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soundtonoise
Sep 10, 2009, 09:31 AM
I read that a couple of you in the ‘Would like MBA Users opinions please’ thread are ‘are holding off until November to see if a 4GB model goes on sale’. Is something happening then?

I have a neck injury that prevents me from carrying much weight and would love to have the MBA as my next Mac. However, since I am a student of modest means, still have a few months of AppleCare left on my current Macbook, and won’t need to take my computer to school on a daily basis until next semester, I have decided that I won’t buy the MBA until the next revision comes out so that I can get a little more value for my dollar and more computer for the next 3 or so years it will need to last me. In the meantime, I’ve been coveting the MBA, looking at the MacRumors MBA forum and Apple website daily, hoping that a revision will miraculously come despite the fact it was just updated 3 months ago.

From the MacRumors Buyers’ Guide, I understood I could expect to wait until approximately February for a new revision, based on the intervals at which previous revisions came out. Is this not the case? Is there something I can get excited about?

For all you Mac gurus (or anyone who notices patterns), can you predict what the likely improvements will be? It seems to me that hard drive is the most common, followed by RAM, then processor speed. Is that the case? Can all three happen in one revision??

Thanks!



Jobsian
Sep 10, 2009, 10:22 AM
Like yourself, I covet a new MBA like you wouldn't believe! I've been following this forum like it was my religion, every single day for news of an MBA update. I adore the MBA.

A few observations I've picked up from around the web, worthy of note:


SSD:
The fastest shipping 1.8" SSD (the kind the MBA uses), is currently at 128Gb capacity - by companies including Mtron, Samsung and RunCore (I think Apple use the Samsung)

The fastest announced 1.8" SSD is currently at 512Gb using 32Gb/die components - by Sandforce. Samsung have already previewed a 256Gb 1.8" SSD and is apparently going to ship Q4 2009.

Processor:
The next major upgrade of Intel processor architecture (updated approximately every two years) is the 34nm Arrandale (up from the Penryn's 45nm). Now for the MacBook Air, intel designed a stunning custom-made version that was about 60% of the size. As far as I'm aware, such a custom-made Arrandale hasn't been announced yet (I may be wrong on this), but even if so, it shouldn't be far behind. Shipping for Arrandales is Q4 2009 as far as I'm aware.

Graphics:
It looks Nvidia is going to follow up the phenomenal 9400m mobile motherboard graphics chip with a version possibly to be called 200m (name not confirmed). Source was the usually reliable DigiTimes. As far as I remember, shipping is Q1 2010.

The only problem with this will be whether Intel and Nvidia settle the dispute - Intel have their own new mobile integrated graphics chip now and look like they're trying to nudge Nvidia out - unfortunately for us, while Intel's new chip outperforms their own older one, it is still utterly smoked by the Nvidia 9400m, so if pitted against an Nvidia follow up, the 200m, well an actual sex-crime would probably occur.

RAM:
4Gb minimum is almost a given now.


Another note is that as Scott has pointed out, due to the Intel-Nvidia dispute potentially hamstringing Apple from using Nvidia's next mobile motherboard graphics chip, it isn't unforeseeable for Apple to release an MBA update with the current Intel chip (Penryn), and current Nvidia graphics chip (9400m) and upgrading the RAM to 4GB and SSD to 256Gb.

So, predictions:
1) 2.13GHz Penryn, 4Gb RAM, 256Gb SSD, Nvidia 9400m in Oct/Nov
2) 2.? GHz Arrandale, 4Gb RAM, 256Gb SSD, Nvidia 200m in Jan/Feb (an instant-purchase for me)
3) 2.? GHz Arrandale, 4Gb RAM, 256Gb SSD, no Nvidia (instead use Intel's integrated chip) in Dec/Jan/Feb
4) No MBA upgrade, focus on the Tablet and next MBP.

I seriously hope it's number 2. Or at least number 1. Not number 4 please lord!

krimsen
Sep 10, 2009, 11:25 AM
The only thing holding me back is that I need a firewire port...

Hamster747
Sep 10, 2009, 11:41 AM
No, It's just wishful thinking. I mean it would be a kick in the teeth to buy a MBA with 2GB RAM and then a few months later Apple decide to roll out a MBA with 4GB RAM. It would be nice if they dropped the price of the 2.13GHz and made it the entry level MBA and released a faster MBA With 4GB and 160GB HDD/SSD. Still one can dream.

Thanks for reading my thread.

Scepticalscribe
Sep 10, 2009, 12:55 PM
Well, we can all live in hope. Thanks, Jobsian, for your detailed post; your predictions (especially the first three, giving rise to varying degrees of longing) have me salivating - it would be nice if they were borne out. Certainly, the MBA is a future planned purchase that I have dreamed about for some considerable time.

Cheers and good luck

Scottsdale
Sep 10, 2009, 03:01 PM
Like yourself, I covet a new MBA like you wouldn't believe! I've been following this forum like it was my religion, every single day for news of an MBA update. I adore the MBA.

A few observations I've picked up from around the web, worthy of note:


SSD:
The fastest shipping 1.8" SSD (the kind the MBA uses), is currently at 128Gb capacity - by companies including Mtron, Samsung and RunCore (I think Apple use the Samsung)

The fastest announced 1.8" SSD is currently at 512Gb using 32Gb/die components - by Sandforce. Samsung have already previewed a 256Gb 1.8" SSD and is apparently going to ship Q4 2009.

Processor:
The next major upgrade of Intel processor architecture (updated approximately every two years) is the 34nm Arrandale (up from the Penryn's 45nm). Now for the MacBook Air, intel designed a stunning custom-made version that was about 60% of the size. As far as I'm aware, such a custom-made Arrandale hasn't been announced yet (I may be wrong on this), but even if so, it shouldn't be far behind. Shipping for Arrandales is Q4 2009 as far as I'm aware.

Graphics:
It looks Nvidia is going to follow up the phenomenal 9400m mobile motherboard graphics chip with a version possibly to be called 200m (name not confirmed). Source was the usually reliable DigiTimes. As far as I remember, shipping is Q1 2010.

The only problem with this will be whether Intel and Nvidia settle the dispute - Intel have their own new mobile integrated graphics chip now and look like they're trying to nudge Nvidia out - unfortunately for us, while Intel's new chip outperforms their own older one, it is still utterly smoked by the Nvidia 9400m, so if pitted against an Nvidia follow up, the 200m, well an actual sex-crime would probably occur.

RAM:
4Gb minimum is almost a given now.


Another note is that as Scott has pointed out, due to the Intel-Nvidia dispute potentially hamstringing Apple from using Nvidia's next mobile motherboard graphics chip, it isn't unforeseeable for Apple to release an MBA update with the current Intel chip (Penryn), and current Nvidia graphics chip (9400m) and upgrading the RAM to 4GB and SSD to 256Gb.

So, predictions:
1) 2.13GHz Penryn, 4Gb RAM, 256Gb SSD, Nvidia 9400m in Oct/Nov
2) 2.? GHz Arrandale, 4Gb RAM, 256Gb SSD, Nvidia 200m in Jan/Feb (an instant-purchase for me)
3) 2.? GHz Arrandale, 4Gb RAM, 256Gb SSD, no Nvidia (instead use Intel's integrated chip) in Dec/Jan/Feb
4) No MBA upgrade, focus on the Tablet and next MBP.

I seriously hope it's number 2. Or at least number 1. Not number 4 please lord!

Nice post.

I am betting on one not quite listed though. I think we will get the new Nvidia 200m with the Penryn SL9600 we have, add 256 GB SSD, and 4 GB RAM.

We all realize what Apple is doing wrong with the MBA, so surely they do too. Just reading these posts all the time, one can identify the number one reason people are choosing the 13" MBP over MBA is the RAM. Number two is the pricing. Number three is the drive space. Followed by a few random FW, optical drive, and etc requests.

There aren't many people complaining about the 2.13 GHz Penryn CPU, so unless Apple has a prearranged deal to use Nvidia with Arrandale, the Penryn CPU seems like the perfect short term solution. How many buyers know the difference between Penryn and Arrandale? They just read WOW 2.13 GHz!

I believe the 256 GB SSD is available now for Apple.

One other thing to note, is the current "rev C" as we are calling it is really still a rev B called "2,1." I tried to raise this point back when the MBA was released with the same 2,1 version naming. So, Apple still has to be planning a bigger set of changes for the MBA.

Veinticinco
Sep 10, 2009, 03:31 PM
The only thing holding me back is that I need a firewire port...
You'll be holding back until they carry you out in a pine box in that case.

Don't get me wrong, I love FW myself and the lack of TDM gives me the heebie-jeebies on any Mac, but in every other aspect the MBA (once they fix the poor QC and bring it up to speed spec-wise in the coming months hopefully) is just too convenient a laptop to ignore or deny yourself all for the want of an almost-mothballed proprietary port and data transfer protocol. Just be thankful they resurrected it in the 13" MBP.

As to the original question, I confidently predict I'll be (finally, almost a year late) fully geared up with a new rev/D MBA this side of Christmas.

LAS.mac
Sep 10, 2009, 04:38 PM
I've also be holding on buying a laptop since June. I went for a MBP 13", but when I saw the Air in the Apple Store I wasn't sure anymore.
I want a MBA as it is now, with slight changes such as 4 gb ram, glass trackpad, and some issue resolved (overheating, hinge, screen lines).
With such upgrade alone, I'm sold. But I won't hold forever. October is the last call. If nothing happens by October, then I'll have to buy a MBP.

bloodycape
Sep 10, 2009, 05:47 PM
Graphics:
It looks Nvidia is going to follow up the phenomenal 9400m mobile motherboard graphics chip with a version possibly to be called 200m (name not confirmed). Source was the usually reliable DigiTimes. As far as I remember, shipping is Q1 2010.

The only problem with this will be whether Intel and Nvidia settle the dispute - Intel have their own new mobile integrated graphics chip now and look like they're trying to nudge Nvidia out - unfortunately for us, while Intel's new chip outperforms their own older one, it is still utterly smoked by the Nvidia 9400m, so if pitted against an Nvidia follow up, the 200m, well an actual sex-crime would probably occur.

I am pretty sure the 200 line is out, granted most of those are either the GTS200 or GTX200 right now in those laptops more gaming oriented. Nvidia does have the 100 which most are re-brands of the 9x000 line, with either a higher clock speed, and/or more ram for the gpu. So, Apple may have to go with a higher end 100 line.

I hope Apple uses the re-brand of the 9600GT(the 120m is it?), like the hard to find, LG P310 13in laptop has. Hopefully if that gets paired with the the next gen SL cpu the heat generated would be less than what is currently being generated when paired up the P(or was it T) line of cpu in a 13in form factor.

What I would like to see Apple add is a firewire port, and possibly an HDMI port. I would even be content HDMI mini port. I think at this point USB3.0 maybe wishful thinking, but Apple maybe able to pull it off?

Hands Sandon
Sep 10, 2009, 06:42 PM
The facts*-

Early February 2010~ 4GB RAM + 256 SSD and nothing else.

Total redesign with lighter weight, thinner, usb 3.0, glass screen/trackpad and more power etc ~ Early March 2011.

*Not certified facts!!

Scottsdale
Sep 10, 2009, 10:45 PM
I would happily wait an extra few months for USB 3.0. At that point, FW becomes somewhat irrelevant for most as USB 3.0 blows away the current FW standard Apple uses FW800.

I would also guess that the longer we wait the more likely we get a redesigned model.

I most want the RAM update and would absolutely die for two slots to allow up to 8 GB of RAM. I will happily pay Apple whatever upgrade price it deems to keep margins high... I don't care about the money... I care about the absolute most performance possible from a similar design/form factor as current MBA.

I truthfully don't want a redesign. I think its current size is absolutely perfect for the MBA. I don't want to lose powerful computing to gain thinness. I will be totally stuck with my MBA for years if Apple goes too thin and uses an ULV CPU... deadly!

I want more power not less!

Cheffy Dave
Sep 10, 2009, 11:12 PM
Anything Runcore beats any other SSD from everything I have been able to put together.

RunCore SSD on MBA 2.13GHz Revision C

Disk Test
176.54
Sequential
152.18
Uncached Write
152.04 MB/sec [4K blocks]
Uncached Write
104.86 MB/sec [256K blocks]
Uncached Read
21.70 MB/sec [4K blocks]
Uncached Read
149.49 MB/sec [256K blocks]
Random
210.19
Uncached Write
7.43 MB/sec [4K blocks]
Uncached Write
112.45 MB/sec [256K blocks]
Uncached Read
14.47 MB/sec [4K blocks]
Uncached Read
128.80 MB/sec [256K blocks]



Stock SSD on MBA 2.13GHz Revision C

Disk Test
86.89
Sequential
70.49
Uncached Write
50.88 MB/sec [4K blocks]
Uncached Write
34.01 MB/sec [256K blocks]
Uncached Read
13.03 MB/sec [4K blocks]
Uncached Read
90.01 MB/sec [256K blocks]
Random
113.23
Uncached Write
5.50 MB/sec [4K blocks]
Uncached Write
24.22 MB/sec [256K blocks]
Uncached Read
9.85 MB/sec [4K blocks]
Uncached Read
86.90 MB/sec [256K blocks]

I have a 256 GB Runcore SATA IV in my black 2.2 Macbook, Boots in 9 seconds with 12 programs opening, shuts down in 5 sec.
Just downloaded the take apart on the MBA from iFixit. I'm thinking the next project is get a new MBA, take out the Apple SSD, Put in a Runcore SSD, then send it out to Colorware for a Ferrari Paint job:rolleyes::eek:
Hm$1700 for the MBA,$499 for the Runcore SSD and $500 for the Colorware paint job:eek::eek::eek::eek::eek::apple:

soundtonoise
Sep 11, 2009, 01:51 AM
Thank you for the interesting and helpful posts. Jobsian, I'll be thinking of of you especially when the next rev comes out.

Jobsian
Sep 11, 2009, 04:15 AM
Interesting SSD benches there CheffyDave. Those are impressive stats. Personally, I'm still usually satisfied with stock SSDs. I think the only time I would actually go out of my way to purchase and install an aftermarket SSD is when an SLC SSD becomes available at reasonable capacity and non-prohibitive cost.

To those who aren't yet aware of these, SLC (single level cell) SSDs fit one bit per cell, as opposed to current stock drives which are almost exclusively MLC (multi level cell) which have at least two bits per cell (you can imagine then that SLC are more precise to control if one cell fails, you only lose one bit as opposed to MLC).

SLC drives are potentially much faster (two to three times faster generally, according to Toshiba) and an awful lot more durable (last at least 10 times as long as MLC NAND). But they're still expensive :)

Jobsian
Sep 11, 2009, 04:28 AM
I am betting on one not quite listed though. I think we will get the new Nvidia 200m with the Penryn SL9600 we have, add 256 GB SSD, and 4 GB RAM. That's right, that one would be an instant buy for me too! I didn't add that particular combo because the Nvidia 200m was said to be shipping in Q1 2010 as far as I remember (and possibly even late Q1), by which stage I imagine it would be less likely Apple would stick to the 2.13 Penryn. However, as you also point out with the 256Gb SSD, Apple may well get first dibs on the new Nvidias and manage to release them earlier than general shipping dates.

For those who don't know, Apple's now closer links with companies like Samsung, Intel and Nvidia has seen them get their hands on components before anyone else before, with Apple being the first company (as far as I'm aware) to get the Nvidia 9400m, the Intel P7500 (1.6GHz) and P7700 (1.8GHz) Penryns and the Samsung SSDs first.


And as you say Scott, I hope Apple don't try to compete with Sony and Dell's premium ultraportables purely on size/weight if it will sacrifice performance. With the MacBook Air, I think Apple have just about hit an absolutely killer sweet-spot between portability and performance for premium ultraportables that even after two years, has been unmatched by anyone else at all!

So far... :)

joelypolly
Sep 11, 2009, 04:32 AM
Interesting SSD benches there CheffyDave. Those are impressive stats. Personally, I'm still usually satisfied with stock SSDs. I think the only time I would actually go out of my way to purchase and install an aftermarket SSD is when an SLC SSD becomes available at reasonable capacity and non-prohibitive cost.

To those who aren't yet aware of these, SLC (single level cell) SSDs fit one bit per cell, as opposed to current stock drives which are almost exclusively MLC (multi level cell) which have at least two bits per cell (you can imagine then that SLC are more precise to control if one cell fails, you only lose one bit as opposed to MLC).

SLC drives are potentially much faster (two to three times faster generally, according to Toshiba) and an awful lot more durable (last at least 10 times as long as MLC NAND). But they're still expensive :)

With current MLC drives already saturating the SATA II interface I don't think 2 to 3 times increase in speed is going to make any difference at all. MLC based drives with proper wear levelling should last well over 10 years.

Consider a MLC 128GB drive with a 20,000 write cycle before it starts to fail. It will offer you 128*20000 = 2.5PBs(2,560 TeraBytes) worths of writes. If I write 80GBs of data a day that still offers me around 87 YEARS of usage. For most people SSDs will out last their PCs before they fail.

SLCs have been the better choice in the past but with new MLC technologies today there is really no point for average consumers to go with SLC based SSDs

Jobsian
Sep 11, 2009, 05:33 AM
With current MLC drives already saturating the SATA II interface I don't think 2 to 3 times increase in speed is going to make any difference at all.Thanks dude, interesting, I wasn't aware that the current speed bottleneck on SSDs is the SATA II interface. Any info on upgrades to SATA II? Or something more mobile than PCI-E?


MLC based drives with proper wear levelling should last well over 10 years.

Consider a MLC 128GB drive with a 20,000 write cycle before it starts to fail. It will offer you 128*20000 = 2.5PBs(2,560 TeraBytes) worths of writes. If I write 80GBs of data a day that still offers me around 87 YEARS of usage. For most people SSDs will out last their PCs before they fail.Hmm, the figure I've seen myself several times including from Toshiba themselves and several other places like Anandtech is 10,000 cycles before it stops reliably holding charge. (see this link (http://www.storagesearch.com/ssd-slc-mlc-notes.html) for example)

As to real-world lifespan - that is still an unknown, and a point of debate it seems. I wouldn't go quite as far as 87 years though.

See this excerpt from one of Anandtech's latest SSD articles (30 August 2009):


Each MLC NAND cell can be erased ~10,000 times before it stops reliably holding charge. You can switch to SLC flash and up that figure to 100,000, but your cost just went up 2x. For these drives to succeed in the consumer space and do it quickly, it must be using MLC flash.

Ten thousand erase/write cycles isn’t much, yet SSD makers are guaranteeing their drives for anywhere from 1 - 10 years. On top of that, SSD makers across the board are calling their drives more reliable than conventional hard drives.

The only way any of this is possible is by some clever algorithms and banking on the fact that desktop users don’t do a whole lot of writing to their drives.

Think about your primary hard drive. How often do you fill it to capacity, erase and start over again? Intel estimates that even if you wrote 20GB of data to your drive per day, its X25-M would be able to last you at least 5 years. Realistically, that’s a value far higher than you’ll use consistently.

http://www.anandtech.com/storage/showdoc.aspx?i=3631&p=6

Hands Sandon
Sep 11, 2009, 05:37 AM
I truthfully don't want a redesign. I think its current size is absolutely perfect for the MBA. I don't want to lose powerful computing to gain thinness.

I want more power not less!

My preference would be for a redesign. First of all if the screen were to go right up to the edge making it larger by an inch or so, that would really hit a sweet spot between the 15.4" and the 13.3". Secondly the whites have that slightly silvery/course appearance and the whole screen tonal balance is too yellow.
Of course the underside air vents are easily blocked and that could be addressed too. I think the Air would benefit from around a half pound drop in weight and a reduction in the maximum thickness would only add to it's portability and distinguish it further from the MBP. I suspect that in order to achieve this and the addition of a glass trackpad Apple will have to change the overall shape to be more even in thickness overall, however the basic shape whilst not as accentuated I would imagine will stay the same.

An addition of a micro SD slot I think is also a must and am confident it will be added.

Power will be increased over current versions, but yes, there will be significant power disadvantages.

Arex
Sep 11, 2009, 08:31 AM
It would be really sweet to get the glass touchpad and (while I know some people aren't keen on the gloss finish) I love the screen on the Macbook Pro's.

Give me that with the 4GB RAM and the 256GB SSD and I am in. :p

Curiously unfussed about new processor and quite happy with the 9400, just want the aesthetic....

joelypolly
Sep 11, 2009, 08:55 AM
Thanks dude, interesting, I wasn't aware that the current speed bottleneck on SSDs is the SATA II interface. Any info on upgrades to SATA II? Or something more mobile than PCI-E?
...

The speed of SATA II is about 300MegaBytes/S however with communication overhead it works out to be around 260MB/s current MLC drives are reaching that on a regular bases. There is currently a MLC drive on the market that does both 260MB read and 260MB write.

SATA 6Gbit/s specification has already been release however nothing in the current market is compatible. Probably looking at another 12months before it becomes available and then probably only for SSDs.

While you look at SLC as a great technology it hasn't always been the cases. Around 15 years ago SLC drives could only provide around 10,000 write cycles before going. Now you are looking at 100,000+ write cycles. MLC is also advancing and will probably be the more developed/researched because of its appeal from a commercial perspective. The same amount of flash ram can be used for double the amount of storage when comparing SLC to MLC.

LAS.mac
Sep 11, 2009, 09:06 AM
My preference would be for a redesign. First of all if the screen were to go right up to the edge making it larger by an inch or so, that would really hit a sweet spot between the 15.4" and the 13.3". Secondly the whites have that slightly silvery/course appearance and the whole screen tonal balance is too yellow.
Of course the underside air vents are easily blocked and that could be addressed too. I think the Air would benefit from around a half pound drop in weight and a reduction in the maximum thickness would only add to it's portability and distinguish it further from the MBP. I suspect that in order to achieve this and the addition of a glass trackpad Apple will have to change the overall shape to be more even in thickness overall, however the basic shape whilst not as accentuated I would imagine will stay the same.

An addition of a micro SD slot I think is also a must and am confident it will be added.

Power will be increased over current versions, but yes, there will be significant power disadvantages.

I do not agree. 13" is a perfect size for an ultraportable. It can lose weight, but only without reducing specifications or with further compromises. I'd prefer 1 more USB than micro SD or other ports, and and the security lock is a must. Increase battery life if the size allows it.
100% in agreement about the glass trackpad, without buttons.

coast1ja
Sep 11, 2009, 09:24 AM
I would happily wait an extra few months for USB 3.0. At that point, FW becomes somewhat irrelevant for most as USB 3.0 blows away the current FW standard Apple uses FW800.

I would also guess that the longer we wait the more likely we get a redesigned model.

I most want the RAM update and would absolutely die for two slots to allow up to 8 GB of RAM. I will happily pay Apple whatever upgrade price it deems to keep margins high... I don't care about the money... I care about the absolute most performance possible from a similar design/form factor as current MBA.

I truthfully don't want a redesign. I think its current size is absolutely perfect for the MBA. I don't want to lose powerful computing to gain thinness. I will be totally stuck with my MBA for years if Apple goes too thin and uses an ULV CPU... deadly!

I want more power not less!

8gb of Ram may be asking too much! You have to remember that the ram on the MBA is integrated into the motherboard... so it doesn't even have one "slot" right now. if it did, people would be upgrading to 4gb already (I know I would). 4gb is a realistic amount to build into the motherboard of the next gen, 8 would either take too much space (depending on how many chips have to be used, if not, see next), cost wayyy too much, or get too hot for use in the MBA.

Hands Sandon
Sep 11, 2009, 09:48 AM
I do not agree. 13" is a perfect size for an ultraportable. It can lose weight, but only without reducing specifications or with further compromises. I'd prefer 1 more USB than micro SD or other ports, and and the security lock is a must. Increase battery life if the size allows it.
100% in agreement about the glass trackpad, without buttons.

You really wouldn't rather have a 14" inch rather than a 13" why? A 13" is great for such a portable machine, but if Apple utilized that wasted space around the screen they're likely to attract buyers who are tempted by the larger 15" screeen too. That would also help justify the extra expense over the 13" MBP. It would be more of a MBP Air in terms of screen space.

With 1TB or even more on a micro SD card and the addition in the current MBP 13/15 of the SD slot, I don't think Apple will want to deprive users of that over another USB.

krimsen
Sep 11, 2009, 10:01 AM
You'll be holding back until they carry you out in a pine box in that case.

Don't get me wrong, I love FW myself and the lack of TDM gives me the heebie-jeebies on any Mac, but in every other aspect the MBA (once they fix the poor QC and bring it up to speed spec-wise in the coming months hopefully) is just too convenient a laptop to ignore or deny yourself all for the want of an almost-mothballed proprietary port and data transfer protocol. Just be thankful they resurrected it in the 13" MBP.

As to the original question, I confidently predict I'll be (finally, almost a year late) fully geared up with a new rev/D MBA this side of Christmas.


I figured so myself. It's not even TDM I need. But there really is no alternative for me to connect Audio Interfaces. USB 2.0. ist just too unreliable.

I'll wait for the next refresh and either buy the MBA /w Firewire or an MBP. No whining, I promise :)

jdechko
Sep 11, 2009, 01:59 PM
I'm hoping to be able to jump in on a Rev D. At this point, the only thing that I'm really wanting is 4GB of RAM, even though I might not need it right away. But I wouldn't complain about having a 256GB SSD, glass trackpad or faster graphics.

Scottsdale
Sep 12, 2009, 12:58 AM
8gb of Ram may be asking too much! You have to remember that the ram on the MBA is integrated into the motherboard... so it doesn't even have one "slot" right now. if it did, people would be upgrading to 4gb already (I know I would). 4gb is a realistic amount to build into the motherboard of the next gen, 8 would either take too much space (depending on how many chips have to be used, if not, see next), cost wayyy too much, or get too hot for use in the MBA.

It's using the space equivalent of two slots. I wouldn't predict 8 GB or two slots, but I would love LOVE LOVE it!:D

fteoath64
Sep 12, 2009, 02:02 AM
No one seems to look into the AMD/ATI alternative for the graphics side for the Rev D. i know it might be a long shot but an RV770 mobile chip might make a refreshing change especially with the higher than normal power consumption of the Nvidia part. That would be a good change to solve a lot of the Nvidia/Intel squabbles to date. These rumblings are not going to die down in a hurry....

Rai Saix
Sep 14, 2009, 04:24 PM
More predictions please! I love these types of threads.

LAS.mac
Sep 14, 2009, 05:04 PM
More predictions please! I love these types of threads.

OK, just because you ask'd for, I predict that in November well'see:

- carbon fiber MBA, black, weighing less that 2 pounds
- 13" OLED screen
- 9 hrs (declared) battery life, although its real working time will be only 7 hrs with BT and wifi on
- 4 Gb ram and 256 Gb SSD
- 2 USD + 1 FW + SD slot
- glass trackpad
- new hinge, no lines, no overheat problems (Scottsdale is actually working side by side with Steve Jobs on the screen lines problem, provided that's the guy who saw more in the whole universe)
- stereo surround sound
- 3G, GPS included
- Price to be confirmed, however I've been (unofficially) told that won't be higher than 1699 USD

Scottsdale
Sep 14, 2009, 08:23 PM
OK, just because you ask'd for, I predict that in November well'see:

- carbon fiber MBA, black, weighing less that 2 pounds
- 13" OLED screen
- 9 hrs (declared) battery life, although its real working time will be only 7 hrs with BT and wifi on
- 4 Gb ram and 256 Gb SSD
- 2 USD + 1 FW + SD slot
- glass trackpad
- new hinge, no lines, no overheat problems (Scottsdale is actually working side by side with Steve Jobs on the screen lines problem, provided that's the guy who saw more in the whole universe)
- stereo surround sound
- 3G, GPS included
- Price to be confirmed, however I've been (unofficially) told that won't be higher than 1699 USD

If I am working with Jobs I will not be asking for a CF shell. LOL. Funny though.

Here's a NOVEMBER MBA I can see coming out...

SAME EXACT FORM FACTOR in ALUMINUM (The current form is perfect)
2.13 GHz SL9600 Core 2 Duo (This is a great chip)
Nvidia 200m GPU (Maybe not this but this would be nice - probably downclocked)
4 GB RAM (I would BEG Jobs for two RAM slots so we could install up to 8)
256 GB SSD
3G
Glass Trackpad (I don't believe anyone who says it will not fit in MBA - maybe as implemented in MBP wouldn't fit but that doesn't mean cannot change)
Same battery is fine with me... the new tech to ensure 1000 charges is great, but I feel that the nearly 4.5 hours I get on average is pretty good. We have to remember that increasing battery power means BOTH weight and space! Any increase would certainly offset the gains from CF vs Al.

I want MORE POWER from SAME FORM FACTOR. I feel a CF form will end up with a ULV CPU and far less powerful MBA. Think of how much a 1.4 GHz SU CPU might downgrade the MBA's capabilities.

Does anyone here think the MBA should be smaller? If they make the MBA smaller, I can see removing bezel to and area on sides of KB to make footprint smaller. At the same time, I don't want smaller than full size KB.

Rai Saix
Sep 14, 2009, 08:30 PM
I just hope for the 226 GB SSD, 4 GB on RAM, and the glossy, full glass screen on the MBP. But really it's all about internal upgrades for me.

NC MacGuy
Sep 14, 2009, 08:34 PM
Bigger SSD, SD slot and 4G RAM would be fine with me.

Scottsdale
Sep 14, 2009, 08:50 PM
Bigger SSD, SD slot and 4G RAM would be fine with me.

Weird thing is I think the SD slot would RUIN the looks of the MBA. I don't want any other ports either. I see people asking for two USB or a FireWire, and I just don't get it. The MBA is beautiful and not showing the ports is part of the beauty.

In addition, I don't feel there is any need in the world for any other ports. The MBA isn't about ports. It's about wireless connectivity to everything and being away from desk. When at desk, and needing ports, the ACD's USB hub functions perfectly... any other hub would do the same.

bloodycape
Sep 14, 2009, 11:51 PM
I think it is a bit wrong to base a laptop purchase decision solely on looks. I think adding a firewire port would make it a much more usable device, and so what if it looks a bit out of place it still a nice laptop to use.

still in school
Sep 15, 2009, 12:40 AM
I vote for all carbon fiber shell and an additional USB port.

stoconnell
Sep 15, 2009, 01:46 AM
I vote for slightly redesigned case with vents cannot be blocked by simply having the machine in your lap, and possibly 2 fans so that they can combine to move more air volume at lower speeds. 4GB (or the option for it) would probably help sales and ease some folks concerns about future proofing their investment. I'd love to see a 1440x900 resolution panel (only if they can keep the brightness up). Obviously, a higher capacity drive option would be nice. I don't have any first hand experience with the button-less glass trackpad, but I suspect that would unify the feature set across the Aluminum product line. Lastly, if they could somehow squeeze a GigE nic into the machine, it would be the cat's meow.

wartnig
Sep 15, 2009, 08:16 AM
I just hope for the 226 GB SSD, 4 GB on RAM, and the glossy, full glass screen on the MBP. But really it's all about internal upgrades for me.

yep! same here! this is all i am waiting on - 226 GB SSD, 4 GB on RAM, and the glossy screen.

stockscalper
Sep 15, 2009, 08:21 AM
Carbon fiber is for crummy Windows machines. It will never be used in a Macbook Air because of heat issues. If you think the Air is hot now, just wait until you see it in a flimsy Carbon fiber form.

Scottsdale
Sep 15, 2009, 08:40 AM
yep! same here! this is all i am waiting on - 226 GB SSD, 4 GB on RAM, and the glossy screen.

Did we somehow lose the common 256 GB SSD to an obscure 226 GB SSD? Is there really an SSD coming out that size? Sure some are 250 while others use the conventional 256 GB sizing. Just wondering if I have missed something?

Scottsdale
Sep 15, 2009, 08:43 AM
I think it is a bit wrong to base a laptop purchase decision solely on looks. I think adding a firewire port would make it a much more usable device, and so what if it looks a bit out of place it still a nice laptop to use.

It's not ALL about looks. The MBA as mine is now functions PERFECTLY with ONE USB port, one Mini Display Port, and one audio port. I enjoy the flip down door so the ports cannot be seen all the time like the ugly MBP ports. That's truly UGLY! So, I don't want a hole for an SD card, and FireWire is completely USELESS at this time.

USB 3.0 is far better than ANY FW port. I hope we get ONE USB 3.0 port and no other interface ports than the ones we have right now.

bloodycape
Sep 15, 2009, 12:31 PM
Carbon fiber is for crummy Windows machines. It will never be used in a Macbook Air because of heat issues. If you think the Air is hot now, just wait until you see it in a flimsy Carbon fiber form.

Wait your telling me that my carbon fiber based Laptop has heat issues? Have you used one? Because I have one and thank you for informing me on my non-existent heat issue. /end sarcasm.

In all honestly my first gen MBP get hotter(specifically on the bottom), partly due to the aluminum case. Build quality is a wash, as most will tell you both are equal. If you actually have used a carbon fiber laptop and notice heat, that could be due to the same reason the Macbook line heats up, poor use of thermal paste or a fan/fan speed that ins't up cpu's heat.


@Scottsdale
Well if they include firewire or SD card slot covered like they do with the USB port then it could be just like how it is now.

wartnig
Sep 15, 2009, 01:11 PM
Did we somehow lose the common 256 GB SSD to an obscure 226 GB SSD? Is there really an SSD coming out that size? Sure some are 250 while others use the conventional 256 GB sizing. Just wondering if I have missed something?

LOL! yeah i meant 256gb.. sorry! PS - Loving your posts Scottsdale.. you're one of the reasons i am switching to the Macbook Air (when its upgraded..) :)

GoCubsGo
Sep 15, 2009, 01:13 PM
Did we somehow lose the common 256 GB SSD to an obscure 226 GB SSD? Is there really an SSD coming out that size? Sure some are 250 while others use the conventional 256 GB sizing. Just wondering if I have missed something?

Clearly that was a typo, clam yourself tiger.

krimsen
Sep 15, 2009, 02:39 PM
FireWire is completely USELESS at this time.

USB 3.0 is far better than ANY FW port. I hope we get ONE USB 3.0 port and no other interface ports than the ones we have right now.

USB 3.0 is completely USELESS at this time.

At least until there's decent Audio interfaces for it. Even Firewire 400 leaves USB 2.0 in the dust, so it's far from useless. It's the best we have right now until USB 3.0 devices appear.

Scottsdale
Sep 15, 2009, 02:52 PM
USB 3.0 is completely USELESS at this time.

At least until there's decent Audio interfaces for it. Even Firewire 400 leaves USB 2.0 in the dust, so it's far from useless.

Over 95% of peripherals for computers use USB. FireWeak (wire) SHARES part of the remaining 5% which is pretty sad.

Is USB 2.0 slower maintained speed than FW800, sure but USB 3.0 is said to blow FW800 away in sustained transfer AND with >95% adoption rate USB is where it's at.

In fact, I would guess that USB 3.0 will have all of the other ports covered as far as conversion capabilities.

We can only hope 3.0 makes it into the next MBA. Some are saying the cutoff will be close. And the reason for Apple to adopt it is because it's fully backwards compatible.

krimsen
Sep 15, 2009, 02:59 PM
In fact, I would guess that USB 3.0 will have all of the other ports covered as far as conversion capabilities.

As I understand it, that would be quite hard with FW and USB having totally different architectures (P2P vs. Master-Slave).

USB 2.0 can reach a max of 480 Mbit/sec, which, in theory, is more than FW with its 400 (mind that FW 800 reaches 800...), but Firewire actually maintains that speed, whereas with USB it is peak speed only and can slow down drastically. That's why you don't see professional audio interfaces or cameras with USB transfer, or with reduced quality over USB.

USB 3.0 might be everything FW is and more, but until we get the devices that support it, FW is king.

stockscalper
Sep 15, 2009, 03:27 PM
Wait your telling me that my carbon fiber based Laptop has heat issues? Have you used one? Because I have one and thank you for informing me on my non-existent heat issue. /end sarcasm.

In all honestly my first gen MBP get hotter(specifically on the bottom), partly due to the aluminum case. Build quality is a wash, as most will tell you both are equal. If you actually have used a carbon fiber laptop and notice heat, that could be due to the same reason the Macbook line heats up, poor use of thermal paste or a fan/fan speed that ins't up cpu's heat.


Yes, I've used them and they are garbage. The reason you feel heat with a MBP is that aluminum dissipates heat. Carbon fiber doesn't and the heat builds up and cooks the electronics. That's one reason pc laptops don't last very long. Look at the new thin Dell, its top speed is 1.4 GHZ. It's all about trying to control the heat in that thin shell so the innards don't get fried. Carbon fiber is a poor material to use in a laptop for a number of other reasons too.

bloodycape
Sep 15, 2009, 04:10 PM
Yes, I've used them and they are garbage. The reason you feel heat with a MBP is that aluminum dissipates heat. Carbon fiber doesn't and the heat builds up and cooks the electronics. That's one reason pc laptops don't last very long. Look at the new thin Dell, its top speed is 1.4 GHZ. It's all about trying to control the heat in that thin shell so the innards don't get fried. Carbon fiber is a poor material to use in a laptop for a number of other reasons too.

I guess this point can be moot if it has proper air and cooling flow. Not sure which Dell you are referring to the 11Z or the Adamo which is a bit older. The 11z is plastic while the Adamo I am pretty isn't carbon fiber, but something else. Again I have carbon fiber Sony and so far with the proper cooling it has, heat isnt that bad on it.

If carbon fiber was that bad they wouldn't be using it cars would they? Also, there isn't that many laptops that use carbon fiber as it is kind of a pricey material.

Rai Saix
Sep 15, 2009, 05:44 PM
Did we somehow lose the common 256 GB SSD to an obscure 226 GB SSD? Is there really an SSD coming out that size? Sure some are 250 while others use the conventional 256 GB sizing. Just wondering if I have missed something?


Sorry! I got them mixed up. I think it's because the second 2 in 226 looks like a 5...

still in school
Sep 15, 2009, 06:30 PM
It's not ALL about looks. The MBA as mine is now functions PERFECTLY with ONE USB port, one Mini Display Port, and one audio port. I enjoy the flip down door so the ports cannot be seen all the time like the ugly MBP ports. That's truly UGLY! So, I don't want a hole for an SD card, and FireWire is completely USELESS at this time.

USB 3.0 is far better than ANY FW port. I hope we get ONE USB 3.0 port and no other interface ports than the ones we have right now.

It's a computer! Not a handbag. Computers do come with ports/slots/plugs ya know.

Function > Form

Jobsian
Sep 15, 2009, 06:38 PM
Sorry! I got them mixed up. I think it's because the second 2 in 226 looks like a 5...
haha u didn't need to apologise dude, Scott just gets excited at times ;)

He's quite the enigma, one moment going party-stoppingly ape (http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=8486937&postcount=22) on anyone crossing his mantras, the next moment genuinely helping someone with a ridiculously detailed post.

Scott kinda reminds me of Kenneth, the badass mail clerk from Family Guy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JSnzPx_MfdQ

Meant endearingly :)

Jobsian
Sep 15, 2009, 06:42 PM
It's a computer! Not a handbag. Computers do come with ports/slots/plugs ya know.

Function > Form
The weight you give for either side depends on the type of person you are and your means.

Function will always outweigh form for myself (and almost certainly for most here, on a tech forum), but personally speaking, I know for certain that form carries a lot more weight than it does for most people, eg many who post in the MBP forums (though they all secretly want an Air hehehe)

In essence, I unashamedly want a computer handbag :D

w00tini
Sep 15, 2009, 09:38 PM
I owned a Rev A MBA and loved it to death. I only sold it to get the unibody MacBook because I burn quite a bit of media for clients after sales presentations and find the MacBook's built in supedrive more convenient.

With that in mind, I have to say I've been considering a move back to the Air quite a bit lately as I have moved over to USB thumb drives instead of optical media for my clients so the built in superdrive isn't as important.

After much thought on what we may see come down the road in the future for the Air I can only guess, and it is my unfortunate feeling that the Air is not going to see 4Gb of RAM or much more than the 128Gb SSD drive. And believe me, I would love to be wrong here, but I believe the positioning of the Air is to be exactly what it it right now: a more than capable, single OS instance-at-a-time, web browsing, email crunching, full keyboard having joy of a portable computer.

Why would Apple build much more in the way of resources into the Air anyway? Think about it for a second. They have never positioned the Air to be powerful, just portable. And portable it is (in spades!). For a more powerful computing experience I believe they would like to push their customers to the more apt MacBook Pro line which is actually not that much bigger than the Air anyway (I took some comparison pics (http://www.straferight.com/photopost/showphoto.php?photo=9756) here when I had them both for a few days) and much more capable when the need for power arises on the go.

Maybe I'm just being a pessimist, and believe me when I say I hope I'm wrong, but it is my feeling that the Air will continue along generally the way it is for a while with regards to its computing power. They certainly would be well-served to update things like the chassis, the screen and the trackpad, but overall I'd bet a small sum of iTunes gift card credits that the Air is about as powerful as it is going to get.

Did I mention that I hope I'm wrong yet??

**really missing his Air and will probably still buy a Rev C anyway soon...just needed to get that off his chest**

:)

Jobsian
Sep 16, 2009, 06:11 AM
Interesting read dude

The only thing I'd say is that yes 1.5lbs isn't much difference on paper, but when you're carrying a laptop a lot, it assumes much greater significance.

As for the alluring pull of the Air, don't fight it.. :D

coldmack
Sep 17, 2009, 12:47 AM
Yes, I've used them and they are garbage. The reason you feel heat with a MBP is that aluminum dissipates heat. Carbon fiber doesn't and the heat builds up and cooks the electronics. That's one reason pc laptops don't last very long. Look at the new thin Dell, its top speed is 1.4 GHZ. It's all about trying to control the heat in that thin shell so the innards don't get fried. Carbon fiber is a poor material to use in a laptop for a number of other reasons too.

Weren't the Wallstreet Powerbooks and iBooks made out plasic, which I have read is a bit worse. Yet, my iBook last it fairly long and such, so I think your point is bit biased.

stockscalper
Sep 17, 2009, 08:20 AM
Weren't the Wallstreet Powerbooks and iBooks made out plasic, which I have read is a bit worse. Yet, my iBook last it fairly long and such, so I think your point is bit biased.

The Wallstreet was in a thick enclosure and heat had a way to dissipate. In a thin form factor like the MBA you need a material like aluminum to help transfer the heat.

alekssss
Sep 17, 2009, 09:06 AM
I've also be holding on buying a laptop since June. I went for a MBP 13", but when I saw the Air in the Apple Store I wasn't sure anymore.
I want a MBA as it is now, with slight changes such as 4 gb ram, glass trackpad, and some issue resolved (overheating, hinge, screen lines).
With such upgrade alone, I'm sold. But I won't hold forever. October is the last call. If nothing happens by October, then I'll have to buy a MBP.
This.

breakfast
Sep 17, 2009, 10:42 AM
This.What, this? :confused:

Rai Saix
Sep 17, 2009, 03:42 PM
What, this? :confused:

.............................Wow.

hitekalex
Sep 17, 2009, 04:00 PM
it is my unfortunate feeling that the Air is not going to see 4Gb of RAM or much more than the 128Gb SSD drive.

I know am going to incur some wrath for saying this, but MBA doesn't need more than 2GB of RAM or more than 128GB of disk space. 2GB if plenty for just about anything, including running an instance Parallels/Windows. Especially since SL upgrade, which shrunk the base OS memory footprint. I know because I use MBA every day, and the 2GB is plenty.

If someone's use pattern requires 4GB or more of RAM - MBA is probably not the right machine anyway.. Not because of RAM, but because of CPU/thermal footprint limitations.

iMacmatician
Sep 17, 2009, 04:23 PM
I know am going to incur some wrath for saying this, but MBA doesn't need more than 2GB of RAM or more than 128GB of disk space.For how many more revisions?

krimsen
Sep 17, 2009, 04:29 PM
2GB if plenty for just about anything.

640K ought to be enough for anybody ^^

hitekalex
Sep 17, 2009, 04:33 PM
For how many more revisions?

Certainly this revision, and probably the next one. We will probably see 4GB in 2011, assuming MBA lives on in its current form factor.

You have to look at what's driving the memory requirements these days - and it's OS and apps footprint. SL has reduced the memory footprint from Leopard.. I am sure this trend won't keep up, and the MacOS 10.7 will need more RAM. But until then, there is a little reason to require 4GB in an ultra-portable.

MacModMachine
Sep 17, 2009, 04:55 PM
Certainly this revision, and probably the next one. We will probably see 4GB in 2011, assuming MBA lives on in its current form factor.

You have to look at what's driving the memory requirements these days - and it's OS and apps footprint. SL has reduced the memory footprint from Leopard.. I am sure this trend won't keep up, and the MacOS 10.7 will need more RAM. But until then, there is a little reason to require 4GB in an ultra-portable.

the memory and foot print in sl was decreased because of the powerpc stuff being removed.

i believe the 4gb ram will happen next year at the latest, while you may not think anyone needs it in a ultra portable, the fact is people want it....and apple will most likely come through on it if it means making more money.

i would like 4gb ram for one thing only....being able to load up a vm or 2 to run xp smoothly.

i would sell my mba in a second for one with 4gb ram.

i would like to see the macbook air have built in hardware for lojack, i like knowing im safe.

SSD size is also starting to kill me , i need 256...very soon , my macbook air is my main machine...and always will be.

hitekalex
Sep 17, 2009, 05:12 PM
i believe the 4gb ram will happen next year at the latest, while you may not think anyone needs it in a ultra portable, the fact is people want it....

Don't confuse people posting in this thread (uber geeks) with a typical Air customer. I will go out on limb and say that for a typical customer buying an MBA, lack of 4GB RAM is a non-issue.

And soldering an extra 2GB on an Air's mobo is probably still a major engineering challenge and a cost item for Apple.. which is why they decided to forgo it for now.

MacModMachine
Sep 17, 2009, 05:15 PM
Don't confuse people posting in this thread (uber geeks) with a typical Air customer. I will go out on limb and say that for a typical customer buying an MBA, lack of 4GB RAM is a non-issue.

And soldering an extra 2GB on an Air's mobo is probably still a major engineering challenge and a cost item for Apple.. which is why they decided to forgo it for now.

a challenge...no,

the same 8 chips can be replaced with higher density ones. there is no engineering needed.

the average user might not use 2gb , but a bto option with 4 would be nice.

they will do it....there is no doubt in my mind.

breakfast
Sep 17, 2009, 09:18 PM
.............................Wow.Excuse my ignorance, but I just don't know what "this" is supposed to mean or tell me as a sole answer to a post (http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=8499649&postcount=57). Wanna enlight me? Thanks.

coldmack
Sep 18, 2009, 01:48 AM
The Wallstreet was in a thick enclosure and heat had a way to dissipate. In a thin form factor like the MBA you need a material like aluminum to help transfer the heat.

So you are telling the me carbon fibre, used in motorbike(and automlobiles) exhaust systems, & other parts, which can include the Superbike class, isn't a good matterial? Maybe you should tell companies like Ferrari, Porsche, Ducati, Yamaha, Honda and many of those auto and superbike champions they are making making mistakes in their construction for 20 or so years.

MacModMachine
Sep 18, 2009, 07:28 AM
So you are telling the me carbon fibre, used in motorbike(and automlobiles) exhaust systems, & other parts, which can include the Superbike class, isn't a good matterial? Maybe you should tell companies like Ferrari, Porsche, Ducati, Yamaha, Honda and many of those auto and superbike champions they are making making mistakes in their construction for 20 or so years.

because the exact same carbon fiber in a car is the going to go into the laptop ?

you should take a read on carbon fiber i think.

goldfronts
Sep 18, 2009, 11:10 PM
Glass trackpad, longer battery life and I'm sold.

gri
Sep 18, 2009, 11:34 PM
Don't confuse people posting in this thread (uber geeks) with a typical Air customer. I will go out on limb and say that for a typical customer buying an MBA, lack of 4GB RAM is a non-issue.

It is an issue. My MBP (1st generation is limited to 2 G. And I can sometimes feel it). If I am paying for a new laptop it should have some improvement over the old one - in specs OTHER than form factor and weight. Would you buy a G3 laptop if its very light and thin anc omes with 1G of RAM...? Probably not. Now we have MBP up to 2.5 or so, max to 8G, 250 G SSD... Sure I could buy those ut they are heavier. So - 4G is a must.

Rai Saix
Sep 18, 2009, 11:52 PM
Excuse my ignorance, but I just don't know what "this" is supposed to mean or tell me as a sole answer to a post (http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=8499649&postcount=57). Wanna enlight me? Thanks.

"This." is the Internet way of saying "I second what has been said in this quote."

breakfast
Sep 19, 2009, 12:47 AM
Thank you.

mackhydr4
Sep 19, 2009, 05:52 AM
"This." is the Internet way of saying "I second what has been said in this quote."

Yup.

jamesryanbell
Sep 19, 2009, 12:37 PM
Excuse my ignorance, but I just don't know what "this" is supposed to mean or tell me as a sole answer to a post (http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=8499649&postcount=57). Wanna enlight me? Thanks.

It means that he agrees with the post. He was going to post something, but then read the post he quoted, and just basically said "this is what I feel as well", but condensed it to "this". It's common vernacular on forums these days.

unagimiyagi
Sep 19, 2009, 05:49 PM
The Air needs to get its mono speaker placed in the center of the laptop at least. I don't like sound coming from one side of the notebook. Better yet, get stereo speakers.

saulinpa
Sep 19, 2009, 10:27 PM
How about a lighter Air? This is Apple - they don't follow the PC game of bigger, faster, more powerful. They look for better and more useful.

zerosnipe
Sep 19, 2009, 10:57 PM
I bought my macbook air about a mont ago and haven't look back since. if you always are waiting for the next best thing than you will never be buying a new computer.

shadow1
Sep 20, 2009, 05:08 AM
It will 2010 for sure. Apple likes waiting for lots of months

jamesryanbell
Sep 20, 2009, 07:42 AM
I bought my macbook air about a mont ago and haven't look back since. if you always are waiting for the next best thing than you will never be buying a new computer.

Nah, not necessarily. I have a Macbook Pro unibody that's doing fine for me right now. When I pull the trigger on an Air, I want 4GB RAM, a 256GB SSD, and the line problem fixed on 100% of them (not taking a gamble). Lastly, I want it when the upgrade is brand new, so that I'll be purchasing right at the very beginning of the life cycle of that Revision. Then I'll maximize "newness", and get what I want as well. :)

MooneyFlyer
Sep 20, 2009, 08:04 AM
Nah, not necessarily. I have a Macbook Pro unibody that's doing fine for me right now. When I pull the trigger on an Air, I want 4GB RAM, a 256GB SSD, and the line problem fixed on 100% of them (not taking a gamble). Lastly, I want it when the upgrade is brand new, so that I'll be purchasing right at the very beginning of the life cycle of that Revision. Then I'll maximize "newness", and get what I want as well. :)

I'm exactly in the same place though mine was the limited edition 13" MB Alu ;) ... I would add that I'd like the glass trackpad as well now that I've gotten used to it.

Scottsdale
Sep 20, 2009, 09:01 AM
Nah, not necessarily. I have a Macbook Pro unibody that's doing fine for me right now. When I pull the trigger on an Air, I want 4GB RAM, a 256GB SSD, and the line problem fixed on 100% of them (not taking a gamble). Lastly, I want it when the upgrade is brand new, so that I'll be purchasing right at the very beginning of the life cycle of that Revision. Then I'll maximize "newness", and get what I want as well. :)

Problem is when we get the 4 GB RAM the 256 GB SSD is going to jack the price up by $400 is my guess.

I agree one post above that the "Silky Smooth" Glass Trackpad is shear joy to use. At first it seemed like a marketing gimmick to me. After a few months of use I found it very disappointing to go back to the MBA's button. Until one has used it extensively it's difficult to understand its added value.

Apple is a master at adding enormous value with small inexpensive features. Take the glass trackpad for example, a few cents worth of glass equals tremendous value to a Mac. Apple uses the small cost upgrades to improve the user experience and more importantly "justify" the cost of a Mac to customers. Another great example is the backlit keyboard; people would often "justify" the high end unibody MB for the backlit keyboard. The total cost to Apple is around $1 per Mac - it was a $300 upgrade. Sure there were other upgraded components, but the $1 cost feature to Apple truly sold the upgraded MB to buyers. How about the aluminum casing on Mac notebooks; $4 worth of aluminum adds tremendous value for Mac buyers. It improves not just the look but the feel and even performance by acting as a gigantic heatsink.

Apple is genius also by only adding a couple of features to each upgrade. By making small incremental changes, Apple gets the enthusiasts to want to go through the hassle of getting a new Mac with each update. I am a junkie who has fallen for this trap. Could Apple have added a glass trackpad or 4 GB of RAM with its last MBA speed bump... sure but it gets another upgrade from many by waiting. Occasionally Apple makes a big update or redesign of each Mac offering, and that new design sells the Mac as a "needed" new computer to the common customer. Apple really uses the incremental and new design updates to keep sales up all the time, because Apple has to keep selling to existing Mac users. Once someone goes Mac, they get trapped into the Apple ways of "needing" an updated Mac every two to three years when new designs and components change the Mac. At the same time, their old Mac is usually still functioning fine... part of Apple's marketing genius!

breakfast
Sep 20, 2009, 02:08 PM
...
Apple is a master at adding enormous value with small inexpensive features. Take the glass trackpad for example, a few cents worth of glass equals tremendous value to a Mac...
Sorry for hijacking, but actually what exactly is the tremendous value brought to us with this glass trackpad? I never used one, I admitt, but I just can't think of a great advantage, really. :confused:

Veinticinco
Sep 20, 2009, 02:52 PM
Sorry for hijacking, but actually what exactly is the tremendous value brought to us with this glass trackpad? I never used one, I admitt, but I just can't think of a great advantage, really. :confused:
Take no notice of that quote of Scottsdale's. There is no "tremendous value". It has absolutely no practical advantage whatsoever over the standard trackpad, and in my experience, is much more frustrating (e.g. drag and drop) and annoying (loud "CLICK" with uneven tension) than the MBA trackpad button. Doesn't even feel 'silky smooth' and cold to the touch like you'd expect glass to. One of Apple's most gimmicky features of recent times.

dudup
Sep 20, 2009, 04:11 PM
I have mixed feelings about the glass trackpad. It's surface is really awesome. Even if previous trackpads on aluminum were already good, the glass gives it an edge, for sure.

But I like having the dedicated button. I've found myself right clicking or zooming things accidentally all the time -- probably because i'm used to manipulate the trackpad with both hands, one finger resting over the button, without actually clicking it.

Scottsdale
Sep 20, 2009, 10:01 PM
The glass trackpad DOES add tremendous value. I would guess that 90% who use it fall in love within a few days. Read many a posts bragging about it. I absolutely LOVE the feel. It does take some getting used to but a separate button makes ZERO sense.

So, don't discount what I say if you disagree. Let's let those who have actually used it on their primary Mac for let's say a week decide how valuable it might be. I used one for two months. It was complete disappointment going back to the MBA's trackpad and button.

I love the MBA, but the button and plastic trackpad need to be updated to the joy of the glass buttonless trackpad.

breakfast
Sep 21, 2009, 04:46 AM
So I'm sure you can answer my question then.
... actually what exactly is the tremendous value brought to us with this glass trackpad? ...Don't tell me it's the feel of it only ... :rolleyes:

Maven1975
Sep 22, 2009, 12:02 AM
Relocate the vents please Apple. It is annoying not being able to use this without putting something underneath it. (Bed, Couch, Blankets)

mhnajjar
Sep 22, 2009, 12:33 AM
Sorry Scottsdale but you sound that you are just advertising for something that doesn't really do anything special. The cons of the glass touchpad are more than the pros.

"tremendous value" = you would know when someone is using your machine due to the high noise coming from pressing it? :D LOL!

stoconnell
Sep 22, 2009, 01:06 AM
Relocate the vents please Apple. It is annoying not being able to use this without putting something underneath it. (Bed, Couch, Blankets)

Amen!

MooneyFlyer
Sep 22, 2009, 08:03 AM
The glass trackpad DOES add tremendous value. I would guess that 90% who use it fall in love within a few days. Read many a posts bragging about it. I absolutely LOVE the feel. It does take some getting used to but a separate button makes ZERO sense.

So, don't discount what I say if you disagree. Let's let those who have actually used it on their primary Mac for let's say a week decide how valuable it might be. I used one for two months. It was complete disappointment going back to the MBA's trackpad and button.

I love the MBA, but the button and plastic trackpad need to be updated to the joy of the glass buttonless trackpad.

Ok, maybe tremendous value is a slight overstatement -- but I agree with the sentiment. After using the glass for a while it is very difficult to go back. To me, it's similar to the experience of when you first got the "back button" or the "scroll wheel" on the mouse. (granted the multi-touch features are available on the trackpads as well).

The feel is much smoother to me than the regular trackpads.
The area is larger I believe (though I don't know that for sure).

There are likely other reasons. Personally, I don't think you can fully understand it without putting some real time into using the glasspad... But, like everything, everyone has an opinion.

Macintox
Sep 22, 2009, 08:45 AM
I think many wishes expressed here are not realistic. But, when Nehalem is here , Apple could easily come up with a new MBair, as is , but simply upgraded to 2.53 G, 4GB of memory, 2 USB and 160GB SSD would make an enormous difference. This 2 weeks old of mine would make way for the new one.. Anytime.
But glass trackpad and black bezel would surely put me off.

caonimadebi
Sep 22, 2009, 09:46 AM
"Value" is dependent on a user's needs, but there are a few advantages of the glass trackpad that I have observed

1. The glass trackpad is MUCH more responsive. There is virtually no latency between finger gestures, such as tap, pinch zoom, swipes, and their executions on screen. Trackpad found on MBA (present on both rev. B and C) has a noticeable split second delay that compromises the multi touch experience
2. The glass trackpad has much higher "fidelity" to the finger gestures. The 2-finger gesture scrolls with incredibly high fidelity, almost as if you're physically moving the page with your fingers. The MBA scrolling experience is much more in line with previous Mac trackpads, which is less responsive but acceptable
3. Glass trackpad requires much less pressure to activate. This has been an advantage to me
4. Glass trackpad removes the elevated button that is known to scuff the MBA bezel, near the iSight camera. This is a widely reported problem

caonimadebi
Sep 22, 2009, 09:51 AM
Sorry Scottsdale but you sound that you are just advertising for something that doesn't really do anything special. The cons of the glass touchpad are more than the pros.

"tremendous value" = you would know when someone is using your machine due to the high noise coming from pressing it? :D LOL!

Would you care to elaborate what you think the cons are? Clicking noise? Have you ever owned a Macbook (Pro) with the glass trackpad?

jamesryanbell
Sep 22, 2009, 11:52 AM
Sorry Scottsdale but you sound that you are just advertising for something that doesn't really do anything special. The cons of the glass touchpad are more than the pros.

"tremendous value" = you would know when someone is using your machine due to the high noise coming from pressing it? :D LOL!

I'm annoyed when I use the trackpad on my black macbook after using the glass one on my MBP. It's way better, smoother, and feels better. I couldn't care less about the clicking sound of the glass trackpad. Sound doesn't matter at all to me, and the feel of it is everything.

Mhkobe
Sep 25, 2009, 04:00 PM
First of all, I'd like to say that I love the glass trackpad feel, however, it's not a huge deal to me whether or not the MBA get's one button for the whole thing, or a separate button. This is because it already has a huge trackpad, and I use tap to click. What I would like to see in the MBA is (along with everyone else) 4gb RAM, and (everyone will kill me for this one) a q9000 intel processor. I see all of the problems with this, yes, but the truth is that the W/h ratings for this processor aren't much higher than the 2.16ghz custom intel processor in it now. I would only like to see this as an upgrade, of course. For all those who want my head for this, I only want to dream, and seeing a quad core processor in an air would sell one too me, even if it cost $3500.

trifero
Sep 27, 2009, 06:06 PM
Firstable, to say how easy it is with Apple products to loose the point.

Macbook Air is a Macbook Air, not a thin Macbook Pro.

Here is my case. I owned a 1.8 MBA, that was very easy to deal with. Not much power, sometimes hot enough to fry an egg...., but very suitable for what i really did with it. That was, mainly, web surfing, mailing, access to my Mac Pro via ARD and siimilar easy tasks. Able to execute every programs, but dont expect to be as fast as a ray. The main job was done in my Mac Pro.

Till the new Macbook Pro came. Guauuu. New screen, SD bootable slot, and an improved battery. Sold the MBA. Bough the MBP. Even i bought a 256GB SSD for it. And everything is incredible in this 2.53 MBP. It boots so fast that its incredible. Virtual machines seems as fast as those running native in other laptops.

But..... Not necessary so much power for what i use to do. And after some days, i misssed my MBA. Its incredible, cause there is not as much difference weight , were are not talking about pounds and pounds.... But..., you can bet, you note it. MBA used to come with me in my bag, as a if it was a book. Not the the MBP.

So many words to give you a very simple advice. I forgot it, so maybe some of you could forget too

Don´t loose the point. Think what you expect from your next laptop before. It may comes to a very expensive forget.

P.D : I write this from my new 2.13 MBA. Next days the MBP will find a most happy owner that can use it as it deserves, as a standalone machine for everything. :)

blueflame
Sep 27, 2009, 11:05 PM
yea, honestly, i am more concerned about the aesthetics of it at this point. i want glass screen, glass trackpad, and 1 more USB port. realistically, i personally dont care is anything else gets bumped. although, bigger hdd/ram is NEVER a bad thing.

jamesryanbell
Sep 28, 2009, 12:18 AM
loose: not tight

lose: to misplace.
;)

alphaod
Sep 28, 2009, 03:30 AM
Sorry for hijacking, but actually what exactly is the tremendous value brought to us with this glass trackpad? I never used one, I admitt, but I just can't think of a great advantage, really. :confused:

There isn't any. People are just buying into Apple's marketing.

trifero
Sep 28, 2009, 04:41 AM
jamesryanbell, upssss. Thanks. I LOST the point with "LOOSE". :)

Jobsian
Oct 7, 2009, 12:19 PM
There's been quite a lull here about talking about an updated MBA, rumors, predictions etc...could it be the calm before the storm? My interest in a possible update hasn't quelled one iota. I can't wait!

Or maybe without any rumors emerging on it at all and the new line Macbooks supposedly coming soon, November seems a bit optimistic?

On another note, personally speaking the latest development of Intel saying no to Nvidia chipsets on their Arrandales is a grim one to say the least. The 9400m arrangement was a perfect compromise between size and power and it looks like we're going to be deprived of an update on any future MBA.

(See this thread http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=796637 )

BigB82
Oct 8, 2009, 12:36 AM
I recently just bought a 13" mbp 2.53 simply cause I love the trackpad, sd card option and amazing battery, im thinking of celling my rev C, its nice I like it, but I would love to see more ram even though I am one who honestly doesnt need it, I just WANT it lol i dont do anything more than internet surfing, emails, social networking so the air is fine, I just like the SD card slot for pictures....

Does the L2 cache being double on the air vs the mbp make a huge difference? i do miss the ssd cause its faster lol, I dont know which one to keep lol I like the uniquness of the air A LOT.....they need to put 4gb ram, glass trackpad and sd card lol

w00tini
Oct 20, 2009, 11:33 AM
well, there's always January fellas :(

*heads out to see the new Magic Mouse*

macfromwayback2
Nov 5, 2009, 11:19 PM
Its November. Did you make a purchase. Or are you still holding out?

I've also be holding on buying a laptop since June. I went for a MBP 13", but when I saw the Air in the Apple Store I wasn't sure anymore.
I want a MBA as it is now, with slight changes such as 4 gb ram, glass trackpad, and some issue resolved (overheating, hinge, screen lines).
With such upgrade alone, I'm sold. But I won't hold forever. October is the last call. If nothing happens by October, then I'll have to buy a MBP.

Veinticinco
Nov 6, 2009, 07:20 AM
Just checking back in here... :)

I was convinced there would be an update this last quarter and that Apple were just waiting on the MBA-spec 256GB Samsung SSD to release it with 4GB and an SD card. It made sense in so many ways, not least the totally anaemic so-called 'rev.C update' back in June (aside from a welcome price drop of course). But an October/November refresh made sense in many ways, not least strategically.

So I guess I was wrong. Very wrong. And with each passing day, I grow ever more restless and frustrated. The only thing that is keeping me in check right now (aside from pig-headed stubbornness) is the lack of antiglare on the 13" MBP. I wonder how long that barrier will last. Not long I guess since it's now available on the 15".

There were many of us speculating last spring that the lack of MBA updates and instore treatment, perhaps pointed towards an early retirement for the product. At the very least it had clearly been deprioritised from "flagship pride of place" to "clearance corner" in a short space of time. I cited the Cube back then as a example of cutting edge design mothballed after a year. Well it's coming up to a year since the first 'proper' MBA was launched (rev. A doesn't really count since it was so underpowered), and the analogy is not so ridiculous now.

Sure the new generation of processors will be with us in the new year, but then possibly so might the dreaded spectre of Intel integrated chipsets. I still really think Apple are making a huge mistake underselling the MBA as evidenced by the demand out there, not least those of us following this thread, MBA owners, ex-owners and wannabe owners. No reason they couldn't update the MBA around now to bring it into line with the spec of the MBPs. Instead we have to hold out for another 3-6 months, hoping that the seemingly never-ending wait will bear fruit in the guise of 4-8GB RAM (4 standard, supporting 6 or 8 as BTO), 256GB SSD, SD card (a given I think), MBP-like battery tech, and perhaps an OLED screen (although I'd settle for a plain current line-free one).

What annoys me most is that as much as I'm p*ssed off at Apple for torturing me like this, I know the second they do release a new ultra-light/thin laptop in 2010, like a crack addict I'll be first in the queue. Grinding my teeth, naturally.