Buying used Rev. A or B MBA - What to look for?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by ddeadserious, Aug 1, 2011.

  1. ddeadserious macrumors 6502a

    ddeadserious

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2008
    Location:
    Plymouth, MI
    #1
    Looking to buy a used, older MacBook Air to supplement my [rather seldom] need for a portable when my iPad won't suffice.

    Considering I'm not looking to spend more than $650 or so, I'm figuring I won't be able to find much other than a Rev. A or B.

    So, what should I keep an eye out for when looking at these? I've owned my fair share of MBP's, but never a MBA before.

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Kendo macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2011
    #2
    Have you taken a look at the current prices for 2010 models? Based on the losses that some members here have taken in order to upgrade, I'd imagine $650 would net you at least a base 11" 2010 model.
     
  3. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #3
    For $650, you can probably pick up a used Rev D on eBay (I just sold one for $800). Apple sells refurbished Rev D models starting at $750.

    If you do find a Rev A or Rev B, I'd strongly suggest getting the Rev B. It was a significant improvement as it had better graphics and heat management than the Rev A. There were Rev B SSD models as well (128GB), although they don't support TRIM and are slow by today's SSD standards, but still well faster than the hard drive-equipped Rev B models. SSD-equipped Rev A models are very rare and are limited to 64GB models.

    There isn't much user replaceable in the MacBook Air, so I'd just look for obvious physical damage. If the logic board goes, it goes, and it's expensive to replace (and probably not worth it), so take that into consideration when making an offer.

    I had a Rev B SSD model for 2 years and it held up well. There is a program from Digilloyd that can "recondition" an old SSD that may be useful. It isn't as necessary on the Rev D models since they support TRIM and have better controllers.
     
  4. ddeadserious thread starter macrumors 6502a

    ddeadserious

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    #4
    I've had a hard time finding much of anything in the MR Marketplace, and everyone on craigslist seems to think that their MBA's are made of gold. I'm not sure I can handle the screen real estate of an 11" though(I'd considered a 2010 refurb since they're only $750). When I will be using the MBA(over my iPad), it will be for html/css or for writing/researching papers and I'm don't think the 11" will be enough for that.
     
  5. KPOM macrumors G5

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    Oct 23, 2010
    #5
    I'd make some offers on eBay. I had mine for sale for $850 and got offers in the $725-$800 range (and sold it for $800 even), so if you see one there you might get lucky and score a 13" 2010 Base.
     
  6. ddeadserious thread starter macrumors 6502a

    ddeadserious

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    #6
    Alright, I appreciate the input, I'll look around and see what I can do.

    Found a Rev. A in good shape and offered $550(asking price was $825 lol) and he accepted the offer, but I'm really not sure I want to deal with the potential issues of a Rev. A. Will definitely look around before I buy it.
     
  7. jenzjen macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2010
    #7
    Hinge, hinge, hinge, hinge, hinge, hinge

    Memories are short-lived, but the early ones had an unofficial hinge recall, so see if the unit has already been serviced.
     
  8. KPOM macrumors G5

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    Oct 23, 2010
    #8
    Yes, the Rev A models were notorious for hinge issues. I had no trouble whatsoever with my Rev B. I only had my Rev A for 10 months so it wasn't an issue.
     
  9. ddeadserious thread starter macrumors 6502a

    ddeadserious

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    #9
    Interesting, it definitely seems like Rev. B is the way to go(assuming I can't find anything newer). Oddly though, I don't think I've seen any Rev. B's on craigslist, they're either Rev. D or A, it seems.
     
  10. 3bs macrumors 603

    3bs

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    #10
    I know this isn't related and I apologize, but why are MBA's called Rev A, B etc?
     
  11. Durious macrumors 6502

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    Apr 11, 2008
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    Calgary, Alberta
    #11
    I still have my Rev. A pure crap don't get it (core shutdown issues) is horrid.
     
  12. ddeadserious thread starter macrumors 6502a

    ddeadserious

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    #12
    Rev. means Revision, I believe we're on Revision D now. Since they haven't undergone any major body/construction changes(as with the MacBooks from Plastic, unibody, polycarbonite, glossy, matte, etc), the only real way to differentiate is with the version that is it. Why it's not 1-5, I don't know.:)
     
  13. KPOM macrumors G5

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #13
    We're on Rev E.

    Rev A - Original MacBook Air - January 2008 (1.6GHz and 1.8GHz Merom Core 2 Duo processors, PATA HDD and SSD options, Intel GMA 3100 graphics)

    Rev B - November 2008 - (1.6GHz and 1.86GHz Penryn Core 2 Duo processors, SATA HDD and SSD options, NVIDIA 9400m graphics)

    Rev C - June 2009 - (1.86GHz and 2.13GHz Penryn Core 2 Duo processors, slightly higher capacity battery, faster Toshiba SSDs entered in later in the cycle, otherwise similar to the Rev B).

    Rev D - October 2010 (11" option - 1.4GHz and 1.6GHz Penryn Core 2 Duo, 13" option -1.86GHz and 2.13GHz Penryn Core 2 Duo, all models with SSD storage and NVIDIA 320m graphics, 2nd USB port, new case designs)

    Rev E - July 2011 (11" option 1.6GHz Sandy Bridge Core i5 and 1.8GHz Sandy Bridge Core i7, 13" option 1.7GHz Sandy Bridge Core i5 and 1.8GHz Sandy Bridge Core i7, Intel HD 3000 graphics, Thunderbolt Port, otherwise similar to the Rev E).

    People sometimes call Rev A-C the "first generation" and the Rev D and E the "second generation," as well, since the second generation added the second USB port, changed the case design and heat management system, and made SSDs standard.
     
  14. ddeadserious thread starter macrumors 6502a

    ddeadserious

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    #14
    Thanks for all the input. My birthday is this week, and turns out my mom is going to just give me cash, which should put me into Rev. C or D range. Anything I should be careful of with them?
     
  15. darngooddesign macrumors G3

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    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    #15
    There is anecdotal evidence that the first case design (Rev A - C) has hinge issues.
     

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