Rev A or Rev B

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by markintosh, May 11, 2009.

  1. markintosh macrumors member


    Jul 4, 2004
    Boise, ID
    I'm sure this is an overdone topic, but my situation is a little different. I have a MacBook 2.4 Alum, and a 2.0Ghz iMac Alum.

    My wife is starting back to school in the fall, and the price for the Rev A 1.8Ghz, SSD MBA is looking really tempting. Can be had for around $1300 everywhere. She won't be playing games, just email, web, and MS Office type stuff.

    Is it really that good of deal? Anyone else have this use?
  2. Airforcekid macrumors 65816


    Sep 29, 2008
    United States of America
    Rev A is fine for your needs. Get the SSD though and test it out before you get coolbook.

    FYI maybe coolbook is a good option for long classes since your just taking notes you can power it down and extend the battery life a ton ive heard 12+ hours.
  3. miffed macrumors member

    Sep 16, 2007
  4. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    So, you're recommending the rev A without explaining all of the "legal copy" nor explaining what Cool Book is, why the original MBA NEEDS it and what it does???

    The sad part is you yourself have a rev B MBA with SSD.

    Don't you think it would be fair to qualify your statement to the OP about the differences of the two MBAs? Why don't you state why you have a rev B MBA instead of an original MBA if the original is so good for the OP?

    I think you are doing a disservice to the OP for not explaining the facts.

    OP, there are hundreds of threads about the original MBA versus the rev B MBA. Be sure you learn about the history of the original, and make a decision after fully educating yourself about the differences. Do a quick search here in the MBA section, and you will see a bunch of threads about original vs rev B MBA (or rev A vs rev B MBA).

    Good luck with whichever MBA you buy.
  5. netdog macrumors 603


    Feb 6, 2006
    Does that go for the Rev. B too? Any reason not to use Coolbook on a Rev. B?
  6. Carl Abudephane, May 11, 2009
    Last edited: May 6, 2012
  7. GeekGirl* macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2009
    Buffalo, NY
    I had the A and B, sold the B because of the lines, and went back to the A, no fans running wild or heat, just as nice as my B at a 800.00 savings!
  8. Scottsdale macrumors 601


    Sep 19, 2008
    LOL, I like my role here. :) Glad to be your source of laughter for the day. Humor about me is the greatest form of flattery (ok, not really how it is phrased, but I will go with it being a positive). At least I am being remembered by trying to help people (although some don't see it that way and see as me bashing their original MBA) and my intentions are very noble.

    I do believe what I am doing here is for the best for all potential MBA buyers. Education before buying is a good thing. Helping others is a good thing. Being honest and truthful about our own poor decisions can lead others down a better path for them saving them money and from the headaches some of us have already experienced. I tell people what I know to hopefully save them from the same terrible experience I had... that is a good thing, right?

    I made a terrible decision when I bought my rev A MBA, and I can admit that I didn't do my research, I didn't wait to learn the facts about performance and benchmarks with common apps, I didn't get advice from a group of those who have experience with it (like the OP has done here), and I wasted my money on a computer that would not do common tasks any Mac user would expect from a Mac. I could not even use my original MBA as a secondary Mac as it just wasn't worth it to even turn it on.

    If we are all going to give advice here on Mac Rumors to people who are asking us our opinions, I believe we must give a correct account of what we know about the computer/technology in question. What I know and have experienced is information I can share so others can learn from my experience. This is a positive and why we are all here. We are here to share opinions, share experiences, share desires, share information, share facts, and share RUMORS!
  9. Carl Abudephane, May 11, 2009
    Last edited: May 6, 2012
  10. aaquib macrumors 65816


    Sep 11, 2007
    Toronto, Canada
    I think the 1.8/SSD Rev.A will be perfect for your wife. Though Scottsdale might choose to disagree due to his negative experience with the machine, it's important to know some must-haves and differences between a Rev.A SSD and Rev.B HDD.

    Processor - The Rev.B uses a Penryn processor which is generally cooler and has 50% the L2 cache. Does your wife need this processing power for what she does? Absolutely not. She could be a Photoshop expert and not ever notice the processor difference. You're trading raw processing power for a jump in L2 cache here.

    Graphics Card - Nvidia 9400M > Intel X3100. In anything graphically intensive, the Nvidia will be much faster than the Intel chip. But then again, you didn't mention doing anything graphically intense on the machine. If she'll just be watching YouTube video, then the Rev.A MBA will work flawlessly.

    SSD vs. HDD - The flash memory will win hands down, easily. For booting your computer, for turning it off or putting it to sleep, for opening up apps, for performance under a nearly full disk, for everything you use, the SSD will destroy the HDD. The hard drive in the MBA is actually much slower than the once in your MB and iMac, but the SSD will be far superior, and will even make up for the processing power.

    Build Quality - Watch for black lines with a Rev.B MBA. Watch for a loose hinge with the Rev.A MBA.

    Recommendation - Go with the Rev.A. Call me biased because I own one myself, but it is an amazing value at just $1300. For what your wife does, there will be absolutely no advantage of going with a Rev.B. In fact, she'll probably notice the advantages that the SSD brings over the 2MB of L2 cache or the graphics card.

    One thing to remember - Go with CoolBook when you purchase your MacBook Air. It'll keep your machine much cooler and your fans much quieter.
  11. CountBrass macrumors regular

    Mar 17, 2009

    I owned an MBA revA SSD and it worked perfectly. The *only* reason I sold it and bought a revB is because the graphics card on the revA isn't good enough for the photo work I do on my MBA (and it struggles with WoW ;)

    If your revA is over-heating you should return it for a replacement: it shouldn't run like that in *normal* use.

  12. aleksandra. macrumors 6502a

    Sep 13, 2008
    Warsaw, Poland
    False. Rev. B has 50% more L2 cache - 6 MB over original 4 MB. You aren't trading cache for power, they come together.

    True, mostly. Even my revision B Air gets somehow hot while watching youtube, although fans don't speed up all the way to 6200rpm (and mine is a good one, idling at ~41°C recently).

    True, but it isn't merely a question of SSD vs HDD. Revision A uses PATA connector, which reduces performance of original SSD. SATA-LIF in revision B is limiting in terms of upgradeability (at least until there's an adapter available), but it doesn't limit its usability. Still I suppose rev. A SSD will feel speedier.

    True. But if you're lucky and/or stubborn, you can get a line-free Air. Also people who bought refurbs so far say they don't have the issue (unless I missed it).

    I can't honestly recommend either machine, because I never used revision B with HDD (mine is the SSD version, and I have yet to see a computer I'd prefer over it). I suppose the best thing would be to try it at the store and see if it's snappy enough. You might gain a little more responsiveness from revision A SSD, but otherwise revision B is just a much more solid, reliable machine. If you decide to get an A, read about reapplying thermal paste and using CoolBook before you buy - it might turn out to be necessary, so be prepared.
  13. BaronvdB macrumors 6502


    Oct 22, 2007
    I've got a rev A MBA and haven't had the core shut down does seem to get hot and the fan goes on all the time but I think that's just how the rev A MBA's are....never played with a SSD or rev B so I can't really comment on those...overall I'm enjoying my rev A MBA...i would suggest you get one with applecare
  14. mykelala01 macrumors 6502


    May 17, 2009
    Rev A

    Because Im bias I own one. But if you dont care paying for extra go with REV B 1.8 with 128ssd. But looking at your budget 1,300 ssd is way better than HDD. For some reason Heat. HDD produce more heat than SSD, the way macbook air has been design it can't dissipate heat that good. Actualy I only have my macbook air for only 4 mos and Apple care already replace my heat sink and Fan because of buzzing sound on the fan. Because my fan will always be on its maximum RPM running constantly. Even with coolbook instal. Im not sure how hot REV B 1.6ghz with HDD run. But Rev A and Rev B have the same design when it comes to heat sink and Fan. They have both have single Fan. And one more thing I heard NDVIA run hotter than Intel chipset. correct me if Im wrong I just heard that.
  15. spriter macrumors 65816


    May 13, 2004
    I realise I'm in the minority and have only just taken receipt of my Rev A refurb (1.6, 80GB HDD) but I have tested it against many common issues raised. So far, I am pleasantly surprised.

    I wrote this in another thread but it's been a few days since:

    - It is externally pristine. I cannot find any cosmetic damage whatsoever.
    - The battery cycle count is 3.
    - Cannot see the grey lines problem.
    - Out of the box it has 10.5.4 (which I left on and did some testing).
    - Installed iStat Menus to monitor results.
    - No SMC fan update in Software update so I assume it has already been applied.
    - Idles in Safari at 52C, fan at 2500rpm
    - In YouTube, HQ quality for ten minutes: temp always between 68-72C, fans topped at 6200rpm. Both cores running at 50-60% constantly. No core shutdown, no stuttering video.
    - Also tried the Cinebench R10. For the second half of the render, both cores going 100% for a good 8-10 minutes. No core shutdown. Fans at 6200rpm, temps 77-80C under full load.
    - Tried with external monitor for extended period (5 hours to a 20" ACD) without any heat issues or fans going crazy. Without the ACD connected, it idles at the desktop at 46C-49C. With the ACD, from 52-55C - not too drastic and certainly no fans going mad... they remain at 2500rpm.
    - Doing Office, Safari and Finder tasks take it to 65C at times but still no whirring fans.
    - I don't find the HDD slow. Possibly my needs are less demanding than others but I'm not seeing beach-balls or frustrating loading times and slow-down in general operation.
    - Windows 7 RC works very well on it.

    I have still not installed CoolBook. I do have some Arctic Silver 5 but not considered it... yet. So far, albeit relatively a brief ownership, I've not found a compelling reason so use it as it left the factory. Maybe my needs are less than others or maybe I got lucky with a good Air.

    I'm still considering it on trial until I'm certain - a few weeks of everyday use will give a complete and fair comparison but I remain very happy so far. Just thought I'd give a positive account of a Rev A to buck the trend :)

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