Go Back   MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Notebooks > MacBook Air

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Sep 23, 2012, 08:05 AM   #1
FreVC
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Macbook Air rigidity

Hello everybody,


A month ago I bought my first mac, macbook air 13" 256gb. It is my first mac and I'm absolutely loving it.

However, recently I started to notice something annoying: if i open up my air, and grab the upper-left corner (above the ESC-key) beneath the screen, I can easily lift my air up. But only this upper-left corner gets lifted, and I can like bend my air. However: if I grab the upper right side (above the on/off button), it seems much more rigid: my air doesn't flex at all.

I already found some topics on this forum about warped airs, but this is not my issue: when on my desk, all four rubbers touch the surface

So, my question is if some of you also notice this lack of rigidity when lifting the upper left side? I know it's just minor issue, but it irritates me a lot when I'm for example taking notes in college. One of the main reasons to go for a macbook was the use of this unibody, but so far this does not seem to be that rigid at all. And if I pay 1600euros for a computer, I think I'm allowed to have ultra-high expectations.

I already went to my premium reseller, but they gave me a strange look when I was explaining this issue and told the only thing the could do was tightening the bottom screws (this did not solve the issue).

Thanks in advance!
FreVC is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 08:28 AM   #2
Mrbobb
macrumors 601
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Wouldn't know. I never use just one hand to grasp my Air, am afraid to drop the dang thing and bye-bye$$$.
Mrbobb is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 08:53 AM   #3
Bendix
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreVC View Post
Hello everybody,


A month ago I bought my first mac, macbook air 13" 256gb. It is my first mac and I'm absolutely loving it.

However, recently I started to notice something annoying: if i open up my air, and grab the upper-left corner (above the ESC-key) beneath the screen, I can easily lift my air up. But only this upper-left corner gets lifted, and I can like bend my air. However: if I grab the upper right side (above the on/off button), it seems much more rigid: my air doesn't flex at all.

I already found some topics on this forum about warped airs, but this is not my issue: when on my desk, all four rubbers touch the surface

So, my question is if some of you also notice this lack of rigidity when lifting the upper left side? I know it's just minor issue, but it irritates me a lot when I'm for example taking notes in college. One of the main reasons to go for a macbook was the use of this unibody, but so far this does not seem to be that rigid at all. And if I pay 1600euros for a computer, I think I'm allowed to have ultra-high expectations.

I already went to my premium reseller, but they gave me a strange look when I was explaining this issue and told the only thing the could do was tightening the bottom screws (this did not solve the issue).

Thanks in advance!
So what is the issue if it does not flex? Or does it?
Bendix is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 09:14 AM   #4
FreVC
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bendix View Post
So what is the issue if it does not flex? Or does it?
Yeah, it does flex. If I pick up my MBA by the right top side (above the on/off button), it comes off the table as one solid piece. But if i grab it by the left top side (above the ESC-button), it does not lift as one solid piece: it first like bends a little bit so that the top left rubber gets off the table, afterwards the 'rest' of the computer follows.

So my question is if more people notice this reduced rigidity on this left side or that this only happens to my MBA
FreVC is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 11:17 AM   #5
bill-p
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
That's actually normal. I had a 2010 MacBook Air 13", and then a 2011 MacBook Air 13". Both flexed and bent to some extent.

You can actually do this: hold your MacBook Air on the left side and right side so that the Apple logo is upright and in front of your eyes. Then twist your left and right hand slightly. Notice how the entire device bends and flexes.

It might be expected behavior, but I was always afraid because it felt like I could easily snap the machine in half if I used too much force.

So I ended up with an rMBP in 2012 instead, which is MacBook Air-like thin but doesn't flex or bend.
bill-p is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 01:47 PM   #6
TheRealDamager
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by bill-p View Post
That's actually normal. I had a 2010 MacBook Air 13", and then a 2011 MacBook Air 13". Both flexed and bent to some extent.

You can actually do this: hold your MacBook Air on the left side and right side so that the Apple logo is upright and in front of your eyes. Then twist your left and right hand slightly. Notice how the entire device bends and flexes.

It might be expected behavior, but I was always afraid because it felt like I could easily snap the machine in half if I used too much force.

So I ended up with an rMBP in 2012 instead, which is MacBook Air-like thin but doesn't flex or bend.
Thats much heavier and thicker than a MBA.
TheRealDamager is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 02:13 PM   #7
bill-p
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRealDamager View Post
Thats much heavier and thicker than a MBA.
Much heavier? Yep. It's roughly 1.7lbs more than the MacBook Air.

Much thicker? Nope. The tapered down design of the MacBook Air makes it thinner at one end, but the MacBook Pro Retina is actually just as thin as the MacBook Air if you take into account the thickest part.

I know because I have owned both.
bill-p is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 05:44 PM   #8
TheRealDamager
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by bill-p View Post
Much heavier? Yep. It's roughly 1.7lbs more than the MacBook Air.

Much thicker? Nope. The tapered down design of the MacBook Air makes it thinner at one end, but the MacBook Pro Retina is actually just as thin as the MacBook Air if you take into account the thickest part.

I know because I have owned both.
1.7 pounds is a lot. People buy the air for it's size and weight, so something that weighs 1.7 pounds more IS a lot heavier. It's also much thicker in every spot except the thickest part of an air.

Most people would not consider these 2 machines as similar in size and weight, by a long shot.
TheRealDamager is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 06:08 PM   #9
bill-p
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRealDamager View Post
1.7 pounds is a lot. People buy the air for it's size and weight, so something that weighs 1.7 pounds more IS a lot heavier. It's also much thicker in every spot except the thickest part of an air.

Most people would not consider these 2 machines as similar in size and weight, by a long shot.
It's heavier. I admit.

But it's not thicker because of the curvature of the Air.

The Air tapers down... but it's not a straight tapering down. The bottom plate curves a lot until it gets to the thinnest point. So in reality, both machines are equally thin when handled. Again, I know this because I have handled both, and both are equally thin to me.
bill-p is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 23, 2012, 06:33 PM   #10
TheRealDamager
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Glad you like yours. It's too big and too heavy for me (especially in it's current 15" form factor). I think most Air users feel the same way, or they would pick one up. It's just not as simple as saying "the rMBP is the rigid version of the Air". With that rigidity you also get 65% more weight and a much larger footprint.

To each his (or her) own...
TheRealDamager is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 24, 2012, 12:10 AM   #11
bill-p
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRealDamager View Post
Glad you like yours. It's too big and too heavy for me (especially in it's current 15" form factor). I think most Air users feel the same way, or they would pick one up. It's just not as simple as saying "the rMBP is the rigid version of the Air". With that rigidity you also get 65% more weight and a much larger footprint.

To each his (or her) own...
Well, but the rMBP is actually the rigid version of the Air. At least that's how I see it.

The screen is protected by a big thin piece of glass rather than the clear plastic on the Air. While the whole body of the Air was easy to bend/flex, the display assembly is particularly easy to bend.

The display assembly of the rMBP is just as thin as that of the air, but it doesn't flex or bend. I suspect that the glass layer is holding the display assembly together... and preventing any flex or bend.

Similarly, since the lower body of the rMBP is a more uniform shape, it's harder to bend than the curved shape of the MBA.

And I actually just looked the numbers up. The rMBP is 4.45 lbs. The 13" MBA is 2.96 lbs. The weight difference is actually just about 50%, not 65%.

Maybe that's a lot, but the rMBP should be heavier because it has a bigger body and a bigger battery... not to mention the extra components inside.

Edit: just to put things in perspective, the rMBP has a 95WHr battery... whereas the MBA has a 50WHr battery. The battery in the rMBP is 90% "bigger" than the one in the MBA.

But again, I'm not saying that the rMBP is "better" than the MBA. I'm just saying that it's designed like a more rigid version of the MBA. And when you take into account what Apple has packed inside that body, 50% weight increase seems reasonable.

Last edited by bill-p; Sep 24, 2012 at 12:17 AM.
bill-p is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 24, 2012, 09:47 AM   #12
TheRealDamager
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
It's NOT reasonable for people who want the Air. It's really that simple. If I wanted to lug around 4-5 pounds, there are a number of choices out there which will be more durable than an Air (with the rMBP being a fine choice). The rMBP is NOT like an Air - you keep saying it is, and the differences don't seem to matter to you, but they do matter to most Air buyers - thats why Apple sells both.
TheRealDamager is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 24, 2012, 09:59 AM   #13
theSeb
macrumors 603
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Poole, England
I've not really noticed any flex in normal use, but I only pick it up by the bottom corners when the screen is open. It feels solid enough when one takes into account how thin it is.
__________________
What is Other on my HDD?
Throttling, overheating and Geekbench
theSeb is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 27, 2012, 08:53 AM   #14
FreVC
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Thanks for the response.

However, I still can't live with the idea my MBA body bends when I pick it up. I think I'm going to compare it to the display models at my reseller, and try and ask again what they can do about it.
FreVC is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 27, 2012, 09:25 AM   #15
J&JPolangin
macrumors 68030
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Japan...at the waters edge...
...your rMBP is 1.7 lbs heavier...my MBA is only 2.3 lbs total = 11.6" MBA user
__________________
2011 21" iMac, AEBS, 2009 2.0Ghz nVidia 9400M WB 4GB RAM & 64Gb SSD, 2011 13" MBP w/ 512Gb SSD/8Gb RAM, 2013 11.6" MBA & iPad3 64gb 4G
PC's: X6, H60, 12Gb RAM, 3x1Tb HDD, 128Gb SSD
J&JPolangin is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Sep 27, 2012, 05:12 PM   #16
knuro
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreVC View Post
Thanks for the response.

However, I still can't live with the idea my MBA body bends when I pick it up. I think I'm going to compare it to the display models at my reseller, and try and ask again what they can do about it.
Why would you concern yourself about an issue that only appears when you pick it up by one corner? Just use two hands. It is a great machine for power and size. Nothing is perfect.
knuro is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Oct 16, 2012, 12:29 PM   #17
FreVC
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreVC View Post
Hello everybody,


A month ago I bought my first mac, macbook air 13" 256gb. It is my first mac and I'm absolutely loving it.

However, recently I started to notice something annoying: if i open up my air, and grab the upper-left corner (above the ESC-key) beneath the screen, I can easily lift my air up. But only this upper-left corner gets lifted, and I can like bend my air. However: if I grab the upper right side (above the on/off button), it seems much more rigid: my air doesn't flex at all.

I already found some topics on this forum about warped airs, but this is not my issue: when on my desk, all four rubbers touch the surface

So, my question is if some of you also notice this lack of rigidity when lifting the upper left side? I know it's just minor issue, but it irritates me a lot when I'm for example taking notes in college. One of the main reasons to go for a macbook was the use of this unibody, but so far this does not seem to be that rigid at all. And if I pay 1600euros for a computer, I think I'm allowed to have ultra-high expectations.

I already went to my premium reseller, but they gave me a strange look when I was explaining this issue and told the only thing the could do was tightening the bottom screws (this did not solve the issue).

Thanks in advance!
UPDATE:
This problem kept bothering me. I went back to my reseller. This time , another guy helped me. He seemed to understand my problem, opened the case and tightened the screws. He stated that at a reselling point, they aren't allowed to change any parts that aren't visibly damaged. So if my problem would reoccur, I would have to call apple care.

Of course the problem was solved, so the next day I called apple-care. After a long wait period, and 'debate with the manager', they stated that I would have to bring it back to my reseller.

Thus, the same day I brought my MBA back to my reseller. Here, a third guy helped me. He clearly saw my MBA flexing very easily, and took it back in without any doubt.

Today, three days after I brought it to my reseller, my MBA is fixed. They have changed the top case and keyboard. The flex has definitely not disappeared (though I don't expect a laptop this thin not to be super-rigid), but fortunately it does not start to wobble anymore after picking it up a few times.

Finally, I can enjoy my machine to the fullest.
I'm even thinking about buying a Speck/other case for it might maybe add some structural rigidity (anyone any experience?).
FreVC is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Oct 16, 2012, 05:39 PM   #18
chrisrosemusic1
macrumors 6502a
 
chrisrosemusic1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Milton Keynes, England
Send a message via MSN to chrisrosemusic1
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreVC View Post
UPDATE:
This problem kept bothering me. I went back to my reseller. This time , another guy helped me. He seemed to understand my problem, opened the case and tightened the screws. He stated that at a reselling point, they aren't allowed to change any parts that aren't visibly damaged. So if my problem would reoccur, I would have to call apple care.

Of course the problem was solved, so the next day I called apple-care. After a long wait period, and 'debate with the manager', they stated that I would have to bring it back to my reseller.

Thus, the same day I brought my MBA back to my reseller. Here, a third guy helped me. He clearly saw my MBA flexing very easily, and took it back in without any doubt.

Today, three days after I brought it to my reseller, my MBA is fixed. They have changed the top case and keyboard. The flex has definitely not disappeared (though I don't expect a laptop this thin not to be super-rigid), but fortunately it does not start to wobble anymore after picking it up a few times.

Finally, I can enjoy my machine to the fullest.
I'm even thinking about buying a Speck/other case for it might maybe add some structural rigidity (anyone any experience?).
Fair enough, glad you are happy with it now.

There are mixed reviews on Speck cases - some people complain of the clips snapping off and dust blemishing the case of the actual MacBook. I just have a 'slip case' for my Mac. Pop it in there for travel and dust protection whilst not in use. Far cheaper too.
__________________
MacBook Air 13" April 2014 i5 1.4Ghz / 4GB RAM / 256GB SSD iPhone 6 64GB Space Grey iPad Air 2 64GB Space Grey Apple TV3 Playstation 4 White
chrisrosemusic1 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Oct 16, 2012, 09:21 PM   #19
TomCat
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Quote:
Originally Posted by theSeb View Post
I've not really noticed any flex in normal use, but I only pick it up by the bottom corners when the screen is open. It feels solid enough when one takes into account how thin it is.
I agree.

I think it is simple physics; the top and bottom of the MBA are essentially flat pieces of aluminum; they are sheets; wafers. The MBP top and bottom have curved edges which greatly increase their rigidity. Obviously the flex factor in the MBA will be more than in the MBP. The underlying question is whether the flex is within the boundaries of good design and is protective enough of the internals.

That is still an issue here, and it is design trumping common sense, and that is a sin Apple has been guilty of countless times; Steve would not put a fan in the original Macintosh, and they consequently did not have long shelf lives. I think Jonny Ive (I'm not enamored enough to call him "Sir Jonny Ive") is as guilty of this as anyone. Were I designing the iPhone I would incorporate neoprene in the back so it doesn't feel like its going to squirt out of my hands at any second like a $2 bar of soap.

So, what could keep a MBA owner awake at night is did Apple sacrifice any level of protection or product longevity just to make the damned thing look cool? They are proven to not be above doing this. BTW, other geniuses are just as guilty; Frank Lloyd Wright's houses are amazing, but the heating, cooling, plumbing and other basic systems were an afterthought, and in many of his greatest seminal designs they are in total disarray.

I bought the 2011 MBA. But if I had it to do over again I would probably go MBP, for a lot of reasons. I am just not in love with the form factor at all, for one thing. Thin for the sake of thin is insanity, especially when that compromises so much else.

Who wants a computer that is shaped like a guillotine blade anyway? It is cold, impersonal, unwieldy, and unfriendly, and difficult to pick up with one hand, plus it doesn't feel good when you are carrying it at your side; everything exactly the opposite of what Steve and Apple were shooting for in terms of the personal emotional bonding that they expect between product and user. The form factor of the MBP is much more friendly.

Last edited by TomCat; Oct 16, 2012 at 09:27 PM.
TomCat is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Oct 16, 2012, 09:31 PM   #20
TheRealDamager
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by TomCat View Post
I agree.

I think it is simple physics; the top and bottom of the MBA are essentially flat pieces of aluminum; they are sheets; wafers. The MBP top and bottom have curved edges which greatly increase their rigidity. Obviously the flex factor in the MBA will be more than in the MBP. The underlying question is whether the flex is within the boundaries of good design and is protective enough of the internals.

That is still an issue here, and it is design trumping common sense, and that is a sin Apple has been guilty of countless times; Steve would not put a fan in the original Macintosh, and they consequently did not have long shelf lives. I think Jonny Ive (I'm not enamored enough to call him "Sir Jonny Ive") is as guilty of this as anyone. Were I designing the iPhone I would incorporate neoprene in the back so it doesn't feel like its going to squirt out of my hands at any second like a $2 bar of soap.

So, what could keep a MBA owner awake at night is did Apple sacrifice any level of protection or product longevity just to make the damned thing look cool? They are proven to not be above doing this. BTW, other geniuses are just as guilty; Frank Lloyd Wright's houses are amazing, but the heating, cooling, plumbing and other basic systems were an afterthought, and in many of his greatest seminal designs they are in total disarray.

I bought the 2011 MBA. But if I had it to do over again I would probably go MBP, for a lot of reasons. I am just not in love with the form factor at all, for one thing. Thin for the sake of thin is insanity, especially when that compromises so much else.

Who wants a computer that is shaped like a guillotine blade anyway? It is cold, impersonal, unwieldy, and unfriendly, and difficult to pick up with one hand, plus it doesn't feel good when you are carrying it at your side; everything exactly the opposite of what Steve and Apple were shooting for in terms of the personal emotional bonding that they expect between product and user. The form factor of the MBP is much more friendly.
Cold and impersonal? What the hell are you talking about?

The fact that the Air is a huge sales hit for Apple demonstrates that many people want something as thin and light as possible. I'm one of those folks.

Apple offers two products to appeal to 2 types of buyers. You value what is incorporated in the MBP. But to say it's more "friendly" or less "cold" is just ridiculous.
TheRealDamager is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Oct 17, 2012, 07:21 AM   #21
0x000000
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreVC View Post
So if my problem would reoccur, I would have to call apple care.

Of course the problem was solved, so the next day I called apple-care.
I don't understand you.
0x000000 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Oct 17, 2012, 12:20 PM   #22
FreVC
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Quote:
Originally Posted by 0x000000 View Post
I don't understand you.
Ohw: it has to be: 'Of course the problem WASN'T solved.'
FreVC is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Dec 9, 2012, 11:54 AM   #23
Mito
macrumors regular
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
I've just noticed that it is easy to flex near trackpad. (Small pressure exactly under trackpad)
Mito is offline   0 Reply With Quote

Reply
MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Notebooks > MacBook Air

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Similar Threads
thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
HELP for BOOT CAMP on macbook air early 2008,macbook air 1,1 abraarukuk Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac 2 Jan 11, 2014 04:51 PM
2012 refurb MacBook Air 13" or 2013 Haswell MacBook Air 13" IrtazaSafi MacBook Air 5 Jul 9, 2013 01:02 PM
Resolved: 2010 Late MacBook Air, 2012 MacBook Air Hexaedro MacBook Air 5 Jan 15, 2013 08:55 PM
MacBook Air + Cinema Display vs Macbook Air + iMac dmw16 MacBook Air 12 Jan 11, 2013 04:37 PM
Macbook Air When To Buy? I pick MacBook Air over RMBP sysProgrammer MacBook Air 22 Nov 2, 2012 02:13 AM

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:37 AM.

Mac Rumors | Mac | iPhone | iPhone Game Reviews | iPhone Apps

Mobile Version | Fixed | Fluid | Fluid HD
Copyright 2002-2013, MacRumors.com, LLC