Is it just me or is the 2013 MacBook Air's display actually pretty good?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Brandon263, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. Brandon263 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2009
    Location:
    Beaumont, CA
    #1
    I have a Thunderbolt Display and recently sold my 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro to buy the 2013 13-inch Air, but for the life of me I can't really discern a clear difference between the Air's display and the rMBP's display.

    At my normal viewing distance, text and images look almost as good on the 2013 Air as they do on the rMBP, just that there is a certain intangible clarity and brightness to rMBP colors at time. In normal usage, I don't notice much of a difference, though. However, the display on the 2013 Air is definitely much better than the washed out one on my go's 2012 Air.

    The colors on the TBD are a bit more deeper, for lack of the proper word, than any of the laptops, but honestly, in my day-to-day word processing, I don't notice much of a difference, except for the increased space.

    Do I have really bad eyesight?
     
  2. rillrill macrumors 6502

    rillrill

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    Location:
    New York
    #2
    at a normal distance, i don't see any pixels.

    on a side note, i went to charge this beast last night around 8 and by 10ish it was done charging. is this normal? if so, fast charging and 12+ bat life makes this the best laptop evah
     
  3. NewbieCanada macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2007
    #3
    Yes charging time is pretty fast.

    The worst part about the display, for me, is that it's not IPS and the viewing angles aren't as good.
     
  4. newdeal macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2009
    #4
    you sir need to get your eyes checked. Like you I came from a 15" rmbp and the display on the air is clearly far far worse. viewing angles, colour gamut, resolution/piellation. Its basically going from apples best display to their worst and the difference is noticable. That said I prefer the air because of battery life and while I couldn't live with the LG display I returned it and got a samsung and its no retina but it is fine for my purposes
     
  5. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    Jul 2, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida
    #5
    The Air display is one of the best I've ever seen on a laptop.

    I guess I too need to get my eyes checked... :rolleyes:
     
  6. DisplacedMic macrumors 65816

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    May 1, 2009
    #6
    i avoid retinas so that i can continue to live in relative bliss with my 11"
     
  7. larry918 macrumors regular

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    Jun 29, 2013
    #7
    Except for some contrast differences, I cannot tell a single difference between my 2013 MBA and my friend's 15 in rMBP display…naturally, I'm no photographer and I don't notice that stuff :D
     
  8. L T macrumors 6502

    L T

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    Feb 24, 2013
    Location:
    UK
    #8
    Only got my 13inch MBA yesterday but I think the display looks bloody amazing!
     
  9. edricfilho macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2010
    #9
    After spending 4 years using MBAs I do not "see" a difference in the rMBP display at normal distances, but I feel reading is really more comfortable. The whole experience is better, specifically if you have to stay in front of the thing for hours. Changed my 11" and 13" MBA to a 13" rMBP and, fact is, it is not THAT bigger, and my reading is relaxed like it has never been...

    Cheers
     
  10. PDFierro macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    #10
    I can easily tell the difference even at the Apple store. For some people it's different. I do lots of word processing too and the Retina screen is a major plus for me, I would not be able to live with the Air screen.
     
  11. ItHurtsWhenIP macrumors 6502

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    Aug 20, 2013
    Location:
    'Merica!
    #11
    Coming from a 13" windows laptop that was the same resolution as the new 11" MBA, the screen on my new 13" MBA is gorgeous to my eyes.

    I have about 30 wallpapers from interfacelift and they all look amazing. I'm sure I would notice a difference between it and a retina display, but the only place I care about resolution is on my TV.

    I don't use my laptop to watch movies, watch TV or play games on a regular basis, and never have, but the occasional Netflix or iTunes movie looks absolutely fine to me. I also have an Xbox 360 for video games, have never been a computer "gamer". The fact that these new ones can even handle the mid-high level games decently well speaks volumes, even though I'll never play them.

    I'll gladly take battery life and a beautiful screen over less battery and a slightly distinguishable rise in pixel density on an amazing screen any day.

    Bottom line, the Pro and it's retina screen just isn't for me. :)
     
  12. skaertus macrumors 68030

    skaertus

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2009
    Location:
    Brazil
    #12
    The displays in the 2012 and the 2013 MBAs are the same. No difference. If you noticed some difference, then perhaps the display of your particular 2012 MBA had some sort of problem.

    Said that, the display on the MBA is not bad. It's a 13" TN display with a 1440x900 resolution, and well calibrated. Of course it doesn't compare to the 15" IPS display with a 2880x1800 resolution of the rMBP, or to the display of other laptops which are coming out with dazzling IPS displays. But pixels in the MBA are certainly smaller (and more difficult to see) than in the 13" cMBP, which sports a lower 1280x800 resolution.

    Some people notice a lot of difference (like me, for instance). For some other people, however, a very high pixel density is no big deal. The difference, of course, is there, but then perhaps you simply do not notice it, or do not care about it. And that's fine. Whatever works for you.
     
  13. coldjeanzzz macrumors 6502a

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    Nov 4, 2012
    #13
    I wish there was a way to ban you from using that smilie
     
  14. Ronnoco macrumors 68030

    Ronnoco

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    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    United States of America
    #14
    I regularly use a 27" ACD at home and use rMBP's at work. I have no problem with my 2013 MBA display. It has nice contrast, vivid colors and fairly deep blacks and the text is easy to read. No, it's not a Retina, but it is certainly easy on the eyes IMO and a very nice display for mobile computing.
     
  15. Tarrou8 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2013
    #15
    This. The display for recreational users is more than adequate. For more demanding usage, the answer will vary per person. Personally I think the current display is acceptable, but considering how great the rest of the machine is, it does feel subpar to me in relation.
     
  16. 2IS macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    #16
    The display on the Air is very average. Average enough that this thread shouldn't exist. It's mediocrity is the sole reason I'm waiting on a 13" Haswell equipped rMBP to replace my 2010 MBA
     
  17. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #17
    Really? :rolleyes:

    :cool:
     
  18. ItHurtsWhenIP macrumors 6502

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    Aug 20, 2013
    Location:
    'Merica!
    #18
    Yes, because it's not what you require, therefore it can't be fine for anyone else.

    Check a dictionary and look up the word 'egocentric'..:rolleyes:
     
  19. jadAce macrumors regular

    jadAce

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2013
    #19
    When I was about to buy a MacBook (making the switch from Windows), I went on these forums and saw that many people chose the rMBP simply because of screen quality. After some debate, I decided I would go for the MacBook Air because of its battery life and Haswell.

    When the MBA arrived, I was genuinely impressed by the display. Sure, if we consider the rMBP or even the Sony Vaio Pro 13, better screen quality may exist. But here, everything is very clear and bright. For my use, it is perfect.
    IMHO, truthfully, I have yet to see such a high quality display on a laptop as light, portable, powerful, and intuitive as the MacBook Air.

    In another few years, we will probably see Retina on the MacBook Air (with great battery life). For now, this screen is awesome.
     
  20. Doublea6 macrumors regular

    Doublea6

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2013
    #20
    For me, and I do a lot of photo editing for fun, the biggest difference I noticed was the contrast and how much better the colors looked. Blacks were a lot darker and it was just top notch. It was also clearer. This is probably because I was in the apple store with the two computers right next to each other though. I'm planning on getting an air, but I think if the pro was already updated I'd get that. I'm a little conflicted.
     
  21. ML321 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2013
    Location:
    Canada
    #21
    The only reason people were hating the display was because of the price. People/reviewers don't understand that if you want 12+ hours of battery life the display can't be demanding. This display is perfect in my eyes. If it was a retina or even a 1080p HD display then battery life would be cut drastically.
     
  22. AXs macrumors 6502a

    AXs

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2009
    #22
    @OP It's just you.

    Macbook Air screen is horrible for something being released in 2013. I have a shelved Acer 6920g which is SIX YEARS OLD, and it has a 1080p screen.

    I'm not saying Apple should have put a retina display into their Airs, but at least a 1080p screen would we be great.

    Every time I use my external HD displays, or especially when I use my iPad Retina - when I switch back to using the Air, the screen quality difference is really noticeable.

    Not saying that it is bad at all... but it should surely be better. This is the only downside to the Air imo. Otherwise it is a perfect machine.
     
  23. Ronnoco macrumors 68030

    Ronnoco

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2007
    Location:
    United States of America
    #23
    Horrible? Really? LOL
    I'm not sure that means what you think it means.
     
  24. Brandon263 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2009
    Location:
    Beaumont, CA
    #24
    Is your Acer a 13-inch machine? Can you make out the text at such a high resolution on a tiny screen?

    I find that even on the 13-inch MacBook Air, I have to zoom in on text in Google Chrome and in word processors because the text is so small.

    I honestly don't know whether updating the display to 1080p would be useful. What purpose would it serve? Even on my rMBP, I never used the 1080p scaling because text was too small.

    I can understand doubling the resolution, though, as it would make things clearer while still keeping text elements readable.

     
  25. jadAce macrumors regular

    jadAce

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2013
    #25
    It really helps that the MBA has ports for external displays. I don't need the high screen quality really. But for those who do, plugging in a Thunderbolt Display or other 1080p monitor is easy.
     

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