11" 1.6 Core2Duo Macbook Air for $450?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by RubberShoes, Apr 15, 2014.

  1. RubberShoes macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    I need a laptop, badly.

    I have a deadline in a month so the hope to wait until WWDC has peacefully fluttered away. I am fully aware of the approaching Retina Macbook Air, but it's looking like that has been pushed back to September or October, after the summer days in coffee shops and, more importantly, after this deadline.

    I found an excellent condition 11" Macbook air with 4GB of RAM and 128GB SSD. The reason I'm tempted is because I live in OS X. I know Windows and know it well, but I deal with a lot of HLS+ partitioned drives as a DIT (digital imaging technician) and spend hours using rsync each day to have some need for a unix based system. I was enticed by Chromebooks, but I live in the depths of the NYC subway for a couple hours each day so I need offline capability and, more importantly, ability to use Final Draft and Office.

    I think the dream would be a $450 13" but I am not sure. I need to read HLS+ drives, use Final Draft, and portable and small enough to carry around in a bag all day. If you were pressed for time, what system would you get? I should also mention I have a very powerful Mac Pro at home so any video editing or heavy lifting will always be done with that. This would just be there for when I am out in the field or running about my day.

  2. chrfr, Apr 15, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2014

    chrfr macrumors 604

    Jul 11, 2009
    Those Airs have two big shortcomings: first, battery life isn't so good due to the small size of the computer. Second, the fastest I/O they have is USB 2.0. If you're having to move a lot of data around on external disks, it'll take a long time without Thunderbolt, Firewire or USB 3.0 options.
  3. csixty4 macrumors regular

    Apr 8, 2010
    Somerville, MA
    I have to agree with chrfr. The 11" Air is a really capable machine. I use it for development every day. But the battery life could be a problem for you.
  4. RubberShoes thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    Lol, clearly I've been dealing with HLS streams all day.

    Battery life is been a big concern for me, but I'm not entirely sure I want to drop any serious money on a macbook considering the new ones are basically around the corner. With that said, I am around an outlet most of the time I am out due to lighting grids for shoots or the local Starbucks.

    You're right, the USB 2 is a killer for me. I thought it at least had Thunderbolt so I could use some adapters. I think I'm going to have to pass on this.

    Thanks for your input!
  5. chrfr macrumors 604

    Jul 11, 2009
    The 2011 Airs were the first to get Thunderbolt, and in 2012, USB 3.0 was added.
  6. robvas macrumors 68030

    Mar 29, 2009
    You should be able to pull an i5 2011 for that much

    C2D is a nice machine but they are a little slow, and they're almost 4 years old now.
  7. bjet767 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 2, 2010
    I gave my Late 2010 11" MBA to my daughter in law and miss it a lot. I did this because she needed a computer and I am anticipating the new 2014 coming in June (not in fall) after the WDC.

    In the mean time I bought a cheap Lenovo S210 to fill my traveling needs of a computer. Well for $300 the Lenovo is what it is and everyday I use it I miss my MBA.

    Personally I would wait if I were you for the 2014 model. It will have the latest and greatest of everything. So just go get some cheap thing which will barely fill the bill and then sell it when the new model comes out.
  8. cedwhatev macrumors 6502


    Oct 22, 2011
    The 2013's are beauties. I just saw one (11"/4/128) go for 650 on eBay, which is a steal! Battery life, USB 3.0, latest processor... can't go wrong.
  9. fedecape macrumors 6502


    Oct 23, 2011
    Miami, FL
    go for a current model and f** the retina, it's not even confirmed yet.

    powerful, incredible battery life, portable, and has the ports you'll need.
  10. RubberShoes thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    You know the saying it's too good to be true?

    Jumped the gun on a 13.3" 2013 for $680! Spent the weekend so stoked on winning the auction on eBay. Sure enough, no tracking number and the guy is has only replied with "Already sold it, sorry" and "You've got the wrong person" when I pressed him further. Of course, he still took the $680.

    Filed a dispute with PayPal, money will be tied up for the next ten days.

    Anybody got a Mac laptop their looking to sell? So much for this deadline..
  11. Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    Sorry to hear of your trouble with eBay, (or, rather with a particular seller) on eBay.

    However, for what it is worth, I would never, ever buy anything of the sort on eBay, - ever - but maybe, that is just me. The risks are too great, and the security is too low. The old 'if it looks too good to be true it probably is' adage applies here.

    Secondly, the 2010 is old in terms of technology, slow, and has limited battery life. I had one, and loved it, but gave it to my brother last summer as a gift.

    My personal recommendation would be to fight this eBay case, and then buy a 2013 (superb battery) refurb from Apple; that way, you'll get an excellent computer at a decent discount, with all of the guarantees and warranties of a new one.
  12. RubberShoes thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    Yea but with a 12" retina around the corner is it really worth my money? I jumped on this because it was such a deal. The refurb is $930 plus tax and I would rather not let this deadline dictate my money. At this point I think a refurbished 13" rMBP would be money better spent.
  13. Scepticalscribe, Apr 21, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2014

    Scepticalscribe Contributor


    Jul 29, 2008
    The Far Horizon
    Yes, but a deal where your money vanishes into thin air leaving you with nothing in your hands does not strike me as "such a good deal". My preference is a good computer, over a good deal, one where warranties and guarantees hold good, and when I do buy an Apple computer, I expect to get close to the best part of two and a half years out of it (the Applecare cycle).

    And, re prophecies and predictions: I have been a member of this forum for six years now, and, while I read the predictions (who doesn't?), few of us can claim such insight.

    We don't know for certain that a 12" MBA retina is coming out soon, and I certainly wouldn't let that guide any purchase of mine for the immediate future. In my experience, a brand new model (rather than a tweaking of an existing model) usually needs a period of at least six months subsequent to its launch to iron out any early glitches or teething problems.

    Good luck getting your money back, and yes, maybe a refurb 13" rMBP would be a better deal.
  14. RubberShoes thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    Hahaha, excellent point.

    I'd love the battery life of the '13 Air but would love the resolution and scaling options of the rMBP. This is why a 12" is somewhat of the perfect machine for me in terms of my needs, but as you say, it doesn't exist yet so it really doesn't fit my "needs"

    Decisions decisions...
  15. RubberShoes thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 30, 2007
    To close this out, I jumped on a refurb 13" Haswell rMBP and could not be happier. I can't imagine using any other screen anymore! Who knew something like a display could have such a profound impact on a computer experience.

    I'll be eyeing the 12" retina Air. Right now the rMBP works but I'd like to have something lighter and easier on my back all day. But for now I have a great laptop that will last me until the 12" retina show up on the refurb section :D

    Thanks for all your suggestions!

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