Feeds

Hands on with the new Apple MacBook Air

Netbook plus?

The essential guide to IT transformation

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.

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
AMD unveils 'single purpose' graphics card for PC gamers and NO ONE else
Chip maker claims the Radeon R9 285 is 'best in its class'
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
Just in case? Unverified 'supersize me' iPhone 6 pics in sneak leak peek
Is bigger necessarily better for the fruity firm's flagship phone?
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?