards the questions asked in preparation for this article in the hopes that they will answer them in their review.

I e-mailed Anand Lal Shimpi, the author of the blog post linked above and of an upcoming MBA review. I asked him if he'd be willing to answer some of the questions that were posted here: "What's wrong with the MacBook Air?"

After receiving his permission to copy it here, here is his e-mailed reply
"
Ask and you shall receive I saw your post in the comments and started making a list of things I would've otherwise missed for inclusion in the review. I can't guarantee every question will be answered but if you have anything in specific I'll try my best to look at it.

Here's the first question answered: http://www.anandtech.com/weblog/showpost.aspx?i=378

-A
"

Now that's responding to your readers.
post #114 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by heulenwolf View Post

WWAN is the correct acronym and it stands for Wireless Wide Area Network.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WWAN

Interesting, the only reference for the acronym WWAN is found in Wikipedia. One that nobody could easily define, certainly not by the person who first presented it here, or a term used by the service it was original identified with or to the source referred to in the encyclopedia's article.

But thanks for the link. Now I can tell the class to quit looking. Glad that nobody came up with the Wikipedia answer; maybe some did but realized that there were consequences for sourcing it unless they were using it in a creative writing course.

But it still doesn't answer my original question, i.e., what is (a) Verizon Internal WANN?
post #115 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post

Interesting, the only reference for the acronym is found in Wikipedia. One that nobody could easily define, certainly not by the person who first presented it here, or a term used by the service it was original identified with or to the source referred to in the encyclopedia's article.

Wiki doesn't even link to Verizon or anywhere else...

This just doesn't not seem to be a biggie... maybe the original poster was jesting.., along the lines of, "If it doesn't cook hamburgers, too, then I ain't buying it". Actually, hamburgers would be a ....

A little more surfing and yes, WWAN does show up here and there and even Apple supports it in places...

http://www.apple.com/support/downloa...tupdate10.html

However, the driver 1.0 was last updated in early 2007, so this is not real up-to-date tech...

 

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 #116 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by KennyWRX View Post

... and here is another one.

Note the low PC Mark scores for the MBA's 1.6Ghz P7500, now look at the scores for the VAIO's 1.2Ghz U7600. Interesting...


Belches out heat like nobody's business? What are they talking about? Mine isn't hot at all. I guess it would heat up if you're trying to run the new Skynet Defense System Software through it, but come on.
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post #117 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post

Suggest you better find a better one. Not one on the page you linked to supports the claim, i.e.,

"Originally Posted by crampy20
But noone can justify why this product is so pricey - ultra protables are $400 - $750 for pretty similar functionality to the air."

Can you read? These machines don't come anywhere near the price or the functionality.

I love the first Bottom Line, "The 9-cell battery on this indoor/outdoor model lasts forever,"

What claim? That the Air is sooooooooooo expensive compared to these? Only two of these models costs less that what I paid for the Air. They have smaller screens, but does a small screen justify the use of the term "ultra portable"? I'm sure a 3 pounder could be called that. Where's all the crying and screaming babies about the Lenovo? It's not equipped with an integrated optical drive either. I've never heard a peep about this huuuuuuuuuuuuge design flaw. No optical drive means severely underpowered, right? I guess you can't do anything with that.
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post #118 of 154
I'm a new Mac user, but a longtime PC geek. I guess time is the only thing that will determine the outcome of the Air, but I doubt it will be successful. Apple is preying on its customers with the Air, because thin is 'in'. The Air is no more portable than the Macbook...it's simply thinner. I upgraded my Macbook to a 200gb 7200rpm Hitachi HDD and 4gb of ram for $250 and in 5 minutes. This put me $250 under the price of the Air without having to convince myself of why I don't need the features the Air is missing. How is .248 inches and 2lbs so serious?
post #119 of 154
As a former heavy-duty backpacker who regularly carried 40+ pound packs for several weeks at a time and who now for work travels fairly regularly and tends to walk from location to location, I will say that 2 pounds is worth its weight in gold and any space-savings in your bag is priceless.

 

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 #120 of 154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

As a former heavy-duty backpacker who regularly carried 40+ pound packs for several weeks at a time and who now for work travels fairly regularly and tends to walk from location to location, I will say that 2 pounds is worth its weight in gold and any space-savings in your bag is priceless.

I'm a regular dude. I don't really travel, but my former laptop was my companion at home and sometimes in the office. My job does entail alot of driving around however to meet with people, for that reason I purchased an iPhone. I do do some stuff however on the side, like edit video, create music and images, so I have some USB peripherals, but never needed more than one port. I think me Dell only had 2 anyways.

My 1.5 year old Dell really seemed to be again, so I decided to get something new. I was gonna get a MacTouch if it was announced at MWSF08, however the MBA caught my attention. I was considering a Macbook if the MacTouch didn't materialize, however I came to a few realizations.
#1 I never, ever used my optical drive.
#2 Macbook was cool, but its seems like its due for a revision. There is nothing more that I hate than buying something and seeing a new version come out within months
#3 1GB Ram is not enough, which means I would shell out more $$$ on the Macbook. This would make the difference for getting a MBA vs MB roughly 400-500 smackers. Not a huge difference really, and it would be even smaller if i opted for the Macbook w/ Superdrive.
#4 The portability though not of primary importance, was a huge selling factor. My Dell feels like it weighs 8 lbs! Its freakin huge for a 15". Definitely not fun porting it around, even just to the office, or even another room.

So I got an MBA. and guess what? Its such a pleasure carrying it around, its almost like its not even there. Its impossibly thin and light, about the size and weight of a clipboard maybe, feels like your carrying a small paper notebook more than a laptop.

I love it! Best laptop I have ever owned.
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