MBA - Best Netbook Money Can Buy?...apparently not...

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Beanoir, Apr 15, 2011.

  1. Beanoir, Apr 15, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2011

    Beanoir macrumors 6502a

    Beanoir

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2010
    Location:
    51 degrees North
    #1
    Well I certainly think so, in fact I was quite happy to think that for the last 6 months, its been a worthy replacement to my previous Windows powered offerings from Samsung and HP. Its great, Ok you pay a premium to get the quality but then you do with any Apple device over the competition, whats new? I honestly believe that in the 11" MBA, Apple have produced a quality netbook.

    Anyway, whilst I was singing the praises of my little 11" MBA netbook today today to a colleague he shot me down in rage for referring to it as a "netbook". I mean he was deeply offended like i'd just told him I'd shafted his mum, incredible really that the conversation actually ended because of it.

    So tell me this, the MBA is small, it's lightweight, it performs the simple tasks well, it's got a good battery life and makes do without the luxuries (backlit keyboard, optical drive etc) in favour of lightweight and low cost. What in the world makes it not a netbook (apart from blatant snobbery)? If Ferrari made a van with 8 seats it would be called a people carrier there's no getting away from some things...right?
     
  2. SnowLeopard2008 macrumors 604

    SnowLeopard2008

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2008
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    #2
    According to Wikipedia (link)
    Netbooks are a category of small, lightweight, legacy-free, and inexpensive laptop computers.

    The MBA is small, lightweight, legacy-free, but NOT inexpensive. It's not a netbook to me, it's just extremely good engineering and design. To cram so much power (CPU and GPU wise) into such a small package and still have battery life as it is and 1 month standby is ... simply extremely good engineering.
     
  3. mrsir2009 macrumors 604

    mrsir2009

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2009
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #3
    I wouldn't put the name of netbook with the MBA. Netbooks are cheap and crappy - The opposite of the MBA. Plus the MBA has full sized trackpad and keyboard, unlike every other netbook.
     
  4. damnyooneek macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2005
    #4
    netbooks are really slow. much slower than the mba. the mba is in the ultraportable laptop category not netbook.
     
  5. s.hasan546 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    Location:
    NY
    #5
    it meets all the wikipedia categories except maybe "inexpensive". However, its very small, light weight, and legacy-free.

    Cost is relative. I think the MBA 1" is inexpensive enough. Especially the refurb prices. Its only $150-$300 more expensive than a 64 gb ipad 2. Im getting the MBA just as a netbook for use on the train, business trips; etc.
     
  6. s.hasan546 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    Location:
    NY
    #6
    plenty of netbooks have full sized track pads and keyboards. My older Asus had a gr8 keyboard, trackpad, build quality, and battery life was approx. 8-10 hours of real life usage.
     
  7. m3digi macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2011
    Location:
    NYC
    #7
    It sounds like your colleague is a bit sensitive. If you enjoy your MBA that's all that matters. Disregard his sensitivities. There are hungry people in the world. That's something worth getting upset over.
     
  8. Beanoir thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Beanoir

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    Dec 9, 2010
    Location:
    51 degrees North
    #8
    Well thats what I thought, at the end of the day it is cheap for an Apple.

    I like the fact that Wiki also define the MBA as a netbook too.
     
  9. SR71 macrumors 68000

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    Jan 12, 2011
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #9
    I don't know about the 11" MBA, but the 13" MBA IMO, is definitely not a netbook.
     
  10. linuxcooldude macrumors 68020

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    Mar 1, 2010
    #10
    I would never consider a MacBook air to be a netbook. The C2D is better then a Atom processor. The GPU is far superior then any netbook. Has the best touchpad.
     
  11. mrsir2009 macrumors 604

    mrsir2009

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    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #11
    +1 for C2D owning those ****** Atom processors!
     
  12. KPOM macrumors G5

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    Oct 23, 2010
    #12
    Yes, but netbooks often sell for about $300 and use CPUs with processing power roughly on par with mainstream chips of 8 years ago. Granted, the Core 2 Duo is an aging processor, but it is still more than twice as fast as an Atom running at the same clock speed.

    Computers such as the MacBook Air, Samsung Series 9, and Thinkpad X220 are in a different class, since they are intended to run mainstream software.
     
  13. Cerano macrumors 6502

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    Oct 28, 2010
  14. webitorgal macrumors regular

    webitorgal

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    Mar 9, 2011
    #14
    I think any computer 11" or larger is NOT a netbook.
     
  15. hcho3 macrumors 68030

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    May 13, 2010
    #15
    Which netbook has resolution of 1366X768 Resolution with 64 GB or 128GB SSD memory as standard?

    Which netbook boots up under 15 seconds?
     
  16. SR71 macrumors 68000

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    Jan 12, 2011
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    Boston, MA
    #16
    this! +1
     
  17. Susurs macrumors 6502

    Susurs

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    Jun 18, 2010
    #17
    It is not a netbook. Judging only by size and putting it in netbook category because of 11' is wrong. My subjective view is that a netbook is a weak windows/linux portative machine with wery limited capabilities primarily targeted @ web browsing.
    AIR outperforms a lot of 'laptops' - only factor is size - and as I told before -size alone does not determine a category...
     
  18. blow45 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #18
    I am not trying to be mean to you, but I got to say nothing, get a netbook instead and good luck with getting your work done there... if you don't get the air. To each his own, and I mean this in a good way. I hope though that the replies have convinced you otherwise.
     
  19. Dilcue macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2011
    #19
    Being the owner of two netbooks, the difference are more than the price tag. Really, the big difference is the processors. Most netbooks feature a version of the Intel Atom 32-bit processor -- a slower, power-sipping processor meant for light demands.

    These processors are clocked around 1.6GHz, with a ~533MHz frontside bus and can handle only a nominal amount of RAM (~1GB, any more doesn't affect performance) and can only perform only a few, non-demanding tasks at once. The single core Atom processor struggles with certain tasks, and using Word, Chrome, and iTunes at once is out of the question. On top of this, all netbooks brandish the admittedly un-extreme Intel Extreme Graphics.

    The MBA has a higher perfomance, albeit much older Intel Core 2 Duo processor. These processors are 64-bit, can built to perform multiple, unrelated tasks, and can address more RAM quicker without being a bottleneck. The frontside bus is also clocked at 800MHz for 11", ~1300MHz for the 13". While certainly not as powerful or fast as the MBP, the MBA also has the nVidia 320m integrated graphics.

    What turns off most people to the MBA who are familiar with netbooks is the light profile, non-backlit keyboard, lacking optical drive. This immediately produces a mindset that the MBA is a netbook, and requires explicit differentiation. Netbooks are similar from these factors, but definitely not the same from a pure performance standpoint.

    This is why I'm waiting for the next iteration of the MBA to replace my netbook. :)
     
  20. blow45 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #20
    I too will replace my current 11 air when the new iteration comes out, and I am sure it will be much much better. I do think though that this iteration is much much better than the previous model, so anyone out for one should know they ll be getting a very capable machine and if they can afford it, there's really no relation to netbook with the air.
     
  21. zap2 macrumors 604

    zap2

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    Washington D.C
    #21
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8F190 Safari/6533.18.5)

    It's just too pricey....for me netbooks are defined by the chips inside. Either Intel's Atom or AMD Fusion or AMD Neo. As CPUs change, the definition should change. The Air is much more an "ultraportable" due to price and usage of Core 2 Duo CPUs
     
  22. blow45 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #22
    netbooks were just a fad anyway guys, imo, you won't hear much about them in the future and they ll gather dust somewhere (as mine does, and btw kudos to someone who referred to the atom as the ****ing atom, very apt), as they will be superseded by thin and light notebooks such as the air, and of course the ipad which has already almost killed the netbook, and good riddance to it btw.
     
  23. hleewell macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2009
    #23
    MBA with Ivy Bridge with USB 3.0 enabled
    If Apple decides with Thunderbolt only, at least get the
    peripheral manufacturers to release 500GB to 1TB Thunderbolt
    equipped connection. Actually I love the mega bandwidth, 2-way channel,
    and the elegant slim profile of Thunderbolt connectors but the supporting
    manufacturers are very scarce. LaCie....that's it? While a lot of USB 3.0
    thumb drives & ext HDDs are already available in the market ...right now!
    My dream is to have a 64GB Thunderbolt USB drive.
     
  24. blow45 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2011
    #24
    I would wager usb 3.0 will be there for sure, of course the display port would be thunderbolt, and if it were up to me to decide I would make the other usb port thunderbolt too, so that leaves one usb 3.0. should be great, and by then they 'll be lots of peripherals with thunderbolt I would wager.
     
  25. Cheffy Dave macrumors 68030

    Cheffy Dave

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2007
    Location:
    Sunny Florida, on the Gulf Coast in Homosassa Fl
    #25
    He's just an :apple: hater, and an irrational one at best, what a stupid thing to get so worked up over!
     

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