Reviewed by ar1814 (Currently owns)
After owning a black MB 13'' and a MBA 11'' 2010, I just moved to this one in february 2012.
The design is still amazing, ever after owning the previous one for a year and a half, still incredibly light too (1.06 kg !). It makes a huge difference compared to a MBP 13'' which is quite light already. As a student, it's really a pleasure to know that I always have it in my bag without breaking my back (I have enough weight with all my books and files...).
First, it's incredibly fast, the previous one was still fast (even my 2 GB/64 GB), but this one is flawless, I've never experienced any lag or anything, even with lots of tabs and apps running at the same time (thanks to the SSD). It cold boots in under 15 seconds, very practical to be able to use it fast (even if it's turned off).
The display is useable but not great (still a lot better than most PC's though). The relatively high resolution (what we usually find in 13'' laptops) makes it comfortable to use, the tap to zoom feature in Safari is a great combination. Color fidelity is not great, but the display is less glossy than the MBP ones, making it more useable in bright environments. I strongly recommend an external screen when at home, making this laptop almost a desktop replacement.
Keyboard and trackpad are, just like every Mac for the last several years : amazing ! Light-years ahead from PC's... let's hope that Windows 8 drivers will take care of that, 'till then, OS X lead the way.
The last point, maybe the only downside that I would express : the battery life. Apple advertised 5 hours browsing. It's realistic, I get that without problems. BUT, you must turn flash off (with ClickToFlash and ClickToPlugin in Safari, or FlashBlocker in Chrome), this thing is killing battery like red tuna in Japanese territorial waters...
Considering the weight, it's still the best computer I've ever owned (and in general, used). I'd still consider the 13'' one for battery life (and screen estate, but it's not really a concern because of the high resolution screen of the 11''), everything else is the same.
- Design 10
- Keyboard 9
- Touchpad 10
- Display 9
- Performance 9
- Heat / noise 8
- Battery life 8
- Software 9