Apple MacBook Air 13-inch (Thunderbolt)

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Macs have always had a reputation for greatness in the computer scene. Their superb operating systems and super virus-resistant structure make for a very attractive reputation. The Apple MacBook Air 13-inch (Thunderbolt) is Apple’s next in line. This laptop is a super thin machine that packs a punch, albeit a punch that doesn’t quite have the same force as some of its competitors.

At $1,299, the Air is a bit pricey for what you’re getting, but something that that price tag includes that other laptops’ prices do not is a guarantee of operational excellence. It all starts with the Air’s sleek looks.

Only minor changes in icons indicate that this is not the previous version of itself. The sleek white laptop descends in thickness from 0.68 inch in the back to just 0.11 inch in the front. It makes for a modern, unrivalled look. Another aesthetic difference is that the previous Air had been relieved of its backlit keyboard, a move despised by many loyal MacBook users. This Air has brought it back, making typing in the dark a pleasure once more.

The Air’s overall weight is 2.9 pounds. The screen is a widescreen, at 13.3 inches. The luxurious aluminum body wraps around the whole of the machine, creating a truly attractive case. The screen it borders has some of the best sharpness and brightness on the market, an obvious expectation given the 1,400×900 resolution it boasts. Below the flat-keyed keyboard, the large glass touch pad is sensitive to a wdier variety of finger motions that correspond to the new operating system.

The Air comes packed with the Mac OS X Lion operating system, an unbeatable interface that allows users a whole new range of possibilities. But the real kicker in the new Air 13-inch is the Thunderbolt port.

Air has also upgraded to a 1.7GHz Intel Core i5-2557 processor, which allows for Thunderbolt to be utilized. Intel’s data transfer is known as Light Peak, and it works through the new mini-DisplayPort that comes on the Air 13-inch. When the DisplayPort is connected to a Thunderbolt-able device, the data transfer rate increases drastically between them. USB 2.0 rates are standard, FireWire is quick, and USB 3.0 is quite fast. The Thunderbolt transfer speed is doubled that of the USB 3.0.

The MacBook Air is traditionally light on the input offerings. Users will find two USB ports, an audio jack and an SD card slot for memory cards and the like. There’s no Ethernet connection, so users looking for the quickest of the quick will want to opt for another machine. Though, you do have built-in Wi-Fi, of course.

SSD hard drives make up the storage units of the Air. Spin drives can hold quite a lot more, but the 128 gigabytes and optional upgrade to 256GB is sufficient for many users’ needs.

4GB memory, average 3D capability, good graphic support and a 7-hour battery life complete the package. This is overall a good buy.