Buying Advice - Macbook Air? ?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by simplenation, Apr 14, 2009.

  1. simplenation macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    #1
    Ok so i've decided that the macbook air meets all my needs and is the right machine for me.. but I have a couple of buying options that I would like to you guys to review. Obviously i'd like to spendless but if rev b is really that much better than i don't mind spending the extra money. Here are the options.

    Option 1

    Refurb Rev a $999 + tax = $1,068.93

    Option 2

    Refurb Rev b + tax = $1,655.xx

    Option 3

    Brand new rev b with student discount and no tax = $1,699.00. I would be driving an hour out of state to buy it.

    So what do you think? Is the rev b really worth the extra money? If rev b is the better of the two options .. I would think that buying it new with the student discount is my best option... i'd also get a free additional year of warrenty if I bought it with my amex.

    What do you?
     
  2. jb1280 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2009
    #2
    Well what exactly are your needs?

    If you are using to access Office documents, email, and the internet, etc. Rev. A will be more than reasonable.

    Rev. B is simply a more capable machine.

    I've had a Rev. A since February 2008 and for simple things such as documents and whatnot I have had no problems. Doing anything more intensive and there are some problems.
     
  3. r6girl Administrator/Editor

    r6girl

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #3
    How long do you plan on keeping the MacBook Air? Do you expect your computing needs to change over this time or stay the same?

    There are a number of threads here in the merits of the Rev. B versus the Rev. A and you'll find proponents of both. I have a Rev. B SSD model, waiting out the Rev. A since I planned on it being my only computer for several years and I wanted something as "future proof" and as capable as possible (and to hopefully evade the poor performance of the Rev. A that's so well-documented).

    So, I vote Rev. B. I think the refurb is your best value - you can also use your Amex to buy this online, of course, and still get that extra year of warranty without needing to drive 1 hour out of the state.
     
  4. simplenation thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    #4
    well i've been a macbook pro user for about a year and find myself using the computer for web, email, videos, games that require little to no power... never really burn anything. I guess the only intensive thing that i would do is run maybe an xp virtual machine from time to time. My goal is to use this as my primary pc for a little while and eventual purchase an imac to work along side it.
     
  5. Eric5273 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2009
    Location:
    New Jersey
    #5
    If you're going to buy the Rev.A refurb, you may want to consider a brand new Rev.A. I just purchased a brand new Rev.A leftover for $1099, and because I ordered it out of state, there was no tax and free shipping. I got it from Small Dog Electronics, but I think they are sold out now. But I think MacMall has them for the same price. And because it was a brand new computer, I was able to upgrade to iLife '09 for only $10 and iWork '09 for $50 through a couple of Apple's promotions.
     
  6. simplenation thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    #6
    Thanks for the response.. I think we are sorta doing similiar things with the air. I'm basically looking for it to become my main machine. The only reason I didn't wanna purchase the refurb and save 50 bucks and 2 hours of my life was because i read something about amex not providing the warrenty on refurbished products.. so i figured spending an extra 50 bucks was worth getting a new machine and a free extra year on the warrenty.

     
  7. r6girl Administrator/Editor

    r6girl

    Staff Member

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    Sep 6, 2003
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #7
    Ah, I did not know that Amex was picky about refurbished products with their warranty. In that case, I do think driving a bit to get a brand new one with your student discount is the best option for you. I did something similar to get mine - drove to the next state with no sales tax, used my corporate discount, and paid with an Amex as well. :D
     
  8. redcrow240 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2008
    #8
    amazon.com with no tax and better return window, slightly used superdrive for around 60 bucks, ebay applecare (from buyer with excellent feedback).....thats my gameplan in a few weeks. The applecare might have to wait till after the new iphone comes out :)
     
  9. Disavowed macrumors regular

    Disavowed

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2009
    Location:
    Midwest
    #9
    Option 2

    Refurb Rev b + tax = $1,655.xx


    Where did you find a refurbished Rev B for this price?
     
  10. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2008
    Location:
    U.S.A.
    #10
    Absolutely positively buy the rev B. It is worth much much more now and in the future. If you want it as your primary machine, the original is not even an option. The rev B is a solid and excellent very capable machine. Now, it is an even easier decision since the rev B is available refurbished at a $250 discount.

    Original vs Rev B
    65 NM Merom 20W CPU with 4 MB L2 Cache ? >>> 45 NM Penryn SSF 17W CPU with 6 MB L2 Cache
    Intel Graphics >>> Nvidia GPU at four times the performance
    PATA drive controller >>> SATA-II drive controller
    667 MHz RAM >>> 1066 MHz RAM
    80 GB PATA drive >>> 120 GB SATA drive

    Every major component was upgraded in the rev B MBA, this leads to a much better performing computer. Apple learned its lesson with the problematic original MBA. The original MBA performs better now than it did, but it is still not capable of performing like the upgraded rev B. Even with Cool Book and software updates, the original MBA is very limited.

    The rev B MBA is a much better computer now and for certain in the future. Look at the xBench.com marks. Even the fastest 1.8 GHz original MBA with SSD performs lower than the rev B with 1.6 GHz and HDD.

    Good luck with your new Mac whichever route you go.
     
  11. zedsdead macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2007
    #11
    Get the Rev B, brand new. I had a Rev A since it first came out, and I have had to have Apple replace it twice. Since then, I have had the third Unit repaired several times and Apple just finally agreed to give me a brand new unit (Rev B).

    The Rev A was a lemon in my opinion.
     
  12. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    Dec 5, 2007
    Location:
    Yay Area, CA
    #12
    I thought it was still a Merom processor but a smaller package (45 nm vs 65 nm)
     
  13. simplenation thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    #13
    well.. I got a Rev B New

    Well I ended up going the new Rev b route... typing on my new macbook air now. The very first thing that I did upon starting it up was testing out video playback. Out of the box the battery was dead and required charging. Video playing back began a little choppy, but after connecting the laptop to power and installing a few updates things seem to be fine. I've only tested the video playback over wifi but it seems to be running pretty smoothly. i also installed istat right away and the laptop runs cool and the cpu barely seemed to spike while playing back HD video. I'll post more info after a little more use.
     
  14. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    Sep 19, 2008
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    U.S.A.
    #14
    Congratulations. You are going to love it. The battery will take some time to charge the first few weeks. But will get better after that. Please tell us what you think. I loved every minute with mine. I am very happy for you. Best wishes with it.
     
  15. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    Sep 19, 2008
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    U.S.A.
    #15
    Nope, the new MBA uses a 45 NM SSF (small form factor) 17W PENRYN CPU. It is definitely a Penryn, and it has 6 MB L2 cache. It is a much nicer CPU than the 20W Merom CPU. It uses less power, and it generates less heat. This is exactly why Apple went with the Penryn, the Merom was very problematic and paired with the Intel graphics, the original MBA overheated.
     
  16. orpkoobcam macrumors newbie

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    Apr 14, 2009
    Location:
    Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
    #16
    IMO, the macbook air is like the smart car. its cool to look at, but its not that practical. the air as less memory/HD space then the macbook, and its more expensive. plus theres no CD drive. i feel that people who buy macbook airs and smart cars are paying more for people to say "wow cool!" then actual functionality.

    my 2 cents.
     
  17. michael.lauden macrumors 68020

    michael.lauden

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2008
    #17
    except for the fact that you get insane mileage with smart cars, and help save the environment in the process. they aren't just for cool factor - they're for people who like to save money.

    with all that being said. if i would have gotten in my last car crash in a smart car - i wouldn't be here right now!
     
  18. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    U.S.A.
    #18
    The problem with the MacBook is that while it has an optical drive, bigger drive, and allows more RAM, it has a TERRIBLY INFERIOR display. In addition, it is heavier.

    The MacBook Air is definitely for those who want smaller and lighter with similar performance characteristics but yet more futuristic. In the future, we are not going to use DVDs/CDs and everything is becoming wireless just like the MacBook Air.

    In fact, I really think the current MacBook Air will represent the future MacBook. Maybe three years down the road, the MacBook will look just like a current MacBook Air. By then, not having an optical drive will be normal.

    So, us who choose to pay more for a MacBook Air are paying more for the much improved display and the higher quality CPU. We are also paying for the R&D costs to create and market the MacBook Air.

    So, yes the MBA costs more, but for those of us who buy it, it is worth every penny.
     
  19. aleksandra. macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 13, 2008
    Location:
    Warsaw, Poland
    #19
    MacBook is also 50% heavier. Air is actually much more practical to carry around all day than a MacBook, and much more practical to work on - screen and keyboard - than any netbook. It's more practical than some of the other computers of its size and weight, because it has more power, and it's more practical than the rest of them, because it's actually cheaper. Everything depends on a point of view.
     
  20. simplenation thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 29, 2008
    #20
    As a couple of people have mentioned already, swallowing the price tag for a Macbook Air can be a little difficult if you only look at price for performance. The bottom line is that this is a specialty machine. The lack of ports, lack of an optical drive and a few other caveats never phased my purchasing decision. My only concern was the problems that plagued the original Macbook air. Paying $1800 - 2500 bucks for a computer isn’t for everyone.. but if you’re a hardcore user it makes no sense to comprise. I’ll hopefully have a review up soon lol.

    Just as a side note, I attached my macbook air to the new cinema display at the apple store and they are a perfect match. In a month or two I play to pick one up and use it to dock my air.
     
  21. Bokes macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    #21
    Since I really only use my macbook (the latest version available)
    for web, word, and itunes and video playback I am thinking of switching to the air.
    I know the air can handle web surf and writing programs....what about video playback? I sometimes read it can be choppy.

    Also, I'm thinking if I do get the air I would go with colorware and get the black version. what do you guys think of them?
     
  22. Doju macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    #22
    And... you know nothing.

    Much lighter, much thinner, much better screen, better L2 cache, etc.

    We are not all bargain hunters. We are willing to pay more for a better, thinner machine. If you don't regularly do processor intensive tasks, it MORE than suffices. It's a great machine, and can do everything a MacBook can but nicer and better.

    Again, we are not all bargain hunters. The more money is insignificant with all the use you get out of it. Stop talking about what you don't know about.

    And smart cars have much better mileage. You really have no idea what you're talking about, do you?
     
  23. Carl Abudephane, Apr 15, 2009
    Last edited: May 6, 2012
  24. orpkoobcam macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
    Location:
    Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
    #24
    you cant be serious. the mileage for a car that small is awful-you can get the same, if not better, mileage in a car 3x the size, such as a civic or corolla. AND, the smart car uses PREMIUM gas. are you saving money using premium gas? no. wasting money. again, for a car the size of my dresser, dont you think $12,000 is too much for a car with NO A/C, NO radio, NO power steering, and only 3 colors?

    dont believe everything the commercials tell you. smart cars are terrible buys.
     
  25. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    #25
    Oh I hate car analogies when talking about computers! :mad::mad::mad:
     

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