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MacBook Air

macbookair.jpg

I've been a proponent of sub-3lb laptops ever since I got my Sony Vaio Z505 in college (circa 2000). You have to compromise on features like optical drives, battery life, and heat, but you make up for it in always being able to carry it with you. I followed up my Z505 with two generations of Dell X300 laptops, which I loved, but I felt that the sub-3lb category was stagnating -- I guess the market was more passionate about performance, optical drives, and not burning yourself. However, Sony did make headlines in the field once more with their sub-2lb ultrathin X505, which measured in at .38" to .8" thick, but it didn't really penetrate the US market, perhaps due to its compromised ergonomics. And then I stopped paying attention as I found myself outside the sub-3lb camp when I won my HP Livestrong laptop.

Well, Apple, you brought me back. The MacBook Air is marginally thinner than the X505 at 0.16" to 0.76", but it packs a whole lotta whollop for its category: 1.6-1.8Ghz Core 2 Duo, 13.3" screen, full-size keyboard, multitouch trackpad, 64GB SSD option, and five hours of battery life. The advent of flash-based hard drives (SSD) is perhaps the game changer here: you get better performance, less heat, and less power drain all in the same package -- assuming you can afford the $1000 upgrade.

I got the Z505 in college because I wanted a laptop I could slip into my backpack and not get a backache -- the extra 3lbs in savings mattered. I'm no longer a student, but as a photographer I find myself walking around with a backpack once more, with backaches. I've been looking for a new higher performance laptop to replace my aging Livestrong laptop. I've also been looking for something much lighter. For the first time I may be able to get both. Of course, now I have to figure out how to pay for it (and a Mac OS X version of Adobe CS3).

MacBook Air

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This page contains a single entry from kwc blog posted on January 15, 2008 10:33 AM.

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