Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Macbook Air in the test, the air is getting thin for Apple - FAZ - Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

Manufacturer The Macbook Air by Apple in 11 and 13 inches

Apple has updated the Macbook Air. This is good news. If you look closely at the laptop, however, the question arises whether the two 11.6 and 13.3-inch models still can be considered as exceptional among the many competing products. Apple has once again not touch screen and design for the renovation work. Weight, dimensions and resolution since the end of 2010 – except for a slight refresh a year ago – remained the same. Is the exterior of the Macbook Air actually so awesome that nothing needs to be changed, or Apple simply go out of ideas?

Well, Apple had set a very high bar five years ago. Steve Jobs unveiled in 2008, the “thinnest notebook in the world” in a paper envelope and ultimately created a new product category: small, lightweight notebook with long battery life, no optical drive, which also drive up quickly and just as quickly wake up from standby. Intel provided for the Windows world, the brand name “Ultrabook” and the appropriate processors. The competition took a while to get at least approximately to the level of the Macbook Air. And two and a half years ago raised the level of Apple again. But for some time there are some Ultrabooks from various manufacturers, which – depending on focus on specific properties -.’re On a level with Apple

The build quality is still excellent © producers The build quality is still excellent

is the Macbook Air is no longer being the thinnest notebook in the world. However, not many come close to the high quality workmanship of this unit. This is due to sturdy unibody enclosure that is made of an aluminum block. Similar – and not necessarily worse – methods employ other companies at the time of production. Nevertheless, if anyone keeps the slightly wedge-shaped housing in the hands, between his fingers literally feel the quality of the material. The perfection in the manufacture and the sophistication of the design inspire continually. At the pleasant keyboard and a precise touchpad Apple needs to change anything anyway. Because many Windows notebooks must queue behind. Dealing with a Macbook Air is still a tactile experience. Also by technical (in) abnormalities such as these: Very rarely the fan starts. The unit is silent usually pleasant to himself.

revolution in the notebook market now are now trying others. Lenovo Ultrabook “Yoga”, the user can bend it: quite classic and stylish notebook or as a tablet. Sony Vaio Duo 13 has a clever folding mechanism, which also makes it the tablet. Microsoft has filed with the Surface Pro is a richly-featured tablet that is using the Type Covers for Ultrabook. Samsung presented the previous week Ativ Book 9 Plus: A Windows laptop with 13-inch screen in a stunning resolution of 3200 × 1800 pixels. And with the devices from Acer, Asus and other manufacturers is the revolution in the price: They cost often far less than 1000 euros


The screen is getting on in years

is specifically looking for a weakness of the Macbook Air, one inevitably comes to the screen. The display is not faltering, but it is getting old, when you take a look at the competition. So you can find some 13-inch model with full HD resolution, with 1920 × 1080 pixels. The Macbook Air 13-inch has only 1440 × 900 pixels, the little brother of 1366 × 768 In addition, many new ultrabooks have a touch sensitive display. Here Apple has already shown, which technique you can depend on the competition for a while the screen. The Macbook Pro – a full-fledged notebook from Apple – you have both 13 and 15-inch donated a retina display. To do the display of the Macbook Air no wrong: illumination and screen brightness are very neat and still on the amount of time


now about the new features: Apple has beefed up the interior again. Both the 11 – and the 13-inch model is now an Intel dual-core i5 works with Haswell architecture. This new processor will not increase – the already pretty brisk – speed in their daily work. It is “only” clocked at 1.3 GHz, which says about the actual speed is not much, because the architecture of the processor has changed. As before, this can increase anyway by “Turbo Boost” to 2.6 GHz when the workload is very high by about 3D games. Then, the new graphics processor is supportive. The HD 5000 Graphics should be in games up to 40 percent faster.

up to twelve hours of battery life

The new generation of Intel processor has been developed mainly for it, to save battery power during operation. The running time that can be achieved is significant on the 13-inch model. Apple advertises “one day,” So twelve hours run time. Our tests showed a good eleven hours. When the battery is slightly better conditioned, and the settings are optimized according to the operating system, the official figure twelve hours might be realistic. The same is true for the model with 11 inches. In this the battery lasts nearly nine hours. Only in direct comparison it becomes clear what effect the new processor. The “old” Macbook Air 13-inch managed just seven and the little brother just five hours.

the category of manufacturers also used like “faster” fall of the new wireless mode “802.11ac”. Theoretically flit across networks so that the data three times faster for Macbook Air, but in practice, the wireless will not reach this speed, because the home network requires a router that can also serve the new wireless mode. And again from the category “higher speed”: The new SSD drives will be according to Apple 45 percent faster than the predecessor. That could be one reason for the fleet at boot time. After about ten seconds the go. This is very good. There are few Windows laptops, the faster it can.

for image processing may not have enough memory

Apple has doubled the space of the model with 11-inch screen at constant prices. Both the small (1000 euros) and the great Macbook Air (1100 euro) in the standard configuration now have 128 gigabytes. The memory has stayed the same size with four gigabytes. That might be a bit too little for image editing sometimes. For only € 100 you can raise it to eight gigabytes. Type and number of connections are all the same, but will be a second microphone. Apple uses it to suppress background noise during video chat (for example, “FaceTime”) and therefore to improve the voice quality.

who already owns a Macbook Air and not constantly suffering with this under power shortage, the credit card can be put back into his wallet. He still has a notebook highest quality workmanship, good screen representation and reasonable battery life. However, if you still have no light and thin notebook, is found in the Windows world, very rarely one that is so convincing as a whole.

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Macbook Air in Test: The air is getting thin for Apple

Macbook Air in the test

The air is getting thin for Apple

From Dettweiler Marco and Michael Spehr

The new Macbook Air is still an exception. The notebook is noble, beautiful and fast. But competition from Apple sits in the neck. Is a refresh of the hardware?

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