Is the Macbook Air worth paying 4 times the price of this?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by macbook123, Dec 3, 2008.

  1. macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006

    I understand the screen on the Air is a bit larger, the processor a smidgeon faster, the graphics card better (note that the memory on the Asus should be cheaply upgradeable), the software preferable to some (though I'd be happy with Linux on the Asus) but is Apple justified to demand 4 times the amount of money for the MBA?

    If so, why?

    Thanks in advance for sharing your opinion.
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Feb 5, 2008
    NYC - Manhattan
    If you think that is comparable to the Air then you are welcome to buy and use it. It isnt. But this is just the same old tired 'the air is too expensive' argument and it would be pointless to rehash it.

    If you want something else, buy it. If you want an Air, buy it. But dont compare 2 tangentially related products as if their difference in price means something.
  3. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    I never claimed that the two are the same kind of product. But as you seem to be so sure that they are in fact "tangentially related", would you mind mentioning ways in which the Air is different, that justify the extra price? I mentioned a few examples above, but I couldn't justify paying 4 times the price. I could justify paying two times the price maybe.

    Take for example the Macbook Pro versus the Air. Different target groups and I would understand that the Pro is 20% more expensive than the Air, but I would be shocked to see if the Pro would cost $9,000.
  4. macrumors 6502a


    Dec 17, 2007
    Spec for spec it seems like a very good price. Of course you have to factor in the larger screen size of the air, unibody style construction, full core2 instead of atom(clock speed isn't everything!)

    It still doesn't justify the massive price tag of the air, but at the market its aimed at, I'm not surprised. I suppose apple charges that much because they know someone will buy it!
  5. j26
    macrumors 65816


    Mar 30, 2005
    The MSI Wind (cousin to the EEE PC) runs OSX like a champ ;)
  6. macrumors G4

    Oct 14, 2005
    Who cares? I'm with BryanHarig .. rehashing this topic is pointless. Buy whatever YOU can justify.
  7. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    I see. So you guys are telling me that the question I ask shouldn't be asked. What's wrong with asking questions? Do you have some kind of tendency to control people?

    I completely agree btw with JG271's point, that a good justification for asking for this price would simply that people are willing to pay for it. But I'm asking my question from the consumers standpoint, as somebody who has held the opinion for years that while Apple computers have a higher price tag to begin with, it pays of in the long run (better hardware and software). I'm not belittling the Air in any way, I think it's the greatest laptop out there right now, however I'm simply surprised about the large difference in price here.

    If you mind my being surprised, I'm sorry, but I'm still surprised. Maybe look somewhere else if you don't want to get upset?
  8. macrumors regular

    Jul 23, 2008
    Build quality and overall customer service just put the air in a different class. If you just need something to get by, then I don't see why you are even here.
  9. thread starter macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    Thanks. Those are good points I hadn't mentioned above.
  10. macrumors 6502


    Jan 5, 2002
    I think the issue here is that those of us who have owned since the release of the rev. A, MBA have heard this question and responded to it countless times since February.

    I also think that you'll find that most/many of the people in this forum would answer "Yes" to your question. That's why we bought it or are considering buying it. And that's why we hang around this forum.
  11. macrumors 6502a


    Mar 3, 2008
    If you would go with a shirt from Wal-Mart instead of CK, then go with this instead of the Air! :cool:

    Both might do the same job, but one is meant to give fashionable quality.
  12. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 10, 2008
    EEE vs Air

    The Asus EEE series are great netbooks that provide a lot of functionality for the price. Mainstream notebooks can have similar functionality and cost about double. Premium notebooks in the thinNlight or ultraportable catagory again can have similar functionality and again be twice the price of mainstream notebooks. You can see this in the models within a single manufacturer (including Asus).

    Some of this difference is in the price of design and components. Smaller, lower quality screens cost less. Lower powered processors cost less. Slower memory costs less. Thicker costs less, plastic costs less, lower quality support costs less, less software or less full featured software costs less. Lower density batteries cost less.

    I think the Asus EEE 1000 series is great value. But its power and form factor is not such that I can use it comfortably all day long like I do my MBA. I don't like Windows (or really anything MS) and don't use MS products where I have a choice. I could use Linux - great OS but I can't run a lot of the things I need on it. That leaves OSX - for many years I could not even go there because I could not do what I needed on it. Now I can so I am limited to Apple products. The MBA is the most portable Apple; I travel a lot, and its competatively priced with other premium machines in its class.

    Its a personal choice and everyone has different needs, priorities, and means. The superficial specs of components that go into a machine are not everything and can often be very misleading. The proof is in the user experience with the whole package and Apple provides that like no other manufacturer.
  13. macrumors 6502a

    Feb 5, 2008
    NYC - Manhattan

    Yes. I also have a short temper and I am colorblind. What do my faults have to do with you rehashing things that have been argued to death over the last year?
  14. macrumors 6502

    Aug 3, 2007
    Well there are a few things that set the Air apart from the Asus.

    1. Performance: The Air offers the performance, screen and keyboard of a full size laptop. The Air will compete with the regular Macbook in performance. The Air gives you the experience of a Macbook all the while being one of the thinnest and lightest laptops in the world. The Asus on the other hand leans towards being a netbook. It's 10" screen, smaller keyboard is quite a bit smaller making it hard to work on for more than just email or casual web browsing. It also has an Atom processor which is NOT a core 2 duo. If I had to guess, it's probably half the processing power of the Air.

    2. Parts: The Air uses high end components. The screen is better than a Macbook screen. It's pro quality. The Bus is 1066MHz, the RAM DDR3, the cache 6MB. There are even fine touches like ambient light sensor, lighted keyboard, multi-touch trackpad with recognition for up to 4 fingers. I don't think you can say any of this about the Asus. Asus most likely uses much cheaper components and is missing features.

    3. Build: Again we are comparing a unibody aluminum v. plastic. The design, materials and build of the Air is on a much higher level compared to the Asus. The Air is also quite thin. I don't have the dimension of the Asus but it doesn't appear to be as thin. This may not mean much but a lot of engineering has to go into making a product like the Air which costs money.

    4. Software/OS: Another reason Apple tends to be more expensive is because they include a lot of good software as opposed to windows laptops. First OS X itself should be worth $400. Remember that OS X is only one version and it should only be compared to the top version of Windows. Next iLife should be worth several hundred as well. Again there is no real PC equivalent here. Now take note that Apple does not make money selling software, whereas Microsoft does. Apple only makes money by selling computers. This means the cost of their software has to be added into their computers. When you go and buy a new version of OS X, you are buying an upgrade that is only available to someone who owns Apple hardware which is why it's cheap.

    Another point to note is that Leopard WILL run faster than XP. So now you can start to see how the Air will offer a much better experience: Faster computer + More efficient OS

    5. Service: The apple store and apple service is a big deal for some. There is just no equivalent for Asus here again. With Apple you can go to the store if you are having problems or even need a one on one session to learn how to do things. They will also service your Air right there in the store if needed.

    Lastly I would like to add that comparing an Air to this Asus netbook is like comparing a BMW 5 series to a Hyundai. Now if you look at the specs on some of these V6 Hyundais, you may find that it doesn't look all that different from the BMW...but no one really feels that Hyundai=BMW right ;)

    The Air is the BMW/Benz/Lexus of computers. While these cars don't appeal to everyone, they can't be judged just on their specs. The old saying is so true: You get what you pay for.

    Bottom Line: The Air will give you the full laptop experience all the while being one of the thinnest, lightest, most stylish, best built laptops in the world running one of the best OSes in the world :)

    By the way the old Air is on sale for $1149 which is just a hair more than 2X the Asus :)

  15. macrumors 601


    Jun 13, 2007
    I'd love to see you use a netbook for more than an hour before you get fedup of it, the majority of netbooks aren't exactly good at going on the internet tbh... Saying that, MBA is essentially a large version of a netbook, and the lack of ports would eventually annoy me...
  16. macrumors 6502

    Apr 24, 2006
    does it wake from sleep?
  17. macrumors 68020


    Nov 27, 2007
    We wouldn't be hanging around this forum if we didn't think so, would we?
  18. macrumors 65816

    Apr 21, 2004
    Its like a mercedez slk roadster vs. a ford focus. Both will get you from point a to point b, the ford can fit a big screen tv as well as two extra people, but the air with osx are something people pay extra for. The slk has 4 piston brake calipers, the ford has one, the air has multouch as well as lcd, the ford has a single piston caliper and great mileage. Which one is better? Its up to you.

    EDIT DAMMIT: some one beat me to the car analogy.
  19. macrumors regular

    Jul 23, 2008
    It's alright; I think most of us are quite tired of feeble analogies anyway.
  20. macrumors 6502

    Jul 11, 2008
    Plus, who doesn't love the Air's damped screen mechanism?? :D It's the little touches that most people will never understand!

    By the way, I found the ultimate solution to the ports issue: Airport Extreme. After getting one, I have become even more happy with my MBA. The only cord I need is my power cord in order to get full access to my printer, external hard drives, and speakers (via AirFoil). It's awesome, reliable, and really easy to set up.
  21. macrumors regular

    Mar 25, 2004
  22. JL7
    macrumors member

    Mar 27, 2008
    OS X is worth paying 4 times the price of that;)
  23. macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 2_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/525.18.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.1 Mobile/5F136 Safari/525.20)

    The Eee PC will do what an Air does. However the air runs a more stable os and in my opinion may last longer. I've seen the Eee PC run OSX but it wasn't easy. The MSI Wind runs OSX smoother for sure. I mean if you want to try it.
  24. macrumors 6502

    Aug 3, 2007
    Well that's part of what you get when you buy the Air. If you're one of those hacker types that want to hack OSX to run on Eee PC go right ahead but you will pay. You will pay in the amount of time spent in hacking it and getting things to run in a stable way...and in the end it'll never be as stable as the Air. The fact is, Apple writes drivers specifically for it's hardware...which means other hardware is either no going to be supported or it'll be some unoptimized/unstable support. And you'll always be afraid to do a software update on the Eee PC cause you never know when it'll mess it up.
    The next problem will be the processor. Again the Atom is no where near the same thing as Air's Intel Core 2 Duo. I would bet the Air is twice as powerful as Eee PC.

    Finally I would like to add that when Snow Leopard comes out, the Air's nVidia will be put to use much more efficiently. Snow Leopard itself is going to be an efficient and fast OS, faster than Leopard, faster than RedHat/Ubuntu and much faster than any Windows to date.

    Snow Leopard + Air:
    A fast, lightweight, efficient OS + Air's Intel Core 2 Duo
    Open CL OS support + Air's powerful nVidia GPU

    Get the picture? The Air (Esp with SSD) will OUTPERFORM Windows Desktops in everything except maybe games! The little Eee PC (which doesn't even have enough power to run Vista and probably runs XP slow) will be left in the comparison!

    Now lump all of this with the fact that OS X is pretty stable and mostly virus free and mostly secure.

    Now we're talking. :)

    Yes Air is worth 4X more and it will probably perform 4X better and is 4X sexier! :)

  25. macrumors 65816


    Apr 1, 2008
    Dartford, UK
    The eee has a mono-core atom. This is the equivalent of a 900MHz Celeron. With the Air you're getting a dual core processor, DDR3 RAM, 9400M GFX, 1066MHz Bus.... The list is endless..

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