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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

Macbook Air comparison...


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Stev0lution

 
Member Since: Nov 16, 2010
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My significant other has gotten bit by the Macbook bug

She really wants a MBA, so I think I'm going to try and find her one for Christmas. Being students, money is a bit tight. I've found a couple of MBA's in the range of $600-$800US. 600 being a MBA 1,1 and 800 being a MBA 3,1.

Aside from the obvious hardware, is there a HUGE difference (real life performance) between a MBA 1,1 and a MBA 3,1 given semi-equal hardware ratings? She won't be using it for anything more than MS Office and browsing the net. No photo-editing, music, or anything resource-heavy. I'm just afraid that after using my White macbook 2,1 and then my MBP 7,1 she'll think that the MBA is a toy (performance-wise).

Any suggestions and insight will be greatly appreciated.
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6string

 
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There is a substantial difference between the 1.1 and 3.1.
The speed, processor, graphics, touchpad, build....The new MBAs are nice machines.

I wouldn't even consider the 1.1.

I'm assuming that you are aware that the 3.1 MBA is the 11" MBA that was released recently.
It really is a nice little kit.
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Scott Baret

 
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For $999 (take a bit off that if you're a student) the MBA offers just about everything you'd need. What it lacks in actual processor speed it makes up for with its SSD. I had been using a MacBook (black Santa Rosa model) as my primary computer until yesterday, when I went to the MBA. I can't notice a performance difference at all, and I've tested it with everyday productivity software (iWork, Bento, Safari), the iLife applications, and, perhaps the most convincing test, Sims 3--which I feel actually is a tad more responsive on the MBA. (However, the graphics card could be a factor with this). I've heard it's not a serious multimedia/powerhouse machine, but runs most software well. (Think of it as the Mac LC from 20 years ago).

I would spend the extra dollars on a new laptop over a used one. I've seen plenty of laptops with considerable wear and tear after just about a year or so of use. Even if a computer looks good on the outside, it may have been used excessively and may not hold up as well as one fresh from the factory.

You also will be able to get AppleCare, which does add to your cost and may present a budget issue in your case, but if anything ever does go wrong during your first three years, you can get it replaced. (This even covers something like a chipped case--my MacBook, like many others, suffered this problem and was repaired within a day). I actually asked for AppleCare as a holiday gift for my new MBA.
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brairden

 
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Sounds like the 1st run air would be fine for what she will be using it for. Niether Office nor internet surfing will tax that processor or graphics engine (except for maybe very extensive PowerPoint projects). Why spend more money than you have to if a cheaper one suits your needs? I know that we all get caught up on specs when computer shopping, but really 90% of people buy more computer than they need.

15" 2.53ghz i5 MacBook Pro (2010) 8gb, 500gb HD - 60gb OWC SSD
13" 2.4ghz MacBook Unibody (late 2008) 4gb, 250gb
24" 2.4ghz Aluminum iMac (mid 2007) 3gb, 1tb
mini 2.0ghz - 32gb iPhone 4
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6string

 
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Originally Posted by brairden View Post
Sounds like the 1st run air would be fine for what she will be using it for. Niether Office nor internet surfing will tax that processor or graphics engine (except for maybe very extensive PowerPoint projects). Why spend more money than you have to if a cheaper one suits your needs? I know that we all get caught up on specs when computer shopping, but really 90% of people buy more computer than they need.
The 1st gen MBA was a bag of ....
The latest air is not only a decent machine, but will also last a lot longer than the 1st gen.
For $200, there's nothing to consider, and if you consider resale value, well, that $200 will pay for itself!
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