Macbook Air 11" i7 Starcraft 2

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by charpi, Jul 26, 2011.

  1. charpi, Jul 26, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2011

    charpi macrumors regular

    Sep 30, 2006
    I can happily report that after a 200v200 battle vs Insane AI it is mostly playable.

    Breaking it down,

    Early game (<50 supply)
    50-70 FPS, mostly in the 60s

    Mid game (<100 supply + I think 100 cannons)

    Taking into account of the AI's stupidity, I just walled off with 3 bases with a crapton of cannons. The screen where the AI rushed his 150 food army into my 100 cannons has around 30-40 FPS. Mostly 33s and 34s.

    Late game (200 supply)

    To put it in the worst case scenario, my army consists of purely carriers, as I guess the interceptors would stress the CPU out the most. So when its 200v200 (Carriers v BCs, Marines, etc), I guess that there are easily over 200 interceptors (I remember I have at least 1 full control group of carriers, meaning 24 x 8 = 192 interceptors), Minimum FPS is 22, usually around the 24 to 26 ish range.


    Macbook Air 11"
    4GB RAM
    128GB SSD (Samsung)

    Lowest on everything, 1366 x 768 res.
    On OSX Lion

    Temp immediately after the game: CPU 77C

    Hope this helps some people :)

    PS. Mods, if you don't think that this is worthy of a thread feel free to merge it with the MBA gaming threads.

    Thanks for reading :)

    Edit: This machine is amazing, I just checked iStat after typing the review (took 10min) and the CPU is back to it's 40-50C
    Edit2: Fans audible from the mid game mark onwards.
    Edit3: From mid game onwards, heat can be felt from the keyboard. Uncomfortable, but still bearable

    Feel free to ask any questions
  2. Xgm541 macrumors 65816

    May 3, 2011
    I like your "real world" benchmark. Im tired of all these charts...
  3. shot2bits macrumors member

    Mar 1, 2011
    United Kingdom
    Thanks for posting. As said on the previous thread, I think everyone will agree the Air is not a gaming laptop but.. It looks as if most modern titles are playable on low settings which I think is a real bonus.
  4. johnadams2007 macrumors member


    Jul 25, 2011
    thats not bad. i hate to bash the new mba, but if i set to low on my 2010 mba, i get around 95-100 fps and i never see below 35-40 at 200 food. i will admit that I'm impressed at how the i7 helps drive up the intel hd 3000's poor sc2 frame rates. =]

    it's worth noting that i have replaced my stock thermal paste with some excellent tuniq tx-3, and the reduced heat keeps me from bogging down under stress. i haven't tried overclocking my 320m yet, but i should.
  5. Matthew9559 macrumors 6502a


    Apr 7, 2007
    Cleveland, OH
    Awesome, thanks for taking the time to try it out for us.

    Have you tried any 2vs2 or 3vs3 online yet? Or do you think that might be a bit too much?
  6. johnadams2007 macrumors member


    Jul 25, 2011
    I've played a few 4v4 matches since I installed yesterday and I notice hardly any differences over a 1v1
  7. Matthew9559 macrumors 6502a


    Apr 7, 2007
    Cleveland, OH

    Yay! :)

    Even my MBP in sig has trouble with 4vs4 on lowest settings. :p

    Though it is 4 years old now and MBA surpasses it in every way.
  8. PaulWog Suspended

    Jun 28, 2011
    Unfortunately your temp after the game is significantly different from the temp while you were playing the game. Processors can drop 20 celcius in a matter of less than a second when the only thing keeping them hot is a game like that. My over clocked i7 2600k at home in my desktop runs at 4.8GHz, and when full-blast it reaches up to 69 celcius... if you stop stressing it, it will go down to 39 celcius in less than one second, and then slowly drop further down :p

    What I recommend if you want to see the temperatures while playing is to run SC2 in Full-screen windowed mode. Then simply use the four-finger swipe gesture to switch to the widget panel, and look at iStat Pro and check the temps :D
  9. goosevr1, Jul 29, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2011

    goosevr1 macrumors newbie

    Jul 29, 2011

    I just got the 13" MBA 1.8 i7 and loaded Starcraft 2 on the OSX side. Playing any of the single player campaigns are really smooth (over 50 FPS) and I'd agree with everything said here.

    Tried multiplayer with low settings (everything on low) and 1152x720 resolution. At this setting, while the units might look a little "cartoonish" (since textures and such are low), the game is extremely playable. Playing custom maps with high activity (e.g. Desert Strike, Income Wars, Nexus Wars, etc) are decent. During the beginning of these games, FPS is around 80-100. Towards the end of the game, when there's a lot going on, the MBA still cranks out 16-24 FPS on average, which for me is smooth enough not to notice any significant stutter.

    It pales in comparision to the gaming rig I have, but for an ultraportable I'd say it definitely runs SC2 effectively if you need to "game on the go."

    Have not tried running it on a bootcamp install on the MBA but I don't have much reason to dedicate 40GB+ just to load Win7 on it.

    Fan kicked on once or twice, but didn't stay on - and temperatures got warm, but never to "uncomfortable."

Share This Page