MBA isn't good anymore


OllyW

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Staff member
Oct 11, 2005
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The Black Country, England
Did you read the wrap up?

Sony has finally found a way to combine a high-res touchscreen with decent performance, great battery life, and a thin and light body — that's all good, but I still want more. Much more. For $1,249 I want a computer that doesn't feel like it would break in a stiff breeze, and one without the jumpy trackpad that sometimes makes me wish for a stiff breeze. The MacBook Air succeeds because each of its parts just work, because it has few earth-shattering features but even fewer deal-breaking flaws. Sony's close, but the VAIO Pro 13 lacks the polish required to really take on the Air.

The 11-inch model is worse. The even-smaller, even-thinner body only exacerbates the build quality problems, and coupled with a touchscreen that's probably too high-res for this screen size, it just falters. Battery life is great, but performance lags a bit behind the larger counterpart — and when the 13-inch Pro is so thin and light anyway, it's hard to think of a reason to buy the 11-inch model unless you're desperately trying to save $100. If that's the case, you're probably better off just looking elsewhere, or saving another $150 and buying the 11-inch Air.
I think Sony has also got work to do. :)
 

UBS28

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Oct 2, 2012
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Did you read the wrap up?



I think Sony has also got work to do. :)
Yes, Sony got work to do also. However they are showing what is possible in 2013. ( touch screens, IPS display, good battery life and so on ... ).

The reason why I bought my MBP in 2010 was due to no competition that offered similar performance, battery life and screen quality. Things appear to be different in 2013.
 

XoFu

macrumors regular
Apr 8, 2013
127
7
Oops!

Argh! This thing is about the Vaio Pro :confused:... what a relief! I missed a couple of heart beats thinking Apple had decided to drop the MBA as of monday ....
 

skaertus

macrumors 68040
Feb 23, 2009
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Brazil
The Sony VAIO PRO is lighter, has a much better display (IPS display at higher resolution), better battery life and it has a touchscreen.

Apple has got work to do.

http://www.theverge.com/2013/6/4/4395926/sony-vaio-pro-review-were-going-to-war-with-the-macbook-air
Sony Vaio Pro?

Have you see the other offerings at Computex? Asus Zenbook Infinity, Dell XPS 11, the new Acer Aspire S7? There's a whole lotta MBA killers being released. I hope Apple is able to keep up with competition instead of just letting the same old design linger on...
 

abz1981

macrumors 65816
Jan 3, 2011
1,014
4
If you believe MBA is no good anymore. Go ahead and get something that is not made by Apple and write us a review about it how you got on with it.
 

notjustjay

macrumors 603
Sep 19, 2003
6,042
111
Canada, eh?
Yeah, I hate it when I buy an Apple product, and then Sony produces something, and all of a sudden my Apple product stops working and is junk.

Oh wait...

I read the reviews on the Vaio Pro 11 and 13, and I'm looking forward to seeing them in person. They look like very nice machines. But that doesn't make the MacBook Pro any less "good".

Or, on the flipside, when your friends tell you they are shopping for a Windows ultraportable, do you currently tell them "that's no good. Get a MacBook Air instead"? If you do, what is their reaction?
 

mortenandersen

macrumors 6502
Apr 9, 2011
401
16
Norway
Apart from all other features...

I love the 11 inch screen form factor because of its portability and light weight.

But apart from brand and all other different features, one that concerns me most is how much noise the fan(s) makes when the machine is running on normal daily use, especially in a quiet room when 3-4 people are trying to co-work producing a translation of a text, for instance: For us, noisy fans are one of the most horrible disturbing things in such a setting. And several of the reviewers of the Vaio Pro 11 have commented that the fans periodically are noisy. That is really too bad these days...

I hope that the new edition of the 11 Air not will have this problem.

That would for many of us be the important factor in the decision process, apart from others of course (the OS, the keyboard, and the screen quality, among others).
 

arctic

macrumors 6502a
Jun 18, 2008
632
1
Same old story. People looking at Android phones and throw a fit that iPhones don't have bigger screens. I just ask them "Does it have the usability of iOS?"

People every single year complaining that Brand X has this or that while Macs don't. Every single year.

A few minutes after WWDC, I'll gladly grab some popcorn and read the posts of users here fuming why there's no Retina for the Airs etc. Then enjoy reviews from anadtech and macworld as they dissect how these machines work well. Then onto more threads like this a few weeks before Broadwell comes out. And so on.

I won't actually be surprised if these disappointed people continue roaming in mac threads instead of buying the windoze machines they're salivating about.

Meanwhile, the wise are enjoying their OSX and iOS. Whether it has a floppy disk or not. :)
 

Saturn1217

macrumors 6502a
Apr 28, 2008
981
237
I read through that whole verge review. The impression I got was that it was an impressive feat to get the Sony Vaio Pro laptops so small and light but some sacrifices were made to get there, mainly in build quality/sturidiness, and the keyboard. Also the super high res screen on the 11" was seen as a negative by the verge (and I would have to agree).

BUT, I think the OP is looking at this all wrong. What is really exciting is the impressive battery life these machines are getting with Haswell. I'm almost certain neither the 11" or 13" Vaio Pros have batteries larger than the comparably sized MBAs (otherwise they'd be heavier) but they are getting GREAT battery life. It makes me think Haswell on the MBA might lead to similar improvements :)
 

skaertus

macrumors 68040
Feb 23, 2009
3,328
449
Brazil
Same old story. People looking at Android phones and throw a fit that iPhones don't have bigger screens. I just ask them "Does it have the usability of iOS?"

People every single year complaining that Brand X has this or that while Macs don't. Every single year.

A few minutes after WWDC, I'll gladly grab some popcorn and read the posts of users here fuming why there's no Retina for the Airs etc. Then enjoy reviews from anadtech and macworld as they dissect how these machines work well. Then onto more threads like this a few weeks before Broadwell comes out. And so on.

I won't actually be surprised if these disappointed people continue roaming in mac threads instead of buying the windoze machines they're salivating about.

Meanwhile, the wise are enjoying their OSX and iOS. Whether it has a floppy disk or not. :)
Not exactly. Android has serious usability problems that iOS doesn't have. But Windows is a very fine operating system that goes shoulder-to-shoulder with OS X. You may have your personal preference, but Windows is perfectly usable and you can't compare it to Android. You could say that a über laptop running Linux wouldn't be comparable to a MBA, and I would have to agree. But as long as the laptop runs Windows, then it makes a worthy contender to any Mac (given that the hardware doesn't have its own faults despite the great specs).
 

arctic

macrumors 6502a
Jun 18, 2008
632
1
Not exactly. Android has serious usability problems that iOS doesn't have. But Windows is a very fine operating system that goes shoulder-to-shoulder with OS X. You may have your personal preference, but Windows is perfectly usable and you can't compare it to Android. You could say that a über laptop running Linux wouldn't be comparable to a MBA, and I would have to agree. But as long as the laptop runs Windows, then it makes a worthy contender to any Mac (given that the hardware doesn't have its own faults despite the great specs).
If usability is the game then I would stand corrected. My Windows 7 gaming desktop can be useful but even if it has its merits and a beast of a GPU, it can't hold a candle to the usability of even the older Snow Leopard. Yes, Windows can be 'usable' just like my old Nokia phone can be 'usable' in making calls.

But you said 'shoulder to shoulder with OS X'? Seriously? Oh well, YMMV.
 

schopaia

macrumors member
Apr 14, 2010
72
6
Both Pro models feel flimsy and breakable — every time I picked my Pro up by its corner, its carbon fiber body flexed a lot more than I'm comfortable with. The lid gives backward when you tap on the screen; the whole tray moves downward as you type. The problems are far worse on the 11-inch model than the 13 — the 13 flexes a little while the 11 appears to be on the verge of coming apart at all times — but in both cases I have this nagging fear that I'm either going to break off a piece of the computer or accidentally press straight through it and come out the other side.


That sounds - dreadful.
 

firewood

macrumors 604
Jul 29, 2003
7,641
872
Silicon Valley
The Sony VAIO PRO is ...
That's a common mental delusion. That if a taller younger person walks into the room, you suddenly age, shrink and become shorter. Nonsense. You are the same height in cm as you were before. And only a minute older.

In fact, what Sony does has no effect on how good or bad the MBA was or is before the new messy guy walked into the room. It's just as good as it was 2 years ago.
 

racer1441

macrumors 68000
Jul 3, 2009
1,770
300
No one has ever explained to me why I want to finger my laptop screen. Yes, Windows 8 needs it, but that's a design decision. I have never felt the need to touch my laptops or desktop monitors.
 

abz1981

macrumors 65816
Jan 3, 2011
1,014
4
No one has ever explained to me why I want to finger my laptop screen. Yes, Windows 8 needs it, but that's a design decision. I have never felt the need to touch my laptops or desktop monitors.
I think you should forget the laptop and get a girl friend. dude. :D
 

mortenandersen

macrumors 6502
Apr 9, 2011
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Back to the heat dissipation and possible fan noise of the 11 Air

I hope that the soon to come Haswell-driven 11 Air will have that GREAT battery time as one supposedly can expect, and that the building quality (or way of constructing and material choice) of the 11 Air will give good heat dissipation without demanding so much fan activity, and therefore possible fan noise. I also hope that Apple is focusing on this matter, because that the manufacturers do that, is NOT self-evident. There are so many machines of other brands out there that have a horrible fan noise.
 

SnowLeopard2008

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Jul 4, 2008
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Silicon Valley
Not even close. Sony's MBA competitor is using Haswell chips. MBA, as of today, still uses Ivy Bridge. That will change in the very near future. It's almost impossible to make an ultrabook type laptop using Haswell and somehow NOT get good battery life. Intel did a lot of work to ensure consistently good battery life across the board for Haswell chips.

According to both Engadget and TheVerge, the case creaks and feels flimsy. I can't remember which one said this but it was something along the lines of "If I pick it up, I feel as if the computer will fall apart or my fingers will go straight through the chassis". The keyboard and trackpad didn't much positive reviews either. Whether the touchscreen is a benefit or just useless is up for debate. The IPS screen is a huge step up as is resolution. But too much is sometimes worse. 1080P on 11" is just crazy. Throw in Windows 7/8's horrible scaling and DPI, 1080P was a bad decision. 1660x900/1440x900 would be great. And save 1080P for the 13". I'm rather young and I find it very difficult to look at an 11" 1080P display using 1:1 pixel ratio. Everything is miniscule.

Top that off with the fact that it's more expensive than a MBA? Apple is more likely to lower current MBA prices next Monday than they are to raise them. Lenovo's X1 Carbon proved that carbon fiber doesn't have to suck so bad (like Sony did here). Solid, premium construction.
 
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skaertus

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Feb 23, 2009
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If usability is the game then I would stand corrected. My Windows 7 gaming desktop can be useful but even if it has its merits and a beast of a GPU, it can't hold a candle to the usability of even the older Snow Leopard. Yes, Windows can be 'usable' just like my old Nokia phone can be 'usable' in making calls.

But you said 'shoulder to shoulder with OS X'? Seriously? Oh well, YMMV.
Just a matter of personal opinion. Windows is not less usable than OS X. Shoulder to shoulder with OS X? Yes, pretty much. They're both equally efficient and usable. Each one follows its own logic and commands are where you expect them to be. But I'll not discuss that in the forum of a Mac community.