Next price drop - what are we looking at?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Doju, Mar 4, 2009.

  1. Doju macrumors 68000

    Jun 16, 2008
    In eight months, the price of the Rev A MBA's SSD went from over $3,000 to around $1200 - 60% off. That just goes to show how rapidly SSD prices fall.

    Now, the MacBook Air Rev B has been out for around five months, and the price hasn't budged whatsoever. With the combined variables of the inevitable SSD price drop, and it soon to become refurbished, we must be looking at a pretty massive price drop. Refurbs at that price are usually ~$300, and a $300 price drop, or $200 at minimum, would be more than generous with the dropping price of SSDs. I mean - in theory, we could be looking at $600 off the SSD version of the Rev B!

    What are your opinions? How long until you think we'll see a more economic version with a price drop, or at the very least a refurbished.

    I'm in the market to throw my Alu 2.4 MB out, and get a MBA, but the price might be a bit much, and I know a price drop is inches away. With that and Snow Leopard's release, waiting could save me near $1,000. :p
  2. Thetacoking2 macrumors member

    Oct 26, 2008
    Oh how I wish a Rev B would g into the refurb section. I check it every day, is that sad? Anyway, when it goes refurb, hopefully it will be about 1499. I think I could pull the trigger if thats how much it was. I dont think that the current rev will be going down in price anytime soon until the newer Airs come out.
  3. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    The reason the original MBA prices dropped from $3099 and $1799 to $1299 and $999 refurbished was NOT because of SSD price drops.

    The original MBA was a complete failure. Apple realized that it had made a terrible error combining the components it did. For MOST people, the original MBA would not work. It would overheat with any video. It would experience core shutdown. The PATA controller could not provide the speed required to make video display without being choppy. Even the SSD was not fast like should have been as was PATA technology limiting it severely. The CPU overheated as it was a 65 NM higher voltage CPU that could not operate in the limited confines of the MBA. The video card was another problem paired with the CPU. Not just was video bad, but for people like me, the MBA would come to a complete stop and lockup when I had multiple programs opened. Just do a search on all of the problems of the original MBA, and you will see what I mean.

    The new MBA is absolutely amazing. It performs excellently. It never fails. It never overheats. It never locks up. It is extremely powerful. How did Apple fix everything???

    Changed all components:

    45 NM LV SSF Penryn CPU with 6 MB L2 Cache.

    SATA-II Controller and Drive Technology - making HDD faster in revised MBA than SSD was in original MBA.

    Nvidia 9400m GPU

    Mini Display Port along with GPU to drive up to a 30" ACD.

    1066 MHz RAM

    Better heat sink. Better interior components to make the MBA operate at much cooler temperatures which eliminated the majority of the problems.

    The new MBA is one bad ass and amazing machine. I don't think it will see price drops like you are projecting. It is NOT problematic, and most people that realize just how great it is, want one.

    Demand of the new MBA will not warrant substantial price decreases. The problems of the original MBA made Apple just want to unload the original MBAs, and the only way to do that was to reduce the price to a point where people would buy the MBA not expecting much or to use as secondary computer. Also Cool Book helped refurbished MBA buyers make the original MBA work much better. It undervolts the CPU to allow it to run cooler and not experience core shutdown and lock up.

    So, no the SSD price drops will not make the revised MBA price drop at the low end ever. The low end MBA has a HDD. The high end MBA may receive a price drop, but I would think Apple will just add a bigger SSD and charge the same or more money with its next update to the MBA.
  4. Doju thread starter macrumors 68000

    Jun 16, 2008
    Thanks for the post Scott.

    I'm aware it had incredible problems, but I wasn't aware it was to that extent - okay!

    But, I know we won't receive a drop on the HDD model likely, but for the high end SSD, a $100 price drop wouldn't be crazy, would it? SSDs are dropping in price, that much would at least make some sense. But on top of the refurbished model, usually being $300 cheaper at that price, I mean a $400 drop wouldn't be crazy, would it?
  5. Turmoil macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2008
    That was Scott's experience. Many many Rev A owners are very happy. Scott speaks only for his own experience. I'm thrilled with my Rev A as many other user are.
  6. Doju thread starter macrumors 68000

    Jun 16, 2008
    I had a MBA Rev A, it went back promptly. I found it unusable, but what I meant is, I didn't find it THAT unusable. I did find it a horrid machine, though. You'd be best paying a bit more for a second hand HDD Rev B, it would run circles around the old one in every way.
  7. bossxii macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    Kansas City
    Once you start to see refurbs Rev B's hit the Apple site you will probably save a few hundred on one, but I highly doubt you will see the new listed prices drop anytime soon. I never own'd the Rev A but avoided it due to all the poor reviews, the Rev B has been a great machine and from everything I have read doesn't seem to be to many going back from UNsatisfied users.
  8. ducatidoc macrumors regular


    Apr 20, 2008
    dunno that was my experience as well....
  9. kinkster macrumors 6502a

    Sep 15, 2008
    Because software updates helped the Rev. A so much I wouldn't attribute it's problems to hardware so much..
  10. Miker2k macrumors regular

    Feb 2, 2009
    Mine's been solid to this point. I had buyers remorse for a week or two simply because of the price tag in the down economy but I ended up keeping it. I think it's simply a case of expectations and user profiles. Some people do/expect more from their machines than others. I am by no means a power user on my MBA. I do simple day to day tasks. I surf the web, listen to Pandora, ichat, etc etc. I have much more powerful machines to do my heavy lifting. There is no doubt that the Rev A is not Apple's finest work but it meets my needs more than adequately, but it's not for everyone.
  11. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    There's only so much you can do to help hardware limitations. Look at the extent Apple went to... then it gave up on the original and completely revised it... I have never seen a complete overhaul like this.

    The MBA was the worst Mac ever, and the new MBA is the best Mac ever. The differences are night and day for MOST people that have used both. Obviously, the original MBA was the most problematic Mac notebook ever... look at the level of problems. Do a MacRumors or Google Search and you will see what I mean.

    Cool Book has helped, completely rewriting software has helped, and Snow Leopard will help. However, I would suspect Apple wishes it had never introduced the original MBA. It really damaged Apple's Mac reputation for many. I could not believe just how limited my original MBA was. I hear there are a few that were light enough users that could use the MBA and be happy. But, a lot more people were dissatisfied like me. Of all of the original MBA users I have ever spoken with, at client offices and friends, I know of ONE that thinks his original MBA was sufficient. Over 20 others absolutely hated their experience and it gave them all a negative overall impression of the Mac. Six of those people gave the MBA another chance with the revised MBA and all six bought SSD. They all love their revised MBAs. These are not numbers I am pulling out of my ass. I thought long and hard before giving the MBA another chance. I am so glad I did, but I feel Apple lied to me and gave me an inferior product with the original MBA because they should have named it Mac Light or something to imply it was not capable of doing everything a Mac could do. It couldn't even properly run the Apple loaded software. That is the truth.

    I just want to know, you all running the rev A, do you have Cool Book installed? Do you use your MBA as your primary Mac? What programs do you run?

    I have noticed the two 90% common factors of happy rev A MBA owners, is they bought it revised at a substantial discount, AND they have Cool Book installed.

    Even for the OP, he knew the limitations of the original and said it would not work for him either.

    This is common. I admit I bought mine the month it came out. I also remember seeing the forums LOADED with problematic MBAs. Even though Apple doesn't sell nearly as many MBAs, there were five to ten negative MBA posts for every one negative MB or MBP post. Look at the facts, then tell me I am wrong again. I really don't care.

    Honestly, I have given the original MBA a lot more credit recently then even I feel it deserves. This is because I have noticed a seriously large pattern of happy rev A MBA refurbished MBA buyers who also use Cool Book. So, I have given a note to the original MBA for anyone who may be considering it to look and see if Cool Book can make the original MBA work for them at a serious discount.

    I use my MBA as a work computer. If I did not use it for work, I would have a rev B HDD running at 1.6 GHz or even just a unibody MB. It is because I use my MBA for work, that I spent the money to buy all of the WANTS and not needs of an MBA in the first place.

    No original MBA buyer is buying for the right reason if it is a NEED. The MBA has to be a WANT for us all. I don't want an MBA that cannot perform the tasks of a normal Mac users daily computing tasks. That is why I sold my original MBA after being disgusted. The truth is the new unibody MB is a MUCH better value for a Mac that is really nice, made of aluminum, does everything a Mac should, and has the same basic speeds as the MBA other than SSD and even that is an option in the MB.

    The point is, if I am buying a luxury in a MBA, it damn well better do everything I expect a MAC to do. I did not expect a lot of intensive stuff from my original MBA. It would not play basic video for 90 seconds without overheating, locking up and experiencing core shutdown. It took 30 seconds to shut down one app and open another. I could only use email, light Internet, and Word or Pages efficiently. That is NOT what I expect out of a luxury MAC product.

    That is why the original MBA failed. It was a luxury item that could not perform the basic tasks fulfilled by a very inexpensive MB. It did fail. The proof is every single component changed in the revised MBA. The proof is Apple geniuses telling people they cannot use their MBAs for video or anything intensive. The proof is the extreme level of failure. The proof is in ALL of the forums. The proof is all over the Internet. The VAST MAJORITY of ORIGINAL MBA buyers did NOT feel they got a Mac that could perform the basic duties of a MAC. People that spent $3099 eight or nine months ago were pissed they couldn't watch video. Wouldn't you have been pissed?

    Lastly, I have had people tell me, the original MBA isn't supposed to perform like a MB or MBP... That's their opinion. When I pay for the luxury of a MBA, I want the performance of a capable MAC. My new MBA works better than my unibody MB and better than my v2,2 MBP. I love that.

    Refurbished buyers went into it with a lot different expectations. They expected it to perform like a secondary computer. They did not pay LUXURY prices like the original MBA buyers paid. They had software changes, quality control corrections to thermal paste, and Cool Book to make their experience MUCH BETTER than us original buyers.

    The real proof is in the revision. Everything works for the vast majority of the rev B MBA buyers. That just was NOT the case of the original MBA.

    The original MBA's components are limited. Yes, software updates have helped. Yes, Apple correcting the quality control issues like thermal paste helped. Yes, SNOW LEOPARD will HELP. But the original MBA will never be like the revised.

    I have taken so much crap over this, but the truth is us original MBA buyers got shafted for being early adopters.

    I only tell people what I think when it's asked in the thread. For as much as I have complained about my original MBA, I have given Apple ten times the positive reviews of the new MBA.

    In the end, Apple did what it had to do, improve the MBA because it was NOT living up to the luxury expectations of what it was billed as. People expected the original MBA to perform like a Mac, and it didn't.

    The new MBA is an extremely capable, beautiful, powerful, portable, and quick MAC! The best Mac ever in my opinion ONLY.

    Should I lie and tell people that my original MBA performed like my new MBA? Should I ignore all of the facts? Is it ok for me to voice my opinion? Do I attack anyone who voices their opinion?

    I simply am voicing my opinion. I want people to make decisions based on all of the facts. There are people out there who cannot afford the new MBA, and who want the form factor of the MBA. The original MBA will work as a refurbished unit, with all of the software updates, and cool book installed, for SOME PEOPLE. For all of the others, they either need to stick with ANY other current Mac or NOT buy the original MBA. Because MOST, NOT ALL, will be disappointed with the original MBA while using it as a primary computer without Cool Book.
  12. Mr. Giver '94 macrumors 68000

    Mr. Giver '94

    Jun 2, 2008
    I can't really compare with Scottsdale's posts but basically the next thing you'll see for the MBA is a 256GB SSD at the same price as the current 128GB SSD. The MBA uses a special sized chip so as soon as the density of the 256GB can fit into that size that's probably what you'll see.
  13. Scott6666 macrumors 65816


    Feb 2, 2008
  14. Scott6666 macrumors 65816


    Feb 2, 2008
    I agree. Apple tends not to lower price points. They upgrade/improve hardware instead each round.
  15. orrelse44 macrumors regular

    Nov 15, 2007
    Oh look, yet another bash the Rev A thread, lovely! :rolleyes:
  16. Scott6666 macrumors 65816


    Feb 2, 2008
    +1 Scottsdale

    I'd have to agree completely with Scottsdale. A long but a nice summary of the history of the MBA.

    It's still hard for me to understand those apologist for Rev A maintaining how they have a perfect machine.

    My own conclusion is that they either (i) don't do very much intensive stuff on it or (ii) they are rationalizing away the issues to feel better about spending so much for a dud.

    Don't bother flaming me about (ii) above. That's just my opinion after watching a year of MBA threads. You're not going to change it now.

    While the Rev A might have been an embarrassment as a product, it did get me to buy my first Mac in years. A MB Pro. I was reluctant to spend $2k. I stretched to spend $1.8k for the MBA after typically paying $1.5k for a windows machine. I returned it and was able to get store credit. Once I had $1.8k in the game, it wasn't so hard to just add a few hundred to move the the (early 2008) MBP, which I love in all respects.
  17. macPlayer15 macrumors member

    Feb 19, 2009
    I strongly believe that not all MBA Rev A's were identical, or at least built in the same manner. I had a rev A that never overheated, there were never any core shutdowns. My friends on the other hand, running an identical video would overheat in a matter of minutes. I think some rev a's have a problem, which is most probably to do with the way it was built (i.e. lack of thermal paste or just a defect in some of the parts).
    So, not all Rev A's had the core shutdown problem, those that did had severe cases of it, those that did not would run just as well as the Rev B's.

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