How the MacBook Air stacks up against other ultra-light notebooks

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  • Reply 61 of 142
    tenobelltenobell Posts: 7,014member
    Quote:

    The X61s has a Thickness of 0.8 to 1.1 inches by comparison to the alleged 0.16 to 0.76 of the Air. (However, even a superficial inspection of the photographs shows that the advertised “0.16in” thickness is only at the VERY front of the machine. It very quickly increases to approx 0.5” thickness and then tapers to its full thickness of 0.76”)



    I'm not so sure what's alleged about its size. You make it sound as if their is some deception. In the keynote presentation Steve described it has going from .16 to .76, front to back. You make it sound as if you discovered some secret that refutes the Air being thinner than its competitors.
  • Reply 62 of 142
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NYCMacFan View Post


    Hard on the eyes. Also bear in mind that 13.3 widescreen = 12 inch in 4:3 and similarly 12 widescreen is like 11 inch in 4:3 aspect ratio.



    Being 4:3 the Asus will have more screen area. Can you, or anyone, figure out the math to determine the ppi of both machines?
  • Reply 63 of 142
    rickagrickag Posts: 1,626member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RonHurley View Post


    As an owner of both an iMac 24? 2.8GHz and Macbook Pro 17?, I also find the Macbook Air to be an interesting product. One that I want to take a good look at when it?s actually released



    However, in the interests of accuracy (and at the risk of being flamed) I feel it?s important to post ACCURATE comparison data with other Subnotebooks. I feel that the total Focus on ?Thickness? to be disingenuous



    I use a Thinkpad X61s for Business Travel and the article above would be better served by comparing the Macbook Air against that. It would have thrown up a far more interesting comparison than the numbers quoted. For example



    ?\tThe X61s has a 31Whr battery compared to the 37Whr battery in the Air (16% less)

    ?\tThe X61s has a Thickness of 0.8 to 1.1 inches by comparison to the alleged 0.16 to 0.76 of the Air. (However, even a superficial inspection of the photographs shows that the advertised ?0.16in? thickness is only at the VERY front of the machine. It very quickly increases to approx 0.5? thickness and then tapers to its full thickness of 0.76?)

    ?\tThe X61 is 2.2? narrower (10.6? v 12.8?) and 0.6? (8.3?v 8.9?) shallower than the Air, resulting in a 30% smaller footprint overall. This smaller footprint is quite important when one uses a laptop on airplanes etc

    ?\tThe weight of the X61s is 2.75 lbs, i.e. lighter by a smidgen than the 3lbs Air

    ?\tThe Hard Drives available are 120Gb and 160Gb and spin at 7,200rpm, as opposed to the slower 4,200rpm of the 80Gb Hard Drive in the Air. This will have an impact on performance

    ?\tThe X61s comes with 1Gb Ram and this can easily and cheaply be upgraded to 2Gb and 4Gb

    ?\tThe 5 Hour Battery Life quoted for the Air is with the Solid State drive. It will be interesting to see what the battery life is under real world conditions with the spinning hard drive

    ?\tYou can also use a 73Whr battery ($130) with the X61s, adding 1? to the overall depth, but still only 0.5? (9.3? v 8.9?) deeper than the Air. The weight now becomes 3.2lbs, a smidgen heavier than the Air. This takes the battery life out to Eight hours and the machine will still have a smaller footprint than the Air

    ?\tThe screen on the X61s is 1.5? narrower (9.7? v 11.2?) than the Air, but 0.25? taller than the Air. Obviously, this is due to the 4:3 profile

    ?\tThe Air does have 30% more pixels than the X61s (1024 by 768 versus 1280 by 800 for the Air)

    ?\tBoth the Air and X61s have Full Size Keyboards and Full Size keys. The Key Travel on the X61s is the full 5mm that you get on a desktop keyboard



    While the Macbook Air is certainly an interesting product, it is more evolutionary than revolutionary. Anybody that travels with a Subnotebook will tell you that the Footprint (for use on Planes etc.) and Weight (for carrying purposes) are AS if not MORE important than Thickness, which appears to be the main ?Promotion? focus of the Air. Other factors are just as important (IMHO)



    Flame suit on!!!



    No need for flame suit. Well written and informative. Question is, what is the actual target market for the MacBook Air? Maybe it is not the business traveler? If not who, the consumer? If the consumer, what makes it attractive to the consumer?
  • Reply 64 of 142
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post


    I'm not so sure what's alleged about its size. You make it sound as if their is some deception. In the keynote presentation Steve described it has going from .16 to .76. And described that as thinner than every other ultra-light.



    I'd trade .2 inches for 1inch taken from both sides of the keyboard (0.5 per side) and say another .5 from the bottom.



    Again, at this point, I am just in wait and see mode to hear about the first tests of it, especially sound and battery life.
  • Reply 65 of 142
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Abster2core View Post


    Please supply link. Aren't these machines like 6 and a half pounds?



    I tried but Acer's website is a trainwreck and the Asus site isn't great either, plus I don't think the Asus Lambo is for sale yet, but the basic specs of the Ferrari is 4 lbs, 2.3Ghz AMD X2, up to 4GB memory, 250GB HDD standard, virtual sorround speakers, optional internal DVD. And it includes a lot of Ferrari branded stuff, like leather bag, bluetooth mouse, etc. But it does cost about as much as the MBA with SSD.
  • Reply 66 of 142
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    I feel like an idiot...I've never even looked for a mini powerstrip even when I've thought to myself "gee, I wish I had a powerstrip...". Thanks. That's a nice tip.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by djames42 View Post


    You rock. I've never seen these before. With a toddler at home, I don't get to travel much these days, but I do frequent coffee shops, and often run into the same problem there. I'm so buying one!



    It's the only thing by Monster I've ever considered buying and well worth it.
  • Reply 67 of 142
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,953member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    That is why i always take THIS with me. They usually only have 2 or 4 outlets and they are usually maxed out.



    I probably should get something like that, though not one with the Monster name. Monster is what you get when you dress up scum and villainy in business suits.
  • Reply 68 of 142
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NYCMacFan View Post


    This thread is not about operating systems, but I do think that Mac OS is objectively better (and that is the general reaction of people like Mossberg at WSJ or CNET types). I use both windows and mac daily. I find that the mac OS is:

    -faster in booting up

    -seems less sluggish when using same processor and ram

    -more stable

    -easier to use, more intuitive

    -possesses more handy features I appreciate

    -naturally less prone to spyware and ads



    This is not trivial as it is a major reason why I am looking to the MBA. I also favor Apple's elegant design and what I consider to be higher build quality. So I am a little ticked off on the MBA execution, but leaning toward buying as the jump from 3 to 5lbs just seems like a lot of additional weight to me.



    Both Vista and Leopard are great operating systems, when it comes to personal taste I prefer Vista, there are so many design decision that makes working on a Mac real tedious to me and I find the whole OS very cluttered and messy in design, so if I buy an MBA, the first thing I will do is install Vista.
  • Reply 69 of 142
    Quote:



    Thanks, but the Asus Lambo I was thinking about was the one announced at CES, it's 12" I believe, the one you linked to is 15"
  • Reply 70 of 142
    g-newsg-news Posts: 1,107member
    What about the Toshiba offerings?
  • Reply 71 of 142
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,953member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    Being 4:3 the Asus will have more screen area. Can you, or anyone, figure out the math to determine the ppi of both machines?



    I didn't do the math, but I did do it in a CAD file that I keep.



    12.1" in 4:3 is about 70.3 in^2



    13.3" in 16:10 is about 79.5 in^2.



    The 16:10 13.3" is almost as tall as the 12" 4:3 but wider.
  • Reply 72 of 142
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by vinea View Post


    I've used my 17" MBP on economy flights.........When the seat is reclined at all there is a problem with the top of the screen getting crunched by the seat.



    Does anyone seriously use a X61s with a mouse on an airline tray?



    With the slimline battery.



    Like how my Keynote presentations look a heck of lot better than your Powerpoint presentations on the X61s




    Just to deal with some of your points in turn



    I've also used my 17" Macbook on long and short flights and it is positively an issue when the person in front reclines their seat, which just about everybody in Economy does (if they are sane!!!)



    Why would anyone "use a mouse with an X61s". The Trackpoint is more than fine, as is the Apple Trackpad.



    As regards the "Slimline Battery", that is what my earlier post says very specifically. The 31Whr Slimline battery has 16% less available power than the 37WHr Air battery. This battery gives about 160 minutes in real world conditions, longer if Wifi is off and Screen Brightness is turned down. With this Battery installed, the machine weight is 2.75lbs



    Using the larger 73Whr battery increases the machine weight to 3.25lbs and the battery life to 7.5 hours, again longer with Wifi off



    As regards the capabilities of Keynote and Powerpoint, I'm glad that Keynote meets your needs and it certainly a decently capable product for some presentations. But it still doesn't match Powerpoint for some of the more complicated tasks. MANY reviews of Keynote (including the recent one here on Apple Insider) refers to its limitations, so I won't repeat them here. Keynote is quite capable but don't overstate its relative capabilities
  • Reply 73 of 142
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post


    The 16:10 13.3" is almost as tall as the 12" 4:3 but wider.



    For people who use word, powerpoint and internet surfing, this is very telling. 13.3 inch widescreen actually gives us a touch less usable vertical space. Bummer.
  • Reply 74 of 142
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,953member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Hansii View Post


    Thanks, but the Asus Lambo I was thinking about was the one announced at CES, it's 12" I believe, the one you linked to is 15"



    OK, I didn't know. It took me a bit of digging, the most I can find is that it's called VX3, and it's 3.7lb.
  • Reply 75 of 142
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mrbofus View Post


    It seems unfair that the Dell XPS m1330 was also not considered; it falls in at just under 4lbs, and has a faster processor, more RAM, discrete graphics, integrated optical drive, all the wireless options, larger hard drive, memory card reader, more USB ports, etc...



    In my opinion the only reason to go with the MacBook Air would be OS X, which, granted, is a pretty big reason. But if we're going to be comparing notebooks, I think the m1330 should be in the mix too. Just my two cents.



    The MacBook Air doesn't fit well into any of the previous categories for light notebooks so I thinkt hey should have showed that. The author looks to have chosen a model from each OEM for comparison. We certainly welcome more comparison here. Feel free to post the specs of the m1330.



    Welcome to AI.
  • Reply 76 of 142
    Ask and you shall recieve.

    Since the Fujitsu at 4 lbs was included in this category for comparison, here's a configuration for the just-under 4 lb.

    Dell XPS M1330:

    3GB (to 4GB) vs. Air's 2GB

    nvidia 8400MGS 128MB DDR3 vs. Air's integrated Intel x3100

    160GB 7200RPM (320GB 5400RPM +$75, 64GB SSD +$750) vs. Air's 80MB 4200RPM

    9-cell 85WHr battery vs. Air's 37Whr

    smaller LxW dimensions vs. Air

    Same new LED display&resolution, video- audio-out, 1 USB, .11n/BT

    Plus: 2nd USB, FW, Enet, HDMI, internal broadband option, slotload DVD burner, ExpressCard, 8-in-1 card reader, audio-in, dual array mics, fingerprint reader



    2.2GHz T7500 vs. Air LV Merom Whatever 1.8GHz

    $1404 (with SSD: $2154) vs. $2099



    So... 1.5x the price for these feeble-in-comparison components buys over a lb. lighter, slimmer, superduper trackpad, camera w/ more MP... and [drumroll] tapered for illusion of even more slimness. Whoopi.

    And Leopard (+ iLife). Whew. OK. Not a RDF ripoff.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Apple Insider


    Dell and HP both make lighter notebook models, but none are really comparable to the top competitors in the ultralight market; instead, those two companies target the mass market, which hasn't yet started chasing light thin notebooks because of the engineering tradeoffs they require to drop the pounds and millimeters and their commensurate price tags.



    What does that mean?
  • Reply 77 of 142
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by zunx View Post


    Too large and too heavy all of them. We need a true full handheld and true pocket computer like these (5 inches screen or so), but with FireWire and with full Mac OS X 10.5.1 inside:



    OQO e2

    http://www.oqo.com/intl



    Samsung Ultra Mobile PC Q1

    http://www.samsung.com/us/consumer/t...=ultramobilepc



    Now it is possible with the new Intel Silverthorne chip. Will Apple deliver or should ou University switch to Windows-Linux?



    Amen, brother zunx!!!



    Unfortunately, since Apple doesn't offer an ultraportable still, I recently got an OQO E2 and really enjoy using it a lot. Only 1# and fits in a coat pocket, so is truly ultrportable!!



    Also, unlike any Apple portables, it gives me the choice inputting via keyboard or by stylus, what a concept, user choice!!!



    Also, FWIW, I was very surprised that the comparison chart choices as others have noted. Toshiba should have been listed as they've made 'thin & lights' (which is what I think the MBA is) since way back with the Portege/Dynabook series 7 years ago and the Sony TZ series which is quite thin and light but has more features in a smaller footprint....



    Before anyone flames me, I've been a loyal Apple customer since '86 puchasing plenty of Macs; desktop and portable, Newtons, iPods, iPod Touch along with doing some consulting with Apple, and own many shares of Apple stock.....but having said all that I still wish that Apple would release a true ultraportable that allows typing and handwriting input, not just a skinny large laptop with limited features!!!



    Also, FWIW, I do think that the MBA is nice for what it is, just that for me it isn't that compelling of a difference from my MB C2D to make me want to get one.



    Mark

    Posted this from my ultraportable OQO E2....
  • Reply 78 of 142
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RonHurley View Post


    However, in the interests of accuracy (and at the risk of being flamed) I feel it?s important to post ACCURATE comparison data with other Subnotebooks.

    ?\tThe 5 Hour Battery Life quoted for the Air is with the Solid State drive. It will be interesting to see what the battery life is under real world conditions with the spinning hard drive



    As you stated, "?in the interests of accuracy?" it was with the, "?spinning hard drive>"
  • Reply 79 of 142
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,953member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NYCMacFan View Post


    For people who use word, powerpoint and internet surfing, this is very telling. 13.3 inch widescreen actually gives us a touch less usable vertical space. Bummer.



    It's not much difference, 7.26" vs. 7.05", a difference of about 3%. But the 13.3" is 1.6" or 16% wider.
  • Reply 80 of 142
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by OccamsAftershave View Post


    Ask and you shall recieve.

    Since the Fujitsu at 4 lbs was included in this category for comparison, here's a configuration for the just-under 4 lb.

    Dell XPS M1330:



    So... 1.5x the price for these feeble-in-comparison components buys over a lb. lighter, slimmer, superduper trackpad, camera w/ more MP... and [drumroll] tapered for illusion of even more slimness. Whoopi.

    And Leopard (+ iLife). Whew. OK. Not a RDF ripoff.

    ?



    For a Windows user that would be a nice portable machine. That is also the cheapest price for 64GB SSD that I've seen. Does that not include the rebate from the HDD?



    PS: Great username!
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