Refurb 1.6 or 1.8 ssd

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by EB66, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. EB66 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2008
    #1
    Would spending the extra $300 to get the 1.8 and ssd be a good decision at the moment to future proof it a little more? The reason I am asking is because with ssd prices dropping so fast will extra $300 I spent on the ssd mean nothing in a year?
     
  2. Halon X macrumors regular

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    Sep 22, 2005
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    Malibu, CA
    #2
    The PATA interface in the Rev A really limits your options, even with dropping SSD prices, most if not all manufactures are focusing on SATA products.

    I'd suggest purchasing the 1.8 only to get the SSD as the SSD is where you will see the biggest and most noticeable speed improvements.
     
  3. EB66 thread starter macrumors 6502

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  4. EB66 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #4
    ya that's probably what I'll do it should be quite a bit snappier and I don't need the extra 16gb of storage it is going to be a secondary computer I take to class. I'll only use it for music, word, browsing, iChat, and some movies.
     
  5. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #5
    Just for consideration, have you thought about the new MBA (rev B)? All of the test benchmarks show that the new one, even with 1.6 GHz and HDD is much more powerful and faster than an original 1.8 GHz MBA with SSD.

    I think what the prior poster was saying is not that you should go with the SSD but rather the PATA technology is slower on the original MBA than SATA-II used on the new MBA. The SSD on the original MBA is considerably slower than the HDD on the new MBA because of the technology used. SSD is not the same on both versions of the MBA. The technology used on the new one really blows away the technology of the old one. SSDs will only improve from here...

    I don't know how you plan to use it, but if using as your primary computer, I think the original MBA is really too slow, too constrained, and not a good value even at $1299.

    The original has PATA drive technology like the other poster said. The new one uses SATA-II. The original has a problematic overheating 65 NM process CPU with 3 MB L2 Cache... the new MBA has a 45 NM Penryn CPU with 6 MB L2 cache that does NOT overheat. The original had Intel graphics that also contributed to overheating and video problems (although most due to PATA for choppy video and CPU for overheating and core shutdowns), while the revised has Nvidia graphics at 4 times the performance. The RAM is faster on new MBA. The interior components are designed better to not overheat in the new MBA. Not to mention, DOUBLE the drive space in the new MBA. There is more...

    I made the mistake of buying the original. For ME, it could not perform well. In fact, in suffered the same problems that are well documented here on MacRumors. Apple has made some software changes trying to make it easier on the original MBA, but the constraints of the components used will not ever allow it to perform well.

    In addition, I believe, along with most rev B MBA owners, that the new MBA is a much better value, is capable of being nearly any users primary computer, and is ready to be even better when Snow Leopard is released.

    I think, in the long run, your money is much better spent going with a rev B MBA... even with 1.6 GHz and 120 GB HDD. There is a thread here in the MBA section of MacRumors that shows the xBench marks for both versions of the MBA with all four configuration types of both. That thread shows that the original MBA does NOT perform as well fully configured with 1.8 GHz CPU and SSD.

    Another thing, there are a lot of rev B MBAs to be had on eBay with 1.6 GHz and HDD for around $1400 to $1500. For an extra $100 or $200, you can get a much nicer system.

    While the original MBA may work for you in the short run, the revised MBA will handle the added requirements of the future. Applications get larger, video players require more and more resources. Even if the original MBA will work for you now, it doesn't mean that two years down the road doing the exact same things you want it to do now will work then. The built in obsolescence of "updates" to apps and OS change requirements over time. While the revised MBA is one amazing machine which can easily handle the ever demanding requirements we have of our computers for many years to come.

    If you think the original MBA is what you need, going with it as a secondary computer, that's great. You can get a substantial discount over what that $1299 MBA cost eight months ago $3099.

    I have been called names and had people get mad when trying to help out by telling about my experiences being an owner of both MBAs. I am not saying that for you the original MBA will not do the job. What I am suggesting is you look into the limitations of the original MBA and be sure that those limitations will not affect how you plan to use the MBA. And if those limitations will affect the way you plan to use it, look into the rev B MBA.

    Best wishes with your decision.
     
  6. Halon X macrumors regular

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    Sep 22, 2005
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    Malibu, CA
    #6

    Actually, what I said is really what I meant and that the poster should indeed go for the Rev A MBA with SSD.

    I've said this many times before. I own Rev A and B MBA's, both with SSD's. I use mine mostly for web, email, Office, iTunes and iPhoto and notice very little difference between the two when performing these tasks to the point that I at times have to check and verify which laptop I'm on.

    Unless someone needs the additional graphics horsepower or increased disk space of the Reb B, I think a Rev A suits most people just fine!

    If I were to do it again, I would hands down purchase the Rev A SSD over my Rev B SSD and put the $$$ saved to other use. The difference in speed for these tasks is very minimal of noticeable at all and isn't (in my opinion) enough to justify the increased price tag!
     
  7. EB66 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Mar 4, 2008
    #7
    hmmm the decisions, ill start thinking "i can get this much better of one for this much more" a couple of times and after a day i am $500 more than where i began for a thousand dollar REV A refurb....the more money i spend no matter what it is i feel like im getting a bigger risk and less of a deal
     
  8. polyethyleneguy macrumors member

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    Florida
  9. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #9
    PATA and SATA are drive controllers not just applicable to the HDD.

    The truth is there is a risk, you are going to get your original MBA and you will experience the same problems countless others have experienced. I think the risk is lower that a rev B MBA will fail, overheat, or not be capable of running apps and OS X for you over time.

    What if you could buy a rev B MBA, with 1.6 GHz and 120 GB HDD, that is faster and much more capable than a 1.8 GHz with SSD, FOR THE SAME PRICE? There are a bunch of people buying rev B MBAs on eBay for $1250 to $1450... (NO TAX AND FREE SHIPPING). I have seen more than a few sell for those prices. A bunch just bought them for $1199 new in box (some are afraid it's a scam cause it's too good to be true - but the deal looks legit to me). Wait and see, supposedly the guy is going to have a bunch more (that price is $100 lower than Apple's and NO TAX on eBay which is another $100 from Apple).

    Read just the xBench results to view the differences.

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=638574&highlight=xbench

    The revised MBA with 1.6 GHz and HDD outperforms the original MBA as a 1.8 GHz with SSD. Set aside the differences in Nvidia graphics, nearly double the drive space, 6MB L2 cache, ability to drive up to a 30" ACD, and the fact that the revised MBA is much more future proof.

    I don't understand why anyone would encourage someone to not consider the rev B before spending all of that money on a computer that should work over time. Shouldn't they fully understand the limitations and use those to decide which is the better buy? I do not get this whole anger bit from rev A MBA buyers who don't think that the buyers should consider the newer technology... it doesn't make sense.
     
  10. lazydesi macrumors 6502

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    Oct 30, 2006
    Location:
    Gr8 Adelaide
    #10
    you'r bloody good mate
     
  11. EB66 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Mar 4, 2008
    #11
    well thanks for enlightening me on the prices that the rev B can be had for i just didn't know you could get them for that price...im sure its not easy but ill start hunting and if you happen to come across any good deals you're not going to take advantage of please let me know
     
  12. EB66 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #12
    your answers could not be anymore descriptive either by the way thanks for the help!
     
  13. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #13
    Rather I sugarcoat the original MBA? Should I tell the OP that buying the original MBA with SSD is going to make all of its limitations/documented problems disappear? The SSD is still limited and not the same on the original MBA as on the new MBA, because the original MBA uses a PATA controller (PATA is not just the drive, but also the drive controller).

    So, did Apple not learn from its mistakes? Why does the new MBA have SATA? Why does it have a 45 NM Penryn CPU with 6 MB L2 cache? Why did Apple migrate to Nvidia graphics? Why did it migrate to the mini Display Port? Why the 1066 MHz RAM? Did Apple change all of these things because it made the original MBA really well? Or, did Apple simply learn from its mistakes?
     
  14. macrockbuddy macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2008
    #14
    Scottsdale

    Scottsdale, before reading all this I was convinced I was gonna get my gf a refurb'd $999 mba. Now I feel like I'd b getting her fake pearls or a cubic zirconia. humm, not like I havent considered it before anyway. . . wat 2 do
     
  15. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #15
    At least fake pearls and cubic zirconia are really cheap, not a 40% discount over the real thing, but like a 95% discount over the real thing.

    Well, technology changes rapidly. In the case of the MBAs, they are really two completely different computers. Apple changed every major component to make the revised MBA a really great computer. A lot of people fall into the "hype" of the MBA thinking they're all the same, but just reading the "tech specs" one can quickly understand how Apple completely overhauled the MBA.

    In the long run, you are going to have a computer that is more future proof by spending a little more and getting the revised MBA. It may take some time to search and find one at a discount, but it's time well spent.

    Best wishes whichever route you go.
     
  16. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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