InfoWorld: Apple’s new 13-inch MacBook Air is easily the best ever

Apple Online Store“I’ve used every MacBook Air since it was originally released, and I still use an 18-month-old Air for hours and hours every day,” Paul Venezia reports for InfoWorld. “My last Air was top-of-the-line, with a dual-core 2.13GHz CPU, 2GB of RAM, and the 128GB SSD, purchased in June 2009. I purchased a top-of-the-line [13-inch] model this time as well, bearing the same dual-core 2.13GHz CPU, but now with 4GB of RAM and 256GB of flash storage ($1,799 from the Apple Store). The difference in performance between the two is significant — and that’s saying something.”

“It has the oomph to handle just about every general-purpose task you can throw at it while weighing in at less than three pounds. I’m not going to use my Air for heavy video editing with Final Cut Pro or to mix down 32 audio tracks in Pro Tools, but I’ll reach for it when it comes to all of my other daily tasks, wherever I happen to be,” Venezia reports. “One thing’s for sure: This Air is easily the best one yet.”

Read the full review here.

57 Comments

  1. Best one yet? For a redesigned model 18 months after the original, pimped out with max RAM and storage? What a brave, out-on-a-limb conclusion to arrive at, let alone post.

    I loves me some bold journalism, I does.

  2. Best one yet? For a redesigned model 18 months after the original, pimped out with max RAM and storage? What a brave, out-on-a-limb conclusion to arrive at, let alone post.

    I loves me some bold journalism, I does.

  3. Apple still has some glaring gaps in it’s product line. They still need something between the top of the line iMac and a Mac Pro. The OWC mod adding a SATA port helps but REALLY a mini-tower would be nice with the power (or a little bit more) of a quad core iMac but with more interface options, USB 3 and maybe a couple PCI slots (NO internal RAID).

    12 processors are great (go for it if you can) but a lot of jobs can be handled easily with something a little less expensive but optimized for video and graphics.

  4. Apple still has some glaring gaps in it’s product line. They still need something between the top of the line iMac and a Mac Pro. The OWC mod adding a SATA port helps but REALLY a mini-tower would be nice with the power (or a little bit more) of a quad core iMac but with more interface options, USB 3 and maybe a couple PCI slots (NO internal RAID).

    12 processors are great (go for it if you can) but a lot of jobs can be handled easily with something a little less expensive but optimized for video and graphics.

  5. The gap is in your head. Apple is poised almost perfectly… have you seen what a 27″ iMac with 16 gigs of ram can do?

    There isn’t enough of a gap there to make a difference.

    now a desktop replacement 20″ laptop with multi-core, dual SD HD’s raided… even if battery sucks, a lot of 17″ laptop users plug in 90% of the time anyway… The portability, that’s where it is…

    Pi

  6. The gap is in your head. Apple is poised almost perfectly… have you seen what a 27″ iMac with 16 gigs of ram can do?

    There isn’t enough of a gap there to make a difference.

    now a desktop replacement 20″ laptop with multi-core, dual SD HD’s raided… even if battery sucks, a lot of 17″ laptop users plug in 90% of the time anyway… The portability, that’s where it is…

    Pi

  7. @Peter Blood

    Yep, I agree. There are many of us who have been howling at Apple for years to deliver a Half-MacPro… halfway between a Mac mini and MacPro.

    Every Pro Mac user I know buys a MacBook Pro and an external monitor with an anti-glare screen from anyone but Apple. Some have one MacPro in their office for heavy lifting, rendering, etc..

    Apple simply does not care about this market segment.

  8. @Peter Blood

    Yep, I agree. There are many of us who have been howling at Apple for years to deliver a Half-MacPro… halfway between a Mac mini and MacPro.

    Every Pro Mac user I know buys a MacBook Pro and an external monitor with an anti-glare screen from anyone but Apple. Some have one MacPro in their office for heavy lifting, rendering, etc..

    Apple simply does not care about this market segment.

  9. People easily get caught up chasing the numbers (Megaherz, Gigabyte), and they tend to equate those exclusively with performance and value.

    I can’t think of any one person who would masochistically edit 3D video, or 32-track audio on a 15″ portable computer, let alone smaller, regardless of the available muscle. Same thing for serious photoshoping and indesigning (not yet a verb, but might become one some day…).

    The value of portable computer is NOT directly proportional to its CPU speed, RAM and HD sizes. Those obviously affect the value (hence, price), but other features and qualities tend to have much greater significance in defining their value. Apple clearly knows it, and MacBook Air is clearly THE best portable computer out there. The performance muscle of the 13″ model is plentiful enough to run ANY Mac software out there today. It will surely be able to run any Mac software that may come in the next 3 or 4 years as well. It is powerful and fast enough to comfortably run MULTIPLE applications at the same time. While you COULD use it to render a 110-minute HD feature with 12 layers of special effects, you would be an idiot (or in a most terrible predicament) to actually do it on any laptop.

    The point is, MacBook Air is a powerful laptop that can do EVERYTHING anyone needs of a laptop computer on a daily basis. And it weighs barely 1.6 kg, which makes it the best laptop out there today.

  10. People easily get caught up chasing the numbers (Megaherz, Gigabyte), and they tend to equate those exclusively with performance and value.

    I can’t think of any one person who would masochistically edit 3D video, or 32-track audio on a 15″ portable computer, let alone smaller, regardless of the available muscle. Same thing for serious photoshoping and indesigning (not yet a verb, but might become one some day…).

    The value of portable computer is NOT directly proportional to its CPU speed, RAM and HD sizes. Those obviously affect the value (hence, price), but other features and qualities tend to have much greater significance in defining their value. Apple clearly knows it, and MacBook Air is clearly THE best portable computer out there. The performance muscle of the 13″ model is plentiful enough to run ANY Mac software out there today. It will surely be able to run any Mac software that may come in the next 3 or 4 years as well. It is powerful and fast enough to comfortably run MULTIPLE applications at the same time. While you COULD use it to render a 110-minute HD feature with 12 layers of special effects, you would be an idiot (or in a most terrible predicament) to actually do it on any laptop.

    The point is, MacBook Air is a powerful laptop that can do EVERYTHING anyone needs of a laptop computer on a daily basis. And it weighs barely 1.6 kg, which makes it the best laptop out there today.

  11. @ Apple Pi

    Well thanks “Mr. Market Expert” for your uninformed opinion. Fact is there is a big gap between the iMac and Mac Pro for those who only need a 4 or 6 processor machine and just a little more in the way of fast connections. The price goes double or more for a Mac Pro. I own 2007 8 processor Mac Pro which is still great but I also know there is a niche in the market that exists in between. I work in the film and television business so I do know that of which I speak, not to be snobbish about it.

    I have a friend, a pro editor, who’s also now in a quandary about buying a 8 or 12 processor Mac Pro (overkill and expensive but nice) or a modded iMac 27″ (underkill in terms of fast I/O connections but usuable). Apple should address this market and btw no one loves Apple products more than I. What do you care anyway if Apple did address this need anyway? The more Apple products the better.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.