My Mac Air is slow

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by odisseo, May 7, 2009.

  1. odisseo macrumors newbie

    May 7, 2009
    hi folks-
    I've recently downoaded games such as simcity 4 and spores and they are so slow! but the air has 2gig ram, so i am puzzled. could it that be that i have only 5 gig left in my HD? Could that be the reason? Especially simcity should work fine as the minimum required configuration is a G4!

    Any help much appreciated, my problem only relates to games. Also some overheating, but i guess that's common.
  2. ray648 macrumors regular

    Jan 10, 2008
    If your air a rev A or B? The rev A used an intel graphics chip which is pretty terrible for gaming.
  3. eXan macrumors 601


    Jan 10, 2005
    Right, if your MBA is rev A it has terrible graphics. That and the fact that Sim City's Mac version runs like total a ss and Spore is a Cider port (doesn't help performance either) produce the result you're observing.
  4. ppc750fx macrumors 65816

    Aug 20, 2008
    See I've stopped gracing EA's crap with the term "port". It's not a port. It's just the Windows executable + a commercial fork of Wine.
  5. Veinticinco macrumors 6502a


    Feb 25, 2009
    Know nothing about gaming but I'll offer this.....a maxed-out HD will slow your machine down significantly regardless of what you're running.

    Only 5GB sounds low, but depends what your stock is? If you have a rev A that's 64 or 80GB, which isn't as bad proportionally as if you have the rev.B at 120/128GB.

    Typically the rule of thumb is don't let it drop below 10% of capacity. However, I believe a more accurate indicator is around 3 times your on-board RAM/sleep disk image, which on any MBA means 6GB. Easy way to check is just offload your iTunes or whatever else is hogging space, and running your game again to see if it improves performance.

    If you do have a rev.A though, as the posters above have said, the video capabilities were just terrible anyway.
  6. DoFoT9 macrumors P6


    Jun 11, 2007
    simcity4? i have been playing that on my original MBP, it struggles slightly and that is with a dedicated GPU - i would HATE to play it on an integrated GPU, even the 9400M would struggle with this fairly low resource hungry game.

    i notice that it uses quite a lot of RAM, thus using more Virtual Memory(VM) thus needing more free HD space.. having only 5gb wont allow for much VM, basically slowing your computer down by ALOT.
  7. odisseo thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 7, 2009
    thank you!

    Thank you guys! In fact i have a MBA rev.1. I love the machine, but the HD it is pretty small indeed. Have to get an external for myself.

    I have also observed that it is recently overheating, and i read somewhere it was a problem of the first batch. Anyhow, thanks for all the advise. Will try to empty the HD and see what's happen.

    Any suggestion for the best/cheap external HD that will not loose my pics and songs? Should I get the TIme Capsule? THey told me it's the worst apple product ever! ALthough the wireless interests me for obvious reasons.
  8. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    Check into Cool Book and reapplication of thermal paste. Both help the original MBA's problematic pair of 20W Merom CPU and Intel "non"-graphics. The 4200 rpm PATA hard drive doesn't help. I had an original and it couldn't do much of anything, but I have read quite a few stories of people reapplying thermal paste and undervolting with Cool Book reducing the symptoms of overheating, core shutdown, and lock ups.

    Best wishes with it.
  9. pellets007 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 28, 2009
    New York
    You do realize that the latter, the reapplication of the thermal paste, is not a viable option to most, if not all consumers, correct?
  10. aaquib macrumors 65816


    Sep 11, 2007
    Toronto, Canada
    CoolBook will do just fine. Reapplying the thermal paste is just another method of getting the Rev.A MBA to perform better than it does out-of-the-box. I've personally just purchased CoolBook and it works great. Didn't want to open up the MBA before the warranty expires. But as others have pointed out, games on a Mac, made by EA, on Intel graphics, with a stuffed HDD? Good luck.

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