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Thread: Apple’s 11.6-Inch MacBook Air Gets a Teardown

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    Default Apple’s 11.6-Inch MacBook Air Gets a Teardown


    Every time a new Apple product is released, iFixIt is there with teardown details for the world to enjoy. With the release of new MacBook Air models, iFixIt have once again given us a peek inside the mystery that is an Apple product. Apple continues to miniaturize integrated circuits and Macs have become less and less user serviceable as a result. These new models are no exception, iFixIt have given this new model a reparability score of 4 out of 10. The higher the score, the easier it is to repair.

    Inside the new MacBook Air, there are six separate lithium-polymer battery cells that take up a large amount of room inside the aluminum unibody enclosure. The 64GB of onboard memory is made up of four, 16GB flash memory chips. Toshiba makes the solid-state controllers. The drive measures a mere 2.45 mm and only weighs 10 grams. The last MacBook Air model had a hard drive measuring 5.12 mm and weighted 45grams.



    The tiny Logic board contains an Intel Core 2 Duo 1.4GHz processor (Red), NVIDIA GeForce 320M graphics chips (Orange), 2GB of RAM (Yellow), and a few other controller chips as well. I find it quite amazing that the brains of a Mac can fit on such a small bit of circuit board.



    MacBook Air models don’t include an optical drive, so including reinstall software on a DVD would be quite useless. Apple has instead decided to include a USB flash drive with software to reinstall Snow Leopard and iLife ’11. The 8GB USB drive is bootable as well, which is a nice touch if you run into disk troubles down the road. The drive is read-only, so installing any diagnostic software of your own is not possible. I hope USB reinstall disks become the standard on all Mac models in the future.



    With the release of this new 11.6-inch MacBook Air model, Apple has chosen not to call it what it really is, an Apple netbook. The iPad was supposed to be Apple’s answer to the netbook, but I think this fits the bill much better. It’s a full-fledged Mac with a tiny footprint and Apple has lowered the price about as low as they’re going to go. With instant boot times and an attractive feature sets, I think Apple has raised the bar once again on what a compact notebook computer can be. I think my next MacBook might just be this model or the 13.3-inch one. Tough decision.

    Source: iFixIt

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    iPhoneaholic Kruejl's Avatar
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    That looks really good, although the core speed is a bit slow for my tastes.
    Apples taste good.

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    actually I love that USB drive.
    if we recall sci-fi movies and series of the past 2 decades, we had memory sticks and memory crystals everywhere, and no easy-to-scratch discs
    If they (whoever) start delivering things like Logic, Omnisphere or every other program that needs dozens of Gigabytes memory on a memory stick, then we can say goodbye to CD/DVD drives in computers. And that way we would still have the "hardware" version of a software that we can put somewhere and can't get lost that easily, compared to having everything as an app and download only (and who wants to download a program library of 40GB?)

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    I must say I wasnt too fond of it but it's starting to grow on me... Only thing I don't like now is the price

    Sent from my iPhone using ModMyi
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay316 View Post
    Once you purchase a product surely its up to you if you put it in a blender or drive over it in a car, what right do Apple have to stop us abusing our stuff? thats like saying you can't slap your girlfriend, she's your girlfriend, you own her, you can do what you want to her lol

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    My iPhone is a Part of Me Rob2G's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gyngabread Man View Post
    I must say I wasnt too fond of it but it's starting to grow on me... Only thing I don't like now is the price

    Sent from my iPhone using ModMyi
    I hope it grows on me, My wife just ordered one
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    same feeling here
    (and hard to justify if you already own a macbook pro and an ipad)


    Quote Originally Posted by Gyngabread Man View Post
    I must say I wasnt too fond of it but it's starting to grow on me... Only thing I don't like now is the price

    Sent from my iPhone using ModMyi

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    My iPhone is a Part of Me Rob2G's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stellan0r View Post
    same feeling here
    (and hard to justify if you already own a macbook pro and an ipad)
    Just give in to apples magic. You know you want to. And if your good next year you can spend a few thousand more on Apples new "Revolutionary" cant live with out products.

    Thats how I feel all the time, and the sad thing is its 100% true.
    [SIGPIC]

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    iPhone? More like MyPhone Doran's Avatar
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    I hate being middle class......

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gyngabread Man View Post
    I must say I wasnt too fond of it but it's starting to grow on me... Only thing I don't like now is the price
    pretty much.... even if it really is a netbook, this thing runs for around 1000+

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    iPhoneaholic zoso10's Avatar
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    They already showed and explained some of the insides at the keynote, that reinstall drive looks sweet.

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    to expensive, why not get a 16 gb ipad, and a mackbook pro and a small external hardrive for 1600 ????

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    I don't get this the reason they shrink stuff is to reduce cost for the end user so why the hell do apple reduce the size of components then charge more than 3 times the price of a decent netbook.

    Mugs buy apple stuff and I'm one. (bought an iPhone 32gb outright) will be the last apple device I purchase.

    Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me

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    Haha, nice... I like the flash drive idea.
    21.5" iMac 3.06 GHz Intel Core i3 l 15" MacBook Pro 2.2 GHz Intel Core i7 l 17" PowerBook 1.67 GHz
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    If only they could make a macbook pro 13" with a dedicated graphics and 3lbs

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    The Apple retail stores should have stock today so I'm gonna go test one out. The reason I got rid of my first gen Air was when it would get hot the clock speed would throttle back so bad the computer was almost unusable... especially building custom firmwares and such. I hope with the SSD and 4GB RAM, and the low voltage core 2 that performance will be markedly increased.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Quote Originally Posted by Poseidon79 View Post
    The Apple retail stores should have stock today so I'm gonna go test one out. The reason I got rid of my first gen Air was when it would get hot the clock speed would throttle back so bad the computer was almost unusable... especially building custom firmwares and such. I hope with the SSD and 4GB RAM, and the low voltage core 2 that performance will be markedly increased.
    Since you mentioned the RAM on these things, the article doesn't mention that the RAM modules are soldered in. So if you want 4GB, better pony up for the 4GB in-store or be handy with soldering.

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    I plan to get the 1.6Ghz processor, 128 GB SSD and 4GB RAM.

    Actually I only use about 50GB on my MB Pro. All my data is stored on my PC with 3 TB drive space and shared through the network or in the cloud with audiogalaxy

    So maybe I'll go for the 64 GB with 4 GB RAM. I don't think 200Mhz is noticeable to the average user.
    Last edited by Poseidon79; 10-22-2010 at 09:02 AM. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poseidon79 View Post
    I plan to get the 1.6Ghz processor, 128 GB SSD and 4GB RAM.

    Actually I only use about 50GB on my MB Pro. All my data is stored on my PC with 3 TB drive space and shared through the network or in the cloud with audiogalaxy

    So maybe I'll go for the 64 GB with 4 GB RAM. I don't think 200Mhz is noticeable to the average user.
    Am I missing something? These don't seem to be options on Apple.com They only seem to offer 2GB... I'd be all over this if they offer 4.

    EDIT: Ah, right, it's a custom addition. Too bad I am limited to buying this at Best Buy. As far as I know they can only get stock configurations, right?
    Last edited by sziklassy; 10-22-2010 at 09:18 AM.
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    at this point in the game, apple seriously needs to step up their processor power to compete with the other manufacturers. I wouldn't buy a laptop with under a 3Ghz dual core at this point.

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    The power draw on a chip that fast would drive the battery life down to an hour.

    The 1.4 Ghz Core 2 Duo is an ultra low voltage processor drawing only 10W. If you wanted the fastest core i7 mobile processor Core i7-660LM this weighs in at 35W which would drain your battery 3.5 times faster!

    Before making such broad statements like "Apple seriously needs to step up their processor power... I wouldn't buy a laptop with under 3Ghz.." you need to think about the impact on other things.

    Edit: I guess you can't buy an Apple then b/c their fastest chip is an i7 2.8Ghz which only comes in the 17" MBP. The reason for this is the MASSIVE power draw and the subsequent MASSIVE battery.
    Last edited by Poseidon79; 10-22-2010 at 09:52 AM.
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