MBA 1.6GHz processor vs. Alienware ULV 1.3 (overclocked)

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by rotobadger, Nov 24, 2010.

  1. rotobadger macrumors 65816

    rotobadger

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    #1
    Can anyone tell me if the 11.6 inch MBA processor (1.6) is roughly comparable to the Alienware M11x 1.3GHz (when it is overclocked to 1.6)?

    I am in desperate need of a second computer to carry with me for work as I travel. My main computer is a 17 inch MBP i5 and it has been fantastic. Carrying another 5 pound + computer is really tough because of the weight. I am replacing an old HP (currently my backup) that weighs nearly 8 pounds!

    Other than the Sony Vaio Z (which uses a proprietary HD), there seems to be nothing out there that fits my needs.

    Ideal computer would be a 13 inch MBP (4.5 pounds or so) with a powerful dedicated video card and a lower end i5.

    I would have to go with the first gen Alienware because I need a VGA out as well.

    Also, the new Nvidia Optimus technology is way buggy and does not work correctly (as I found out on a Samsung QX410 and had to return it after many, many hours on the phone with Samsung and Nvidia).

    Hoping the next gen of MBP will be lighter and more powerful!
     
  2. CaoCao macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    #2
    CPU performance will be similar, but the M11x will consume ~50% more watts
    If you go with the MBA 11 you will shave two pounds
     
  3. aberrero macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2010
    #3
    HP Envy 14 covers all the bases I think. It weighs 5.1 or so pounds, so it is a bit on the heavy side, but not much heavier than the 13" MBP.
     
  4. Kenrik macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2004
    #4
    Ewwww.... HP... Apple Knockoff... Eww...
     
  5. bolen, Nov 24, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2010

    bolen macrumors 6502

    bolen

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Location:
    Sweden
    #5
    You want a second computer for traveling?

    [​IMG]
    vs.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    'nuff said.
     
  6. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #6
    While you are giving advice... I am really torn between a Prius and a Hummer for my daily commute. I'd like good gas mileage, and parking spaces are really small. Any suggestions? ;)

    /Jim
     
  7. bolen macrumors 6502

    bolen

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Location:
    Sweden
    #7
    That's a tough nut to crack! ;)
     
  8. lilo777 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2009
    #8
    Looking at the number and types of ports on both computers I'd say the upper one is like a Swiss knife. MBA is too limited. I you really want to go with slim, then Sony VAIO X might be a better option - thinner and much lighter than MBA.
     
  9. bolen macrumors 6502

    bolen

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Location:
    Sweden
    #9
    Question is, do you actually need that plethora of ports on an ultra-portable computer?
     
  10. Adidas Addict macrumors 65816

    Adidas Addict

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2008
    Location:
    England
    #10

    The Vaio X is a beautiful machine, but it's very slow in use.
     
  11. rotobadger thread starter macrumors 65816

    rotobadger

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2007
    #11
    bolen: I had the 11 inch MBA and loved it. Of course I'd rather have a thin 2.2 pound notebook than a thick 4.5 pound notebook. But the MBA didn't have the graphics power I need for work. Unfortunately, it choked on certain processes. The M11x has the same processor but a much more powerful GPU.

    I'm not positive the M11x is the answer but it's the closest thing I can find to a powerful light and portable.

    I'm seriously leaning towards just waiting until Apple updates the MBP and hope the 13 inch gets a dedicated GPU.
     
  12. iMpathetic macrumors 68030

    iMpathetic

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2007
    Location:
    IMBY
    #12
    The m11x is gonna be far, far nicer if you actually need power... don't forget, you can stick a REAL hard drive in there!
     
  13. aberrero macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 12, 2010
    #13
    Apple is more likely to kill the MBP than to give it dedicated graphics.
     
  14. lilo777 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2009
    #14
    It depends. For some, "ultra-portable" might mean a wide variety of situations/usage scenarios and then, yes, having those ports might be beneficial.
     
  15. foiden, Nov 26, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2010

    foiden macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2008
    #15
    I looked at the alienware. A nice machine, but it does defeat its purpose as an ultra portble at times. It weighs as much as a MBP if not a bit more. For its size, it's a heavyweight. It does, however, have switchable graphics that puts in the idea of a good battery-life with the choice to go high powered low-life. While switching between the 2 is a bit clunky, the choice is definitely in favor of the alienware. On the other hand, for the price of the Air, you're still stuck with regular hard drives instead of SSD. And to tell you the truth, one major reason for the Air's incredible desktop snappiness is the entire SSD architecture.

    And to a degree, SSD is where the main part of the price of the Air is put into. Refit that alienware with SSD and then you'll see the price go up. But until you put that kind of drive into the alienware (for which the prices you see are without that tech. A lot of folks forget that detail that the true reason most of these other machines can look snazzy with certain features and sell for less is the lack of SSD due to HDD being much cheaper, even when comparing between Apple products, the SSD makes the biggest price difference where ram, CPU power, and other feature upgrades cost less) it'll suffer more hangups and pauses on the desktop side of things.

    The lack of SSD, for the same price, is where you'll see the biggest (general desktop and non-gaming use) issue between the Alienware and the Air. A case where the Air has a big advantage. The alienware has some pretty nice maximum battery life quotes, but you have to leave it underclocked to get it, and it has a bit of less aggressive testing for the quoted battery life. Overclock that thing and the alienware loses the battery advantage. So you're left with the choice of similar CPU performance with or without the SSD.
     
  16. KnightWRX macrumors Pentium

    KnightWRX

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    Location:
    Quebec, Canada
    #16
    Did you just recommend a Intel Atom processor with an Intel integrated graphics chipset to a guy looking at the MBA and Alienware M11X ?

    Sorry, but the Vaio X is not even close to being in the same ballpark in terms of performance.
     

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