I’ve Been Adding to Apple Profits… MacBook Air 13″ Review

I have been buying myself yet another computer.  Yes! you guessed it… it is a Mac (wouldn’t have anything else).  My MacBook Pro laptop that I purchased from new in 2006, was beginning to show its age, but only in terms of software.  When Apple released the new OSX Mountain Lion they removed support for some of the older Macs.  Although this didn’t mean I couldn’t use my computer any longer, but it meant that I would not be able to upgrade to the latest operating system or any future releases.

The computer itself was in extremely good condition, considering the amount of use it had seen over the six years of its life.  I have to say when Apple built the original MacBook Pro back in 2006, they did it right.  The mouse, the keyboard, the palm rests showed hardly any signs of use.

As my photography and graphics design skills have progressed over the past few years, the power of the laptop was beginning to be somewhat restrictive so it was time for an upgrade.  I needed enough processing power to cope with the ever demanding specifications of Adobe Creative Suite.  The laptop needed to be light enough to carry around along with my ever increasing collection of photography equipment and the screen could not be too small – my original MacBook Pro was the 15.4″ model and was an ideal size.

It had to be only one model… …The MacBook Air 13″

My local computing superstore was selling a 2011 model for an excellent price, which had the following specifications:

  • CPU: Core i5-2557M 1.7Ghz
  • Hard Drive: 128gb Intel SSD
  • Keyboard: Backlit
  • Graphics: Intel HD3000
  • OS: Mac OSX Lion – Updated to Mac OSX Mountain Lion
  • Case: Unibody
  • RAM: 4Gb 1333mhz
  • Monitor: 13.3″ 1440×900 LED

Why the 2011 model? I hear you ask.  Why not the current 2012 model?

Well like anything these days, money is always a contributing factor.  Buying a new computer, especially a Mac can get quite expensive.  As I have already mentioned the store where I purchased it from, was doing the laptop at an incredible price as it was the last one in the company and it was a display model.  Now normally I would never purchase something that has been stood on display for (what they said was six months), lots of different people had been playing around with it.  More so because on the MacBook Air you cannot replace the battery (easily) and the constant charging of it, meant the life of the battery was compromised.  I told them so, and managed to score myself a little bit of a further discount because of it.

Another plus was that, the laptop was included in Apple’s upgrade program, allowing me to obtain a complimentary copy of Mac OSX Mountain Lion, and I am enjoying the PowerNap feature, among others.  The computer has never been switched off since… in fact I am using it right now to write this article.

The other reason was, I knew I would be selling my old laptop on eBay and would get around £300 for it, which meant that the MacBook Air was much cheaper because of this.

One drawback of this particular laptop that was lacking from it, that will be sorely missed (until I can get an adapter) is the FireWire Port which I used to quickly transfer my large photographs from my camera to the computer for editing.  It was almost a deal breaker but… … still thought it was worth it, and you can get a Thunderbolt to FireWire adapter and all will be good.

The other drawbacks of this laptop, one I thought would not be too much of a problem until I actually purchased it and brought home, was the lack of a CD Drive, thought I would never need to use it again, but as soon as I got it home, I was asked to photograph two wedding receptions and were required to provide a CD of the images to each of the couples… Typical isn’t… …I ended up using my main computer to produce the CDs.

The other drawback I have found, is the lack of space.  Going from 500 gigabytes (that I upgraded the MacBook Pro to) to a 128 Gigabyte SSD has restricted me a little, but the speed at which the laptop runs from start-up is worth it.

I have had the MacBook Air for just over a week now and have to say, it has been a worthwhile purchase again, and will not be considering moving away from Apple.  Apple’s computers and mobile devices are certainly expensive when you consider the price of purchasing or building a PC, but the quality of their products are worth spending that little bit extra.

I hate going into work sometimes, because I have to use a Microsoft Windows machine and find it such a pain to use.

Mac’s Just Work…

Thank you again to Steve Jobs for building such a great product, and hope Apple will go on making more great products now you are not with us any more.

Thank you for reading.  I would love to read your comments, please leave them below.

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