The New MacBook Air: Faster and Still Super Skinny

Illustration for article titled The New MacBook Air: Faster and Still Super Skinny

Today's lovely debutante is the 2012 Pro, of course, but the Air—who we suspect gave the Pro some serious body image problems over the years—is getting a promotion too. Ivy Bridge, USB 3.0, and speed, speed, speed.

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All MacBook Air models will now pack Ivy Bridge processors—up to 2.0 GHz. But in addition to the superfast CPUs, MacBook Airs will start with 4 GB of RAM (sort of the minimum, these days) with the option to blast all the way up to a fancy 8 GB. That much memory combined with Ivy Bridge guts and an SSD will make these things fly: Oh! And that SSD! Now it goes up to a gigant-o 512 GB of space, running at blazing SATA 3 speeds (6 Gb/sec).

Some other sweet perks this time around, beyond USB 3.0 inclusion? A beefed up 720p FaceTime camera, a $100 price drop, and they'll ship today. They haven't gotten any smaller or lighter, but, really, how much more could you want? These are terrific little blades. Unfortunately, they're still stuck with AMD integrated graphics. Don't get any delusions about Far Cry 3.

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Remember when the MacBook Air was an underperforming runt?

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DISCUSSION

I might be baiting here, but...

Aside from a lightweight, fast email/web machine, what is the target demographic for a MacBook Air? It's fast, but small storage, and no dedicated class GPU. And for the love of god, don't go all "thunderbolt" on me. I can plug anything into anything to expand it's capability, but then I might as well have bought model "B."

Nothing wrong with dropping 1.5k on one if it's well within your means, but are these primarily bought by people who have no specific purpose for it? I view machines in categories like this...

Email/Browsing/Word Docs

Professional (AutoCAD-esq)

Professional (Video/animation)

Gaming

And the Air fits only the first one? Maybe Video, but you'd need a, um- "Thunderbolt" external drive or something. (Que Macbook Pro?)

*After typing this, I just realized it's the probably the same reason people buy sports cars. Cause they can. It just seems like a waste to me.

It is Sexy though.