PC Mag notes that Apple’s MacBook Air 11-inch (Mid 2013) retains all of the features that MacBook Air fans have grown to expect, although some of them are starting to seem dull and could bear a little improvement. However, not the new fourth-generation “Haswell” Intel Core i5 processor and its effect on battery life and 3D performance, but even though the 11-incher is improved over last year’s model, concurrent improvements to the MacBook Air 13-inch (Mid 2013) ($1,099) make that model a more attractive alternative for the majority of users at only 100 bucks more.
They observe that the 2.34 pound full-featured clamshell laptop system with a backlit keyboard measures only 0.68 inches at its thickest point, so it will even fit in a satchel made for full-sized tablets, and the the base MacBook Air now comes with 128GB of Flash storage space, up from last year’s 64GB.
You also get phenomenal battery life. The reviewers note that last year’s MacBook Air 11-inch stopped playing their test movie at 4 hours 14 minutes, but the new Haswell model more than doubles that to 10:42, and the 13-inch model betters by a factor of one-third according to Apple.
They conclude that if you are always using the system on airline tray tables, the 11-inch makes more sense, but if you’re willing to carry a bit more in return for a larger more usable screen with five more hours of battery life, consider the Haswell-powered 13-inch MacBook Air, which is ultimately a better buy and continues as PC Mag’s Editors’ Choice for mainstream ultraportable laptops.
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