2010 MBA owners not upgrading...

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by jksu, Jul 5, 2012.

  1. jksu, Jul 5, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012

    jksu macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2009
    so i bought an 11" mba in 2010 as soon as they were released. 4/128/1.6 core2duo.

    it was a wonderful upgrade from my 2006 black macbook (core duo). big trade was hard drive space since i had upgraded the macbook's hard drive twice so it was at 500gigs when sold it to best buy.

    when the 2012 mba's were announced i thought i was ready... big leap in tech: i5/i7 processors, faster ssd/ram, thunderbolt, usb3, facetime hd, backlit keyboard, 8/256 options, etc. sounded delicious!

    so i ordered one: a 2012 11" ultimate (i7/8/256) -- it was hotter/noisier and screen was pretty much the same quality (LG both on 2010 and 2012)... seemed even worse since the new one wasn't calibrated. for my day to day needs (web, office, ilife), it wasn't a huge jump in function.

    maybe if i went 13" it'd feel more like an "upgrade"? everyone seemed to rave about the 13" as the sweet spot in laptops. after making sure it'd fit my bag (silly reason but i admit, it played a role), i decided to go for it.

    so i returned the 11" and ordered a 2012 13" i5/8/256. less hot, less noisy, nice big screen (although quality the same, another LG), great battery life. i thought i was set.

    but after a week of using it, i missed the compactness of my old mba 11". and thanks to this forum, i began utilizing pinch zoom out, full screen mode, etc. and decided the grab-ability of the 11" was worth the loss in screen size.

    the 13" is a sweet spot and i understand why. but i think i'd rather keep the 11" portability and get a 23" IPS display for my desk...

    so then i thought maybe i should order a 2012 11" i5 (since the i7 seemed to run so hot) -- but other than disc space and maybe slightly longer battery, i'm not gaining too much usability. my wife does most of the dvd ripping, photo/video of family photos on her iMac, so the additional horsepower of the 2012 mbas is lost on me a bit.

    the 2010 is pretty darn fast for my purposes. i won't lie, the 2012 is smoking fast (iPhoto can be pokey on the 2010 for instance) -- everything launches at least a split second or 2 faster, but i guess i can spare a few seconds...it definitely is not the dramatic jump from the 2006 macbook.

    i hover around 3gigs of ram usage typically so i'm not paging out too often... and since apps launch so quick, i don't mind quitting iphoto or iTunes, for example, if i'm not going to use them for a while. i have 25gigs still free on the SSD and can probably move/compress some music and photos to external.

    in any case, any other 2010 users happy to sit in and enjoy their mbas another year?

    my blackbook made it 4 years. let's see if mba can make it 3...

    here's to 2013 mba's bringing a 12+" IPS or retina screen in the 11" form factor, even more affordable SSDs, and improved battery...

    i do miss the backlit keyboard though :)
  2. noteple macrumors 65816


    Aug 30, 2011
    I have a 2010 13" Air maxed out.

    I would have kept an 11" but the battery had me looking for an outlet before the day was over.

    So for now I'm keeping the Air for portability (missing the backlit keyboard)
    And went for the rMBP

    I'll look at a new Air 13" when it gets a retina display.
  3. firewood, Jul 5, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012

    firewood macrumors 604

    Jul 29, 2003
    Silicon Valley
    I looked at the 2011, 2012 MBA 11's, and upgraded the SSD in my 2010 MBA 11 instead. It runs cooler, has nice enough GPU performance and decent battery life, and runs Xcode plenty fast for my needs (faster than the office Mac Pro due to the SSD). Only thing I miss is the lighted keyboard, otherwise I'm still happy with my 2010 Air.
  4. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Apr 29, 2005
    Same boat for me.

    I have a maxed out 2010 11" MBA 1.6/4/128 (ultimate). I've been pretty happy with it, generally not wanting for anything. I use it heavily as a software development machine. I carry it around everywhere if I use it or not. Its so light there's no drawback to take it just in case. At home I often plug into a 28" monitor.

    I thought the 2012 11" MBA ultimate 2.0/8/256 would be an awesome upgrade so I bought one. But as you said, its faster at everything, my 4 second compiles take 2 seconds. But I wasn't really complaining about 4 seconds. Even a full build maybe 40 seconds. Still not a big deal.

    I was shocked at how incredibly hot the 2012 can run. Couldn't have it on my lap. My 2010 always runs cool. I did a test purposely maxing out each CPU, display cranked up etc. The 2010 was consuming 20watts where-as the 2012 was consuming 31.2 watts. Thats a huge increase in power consumption and the battery life indicated the corresponding drop in life.

    In light usage, heat and battery life seemed fine.

    Ultimately what has shocked me is the low resale value of my 2010 ultimate MBA. To buy it, I had sold my $1200 2009 13" MBP (discounted to $1000) for $800 on eBay. 80% of purchase price. I expected something similar this time around. Boy have I been wrong there. People on eBay are clueless about what they're buying. Yesterday I saw a $999 base MBA sell for $700 while an ultimate only sold for $635. Absolutely no value to the upgrades. Having spent $1400 less than 2 years ago, I'm shocked that it can only be worth $650 or less. Thats a 55% drop in value, worth only 45% of its original price. Its simply worth more to me than that. I can't justify spending $1000 to shave 2 seconds off my build time.

    It also makes me worry that the upgrades to the 2012 MBA will also not be worth anything in 2 years. Folks will be selling the $999 base for the same price as the $1650 ultimate.

    I think I've resigned myself to keeping the 2010 at least another year and see what wonderous improvements 2013 will bring.

    SSD prices are still dropping like a rock. Next year 512GB will be today's 256GB.
  5. calvol macrumors 6502a

    Feb 3, 2011
    I have a 2010 13-UMBA and echo all the comments above. I love the long battery life and cool operation with CoolBook/C2D cpu. All Office applications open very quickly, browsing is fast with Safari, and I like Snow Leopard gestures more than Lion. I bought it 18 months ago as a refurb for $1370, and it has been flawless, and I have the Samsung screen. The only thing that is not real fast opening is VMware Fusion, which takes 10-12 seconds, but once it has resumed, Word and Excel run very fast on Win7, just as fast as on OSX.

    But a friend gave me a good deal on a TB Display for $650, and I thought about upgrading to the 2012 Air, but I don't like the Sandy/Ivy Bridge chips because they run hot with TurboBoost together with weak graphics. I can't see running a machine at 100C while watching video for extended periods. My 2010 runs 80C max. The RMBP looked really nice, but I don't want to buy Rev. 1. So I'm leaning toward the updated 2012 Mini, hopefully this month, to run with my TBD, and use it if I ever do video encoding, etc., and keep my 2010 Air for portable use.
  6. dona83 macrumors 6502

    Nov 26, 2004
    Kelowna, BC
    Weak graphics? The HD3000 was only 5% slower than the 320m, the HD4000 is finally a good upgrade at 40% faster. I play COD:MW on my wife's 2011 11" Air at full resolution just fine, settings at around low-medium. Turned on 2x anti aliasing even and still had acceptable frame rates. A 2011 MacBook Air has 3DMark06 scores just slightly below that of a 2010 13" MacBook Pro, something like 4,000 vs. 4,200. 2010 11" MacBook Air scored 3,800. The 2012 MacBook Air scores 5,800.
  7. trondah macrumors 6502

    Dec 1, 2008
    What are you guys talking about? The MBA has backlit keyboard since 2011?
  8. Barna Biro macrumors 6502a

    Barna Biro

    Sep 25, 2011
    Zug, Switzerland
    Yep, totally true.
  9. tigres macrumors 68040


    Aug 31, 2007
    Land of the Free-Waiting for Term Limits
    I'm just going to say it. Lion.

    I came from the 2010; and I too echo the OP's observations. However, pop ML on it and it acts differently.

    But- still not SL fast IMO.

    I just am convinced the Lion is a clogged engine trying to run on a freeway in a traffic jam.
  10. AtmChm macrumors regular

    Jul 6, 2010
    I also agree with the posts above. I have a 13" UMBA 2010, and it indeed runs very cool - even under some load. Also, it cools down fast if it does heat up under load, once the process is ended.

    I recently picked up a 2011 11" MBA base cheap on clearance at Best Buy. I was very surprised how much warmer that ran, even under light load - e-mail and web browsing. I also have the base 2010 11" MBA, and in direct comparison it is definitely cooler than the 2011 11" MBA, but a bit warmer than the 13" 2010 MBA. The main reason I bought the upgraded 11" was for use around the house on my lap, but with the higher temps, it is just not comfortable. I'm disappointed, and taking it back. I thought they had finally solved the MBA heat issues with the 2010 MBA, but it looks like Apple has gone backwards with the move to the I series processors.
  11. PBG4 Dude macrumors 68020

    PBG4 Dude

    Jul 6, 2007
    I have the $1099 11" 2012 MBA and one of the things I like about it is it pits out less heat than my 2010 base 13" MBA. Battery life hasn't been an issue for me, but then I don't normally go longer than 5 hours straight use of my laptop away from a power supply.
  12. cedwhatev macrumors 6502


    Oct 22, 2011
    I was considering upgrading my 2010 11" Ultimate to the new 2012... but I just couldn't justify doing it. No real difference in battery life between the 2010 and 2012, and my 2010 is plenty swift for my needs, so I sold my 2010 on eBay, and bought another refurb 2010. I did it because my MBA was actually out of warranty, so I sold it for just under 700, and bought the refurb for 820 taxes in.. and now I've got the same machine with a full warranty again! Planning on getting the AppleCare as well.. I've been so pleased with the 2010 and its functionality, that I may just hang on to this baby for three more years.... or not. Ha.
  13. Fontane macrumors regular

    Feb 3, 2011
    I have the Late-2010, 13-inch, 4GB RAM, 128 GB SSD. I bought it in Feb 2011 and like a fool I did not buy Applecare this past February when I crossed the one year mark.

    I've been on the fence wanting to upgrade and be set for a good three years or so, but I just haven't been able to bring myself to sell this machine because it runs so well. I use the machine for surfing, email, and other light activities and it runs so fast. I honestly have no issue with this machine other than wanting to get something that will last me another three years.

    This thread is interesting because I think it hits home for a few of us who have been wanting to upgrade but just love our 2010 models too much.
  14. AtmChm macrumors regular

    Jul 6, 2010
    Yeah, I bought my 2010 13" UMBA in April or May 2011 because Lion was not going to support PPC software, and it was rumored the new air would come with Lion and not run on SL. So glad I bought that computer when I did. I picked up the 11" 2010 MBA base model right after the new ones came out. Got it at Best Buy on clearance for $729. Really glad I bought that one too.

    While I could move to Lion at this point, I just don't like it. I hope ML is a lot more like SL. However, I think the heat issues of the Intel i series with integrated graphics is not going away unless Apple puts a REAL GPU back in the MBA.
  15. ixodes macrumors 601


    Jan 11, 2012
    Pacific Coast, USA
    1a) Please elaborate, I've not tried ML yet and would enjoy hearing your take on it.

    With the exception of my current MBA's with Lion, my 2010 MBP's and Mac Pro are still running 10.6.8, the version of OS X that is my favorite by far.

    Thanks :)
  16. nylon macrumors 65816


    Oct 26, 2004
    I had the 2010 13 - UMBA. I sold it on eBay 1 month ago for $1000 ($900 after eBay fees). With a gift card I was able to pick up a stock 2012 13" 256GB MBA for about $1400.

    While I loved my 2010 UMBA, I have to say that the 2012 version is a huge improvement. Obviously this will depend on your usage. However, the system handles everything I can throw at it without issue while the 2010 version stuttered from time to time. I love having the backlit keyboard back as well.

    I'm lucky to have gotten a Samsung display as well as the Samsung SSD which makes it even more satisfying.

    Best $500 I ever spent.
  17. calvol macrumors 6502a

    Feb 3, 2011
    I wouldn't worry about not buying AppleCare at this point. Usually catastrophic failures to the logic board or memory occur in the first few weeks of ownership. Most likely they will be good for 5+ years now. From here out, just try to protect your MBA physically, especially the screen from cracking, by using a cloth screen protector, and some kind of support to prevent bending of the screen/chassis (I use a clipboard in my backpack to prevent).
  18. Golasen macrumors newbie

    Feb 25, 2012
    I just bought the late 2010, 13"/4/128. I have been thinking about switching for a while, and when a friend sold his air which was almost never used, i took the bait:)

    Comparing to my 2009 HP DM3, with the same amount of RAM and a regular hard drive this machine is a lot faster. My main uses are light photo editing (iPhoto), internet, mail and office so this is all I need!
  19. jksu thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 26, 2009
    to treat my 2010 11" right, after deciding not to abandon it for a 2012, i got it a new keyboard protector -- the new tpu is thinner and less obtrusive.

    also got a speck trimsleeve which fits the 11" perfectly and gives it some protection in the unpadded sleeve in my new messenger bag that's designed for a 13".

    re-tweaked my screen calibration and have fallen in love again with this quiet, speedy, compact machine! flux is nice too... seems to be helping with eye fatigue.

    money saved not going for the 2012 will go towards an 23-24" ips display, a iPad mini when it's released, and downpayment on a 2013 mba 11-12" 8/256!
  20. techiegirl macrumors 65816


    Sep 7, 2007
    I gave my 2010 11" MBA to my daughter and bought a new 11" 2.0ghz/8gb ram/256. Considering the low resale value, I wouldn't have bought the new one if I had to sell the 2010.

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