MacBook Air 2012 review

Love

  • Ivy Bridge Power
  • USB 3.0 connectivity
  • Incredibly thin

Hate

  • Ageing design
  • No SD card reader
  • No wired internet
title: MacBook Air 2012: Battery / url: battery-verdict



As an entertainment hub it thrives with photos and HD movies looking great on its LED display. Storing your digital media may be a bit of a pain, however, with just 64GB of storage on the cheapest setup (£849).

A higher price tag of £80 more gets you 128GB on the smaller model and you can go up to 512GB of storage for £640 extra, should money not be an issue.

This storage is of the SSD variety though – so it's lightening fast to access your files. The webcam has also been improved; it’s now a 720p HD one so your FaceTime calls should be clearer than ever.

MacBook Air: Battery

 

Apple is promising a battery life of five hours for the 11-inch model and seven hours on the 13-inch one.

In our test, which involves looping HD video using Apple's QuickTime on full brightness, it lasted just under four hours, indicating that Apple’s promise for normal usage should be about right.

Charging the MacBook Air is a quick and easy affair using the relatively small power pack and the new MagSafe 2 power adaptor, which is thinner than the previous incumbent.

If you want to use your old Mac powerpack, Apple will sell you an adaptor for £9.

MacBook Air: Verdict

In terms of performance and usability it's hard to fault the 2012 Apple MacBook Air. It may not have the sheer power of its MacBook Pro brethren, but it's hardly a slacker either with the third-generation Intel Core power making for a much slicker experience than last year's range.

Its slimline chassis and lightweight footprint mean that it is the perfect portable machine and, despite the Ultrabook onslaught, it is still the most desirable notebook available.

But we're not too sure just how much longer that desirability can last. Yes, it looks brilliant, is a pleasure to use, and it has a fantastic build quality. But these are all plus points that could be said of both the 2010 and 2010 MacBook Airs.

Ultimately, we think it's time that Apple shook up the laptop market again and we're desperately hoping that the 2013 Air refresh shows more signs of the unique innovation that has made the Cupertino-based company the biggest name in tech.

Until then, we'll enjoy using the new MacBook Air, albeit with a tinge of disappointment.

Apple MacBook Air availability: Available now

Apple MacBook Air price: From £849

Review by Paul Lamkin