I received my MacBook Air 13" yesterday. It's the base 1.86GHz base model, but with 4GB RAM instead of 2. It replaces a black MacBook from late 2006, so quite a lot has changed. Here's a quick review of the first things I noticed while setting everything up. THE GOOD Audio I bought the MacBook Pro 15" a while back, but had to send it back for various reasons I'll get in to in a bit. One of the things that I noticed was that despite its separate speakers the sound was very hollow. Even the sound on my four year old MacBook was better. So I didn't expect much from the Air, since there can't be much room in there for proper speakers. But I was really amazed to find out that the audio is actually quite good. There isn't much bass, but other than that it's very clear. It seems to come from everywhere: the back, the sides and even through the keys. So even though it doesn't compare to a proper audio set, it's still pretty good. Form, looks and weight The form and looks are awesome. It's amazing how thin the screen is. One of the things that I noticed immediately was that the angle in which you type is pretty much perfect. Your wrists lay very close to the desk, and your hands in a slight upward angle. This types pretty great, and is a huge improvement over my old, and now fat, MacBook. Some people mentioned that the aluminum body has sharp corners, but I notice nothing of the sort. It's all very smooth and soft, and even if I try, I cant find any position that typing or using the trackpad isn't comfortable. 1080p I couldn't really play 1080p videos on my old machine. The Air plays them flawlessly. Both normal movies in Quicktime or Flash videos on YouTube. The latter takes up quite some CPU power (50% or so), even with Flash 10.2 which was supposed to fix this, but it handles it just fine. The biggest relief: the fan doesn't even spin up and it stays completely silent, also with Flash videos. Every Flash video on my old MacBook caused the fan to go insane and I could sometimes hardly hear the sound over the sound of the fan. Not so with the Air. Boot up time I don't care about boot times, because I only reboot when there are system updates that require it. Otherwise I always put it to sleep. But, since the SSD is supposed to be fast, I tried it out. From the moment I press the power button to OS X being fully loaded: 15.0 seconds. And the first 5 seconds is just a black screen. The last 2-3 seconds is when you see OS X come up. I don't have that many startup items installed yet, but still. I haven't really noticed much from the SSD other than this, but everything is very snappy for sure. THE OK Trackpad It need to get used to the new Trackpad. I miss my dedicated button. Something that'll change over time, I'm sure, but still. By default you can right click with two fingers at the same time. On the old trackpad, you needed to put two fingers down, and click with the third. Here though, you just need the two. Thing is, most of the time when I'm working the with trackpad, I have my fingers resting on it. I mean, it's huge, so where else are you fingers going to go? But this means that half that time that I click with one finger, it registers more fingers and makes it a right click. Very annoying.Fortunately there's an option to turn it off. I enabled the right lower corner to function as the right click. For some reason though, this doesn't feel right either. But again, something that needs time. I can always turn it off altogether though, and simply use ctrl + click. Other than that, the click itself is rather loud. Again, because I rest my fingers on the trackpad the tap-to-click option isn't an option; that would only cause accidental clicks all the time. The old MacBook had a very silent click, which is really useful when you're working in a reading library and you don't want to annoy other people with your constant clicking. The MacBook Pro I used had an exceptionally loud click though. That just wasn't funny anymore and I was ashamed to even use it. The Air's is reasonable, but it is clearly audible, even from a distance. In most situations it doesn't really matter though, but it would've been nice if they could make this completely or near silent, just as the keys barely make a sound. Another thing I notice is that the glass trackpad doesn't feel as accurate as the older ones. Maybe it's the different resolution, so that I'm just a bit off. But I have a lot more difficulty making precise movements for some reason. THE BAD LED backlight The foremost reason I had to send the MacBook Pro 15" back was the screen. The higher resolution gave me headaches, but the normal resolution didn't come with an anti-glare option. The glass glare is too much for me, and so I was glad to see the Air had a glossy screen but without the glass. The glare on my black MacBook, which has a similar glossy screen, never really bothered me, so it seemed the perfect solution. The LED backlight though was horrible on the MacBook Pro and it seems the same is true for this MacBook Air. Since there aren't any screens anymore — at least not in proper machines from Apple — that use the older LCD/CCFL backlighting, I don't have much choice. I'm going to give this a try for at least a week and see if my eyes adjust. But for now, the eye strain is pretty severe after using it for a while. I don't know if it's the brightness or the flickering (which happens when you dim LEDs, and to which some people are more susceptible than others). There's a long thread about this on the Apple Discussion forums with similar experiences from many others: http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=1677617. There doesn't seem to be a solution, other than not using the screen. Obviously not everyone experiences this the same way, but when you do, it's not pleasant at all. I do notice that it makes a huge difference how much light there is in the room. In a dark room, the eye strain becomes a lot worse, where in a fully lit room it's more bearable. But every time I look at another monitor that doesn't have LED backlights I'm reminded at how strained my eyes are. I'm hoping I'll get used to this, because I already love this Air, and there aren't any other options left. But I do believe that returning this might be the only options to save my eyes if this doesn't get any better. I've been using it today for a few hours and I already feel like I've been staring at it none-stop for 5 days. The moment I look over to my external monitor, that doesn't have LED backlights, my eyes adjust and everything feels completely comfortable right away. When I look back at the Air's display, it nothing but discomfort. I've tried every possible brightness setting, calibration profile, brightness application, but there doesn't seem to be a single setting that's actually comfortable. Oh well... we'll see.