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Domino8282

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 22, 2010
982
193
Southeast USA
My only reason for posting this is if anyone in my situation is on the fence about pulling the trigger on an M1 MacBook Air.

I am admittedly an Apple fanboy and have an embarrassing amount of Apple stuff (some of these are several generations old though)- iMac, iPad Pro, iPhone, Mac Mini as HTPC, not to mention ATV x2, HomePod, HomePod Mini, Apple Watch... not to mention my wife’s stuff. I really didn’t need another Apple product and this was totally an impulse purchase.

That being said, I am absolutely in love with this MacBook Air. I got the education discount and splurged on the fully loaded configuration. Totally unnecessary I’m sure, and I was prepared to have massive buyer’s remorse, but this thing is a beast.

For my use case, which is some gaming (mainly WoW and Apple Arcade stuff), accessing various aspects of my work remotely via Cisco AnyConnect VPN, Citrix Workspace, and Microsoft Remote Desktop, office suite work (typically Office 365 for work and Apple’s suite for personal use), web browsing, streaming, some light photo/video editing, occasional GarageBand use, managing my home network and tinkering with a Linux server over ssh/VNC... all of this is flawless, snappy, near-instant whether Rosetta 2 or native.

I have found at night while lying in bed, when I typically reach for my iPhone or iPad to doomscroll on the Apple News app or Twitter or Facebook, I’m now reaching for the MacBook. It’s comfortable to hold on my lap for hours without negatively affecting my fertility or roasting my thighs. I have used it for both work and fun for the last 3 days, relatively heavy use, on a single charge.

I haven’t once regretted getting the MBA over the MBP - the display is gorgeous, the performance is outstanding for my use case, I’m not a huge fan of the Touch Bar, and I personally feel that the wedge shape is more comfortable to type on as far as wrist angle. I’ve also never regretted fully loading the MBA with 8-core GPU, 16GB RAM, and 2TB SSD. Was it completely unnecessary and a waste of money for my uses? Probably... maybe certainly... but no regrets.

I’m actually thinking about selling mine and my wife’s iMacs, selling my wife’s 1-year old 16” MBP to get her own M1 MBA, getting a couple of TB3 docks and UltraWide monitors, and calling us good on computers for awhile. She is supremely jealous of the MBA currently.
 

TomOSeven

Suspended
Jul 4, 2017
571
696
There's certain aspects of this machine that I really like but also a whole lot I don't.

Yesterday I thought I'd do some work outside on my favourite bench by the river. Took out the Macbook, realised it was nigh on impossible to use outdoors because the screen is so glossy, couldn't see anything because of all the reflections.

Then I came home, hooked up the Macbook to my monitor via USB-C, lo and behold, my external monitor looks terrible under MacOS. Not quite as unusable but far from pleasant. Everything's nice and crisp under Windows and I can scale everything to 125% to make things bigger without losing sharpness, not so under MacOS.
It's either tiny and blurry or reasonably sized and ULTRA blurry.

Then there's the keyboard, which is acceptable but nothing to write home about, and still a lot of software issues. To be fair, I expected there to be software issues on an entirely new platform, but I never expected to have a browser that doesn't support uBlock Origin in 2020.

There's a lot to like here, like the absolutely perfect trackpad, the unreasonably good sounding speakers and the insane battery life, but the external monitor issue is almost a deal breaker to me.

Oh, and how cool is touch ID? I didn't think I'd care much about it, but unlocking and waking up the Mac in a split second with one press of a button is so neat, haha.
 
Last edited:
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velocityg4

macrumors 604
Dec 19, 2004
6,911
4,068
Georgia
My only reason for posting this is if anyone in my situation is on the fence about pulling the trigger on an M1 MacBook Air.

I am admittedly an Apple fanboy and have an embarrassing amount of Apple stuff (some of these are several generations old though)- iMac, iPad Pro, iPhone, Mac Mini as HTPC, not to mention ATV x2, HomePod, HomePod Mini, Apple Watch... not to mention my wife’s stuff. I really didn’t need another Apple product and this was totally an impulse purchase.

That being said, I am absolutely in love with this MacBook Air. I got the education discount and splurged on the fully loaded configuration. Totally unnecessary I’m sure, and I was prepared to have massive buyer’s remorse, but this thing is a beast.

For my use case, which is some gaming (mainly WoW and Apple Arcade stuff), accessing various aspects of my work remotely via Cisco AnyConnect VPN, Citrix Workspace, and Microsoft Remote Desktop, office suite work (typically Office 365 for work and Apple’s suite for personal use), web browsing, streaming, some light photo/video editing, occasional GarageBand use, managing my home network and tinkering with a Linux server over ssh/VNC... all of this is flawless, snappy, near-instant whether Rosetta 2 or native.

I have found at night while lying in bed, when I typically reach for my iPhone or iPad to doomscroll on the Apple News app or Twitter or Facebook, I’m now reaching for the MacBook. It’s comfortable to hold on my lap for hours without negatively affecting my fertility or roasting my thighs. I have used it for both work and fun for the last 3 days, relatively heavy use, on a single charge.

I haven’t once regretted getting the MBA over the MBP - the display is gorgeous, the performance is outstanding for my use case, I’m not a huge fan of the Touch Bar, and I personally feel that the wedge shape is more comfortable to type on as far as wrist angle. I’ve also never regretted fully loading the MBA with 8-core GPU, 16GB RAM, and 2TB SSD. Was it completely unnecessary and a waste of money for my uses? Probably... maybe certainly... but no regrets.

I’m actually thinking about selling mine and my wife’s iMacs, selling my wife’s 1-year old 16” MBP to get her own M1 MBA, getting a couple of TB3 docks and UltraWide monitors, and calling us good on computers for awhile. She is supremely jealous of the MBA currently.

Good to hear your experience. Now's probably the time to sell those Intel models to get the most for your money. Sell them locally for cash for the most money. Heck with the 16" value and if the iMacs are new enough. It might not cost you anything or at least very little. Depending on how spendy you get with the monitors.

On monitors. I do recommend that whatever you get. Make sure it is at least 2160 vertical resolution to use HiDPI mode. As text can look blurry on non HiDPI displays. As far as I can find 3440x1440 will not use HiDPI.

Also the LG Thunderbolt displays sold through the Apple store can basically act as charging docks. The 5K model even has a decent Webcam. LG does make one ultrawide with Thunderbolt and 5120x2160 resolution.
 
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Six0Four

macrumors 6502a
Mar 27, 2020
821
752
I picked up the base model air and it can handle anything i throw at it. Very happy with my purchase.

The M1 Air would be the perfect laptop to use as a desktop. Cool, quiet, small and light.
 
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HarryWild

macrumors 68020
Oct 27, 2012
2,023
695
I never understood why people brought notebooks in the first place. Desktop is where serious stuff takes place. I will be getting a Mac Mini full loaded M1 later on to do web surfing and watching streaming content on a 32” 4K monitor. Cannot get any better then that!o
 

onepoint

macrumors 6502a
Aug 3, 2010
842
504
USA
I never understood why people brought notebooks in the first place. Desktop is where serious stuff takes place. I will be getting a Mac Mini full loaded M1 later on to do web surfing and watching streaming content on a 32” 4K monitor. Cannot get any better then that!o
Occasionally people need to use their computers while away from their desk.
 

1240766

Cancelled
Nov 2, 2020
264
373
I never understood why people brought notebooks in the first place. Desktop is where serious stuff takes place. I will be getting a Mac Mini full loaded M1 later on to do web surfing and watching streaming content on a 32” 4K monitor. Cannot get any better then that!o
If you can bring your desktop and monitor with you to the couch, to the bed, to the trips....then I agree you don need a laptop ?
 

Sanpete

macrumors 68040
Nov 17, 2016
3,689
1,664
Utah
Yesterday I thought I'd do some work outside on my favourite bench by the river. Took out the Macbook, realised it was nigh on impossible to use outdoors because the screen is so glossy, couldn't see anything because of all the reflections.

Then I came home, hooked up the Macbook to my monitor via USB-C, lo and behold, my external monitor looks terrible under MacOS. Not quite as unusable but far from pleasant. Everything's nice and crisp under Windows and I can scale everything to 125% to make things bigger without losing sharpness, not so under MacOS.
It's either tiny and blurry or reasonably sized and ULTRA blurry.
Yeah, I miss the anti-glare screen option.

There are some threads here about trying to get the new machines to work with various monitors.
 

KPOM

macrumors P6
Oct 23, 2010
17,160
6,427
Then I came home, hooked up the Macbook to my monitor via USB-C, lo and behold, my external monitor looks terrible under MacOS. Not quite as unusable but far from pleasant. Everything's nice and crisp under Windows and I can scale everything to 125% to make things bigger without losing sharpness, not so under MacOS.
It's either tiny and blurry or reasonably sized and ULTRA blurry.
That's the opposite of my experience. Some Windows 10 apps still aren't very good at scaling, and display really tiny text sometimes. I much prefer scaling on macOS.
 

KPOM

macrumors P6
Oct 23, 2010
17,160
6,427
My only reason for posting this is if anyone in my situation is on the fence about pulling the trigger on an M1 MacBook Air.

I am admittedly an Apple fanboy and have an embarrassing amount of Apple stuff (some of these are several generations old though)- iMac, iPad Pro, iPhone, Mac Mini as HTPC, not to mention ATV x2, HomePod, HomePod Mini, Apple Watch... not to mention my wife’s stuff. I really didn’t need another Apple product and this was totally an impulse purchase.

That being said, I am absolutely in love with this MacBook Air. I got the education discount and splurged on the fully loaded configuration. Totally unnecessary I’m sure, and I was prepared to have massive buyer’s remorse, but this thing is a beast.

For my use case, which is some gaming (mainly WoW and Apple Arcade stuff), accessing various aspects of my work remotely via Cisco AnyConnect VPN, Citrix Workspace, and Microsoft Remote Desktop, office suite work (typically Office 365 for work and Apple’s suite for personal use), web browsing, streaming, some light photo/video editing, occasional GarageBand use, managing my home network and tinkering with a Linux server over ssh/VNC... all of this is flawless, snappy, near-instant whether Rosetta 2 or native.

I have found at night while lying in bed, when I typically reach for my iPhone or iPad to doomscroll on the Apple News app or Twitter or Facebook, I’m now reaching for the MacBook. It’s comfortable to hold on my lap for hours without negatively affecting my fertility or roasting my thighs. I have used it for both work and fun for the last 3 days, relatively heavy use, on a single charge.

I haven’t once regretted getting the MBA over the MBP - the display is gorgeous, the performance is outstanding for my use case, I’m not a huge fan of the Touch Bar, and I personally feel that the wedge shape is more comfortable to type on as far as wrist angle. I’ve also never regretted fully loading the MBA with 8-core GPU, 16GB RAM, and 2TB SSD. Was it completely unnecessary and a waste of money for my uses? Probably... maybe certainly... but no regrets.

I’m actually thinking about selling mine and my wife’s iMacs, selling my wife’s 1-year old 16” MBP to get her own M1 MBA, getting a couple of TB3 docks and UltraWide monitors, and calling us good on computers for awhile. She is supremely jealous of the MBA currently.
I agree. This M1 MacBook Air (16GB/8Core GPU/512GB) is my favorite notebook of all time, beating out the 12" MacBook that I just sold after 3 great years of ownership. I'll miss the 12" MacBook's light weight (and will always wonder how it would have performed with an M1 chip inside), but the M1 shows the promise of Apple Silicon. It runs circles around the Ice Lake 13" MacBook Air I purchased earlier this year, and I wish I could use this at work instead of my work PC, which is a perfectly capable 2-year old Coffee Lake HP EliteBook running a 25W CPU.
 

Six0Four

macrumors 6502a
Mar 27, 2020
821
752
I never understood why people brought notebooks in the first place. Desktop is where serious stuff takes place. I will be getting a Mac Mini full loaded M1 later on to do web surfing and watching streaming content on a 32” 4K monitor. Cannot get any better then that!o

fgfgdfy.gif
 

Domino8282

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 22, 2010
982
193
Southeast USA
Thanks everyone!

? lol just imagining bar graphs by laptop temp on the ole’ swimmers’ count and motility (higher is better)...

Btw if anyone has suggestions on a good, reasonably priced, curved, ultrawide display that is known to work plug and play with the M1 MBA, I’d appreciate it. So far, I’m looking at an LG (38WK95C-W) and a Dell (U3818-DW). The external monitor threads here are making me nervous though.
 
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Knowlege Bomb

macrumors G3
Feb 14, 2008
8,964
6,637
Madison, WI
I've really been hesitant to purchase a new Macbook over the years. It's actually been a lot of years and my current lineup is an HP I bought back in 2016 when I went back to school, a 2008 Macbook Pro and a 2009 Macbook Pro that my brother gave my mom when he upgraded and she passed along to me because she hates technology.

Both Macbooks work great, although they're pretty slow. I still use them for authorizing new devices after a restore or restoring from backup after switching to a different phone. I have all of my photos and music backed up separately from iCloud and sometimes even use iTunes to create a new playlist.

The only reason I have the HP is because there was software in my program that wasn't compatible with my old dinosaur Macs. I think subconsciously I've been waiting for MacOS to get closer to iOS over the years and it's getting to the point where they're starting to overlap visually and functionally a lot more frequently.

I need to just control myself enough to not buy the next iPhone and use the money I would have thrown at the new Pro line to get myself an M1. This will require a lot of coaching a reassurances that the 12 Pro is a beast that will be just fine for my needs for years to come.
 

AppleSmurf

macrumors member
Nov 12, 2020
63
73
I agree. I have a 2020 12.9 iPad Pro with Magic Keyboard that I am thinking about selling. The new M1 MBP, replacing my MBP 16, is so easy on the lap vs. balancing the iPad setup.
Anything potentially holding you back from the switch? I’m thinking about an iPad Pro, but the new MBP has me rethinking everything.
 
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ajaan

macrumors regular
Dec 15, 2013
139
68
Inclined to agree with the OP. Best computer (MBA 8GB) I've had in 20 years of Macs (owned about 7 in that time, plus the wife's and kids on top).The Big Sur look compliments it well. Usually, I load up with RAM, took a risk, and 8 GB is working out just fine for my use.

Can see a time in the near future where we stop thinking about what RAM, GPU or CPU our Macs have, apart from some dedicated people who are interested, just like *most* people don't think about it on the iPhone and iPad -- they just care about look, generation, and does it do the stuff they want it to do well.

I always had a desire to go iPad Pro due to the simplicity, minimalist, instant on, battery life, smoothness of use etc. That desire has been killed by the new MBA.
 

ArPe

macrumors 65816
May 31, 2020
1,281
3,319
In the last 4 years I could use just about any 15” or 16” as a decent desktop replacement with external display but only at 1080p to 1440p. 4K would cause throttling at times that would slow down the GUI and some apps.

The M1 handles 4K easily with no throttling or noise. Don’t even need an eGPU for some of the things I needed it before.

Can’t wait to see what the Mac Pro with M2/3 does.
 
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TrueBlou

Contributor
Sep 16, 2014
4,508
3,499
Scotland
I never understood why people brought notebooks in the first place. Desktop is where serious stuff takes place. I will be getting a Mac Mini full loaded M1 later on to do web surfing and watching streaming content on a 32” 4K monitor. Cannot get any better then that!o

To each their own of course, but considering the MBA/MBP M1 offer basically the same performance as the Mini M1, it’s not as if you’re losing anything by going laptop.

You can use the laptops at a desk, as I will be, hooked up to a 4K 28” monitor (or whatever your poison is), then when I want to work downstairs, in the garden, or anywhere else, I’ll just unplug it and take it with me, without losing any performance. Just a smaller screen...... But then, I don’t much fancy lugging a 28” screen around with me, even if I could :D
 
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