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MacBook Air 'Ultimate' Configurations Benchmarked

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In a follow-up to its benchmarks for the new 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Air models yesterday, Macworld has now gotten its hands on the "ultimate" configurations of the two sizes, allowing for testing on the higher-powered models offering faster processors and more RAM.
Our Speedmark 6.5 results show the BTO 11-inch MacBook Air topping its standard configuration version by 12 percent, overall. The biggest individual test gains were in iTunes encoding and our multitasking test, which were both 16 percent faster on the BTO 11-inch MacBook Air. Aperture was 14 percent faster, and iPhoto and HandBrake were both 13 percent faster.

The 13-inch MacBook Air BTO configuration was 10 percent faster than its stock configuration. Individual application highlights include Aperture and our multitasking tests that were both 15 percent faster, and iPhoto was 14 percent faster.
In the context of Apple's broader lineup, maxing out the 11-inch MacBook Air brings it within 5% of the current white MacBook on the Speedmark suite, while the top-end 13-inch MacBook Air healthily beats the standard 13-inch MacBook Pro despite the Air's slower processor. The maxed-out 13-inch MacBook Air remains about 10% slower than the standard 15" MacBook Pro with its significantly more powerful Core i5 processor, although that deficit is about half as wide as that seen with the standard 13-inch MacBook Air.

Article Link: MacBook Air 'Ultimate' Configurations Benchmarked
 

Brien

macrumors 68040
Aug 11, 2008
3,258
956
Wow, I'm surprised that the 13" comes so close in performance to a 15" MBP. I guess those SSDs really do make a difference.
 
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itommyboy

macrumors 6502a
Feb 26, 2009
569
0
Titletown USA
OK Enough Already I'm Pulling The Trigger

Just what I needed. Well these max'd config tests starting to show up and the fact I found a quick buyer for my 4,1 MBP. No more going back and forth the 13" max'd it is for me. For what it's worth it will be my only Mac laptop - actually will be my ONLY Mac - until next iMacs drop. Now to find one around my neck of the woods in store. :rolleyes:
 
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PeterQVenkman

macrumors 68020
Mar 4, 2005
2,023
0
That is definitely cool. Before some people consider the MacBook Air vs the MacBook Pro 13 inch, also consider price on the maxed out Air:

$1800 before tax and Applecare.

Yowza!


If you've got the money to burn and no need for more than 4 GB of Ram, the Air is one sweet machine.
 
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tripjammer

macrumors 6502a
Apr 28, 2010
581
0
Just what I needed. Well these max'd config tests starting to show up and the fact I found a quick buyer for my 4,1 MBP. No more going back and forth the 13" max'd it is for me. For what it's worth it will be my only Mac laptop - actually will be my ONLY Mac - until next iMacs drop. Now to find one around my neck of the woods in store. :rolleyes:

I am on the apple site now...and I am torn between a 13 inch MBA maxed out or a Maxed out iMac 27 inch with the i7 but no SSD.

hmmm...anybody know when the next iMac update is gonna be?

I have a ipad and two regular windows laptops...but I need a real mac....to start developing some iOS apps.
 
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hawon

macrumors member
Sep 8, 2009
86
11
but none of the others are maxed out configurations though.
What about when MacBook and both 13&15" MacBook Pro with ultimate configurations?
 
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daneoni

macrumors G4
Mar 24, 2006
10,807
79
Pointless comparison. Put SSDs in all the other notebooks then retest and see who comes out on top.
 
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Winter Charm

macrumors 6502a
Jul 31, 2008
804
270
Wow, I'm surprised that the 13" comes so close in performance to a 15" MBP. I guess those SSDs really do make a difference.

They sure do, and it's getting close to time for me to buy another mac. (i'll probly buy once they open the education deal during the summer. :D :D :D

I'm really hoping they go the route of inbuilt flash storage for the new macbooks as well. Judging from the performance gain, if they took the hard drive bay out of the macbook pro and just put in a ssd board, they could make the battery even bigger!!! :)

The result would be a macbook pro with 11-12 hour battery and an SSD reliability as well as instant on capability, and a healthy performance gain

(i'm guessing they will take the pros along the range of 256GB - 512GB):D



EDIT: though, finding replacement boards would be annoying, maybe they would adapt the hard drive bay somehow, and if they didnt, i'd like to get my hands on an SSD like the Vertex II...
 
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Wang Foolio

macrumors regular
Jan 11, 2010
164
0
Keep in mind that a 15" MBP with upgrades and SSD is what, like $3,500 - 4,000?

For the price, the MBA's are looking mighty fine.
 
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HyperX13

macrumors 6502
Sep 3, 2009
347
6
I wish the 11 came with the 256 gig ssd. That would be the ultimate notebook for me...
 
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TMRaven

macrumors 68020
Nov 5, 2009
2,099
1
Pointless comparison. Put SSDs in all the other notebooks then retest and see who comes out on top.

Then you're comparing two machines with vastly different price points. Not much of a comparison.

Until apple introduces stock flash memory for all of their notebook lineups, all with competitive price points, this comparison is fair.
 
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koruki

macrumors 65816
Aug 16, 2009
1,191
503
New Zealand
Wow I'm impressed, I resented the gen1 Macbook Air I have, but looking at his I may pick up one new one using the ultimate config ;)
 
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Torrijos

macrumors 6502
Jan 10, 2006
383
21
And I wish there would be a Mac project...
I'm kind of done with my portable phase.

Still, if they manage to get a lit keyboard in there, the macbook line can disappear for the air line.

I'm guessing a lot of olds Macbook Pro will be waiting for the refresh in a few months hoping t get the SSD treatment.
 
Comment

jahman

macrumors regular
Feb 12, 2010
130
1
UK
A maxed out 13" MBA in the US is £1340 in the US if you add VAT. In the UK, the same spec costs £1510 which sticks in the craw somewhat. How can Apple justify a £170 differential? I'd import one if there were an easy way to do it. I'm sure a UK power adapter is <£170.

Cheers,

jahman
 
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Stingray454

macrumors 6502a
Sep 22, 2009
588
104
I am on the apple site now...and I am torn between a 13 inch MBA maxed out or a Maxed out iMac 27 inch with the i7 but no SSD.

I have a ipad and two regular windows laptops...but I need a real mac....to start developing some iOS apps.

I'd say the 27" is for serious desktop work and gaming (got one myself, love it). The huge screen is great for development, I use it for that myself. The Air is, imo, more suited for traveling, meeting, school, couch/bed-surfing, watching a movie and so on. I wouldn't use it as primary computer, but that's more a matter of taste.

I will personally keep my 27" i7 and get the 11" MBA to use for traveling and such stuff mentioned above, that feels like the perfect setup for me.
 
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nastebu

macrumors 6502
May 5, 2008
354
0
Pointless comparison. Put SSDs in all the other notebooks then retest and see who comes out on top.

What on earth would that prove?

It's like, "The peanut butter sandwich is just like a ham sandwich. See, if I scrape off the peanut butter and jelly, and add some ham, it's exactly the same. RIP OFF!!"
 
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