Apple MacBook Air Laptop

Apple 13.3″ MacBook Air ( Silver)

Fifth-generation Intel processors

Designed to reduce power consumption while maintaining high performance

Next-generation graphics

Intel HD Graphics 6000 is the next generation of advanced integrated graphics and delivers fast graphics performance for immersive mainstream gaming and smooth scrolling through large music or photo libraries

Multi-Touch trackpad

Supports all the Multi-Touch gestures Mac users love including tap, scroll, pinch, and swipe

1. Memory

I have bought my macbook air with 8GB ram directly from Apple’s website because I felt like 4GB was a bit low. I understand for many people it’s enough and for me it would be enough for now but I think within 3 maybe 4 years it will cause the computer to run slower since the newer operating systems more than likely would need more ram to run fluently. I also felt like if I am spending more than $1000.00 on a laptop I might as well make it as future proof as possible, I want to get the most life out of my macbook. If you are like me, you can’t afford to upgrade your Mac every two or three years. So if you want it to last as long as it can I feel like the ram upgrade is mandatory since you CAN’T upgrade it yourself. So far its been performing very well, I have been able to open my web browser with 7 tabs open while listening to music and have Microsoft office open typing a document with no hiccups at all. It only used about 40% of my memory. If you are deciding whether or not 4GB is enough I would highly recommend going with 8 GB. Not only will it better the performance for any crucial updates to come but it’s only $100.00 more. That’s really not a bad deal if you ask me.

2. Processor (core i7 2.2 GHz)

I love the core i7 processor in my macbook air. I have been getting around 11 hours of battery life with mixed use as in web browsing, listening to music or typing word documents, and watching videos. When I use my macbook air for more intensive things like watching movies, youtube videos, downloading a ton of things at once I get anywhere from 7 to 8 hours which is still amazing. I have had some laptops in the past only get 3 hours doing basic things. I think paying $150.00 for the processor upgrade is a good deal but I don’t think it’s a mandatory upgrade. If anything like I said earlier in this review I believe the memory (ram) upgrade is mandatory because the core i5 processor is a great processor, it’s more than enough for most people and it will last a long time. If you have the money to upgrade the processor I would say defiantly go for it since it will make things a little more snappier but if you don’t have the money for the upgrade, don’t sweat it because the i5 is still a top of the line processor. Its much better than the Core M processor that Apple uses in the new macbook.

3. SSD (256 GB)

The performance of the SSD is great. It is so much faster than a traditional hard drive it’s not even funny. It takes 10 seconds for my macbook air to fully boot up from a cold boot. Opening up apps are Instant coping files are fast and really this SSD just makes my mac fly (not literally). Once you use a laptop with a SSD you honestly don’t even want to go back to using a laptop with a spinning hard drive. I think the best place for a traditional hard drive would be using it for backups or using it as a secondary hard drive in a desktop since price per GB is much cheaper than a SSD. I have seen a 8TB hard drive being sold here on Amazon for $240.00 whereas a 2TB SSD sells for about $700.00 on here. Yes you read that right $700.00! That’s just insane but price will go down over time. I think the entry level 128 GB SSD would be enough for someone who plans on using this laptop for school or use it for basic things like storing pictures, music, programs, etc. If you plan on using this machine for video editing or to have a ton of movies on it you should at least get the 256GB SSD. If you have a ton of money to spend the 512 GB SSD would be your best bet since editing videos, storing movies, playing games, and also backing up any iDevices will eat up your storage memory. I bought the Macbook air with 256 GB SSD because I do like to keep some movies and videos on here and I plan on doing some video reviews using iMovie but since I store most of my media on my external 2TB hard drive I don’t see a point in me spending a extra $300.00 for the 512GB model. Like I said earlier if you plan on doing a ton of video editing, storing large amounts of movies, keeping backups of your iDevices and just want to keep majority of your data on your laptop you should definitely go for the 512GB model. It will cost you a extra $300.00 but it will be more than worth it.

4. Design

The design is nothing like I have seen before. Even though Apple has stuck with this design for some years now it’s still a breathtaking design. When you buy a macbook you’re not only paying for the specs you are also paying for the craftsmanship. You’re paying for something that will last you many many years and that works well with your other Apple products. Its great that Apple uses aluminum in their MacBooks because it helps spread the heat out away from the processor. Another great thing Apple has implemented in their MacBooks is the backlit keyboard. I have used it a handful of times to type in the dark and it’s been working really good. The light is evenly spread throughout the keyboard making it very easy to see and to use. Another cool thing Apple has always done is putting their Apple logo on the back of the macbook making it light up when your computer is on. It’s a simple thing that makes the Mac look premium. I know this is a little thing but it’s just awesome I have always loved that about MacBooks. Apple has paid a ton of attention to the details big and small. This is what makes apple products so desirable and just stand out.

5. Display

The first thing I want to make clear is that this display is a nice display. I hear people all the time say the display on the macbook air sucks or that its out dated and it just really gets to me. It tells me that people just take things for granted. If one little thing is wrong or it isn’t exactly how they want it they complain about it like a kid. If the display is going to bother you that much please do everyone a favor and stay away from the macbook air because nobody wants to hear you complain over something that’s not a big deal. Now that I have that out of the way LOL I really do like the display here on the 13 inch macbook air. It’s a 1440 by 900 so not quite full HD but it isn’t half bad either. It’s a step up from 1280 by 800 so in other words you will have a little more room to work with on the desktop, in the web browser and everywhere else. I think one reason why Apple has not updated the screen on the macbook air is to save battery life because if the processor is having to work with a ton of pixels it uses more of the battery. This isn’t a IPS screen but it’s still a very high end TN panel in other words I don’t have to be directly in front of my screen to get good colors its just if I am looking at it from a tight angle colors will start to look funky. Overall if you are not planning on editing some high quality pictures or 4K movies and don’t need every bleeding pixel you can get then the screen on the macbook air will be great for you. I think it would of been better to at least see a full 1080p IPS display with the next update since it wouldn’t use much more power and I am paying more than $1000.00 for a laptop but for now and a while I think the 1440 by 900 resolution isn’t bad at all, I am still more then happy with my purchase I know it’ll last me a good long time before it becomes unusable:)

6. Keyboard, trackpad, palmrest

This is a Mac the mouse and keyboard are fantastic. I like the layout of the keyboard, it has a good amount of travel and I just think Apple did a good job making the keyboard. I can type for a couple of hours and feel fine. The mouse I would have to say it’s the best I have used but you probably already know that if you use Apples laptops. The gestures are awesome they are easy to remember and it just all makes sense. I think my favorite gesture is scrolling up and down on a web page or a photo. Its very handy and I am glad to see that Apple really does take its time to figure out some neat things. I also think the palm rest is nice. It feels sturdy, there is no flex at all not in the keyboard or the palm rest which is great. If you have never tried out a Mac’s mouse you should look into trying it out so you can see for yourself how great it is because once you have used one it’s hard to go back to a PCs mouse. Don’t get me wrong I do like the Windows operating system and I do use a Windows desktop (Dell Optiplex 760 small form factor) but one thing the Windows OS seem to never get right (mostly on laptops NOT desktops) is the keyboard or mouse which makes it hard to use. If something isn’t simple and intuitive to use then it makes it harder for me to want to use it. That’s what Apple does right with the keyboard and mouse, they make it fun and easy to use without any gimmicks. Its differently one of their strong points.

7. Ports and other connectivity

The MacBook air 2015 model comes with 2 USB 3.0 ports, an SDXC card slot (Only the 13 inch), headphone port, a thunderbolt port and magnetic charging port. For wireless connectivity it has Bluetooth 4.0 and WiFi a/b/g/n/ac. If you need to connect to your tv or monitor through HDMI the thunderbolt port can do that with a thunderbolt to HDMI dongle ($30.00). One huge reason why I picked the MacBook air over the 12 inch MacBook is ports. Yes the new MacBook is much thinner, it has a awesome retina screen, it also does not need fans to cool off the processor and its very hard not to lust after, but when I thought about it really hard and spent hours of watching youtube videos on what others think about the new Macbook and how it only has 1 port to connect to everything including power. Having to also buy a $80.00 dongle just to connect to my other devices, that to me is outrageous. That dongle is something that should come with the new Macbook at least until the usb type C port becomes a standard. Also having one port for power and data is inefficient it beats the purpose of portability. Having to remember every time to bring a dongle just to connect my usb thumb drive or other products. I should not have to pay extra money just to connect my hard drive or usb to my computer. Not only is the MacBook air more powerful its more future proof since it does have more ports to have a better time connecting to other devices. If I am spending more then $1000.00 on a computer I want it to last as long as it can and I want to connect my external devices to it without having to pay EXTRA just to do so. Sure in the future usb type C will become a standard but only having that one usb type C port for power and data is inefficient. There’s no other way around it.

8. Operating system

The software is great. It works very well together with the hardware. I am able to text from my laptop to anyone I want since I have a iPhone 6. You can enable this by connecting your iCloud to your computer and then go into settings on your iPhone. Once your in settings go to messages and after that you go into text message forwarding and it’ll show your device. This feature alone is amazing I have never been able to receive calls and have the power to text on my computer before. Its nice because if my phone is upstairs or just not by me I am able to just use my laptop. The operating system (10.10.4) is fast and fluid. It’s easy to get use to and overall efficient, no need to clean my hard drive or run antivirus to speed it up or download 37 updates. I think the thing what took me the longest to get use to was the dock. I wasn’t use to where things minimized. Keep in mind I grew up using Windows so in other words there were new things that I needed to learn. Another thing that I didn’t know was that most of the software I use for the Windows OS is NOT made for the Mac OS but there are alternatives. I am still learning what alternatives to use for my Mac since I am still fairly new to the Mac OS, I am still learning about it and how it works. Honestly at first I did not like the Mac OS, I didn’t like how things were done and I didn’t like how confusing it was to uninstall something. But what kept me coming back was the consistency and overall simplicity. If I didn’t know how to do something I just looked it up. I didn’t have to jump through hoops to do the things I wanted. It was a simple step or two and it was easy to remember. Things worked 97% of the time, the mousepad is fun to use and the fan is almost never blowing which is nice because I don’t have to turn up my volume all the way just to hear something. Now that I have given it some time and learned much more about it I think both Windows and the Mac OS are great operating systems once you get past the learning curve.

9. Price (Starting at $899.00 for base 11 inch model)

Many people including myself find the price to be quite high for a laptop. You are paying around $1000.00 for a machine to surf the internet, watch videos, store things on the hard drive and to use programs on. But when I thought about it and compared a Macbook to a Windows laptop I find myself liking the Macs design more then most of the Windows machines design. Also the trackpad ALWAYS wins, it just works 97% of the time whereas the Windows laptops trackpads (yes even the expensive Windows laptops) don’t work most of the time even for just basic things. I mean on the Windows machine I can scroll up and down and right and left click but that’s about it. Everything else with the trackpad just don’t work very well and sometimes the mouse pointer skips on some Windows laptops making it a drag to use. I don’t want to have to carry around a mouse just to use my laptop. That defeats the purpose of it being portable. On my Mac I can do everything the Windows machine can and more. I can also use it to zoom in on websites and pictures, use it to show my desktop, to scroll left and right and much more. What makes it so awesome is that it works very well without any hiccups and the trackpad is nice and big so I don’t find myself running out of space when using it. Another reason why I spent my money on the Macbook air is that I also have the option to partition my hard drive to run just about any Windows operation system. The software is called bootcamp and it’s built right into the Mac OS!! So if I really didn’t like the Mac operation system too much or I just wanted to take a break from it I can. I really like that Apple gave me the option to do so. It shows that Apple really does think about there customer and not many companies do that. Another reason why I spent my money on the Mac is that it is very easy to find accessories for my Macbook such as hard cases, laptop bags, DVD drives, Decals, anti glare screen protectors, etc. The battery also lasts as long as Apple claims (about 12 hours on the 13 inch MacBook air) whereas most Windows laptops only last about 6 hours. Sure when I thought about it most of the Windows laptops had better processor or were just as good, more storage for less, higher resolution screens, dedicated graphics so games play and look better (most of the MacBooks use integrated graphics) and some of the Windows laptops had 2 or even 5 M2 Sata slots to install more SSDs but when it comes to the Mac things just seem to work better and smoother. No need to fiddle around with uninstalling crap bloatware or downloading 28 updates or having to worry about buying antivirus software. The Mac is all ready to use right out of the box. Just power on the computer, answer some basic questions and preferences and then you’re good to go. Since Apple makes the hardware (most of it at least) and software these computers are just easier to work with. I have never heard of someone complaining about how they have to reinstall OS X because of a virus or that they can’t find the right driver because it’s all integrated with the hardware so well that I don’t even have to worry about renewing my virus protection or reinstalled OS X. The overall simplicity is unbeatable. I don’t need to worry about the cleaning the registry, or defragging my hard drive because it just all works. All I want is a computer that not only works but works good and looks good while doing it and that’s what the Mac has to offer. So if you ask me I think it’s worth the money, it’s worth saving up to buy a product that you know will work for as long as you own it. If you are a die hard Windows fan and not so sure it’s worth saving up for a Mac my advice for you would be to buy a MacBook that’s a little older like the MacBook pro 2010 model. I see them go for about $400.00 on Amazon and Ebay in good condition. I have one myself and it still works wonderfully with the most up to date software. As long as you upgrade the ram and hard drive to a SSD you are golden.

PROS:
A. Great huge touchpad and keyboard
B. AMAZING BUILD QUALITY
C. Very good battery life (lasts around 11 to 12 hours)
D. Good bright screen (1440 by 900)
E. Light and powerful, Very portable
F. Has a good amount of ports also the charging port is magnetic
G. Has 720p webcam
H. Easy to find accessories such as DVD drives, Hard cases, handbags, decals, etc

CONS:
A. No disk drive included (Disk drive costs $70.00)
B. No HDMI port built into the Mac
C. Not a matte finish screen ( personal preference )
D. Not as many programs for Mac ( still learning what’s out there )
E. Price

Conclusion

If you want something small and portable but powerful enough to handle most things this is the laptop for you. It has a good amount of ports and awesome battery life and still looks sexy. If you are someone who needs a high res screen to edit 4K videos or want to play Skyrim on max settings then you should look elsewhere because this macbook does not have a retina screen or the GPU to do what you want. If you are not for sure whether or not a Mac is the right choice for you then I would have to say try buying a Mac from around 2010 or 2012 they are much cheaper on Amazon since they are a little older but they are still very fast computers that allows you to upgrade the ram and also packs a punch.