Feeds

Hands on with the new Apple MacBook Air

Netbook plus?

Boost IT visibility and business value

Faster chippery, sort of

The Intel graphics was always the original Air's failing performance-wise, and so the Nvidia graphics, as they did with subsequent revisions of the first model, will go a long way to balancing the relatively slow CPU speed and the use of the old chip.

I should point out, though, that none of the other 11.6in notebooks on the market have a Core 2 Duo inside. Some have single-core Celerons, more modern ones have dual-core Pentium processors or AMD's dual-core Athlon II Neo.

Apple MacBook Air 11.6in

Not a top-of-the-line processor

But a detailed look at the specs will have to wait for benchmark testing results to compare them to. Watch this space for a full review. For now, I can say that the 11.6in Air had no trouble running 1080p video - not something you can say about even the newest of Atom-based netbooks with Intel graphics.

The 13.3in Air feels much the same as the previous Air when closed, and the 11.6in version is an inch or so smaller. Apple has included a full-size keyboard in both, and in the case of the smaller Air, that's the component that defines the laptop's size.

Like MacBook Pro keyboards, the Air's is solidly underpinned and good to type on, though both models lack a keyboard backlight, a feature no one really appreciates until they use it in low light.

Apple MacBook Air 13.3in

Slighty better specs in the 13.3in Air

Apple was right to add a second USB port to the new Air - having one was the original's key limitation - but there's no Ethernet, Apple not unreasonably supposing that the vast majority of users will connect over 2.4/5GHz 802.11n Wi-Fi. There's always a USB Ethernet adaptor if you need a wired connection, but that's extra, of course.

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Apple takes blade to 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display
Shaves price, not screen on mid-2014 model
iPhone 6 flip tip slips in Aussie's clip: Apple's 'reversible USB' leaks
New plug not compatible with official Type-C, according to fresh rumors
Top Gun display for your CAR: Heads-up fighter pilot tech
Sadly Navdy kit doesn't include Sidewinder missile to blast traffic
FEAST YOUR EYES: Samsung's Galaxy Alpha has an 'entirely new appearance'
Wow, it looks like nothing else on the market, for sure
YES YES YES! Apple patents mousy, pressure-sensing iVibrator
Fanbois prepare to experience the great Cupertin-O
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
TV transport tech, part 1: From server to sofa at the touch of a button
You won't believe how much goes into today's telly tech
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
Things are looking up in Flappy Bird sequel
'Swing Copters' offers the same gameplay but in a different direction
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.