The 11.6in Air lacks the 13.3in model's SD card slot, but with that second USB port, plugging an adaptor module in still leaves you with a port spare. And it'll be a darn sight easier now that Apple no longer builds the Air's ports into a drop down panel.
Way skinny, and very easy to carry around
These changes improve the Air's usability no end and remove almost all of the compromises made to get the original as thin as it was.
I liked the look of the previous Air, but at first I wasn't sure about the new one's styling. Fortunately, it's not as wedge-shaped as it looks in the official photos, thanks to the curvature at the edges of the lid and the base.
Closed, it's very convenient to carry - especially the 1kg 11.6in one - though you won't be opening it single-fingered as they do in the ads. In both models, the screen gets almost but not quite vertical before the base starts to tilt up.
Extra USB portage, but still no Ethernet
As you'll have seen from the internal snaps, much of the Air's interior is battery, but the figures Apple quotes are not spectacular. The 11.6in is said to provide five hours' runtime on a charge, officially. I couldn't test that, but I can say that knocking back the backlight to a dark but still just viewable saw Mac OS X's menu bar battery readout report six hours and five minutes from a full battery. I couldn't turn off the Wi-Fi, but doing so should raise that figure a bit.
Next page: New design, same old performance?
Didn't get a review machine I see
I love the fact that the reviewer has clearly just wandered down to the Regent St apple store and had a play around with one of the desk models :)
Shows an enterprising spirit!
RE:Like a bad eeepc 1215pn surely?
Doesn't the Asus EEE 1215pn have the Atom processor. Comparing the Atom to a Core2Duo is like comparing a Skoda to a Ferrari.
Didn't Author tell you to stop reading?
"If you're the sort to throw a fit because you can by a 15in octo-core über machine for half the 850 quid Apple wants for the even most basic, smallest Air, stop reading now. Let me assure you, your prejudices will be reinforced."
...but no...you had to come in and comment anyway.
You should probably highlight the downsides of a Hackintosh before evangelising them too btw. You and I have built 'em and know the pitfalls, but Joe Public is probably nowhere near technical enough to build one himself.
What, £1100 for an ultra-thin 11" notebook PC with just 64GB SSD and 2GB RAM?
What kind of idiot would pay for that?
No, I'm not talking about the Air, I'm talking about it's direct competitor, the Sony Vaio X. Which only has a 1.86Ghz Atom, as opposed to the Air's Core Duo.
Makes the £850 Air seem pretty good value, doesn't it.
Did you read the review at all???
I was going to post how great and balanced a review it was, hopefully quashing the usual slatings, but no.... still they trudge in.
I love the product, but have no requirement for one that i couldn't fix with my iPad or MBP, but i know of many folk who'd love one, my other half at uni for instance, to complement her iMac!