Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Carrotty, Jul 1, 2012.

  1. Carrotty macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2012
    A few questions..

    What is this thing that people have been saying about the air's keyboard? is it too shallow or something, and is it supposed to be a disadvantage or a problem about the airs? Does putting a keyboard cover over let it have a 'deeper' feel? And does the cover have cons like preventing ventilation etc?

    And are any of you using microsoft office? I might need it for my essays + assignments but it is expensive.. near $100? Are there any free or much cheaper alternatives that work the same way as MS office and can be converted or is compatible for others using MS office on either windows or mac? I don't want this to become a problem when i need to send my work to classmates/teachers...

    Anyone know a cheaper alternative to apple's external superdrive too which has similar features and functions? Sorry about these questions, just about to get my air but thinking about the extras i'd have to fork out.. makes me wanna get a pro instead..
  2. jakeruston macrumors regular

    Jun 9, 2010
    The Netherlands
    Regarding the MS Office question, you might want to look into Open Office. This is free and allows you to export to MS Office file formats too, if you want to cut the costs down it's worth a look at.
  3. jmgregory1 macrumors 68000


    Jun 24, 2010
    Chicago and a few other places around the world
    Get Apple's Keynote, Pages and Numbers. I've been using them exclusively for work for years and they make MS's bloated programs worthless (unless you are doing some really complex spreadsheets in which case excel may be the better choice). I've even had situations where a co-worker's ppt presentation wouldn't run on his Mac running ppt, but worked perfectly on mine running Keynote.

    You can open, use and save files as MS files - so there is no reason to get Office.
  4. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

    Jul 8, 2007
    I'm pretty sure you can use any external drive, cheap OR expensive.
  5. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    1. The MBA KB is a little more shallow key press than the Pro models, but I don't find it an issue. I don't think adding a cover would change that in any way helpful though. Can you get to an Apple Store os Best Buy somewhere to try it out before you buy?

    2. You can try out the free LibreOffice office suite. Unless you have a very complex MS Office document, it should do the trick for you. LibreOffice is the successor to the open source suite OpenOffice.

    3. A standard USB external optical drive will work. I have not tried it myself, but forum members have reported this one from Amazon Basics works well. There is a similar Samsung model that reportedly works well also.
  6. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    Perhaps the keyboard is a bit shallower than other notebooks, but the chicklet-style keyboard has become a lot more common. The MacBook Air keyboard and trackpad compare favorably to Windows Ultrabooks. I have no issues typing on it. Actually, it works better for me than the "standard" keyboard on my 5.5 lb Windows notebook.
  7. mattopotamus macrumors G5


    Jun 12, 2012
    Same, I love the keyboard. I actually use an apple keyboard on my work computer b.c I can type much faster.
  8. Carrotty thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2012
    Alright, will go to the local store to test the keyboard out, thanks guys. Regarding the Openoffice / Libre alternative, do i just go to the website, download it for free and just use it?
  9. pandaguy macrumors member

    Jun 29, 2012
    The keyboard isn't bad--it's actually way better than what I had anticipated. If you go to an Apple Store or Best Buy you'll see what I mean.
  10. InfiniteDeath macrumors newbie

    Jun 19, 2012
    You can buy Office Home and Business on ebay for ~$50. Has everything the home version has + Outlook.
  11. Carrotty thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2012
    I guess i'll try the free openoffice/libre first since it's...free. If i feel the need to get that then i'll check it out on ebay. Thanks
  12. Dangerous Theory macrumors 68000

    Jul 28, 2011
    Just for writing essays you certainly don't need to pay for an office suite program. Libre will most certainly do enough and more.
  13. Carrotty, Jul 1, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2012

    Carrotty thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2012
    Okay, saw the libreoffice web, i think that should be good enough for me, and it's free! Now all the extras i'd need would be the mba case, superdrive and HDMI adaptor.. Anybody know a specific superdrive that's cheaper than apple's and has a colour that goes with the mac? thanks :)

    Just another quick question... what if i order my macbook air but when it arrives and i'm not home and nobody else is home... would they call/mail me when it's arriving one day before?

    And based on the current OWC's prices for SSDs for 2011 and other previous airs, does anybody know how much the 256gb (if OWC sells this size) or 240gb SSD cost? Just trying to see if it is worth for me to get the 256gb air now.. thanks
  14. JButt macrumors newbie

    Jun 12, 2012
    You can track it and know where it is. They will require a signature to leave the package. You can have the delivery redirected to a Fedex office (including a Fedex print and copy center) for pickup -that's how I handled our most recent delivery.
  15. Aniseedvan macrumors 65816

    May 14, 2012
    You reference classmates above so I hope you can take advantage of the HE discount. Hopefully you could then use the gift card to buy pages if need be?
  16. mikeray macrumors regular

    Jan 17, 2006
    Brooklyn, NY
    My macbook air 2012 keyboard feels great, and I did not have any trouble getting used to it, coming from a 2008 unibody macbook.
  17. Carrotty thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2012
    Does the pro/air or different SSD sizes etc determine the download speed of your movies/shows? Or is it purely based on my wireless broadband speed?

    So for example, does the pro download a movie faster than an air downloading the same movie? (assuming both are 13" base models if that matters and that i am downloading it in the same room, using the same wireless broadband)

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