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View Full Version : Actual Experience Using the Macbook Air for Work




pjohnny
Feb 3, 2008, 10:25 PM
So, I got my MacBook Air on Thursday morning in Dallas. I flew to Miami early Friday morning for a 6-hour seminar I was teaching to a group of educators.

Great time to try out the new MacBook Air in a professional setting. Here are my experiences:

1. Migration Assistant worked fine, but too slow for my deadline. (Said it would take 12 hours to transfer everything from my old computer - 60 gigs) I transferred files via a USB connection to the MBA. Much faster.
2. Downloaded some Family Guy episodes from iTunes for the plane ride.
3. Changed some of my PowerPoint slides around with new templates from Microsoft Office 2008.
4. Headed to Miami
5. Computer was fun to use to watch videos on the plane. But my headphones from my iPhone didn't fit well, so only partially worked.
6. My PowerPoint presentation looked better than when I using my PowerBook G4. (when projected on large screen)
7. The video out connection was tight, but fit fine. Worked well with my portable projector.
8. My USB wireless remote was a really tight fit. I didn't think it would work for a while, but it did. Part of the problem was how much it rubbed up against the video out connector.
9. COULD NOT get the headphone jack for my external speakers to connect while the other two items were plugged in. Just NO ROOM. When I wanted to show a video clip with sound, I had to unplug the USB wireless remote. Annoying, but I'll work out a solution.
10. Bottom line, with little time to prepare and transfer all my data, the MBA would pretty great for my purposes.
11. And everything worked fast enough too. For me, going from a PowerBook G4 (12 inch) this is an upgrade in almost every way.

So in conclusion, I'm loving it, working through a couple of issues, but nothing big. The positives far outweigh any small limitations. The most disturbing thing was that NO ONE commented on the MBA at the conference, in the airport or on the plane. Man, when I got my new iphone, people were all over me!! I expected a little more attention.



ahaxton
Feb 3, 2008, 10:28 PM
The most disturbing thing was that NO ONE commented on the MBA at the conference, in the airport or on the plane. Man, when I got my new iphone, people were all over me!! I expected a little more attention.

See if more people comment on it in a week. Demos have barely been in stores.

nagromme
Feb 3, 2008, 10:34 PM
Thanks for the report. It's good to keep in mind the side-to-side port crowding, not just top-to-bottom. (Not that the Air is the first laptop with crowded ports needing extenders.)

Could you use an Apple remote (IR) instead of that USB one? Apple's is nice and tiny--but it's not a pointing device. Maybe a bluetooth pointing device is your best bet. Down with cords and dongles! Crowding solved.

I don't care who notices my Air. It's between me, my bag, and my biceps :)

BWhaler
Feb 3, 2008, 10:55 PM
Thanks for the update.

I ordered one, but its not coming for a few weeks. I suspect and hope that as long as I get a quality build, I am going to be very pleased with the MBA.

I got the extra power adaptor and DVD player today. I was blown away with how small the power adaptor is.

I'm really looking forward to dropping some serious weight out of my bag when I fly.

larryj
Feb 4, 2008, 06:38 AM
That's an interesting point about the ports being too close together. I don't think it will affect me, but I can see that being an issue for a lot of other people.

NC MacGuy
Feb 4, 2008, 07:04 AM
That's an interesting point about the ports being too close together. I don't think it will affect me, but I can see that being an issue for a lot of other people.

I've got a 3 inch usb port extender which seems to have taken care of my fat usb devices not fitting.

mcdj
Feb 4, 2008, 08:09 AM
For me, going from a PowerBook G4 (12 inch) this is an upgrade in almost every way.

Thanks for the mini review. Coming from a 12" Powerbook myself, I'm curious as to which one you have. I have the very last model, 1.5ghz, 80gb, 1.67gb RAM. My concern is whether the MBA will be fast enough to justify it compared to the PB. My Powerbook still has plenty of life left in it.

noservice2001
Feb 4, 2008, 09:55 AM
The most disturbing thing was that NO ONE commented on the MBA at the conference, in the airport or on the plane. Man, when I got my new iphone, people were all over me!! I expected a little more attention.

This is the funniest thing i read w/o actually laughing.... either the people you work with aren't tech savy- or its too descreet a machine... (too thin? or maybe the footprint makes it look like any other lappy) maybe you should use it sideways to show off its profile? haha

mrJnC
Feb 4, 2008, 10:00 AM
Did you encounter any clearance difficulties with the airplane tray table?

Freyqq
Feb 4, 2008, 11:04 AM
So, I got my MacBook Air on Thursday morning in Dallas. I flew to Miami early Friday morning for a 6-hour seminar I was teaching to a group of educators.

Great time to try out the new MacBook Air in a professional setting. Here are my experiences:

1. Migration Assistant worked fine, but too slow for my deadline. (Said it would take 12 hours to transfer everything from my old computer - 60 gigs) I transferred files via a USB connection to the MBA. Much faster.
2. Downloaded some Family Guy episodes from iTunes for the plane ride.
3. Changed some of my PowerPoint slides around with new templates from Microsoft Office 2008.
4. Headed to Miami
5. Computer was fun to use to watch videos on the plane. But my headphones from my iPhone didn't fit well, so only partially worked.
6. My PowerPoint presentation looked better than when I using my PowerBook G4. (when projected on large screen)
7. The video out connection was tight, but fit fine. Worked well with my portable projector.
8. My USB wireless remote was a really tight fit. I didn't think it would work for a while, but it did. Part of the problem was how much it rubbed up against the video out connector.
9. COULD NOT get the headphone jack for my external speakers to connect while the other two items were plugged in. Just NO ROOM. When I wanted to show a video clip with sound, I had to unplug the USB wireless remote. Annoying, but I'll work out a solution.
10. Bottom line, with little time to prepare and transfer all my data, the MBA would pretty great for my purposes.
11. And everything worked fast enough too. For me, going from a PowerBook G4 (12 inch) this is an upgrade in almost every way.

So in conclusion, I'm loving it, working through a couple of issues, but nothing big. The positives far outweigh any small limitations. The most disturbing thing was that NO ONE commented on the MBA at the conference, in the airport or on the plane. Man, when I got my new iphone, people were all over me!! I expected a little more attention.

try a short extension usb cable. That might be a smaller USB plug so it won't interfere with the sound part.

TV Cameraman
Feb 4, 2008, 12:10 PM
Did you encounter any clearance difficulties with the airplane tray table?

When I was going through security on my trip this weekend to the Super Bowl, I never took my MBA out if the padded manila envelope I was using to protect it. TSA never batted an eye. They did look a little confused as to why I was separately scanning a manila envelope though! :)

Quint
Feb 4, 2008, 12:26 PM
Before Belkin, Griffin, and every other company puts out a MBA port adaptor. I am thinking of a little device that plugs into all three ports together and then breaks out into short (1-2") female cable adapters for the three ports.