Wednesday, October 20, 2010

New MacBook Air vs. Old MacBook Air

The new MacBook Airs (MBA) arrived yesterday as Apple showed off two new models with 11" and 13"screens. Both models come with SSDs (the 11" only has a 64GB drive), larger, longer batteries and a much needed case redesign that adds one more USB port and removes the annoying flip down port cover that the original came with.

As you can imagine I felt the need to compare my 13" MBA to the new model. Besides the obvious case and battery changes what does the new version have that mine doesn't? Two things: the ability to expand the memory to 4 GB and an updated graphics card. Not bad for a year old model! That spells good news for current MBA users; you have little reason to upgrade to a new machine, unless you didn't get an SSD, want an smaller screen and/or want to upgrade to 4GB on memory (which again is only available on the 13" model).

The 4GB of memory is the main thing that entices me... and maybe the upgraded processor. But is upgrading from a Core 2 Duo 1.86GHz processor to a 2.0GHz processor worth $100? One of the case design flaws that I've learned to deal with is having the mini Display port, USB and headphone jack right next to each other. With a USB cable plugged into the slot there is no way to get a headphone jack plugged in. That means living with just adequate sound.

Is it just me or does an 11" screen on the new MBAs make it seem like Apple is targeting would be netbook users? Maybe higher-end netbook users? Maybe that's just a coincidence.

1 comment:

Omen said...

Thanks for your easy to understand thoughts on the difference between these two! I just sold my Macbook for $500 (glass cracked) and deciding wether to fish for an older model Air or get the new 11". I have an iMac at home for school, music creation, etc, but would like a light companion.