How durable are MacBook Airs?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Caris, Sep 23, 2015.

  1. Caris, Sep 23, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2015

    Caris macrumors 6502a


    Sep 25, 2006
    Newcastle Upon Tyne, UK
    Whnever I've owned an Apple notebook it's only really ever stayed in my room, I never really take it anywhere out the house. But I'm going traveling for a year and just wondering how people's Airs have held up with taking them to college, travelling with business etc.

    Are they pretty durable to be threw in and out of backpacks and stuff like that? I'm always scared of breaking my MacBook but I think I might be being over the top.

  2. DIY_glenn macrumors member

    Sep 7, 2015
    Yes, definitely!
    I've had my 2011 for 4 years, still looks brand new. Thought I'd scratched it a couple of times, but could rinse off. That thing is durable!
    Some advice:
    - Buy a protective sleeve, but take care to have one that doesn't have the zipper exposed to scratch it up overtime.
    - Make sure it has some "air" around it (the sleeve might help). If you have heavy books etc. besides the MBA, you might end up with scratches on the screen from the keyboard.

    I haven't seen this screen scratching issue on the MBA (or my GF's 2012), but a couple of guys here at work have a lot of scratches on their screen from the keyboard on their 13" MacBook Pro Retina.

    I've always taken care to make sure the MBA has enough padding around it to withstand some rough handling.

    Buy a backpack made for computers, that has extra padding at the back, underneath and towards the front pocket to absorb as much as possible. ESPECIALLY the padding underneath is gold. My backpack has a 5cm padding so the Mac doesn't touch the ground when the backpack is on the floor. (My MacBook Pro got a dent on one of the corners when an older non-padded backpack fell to the ground from about 60-70cm, I had to open up and re-align the monitor hinges etc.)

    All in all - YES, the MBA is durable, but take care of it, and you'll have a "brand new" computer for years!
  3. Shirasaki macrumors 604


    May 16, 2015
    MacBook Air is the most durable computer Apple has created, packed with performance and portability, and keep them in a prefect balance. New MacBook is way too expensive and way underpowered. I see a guy using it today to trigger app exposé. It is just SO LAGGY that I cannot believe this is a machine packed with power.
  4. DesignerOnMac macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2007
    I own a 2013 Air. I take it everywhere, but I protect it with a Samsonite bag made for the Air. If your going to use a backpack get at sleeve and protect your Air.
  5. MacBoook160 macrumors 6502

    Feb 9, 2011
    For basic carrying in a backpack or or handbag, I use an Acme Made sleeve; there's an open space on top, so I wouldn't pack it with your food and water bottle, but it's a snug basic barrier. Perhaps if I were doing more traveling I'd go for something even more durable.
  6. b0fh666 macrumors 6502a


    Oct 12, 2012
    very durable. seen some perfectly working units in the field completely beaten up.
  7. flowrider macrumors 603


    Nov 23, 2012
    IMO, Very Durable. I take care of mine when I use it (for travel only). I keep it in a sleeve and the sleeve stays in a shoulder bag. I stay away from liquids. Other than that that's really the only precautions I take. It still looks new after two years.

  8. barbu macrumors 6502


    Jul 8, 2013
    Here is my little Macbook Air (11" Mid-2012). It fell off a desk and struck an extremely hard tile floor directly on its front corner/edge (the wife did it - MagSafe let me down that day :p). The only damage is what you see in the picture: the aluminium deformed slightly. I had to file down the jagged edge afterwards but everything else was fine, no damage to the screen, no bends or warping, it just kept on tickin'.

    IMG_0191.JPG IMG_0196.JPG

    This image shows the ACME slip case like @MacBoook160 mentioned, I bough it on a whim at the Apple Store and I love it. It shows absolutely no signs of wear after these past few years. It has a snug fit and keeps the macbook safe while it rattles around in my briefcase.

    As everyone else has said, this is an extremely rugged little computer and you should have no reason to fear dragging it around the world. Have a good trip!
  9. Left4DeadBoy macrumors regular


    Sep 20, 2015
    ^Basically. Apple designed the MacBook Air to resist scratches. Isnt it a great grey color also?
  10. mmomega macrumors demi-god


    Dec 30, 2009
    DFW, TX
    The only thing I protected my MBA's with was a bestskinsever skin.
    I had a 2010, 2011, and 2013 model. I sold off the 1st two and my wife currently uses the 2013 as her portable laptop. She has a 2014 rMBP as well but she says that's her "at home laptop" because it's so much heavier to lug around each day.

    But yeah the Air's are a very good laptop and quite durable, like I said a skin is the only thing I ever had on mine for years and it went with me everywhere, flights, cruises, camping and day to day traveling between offices. I think it stayed on the road more than it did at home.
  11. TjeuV macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2011
    Been taking a MacBook Air everywhere in a backpack or briefcase without a sleeve. No problems whatsoever. The only scratches I get are from when I bang it against my desk.
    Never used sleeves or cases for MacBooks, iPhones or iPads ... just a waste of money, these devises are stronger and more durable than most people think.
  12. Boyd01 macrumors 68040


    Feb 21, 2012
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    The most frequent threads regarding damaged MBAs seem to be from liquid spills, there are a couple of them here right now. These usually happen at home. ;)

    Use a little common sense to protect it while travelling and it should last a long time. My 2013 11" MBA has seen a few miles and is still going strong.
  13. c8rlo, Sep 23, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2015

    c8rlo macrumors 6502


    Sep 1, 2015
    still fairly new to Mac, i bought an used Mid-2011 13" MBA from a friend earlier this month. i use it ALL the time, it's now my daily workhorse...i lug it around in my messenger bag when i take it to work, travel or just chillin' at the local coffee shop. it's pretty solid and runs Yosemite with no issues. i would highly recommend a case or sleeve, just for piece of mind.
  14. MacFrag macrumors member


    Jul 24, 2015
    The Netherlands
    I have seen allot of iPhones with dents and broken touch screens :rolleyes:
  15. TjeuV macrumors 6502

    Dec 14, 2011
    I'm pretty sure I have seen more without ;)
  16. AlliFlowers Contributor


    Jan 1, 2011
    L.A. (Lower Alabama)
    Every day I get up and toss my Air in my bag. Sometimes I put it in the neoprene sleeve, sometimes I don't. I've used it on planes, ships, and other places, without a worry. The Air is a workhorse that is just the right size and weight for anything you can imagine.
  17. MacFrag macrumors member


    Jul 24, 2015
    The Netherlands
  18. CoMoMacUser macrumors 6502a

    Jun 28, 2012
    My mid-2012 MBA looks brand new. They really hold up well.
  19. lamqa macrumors newbie

    Sep 26, 2015
    it was really durable. went to the rainforest with my mba 2011 13" and copes with those humid environment
  20. MacBoook160 macrumors 6502

    Feb 9, 2011
    Wow! And I worry about the subways!
  21. Digger148 macrumors regular


    Aug 8, 2010
    Actually, I carry my MBA 11 around in a plain old padded mailer that has the opening secured with a 6" strip of velcro. Since 2013 it has gone across the country (USA) with me in my rig many, many times without incident. I let my 7 year old granddaughter use it without a single hesitation.
  22. throAU macrumors 603


    Feb 13, 2012
    Perth, Western Australia
    My Ex's 11" 2010 model did trips all over the world in her handbag with no cover or any special protection and lasted until 2014 when she upgraded because the battery was pretty trashed and she needed more SSD storage.
  23. asoksevil macrumors 6502

    Jun 7, 2010
    Taipei, Taiwan
    My 2010 MBA has been with me since my college life and I have traveled to numerous countries with it no problem. I can´t believe this 5 year old machine still looks brand new! It´s got a really timeless design.
  24. MacBassPlayer macrumors newbie


    Aug 9, 2009
    Sidney, IN
    My 2012 has been to hell and back (college and touring with a band) and other than 2 little black scratches on the bottom, it looks as good as new. As long as you use common sense and don't do anything stupid, they are pretty hard to break.
  25. 0007776 Suspended


    Jul 11, 2006
    My 2012 has been all over the world with no real problems. The only issues I'm having right now I'm pretty sure stem from the back that I should have gone with a larger SSD as my drive is almost full.

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