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A good buy and a hard call



Performance

As I said earlier this week in my preview article, I wanted to spend more time checking the air before weighing the performance. To sum it up, I unpacked the machine on a Friday afternoon and spent Saturday and Sunday doing things on the weekend: checking emails, sending SMS and other apps, streaming Spotify, doing random Google searches, updating my to-do lists in Notes , and occasionally jump in Slack. The machine wakes up quickly, although a cold start ̵

1; not something I do every day – takes about ten seconds, from power up to login screen.

With work week over, I essentially lived on Google Docs and Sheets and used the device for several Google Hangouts calls a day – something that makes the fans in my old Air a disturbing noise. On the new Air Hangouts makes the keyboard a bit warmer, but the system remains at least quiet.

Also since the beginning of the work week I spend more time in the office when the Air is connected to an external monitor. (Apple says you can power two 4K monitors or a 5K monitor.) I plugged in one of the cable networks and streamed in full screen mode in the morning after Election Day, trying to get the job done. The stream was fluent, without frames or audio clips. All apps on my computer continued to run smoothly. I had the same success watching full-screen 1080p YouTube videos on the monitor.

As you might expect, my experiment proved frustrating when I finished the dissolution. Thanks to YouTube's "Stats for Nerds" fade, I know that in a full-frame 4K video (or more in certain places), the air loses almost half of the frames and more than half on an 8K clip. While the videos on my monitor did not play for more than a few seconds, the rest of my workload did not come to a halt, though I'd noticed that Slack, in particular, seemed less appealing.

I should add that playing 4K videos full screen on Air was not much better; it stutters too much to really enjoy. As you might expect, this high-resolution video streaming in full-screen mode has made these fans soar: this is one of the few times in my test week that the cooling system really worked.

It should be By now it was clear that the Air was sufficiently equipped to meet my real needs, this 4K streaming experiment aside. But as always, your mileage may vary, so this is a good time to discuss dates. It's worth noting that I've tested the entry-level Air model, the 8GHz 8G Intel Core i5 processor, the 8GHz Intel UHD Graphics 617, the integrated Intel UHD Graphics 617 and a 128GB SSD for 1,199 $ offers. Upgrading to 16GB of storage costs $ 200. You can also increase your storage space up to 256GB ($ 200), 512GB ($ 400), or 1.5TB ($ 1,200).

The lack of processor options feels fundamentally wrong.

Unfortunately, this is one of the lowest of Intel. powered processors of the Y series and no, Apple does not offer an upgrade option. No Core i7 chip, no quad core, no nothing. But Apple is heading for the more expensive Pro line, where the Touch Bar model is equipped with a standard 2.3-GHz quad-core processor and a 2.7-quad-core Core i7 chip GHz can be configured. (The $ 1399 entry-level 13-inch Pro, which does not have the Touch Bar, has dual-core processors, but with higher clock speeds and at least one Core i7 option.)

Again, no that prevented me from doing my job on the new Air. The lack of processor options, however, feels fundamentally wrong. And for some of you, it could actually be a deal breaker.


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