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Macbook Air 11.6-inch 1.4GHz 64GB unboxing, first impression

updated 03:45 am EDT, Thu October 21, 2010

Apple hits the bullseye yet again

The new 11.6-inch Macbook Air is a notebook that many Apple users have long been waiting for. While it might not have the most impressive overall specs, it delivers snappy performance for use with everyday apps. Mail, Safari, iChat, and iTunes all work smoothly and load quickly, making it a very useable device for users who need mobility and functionality on the go.

While it might have been nice to have 3G connectivity built-in, it would have only meant yet another data plan for Apple iPhone and iPad users suffering data plan fatigue. Being able to connect to the net by tethering only when on the move may actually be a blessing in disguise.

There is plenty of space on the palm rest to make typing on the full-size keyboard a breeze. While the screen is smaller, the display is high-quality and produces sharply defined text and equivalent workspace to a typical 13-inch notebook due to its high-res, 1366x768 display. The new glass trackpad works beautifully and is more than ample.

The only aspects that are somewhat disappointing are the lack of keyboard backlighting, and the fact that it doesn't use Intel's latest generation of Core i series chips, but a previous generation CULV Core 2 Duo. Though, as already noted, performance is more than adequate; it's just nice to have more processing grunt than one needs. Then again, Apple would have had to sacrifice on graphics performance and increase the asking price. As it is, the new Macbook Air is affordable, desirable and a highly portable device. In the past, there have not been too many ultra-portable notebooks that could be described in this way.

On first impression, the new entry-level Macbook Air is a winner, and one would expect that Apple will have yet another runaway hit on its hands.

by MacNN Staff



  1. PeteWK

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Been Waitin

    The larger Air just didn't do it for me. This one scratches me where I itch. Now if I can just reach my wallet . . .

    Comment buried. Show
  1. wrenchy

    Joined: Dec 1969



    The MBA 11.6 is a Netbook.... NETBOOK.

    Why is it being called a notebook?


  1. SockRolid

    Joined: Dec 1969



    "Why is it being called a notebook?"

    Because it's not plastic?

  1. chefpastry

    Joined: Dec 1969


    @ wrenchy

    You really are one dumb f*ck.

  1. ASathin8R

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Netbook vs Ultraportable notebook

    A netbook typically has an Intel Atom, 1GB RAM, a 10-inch screen, integrated Intel graphics and is gutless.

    An ultra-portable notebook has the specs of the 11.6-inch Macbook Air...CULV Intel Core 2 Duo, NVIDA 320M GeForce Graphics 256MB, 2GB RAM (upgradable to 4GB) and kicks a netbooks a**.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. ppshopping03

    Joined: Dec 1969




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  1. Feathers

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Of course the new MBA has lost the backlit keyboard and the 11" version doesn't have the SD card slot. Yet again, Apple give with one hand but take away with the other. I would have bought the 11" almost instantly if they hadn't been so sneaky. Being able to supplement the SSD with SD cards would have been a no-brainer!

  1. snappy22

    Joined: Dec 1969


    runaway hit

    "On first impression, the new entry-level Macbook Air is a winner, and one would expect that Apple will have yet another runaway hit on its hands."

    A "runaway hit" like the original MBA that only sole in limited numbers?

  1. rombe3jr

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Still a novelty...

    But getting closer to perfection for this form factor.

  1. malax

    Joined: Dec 1969



    In low light is the lettering more visible than a previous generation MBA with the backlit off? On the backlit keyboard the letters are "clear" (not white) so they don't show up all that well without the backlight. Did they change that for these non-lit MBA keyboards?

    Also, how does it do with video chat or flash video? My first gen MBA overheads and basically shuts down after a few minutes of either. I think they fixed that with 2nd gen, but I'd like to know it wouldn't be an issue with the new ones.

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