Help evalutating Air Performance!

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by andygabriel, Jan 18, 2010.

  1. andygabriel macrumors regular

    Feb 1, 2009
    Hi everyone, I'm thinking of getting an Air Rev C or if there'll b a Rev D i'll probably go for that. But for now let's consider the Rev C.

    I use my laptop for email, Browsing, Itunes, iLife, Word. I don't do any photo editing or gaming.

    My only machine at the moment is a white macbook 2008 and would like to know if the Rev C is faster than that and will i notice and speed bump if i get the Air. And it will b my ONE & ONLY Machine to replace the White MAcbook!

    Ports and DVD drive are not issues for my use. I like the Air coz it's light but wanna know if it' s a smart move! I don't want it to be slower than my macbook. I'm hoping same or better performance.

    Below are the specs of my White Macbook:

    Model Name: MacBook
    Model Identifier: MacBook4,1
    Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
    Processor Speed: 2.4 GHz
    Number Of Processors: 1
    Total Number Of Cores: 2
    L2 Cache: 3 MB
    RAM Memory: 4 GB (667 MHz DDR2)
    Bus Speed: 800 MHz
    Graphic: GMA X3100
    Hard Drive: 320GB

    Hoping to get Macbook Air
    Intel Core 2 Duo processor with 1066MHz frontside bus
    2GB Memory (DDR3)
    128GB solid-state drive
    NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics

    According to the specs the Air seems faster with better Graphics, DDR3, Bus Speed and SSD. Please macbook air owner, help me out.
  2. andygabriel thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 1, 2009
    If you can state where i'll notice improvements or slow downs compare to the macbook. Cheers
  3. coast1ja macrumors 6502

    Jul 13, 2009
    download xbench and run it. Then search these forums for Rev. C xbench scores... there are many posts with such information.

    That would tell you the overall speed, as well as any areas that would be faster/slower than your current model.
  4. coast1ja macrumors 6502

    Jul 13, 2009
    Just looking at the specs... the MBA may 'Feel' faster because of the SSD. Programs would open quicker, startup and shutdown would be quicker, etc. Everything else would most definitely be slower.
  5. andygabriel thread starter macrumors regular

    Feb 1, 2009
    Thx for the advice. I did the Xbench test and my white macbook got a score of
    81 and i checked the Xbench site for a AIR REV C and the latter for 154.

    Does that mean that the Air is twice faster than my White Macbook?

    I'm sorry but i don't really understand all the technical description i got after i ran Xbench!

    Please help!
  6. coast1ja macrumors 6502

    Jul 13, 2009
    not a problem.

    Xbench runs a number of tests. You only need to look at the top line of each test for the score. My guess is that the MBA scores amazingly well in the disk test because of the SSD. Also keep in mind that some people on here have replaced their SSDs with faster offerings from runcore.

    I am finding stock 2.13ghz MBAs with stock SSD scoring 82 overall.

    It appears that overall performance would be about the same... but again, the MBA would feel faster.
  7. bossxii macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    Kansas City
    As stated above, the SSD in the top end Rev C makes the MBA feel fast. The CPU and GPU are still the same/less than the base model 13" MBP. The MBA is a "fun" laptop to use, everyone will ooo and ahh over it, but be honest with yourself about "why" you would need/want the MBA. I went thru this about a year ago. The thing is cool as hell, fun to use and lightweight. However it is also (imo) flawed in it's design of the fan ports, hinge and trackpad.

    If you plan on using your laptop for streaming video, such as Youtube, Netflix or Hulu? Avoid the MBA unless you enjoy hearing the fans at 6k RPM trying to keep it cool, while the video stutters as the CPU tries to keep up.

    If you plan on using your laptop for work purposes such as email, general web research, spreadsheets etc... MBA can do these very well and make traveling with it a pleasant surprise.

    For all around use, the MBP (imo) is a much better solution given the better thermal design, trackpad, hinge and speed of the CPU options. MBA has uses, but no matter how many outspoken MBA fans you read on this board, think about why you want one, and "what" you are really going to use it for. If you figure that part out, you won't be disappointed, just realize what the MBA is and what it's limitations are. :)
  8. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    What the SSD is effectively doing is reducing the size of the bottleneck. The drive read/write is the bottleneck in most tasks performed on a computer. The MBA may not have as much processing power, but its overall performance is better.

    Going back to your questions... the MBA would be perfect for you. I would wait to see what updates might or might not happen before updating. You may find that an update leads to a lower price point with a new MBA (as in past updates). Even if the update doesn't result in a lower price point, you can decide if the older model makes more sense while discounted on clearance.

    I love the MBA, and I highly recommend the update for anyone that can afford the convenience of "ultra-portability." I also would advise an SSD for certain as it results in 4x the speed and performance by reducing the bottleneck drastically versus the HDD model. Finally, the current SSD can be purchased as new "refurbished" for $1549, with full warranty at - in refurbished down the page on the left side.

    I hope we are both buying rev 3,1 MBA either this Tuesday/Wednesday or next Tuesday/Wednesday. We could very well get an update BEFORE the mobility media event on the 27th IF the MBA form factor is not changed. Apple has quietly updated Macs in the past before live events.

    However, I am expecting a real reason for Apple to show us the new MBA at the live event, as I expect a completely new technology in the display itself. I think it will be OLED, HD (higher resolution), or 3D. I expect a smaller footprint by reducing bezel space around display and extra space around keyboard yet still resulting in a full sized keyboard and 13"+ 16:9 display. I also expect a RAM update, and glass trackpad. We could see a different CPU and/or GPU.

    Best wishes with whatever you choose...
  9. agaskew macrumors 6502

    Dec 3, 2009
    The Air also has faster FSB speed and bigger L2 processor cache. These things make a difference :)
  10. samtim macrumors newbie

    Jan 13, 2010
    O.P. stick with what bossxii said!

    Scottsdale - I dont really like OLED, used to have few devices with that screen.
    but I agree that rest of mba could be updated to certain extent:)

    MBA is my second notebook and used accordingly.
    I bought 1.86 rev.c for purpose - I don't need performance and I considered upgrading to SSD (though im having some issues with 3rd party ssd atm).

    All I needed is quiet, light and ergonomic stuff. I got MBP 15" 2.66 (glossy eye straining piece) and I enjoy MBA many times more.
    Some freezes in video - well they are very rare.
    Fans staying in 2.5-4k range most of time.
    And last thing you would think im joking, but im not:
    I love mono speaker - sound coming up from the right side of kb.
    So I consider mba as retro thingie:)

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