1. Sturdy and elegant design 2. Gorgeous display 3. Powerful Internals 4. Multi-gesture trackpad 5. Very comfortable keyboard 6. Incredible battery lifeCons
1. No optical drive 2. Less number of ports 3. A little too costlyVerdict
The Apple Macbook Air is undoubtedly one of the best 11-inch notebooks and is ideal for writers and the like but it is a little expensive. But in case you've got money to spend, it is highly recommended. :)
Thin, Light and Powerful all day long...
There are a lot of large, small and tiny laptops out there now. You get laptops as big as 17 inches to ultrabooks as tiny as 10 inches. Most of the mini-notebooks are convertibles now, after the launch of Windows 8. You get fancy full HD touch-screens; detachable displays that are so thin yet fit very powerful computing architectures, and even some come with an optional keyboard! On one hand, manufacturers like Samsung, Lenovo and Sony have made full use of the touch-based user interface of Windows 8 to launch touch devices that can blow anyone’s socks off and on the other hand Apple Inc. with it’s MacBook Air 11” says that it likes to keep things simple, so that a desktop is a desktop (Mac Pros, Mac minis and iMacs), a laptop is a laptop (MacBook Pros and MacBook Airs) and a tablet is a tablet (iPad). The MacBook Air 11” 2013 model mainly consists of major changes under the hood. There’s not many changes to the design and the look of the MacBook Air but the internals have drastically changed. To mention them in short, Intel’s 4th generation Haswell chips replace the previous years’ Ivy Bridge, the base model stars with 128GB of SSD (Solid-State Drive) and you get a newer and faster standard of Wi-Fi -108.11ac that replaces the previous version of Wi-Fi. Let’s head on to a more specific and detailed review of the Air…
1.Design: If you’ve even seen or used any of Apple’s MacBook Airs before, you know what you’re dealing with here. The design is the same sturdy, slim and absolutely gorgeous design. The powerful CPU and all the great internals are tightly fit into a sturdy aluminum unibody. A unibody design means there’s not a lot of fuss. You get a case for the internals, fit everything in, and close it with a panel and screws. The Air feels great, is light, and is pretty durable - everything you’d expect from an ultra-portable like itself. The top panel looks gorgeous and has a subtle shine to it. The backlit Apple Logo in the center proudly shines across the design. The main body tapers towards the front and ends in subtle, blunt edges. The behind of the design is a little thicker (17 mm) and the cooling mechanism is fit there, below the hinges. The hinges are strong and you can still open the notebook with just one hand (something I find really handy at times). On the right you get 1 USB 3.0 port and a thunderbolt port and on the left side you get another USB 3.0 port (so total 2) and a MagSafe 2 power adapter port along with dual microphone pinholes. Dimension wise the device measures 30.0 x 19.2 x 1.7 (0.3 in the front) cm. The device weighs only 1.08 Kg (2.38 pounds)! It the second lightest notebook to run a core i5 processor after Sony Vaio Pro 11.
2.Display: Unfortunately you do not get a full HD display with the MacBook Air but instead you get an 11” LED-backlit glossy screen with a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. Frankly, I didn’t miss a HD screen. The display is extremely bright and vivid. Everything you want to watch on it - be it movies or images or text - it’s always absolutely gorgeous. Intel’s integrated Intel HD Graphics 5000 with a VRAM of 1GB handle the display. There is a slim border along the display, which actually helps put focus on the display. I have absolutely no complains with the screen what so ever. You also get a Facetime HD camera with the unit along with loud stereo speakers.
3.Keyboard & Trackpad: You get a lovely 72-button keyboard, which is ideal to type on (even though the keys don’t provide much compression because of the tiny size). The keyboard is very comfortable and hence the Air is highly recommended to writers. The function buttons provide shortcuts to media controls, volume controls, brightness control, keyboard backlit controls and controls to stuff like the Launchpad, Mission Controls and such (you could still use the Function keys the traditional way by pressing the Fn key placed in the extreme left corner). The trackpad can be completely pressed to single click and is big enough for all five fingers to fit in comfortably. You can perform gestures like 2-finger tap, pinch to zoom, 3-finger or 4-finger swipe, 4-finger pull down and much more. The trackpad gestures are really very innovative and simplify tasks by a great deal.
4.Performance: The Haswell® chips replace Intel’s Ivy® Bridge in the MacBook Air. This induces faster performance even with lesser clock-speeds and a longer battery life. The dual-core Intel Core® i5 1.3 GHz processor (with a turbo-boost of 2.6 GHz with 3MB processor cache) on the 11-inch base model also is fast enough to run 16 different software at the same time on 16 different desktop pages. That’s a whole lot of processing power. The system packs 4GB of RAM that unfortunately cannot be expanded further and 1GB of VRAM. According to CNET’s benchmarks, the Air’s arch nemesis - Sony’s Vaio Pro 11 beats Apple’s MacBook Air in all performance fields except in battery backup. The battery on the MacBook Air lasts for more than 9 hours once fully charged and takes less than 2 hours to fully charge! If you really need a notebook with extensive battery life, then the Air is the one for you. The Vaio Pro 11 is also lighter than the MacBook Air but Apple does a good job making the Air feel overall better than the Vaio Pro 11.
5.Software: The Apple MacBook Air comes with OS X Mountain Lion 10.8.5 as it’s primary operating system. You get a whole lot of utility software like Calendar, Reminders, Notes, Mail, Contacts, etc. You also get iLife free with the system, which included Garage Band, iPhoto and iMovie. iLife gives you the abilities to create high quality digital media all by yourself on your MacBook Air, if you’re in stuff like that. The Air can also run Windows with the help of Boot Camp Assistant. You could also purchase heaps of other software on the Apple App Store.
6.Price and Configurations: The base device with 128GB of memory costs around $948 USD (~Rs.68,000 INR) on Amazon.com while a fully upgraded device with an Intel® Core® i7 processor, 512GB SSD and 8GB of RAM costs about $1,749 USD (~Rs.1,30,000 INR). You could also only bump the storage to 256GB for around $100 USD (~Rs.7000) more.
Here's the best place to shop for Apple MacBook Air MD711L/A
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