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Apple MacBook Air (2019) – Full Review and Benchmarks

Recommends that a MacBook used to be simple: The original MacBook Air was good for everyone. It's not that easy anymore, but thanks to the PCs getting better and Apple's rising prices.

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Yes, this year's MacBook Air (starting at $ 1,099, tested at $ 1,299) is $ 100 cheaper than last year's model, but the lack of a sub- $ 1,000 model in Apple's lineup hurts. MacBook Air's Y Series Intel CPU will be great for some, but it's not as fast as the U Series chips in PCs and the new 1

3-inch MacBook Pro.

Nevertheless, the new MacBook Air gives a solid overall experience. Battery life is good for a premium laptop, the bright, sharp Retina display now has Apple's True Tone display technology, and the gold color looks very slim. Everyday users will probably find Air to be very good, while those who need serious work are probably better off with the $ 1,299 13-inch MacBook Pro.

Price and configuration options for MacBook Air 2019

MacBook Air is more priceless than many 13-inch laptops, but it is now the most affordable MacBook. It starts at $ 1,099 with an 8th Gen Core i5-8210Y CPU, 8GB of RAM and 128GB of SSD storage. We tested the 256GB SSD model, which gives $ 200 for the price.

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Other upgrades include 16GB of RAM for $ 200, the upgrade I want to take the most as I keep many apps running at the same time. There is no CPU upgrade option, unfortunately.


A sleek wedge of machined aluminum, the latest MacBook Air is very similar to the iconic (but now retired) laptop that inspired it. And while this highly iterative design was getting old on the MacBook Pro, we tested a gold version of the air that looks pretty good. Airen is also available in room gray and silver options sold by the MacBook Pro.

At 13 pounds and 0.2 ~ 0.6 inches thick, the 13-inch MacBook Air is slightly heavier than the Dell XPS 13 ( 2.7 pounds, 0.3 ~ 0.46 inch and HP Specter x360 (2.8 pounds, 0.6 inch) but lighter than 13.9 inch MateBook X Pro The new 13 inch MacBook Pro


Apple's USB-C vision is, in the best case scenario, frustrated at best and at worst. The MacBook Air has two Thunderbolt 3 ports on the left and you use one to charge the MacBook Air.

There is also a headphone jack because what is good for the iPhone is not the best for the MacBook. The 13-inch MacBook Pro also starts with this port selection, but it can be upgraded to four Thunderbolt 3 ports.

This port layout suggests that you own – or are willing to buy – a USB Type-C hub to get more ports like SD memory reader and USB Type-A port that many still need .

MORE: 13 USB Type-C Hubs (under $ 100), rated from Best to Worst

MateBook X Pro and Specter x360 have both Type-C and Type A ports, while XPS 13 gives you three Type C ports, all of which can draw power and two of which are Thunderbolt 3. The XPS 13 also contains a microSD card slot.


MacBook Air offers the same keyboard you find on Apple's MacBook Pros, which is shallow and clicked, but provides a decent typing experience. Tested it on 10fastfinger's typing test, I clicked on the way to 73 words per minute with 96% accuracy, a short fall from my average of 80 wpm.

The air keys have 0.7 millimeter travel, which is quite short (we look for at least 1.5 mm). We found 71 grams of required activation force in these keys, which helps to make up for its shallow depth as our preferred measurements start at 60g.

The MacBook Air keyboard is shallow and clicked, but provides a decent typing experience.

Apple has given the MacBook Air the fourth generation of its Butterfly Switch keyboard. The previous generations had a reputation for problems. This fourth edition of the Butterfly switch has a different material designed to provide increased reliability, but it doesn't feel much different to me and it's hard to say how it will last over time. XPS 13, Specter x360 and MateBook X Pro laptops have scissor-style key switches that do not have issues reported by many MacBook owners.

Touch Pad and Touch ID

When I squeezed and zoomed on the MacBook Air's 4.6 x 3.1-inch touch pad, I saw that the surface was smooth and fluid shrinking and zooming. Apple's Force Touch trackpad also offers accurate tracking of my cranes and clicks, though I miss the old tracks that actually moved when you clicked them, instead of the haptic feedback Macs now use to simulate clicks.

] The MacBook Air gives you the best of Apple's touch-sensitive interface. Instead of being stuck with the MacBook Pro's OLED Touch Bar display (which never got a killer feature), you get the company's Touch ID biometric scanner plus physical F1-F12 function keys. This Touch ID button enables super-fast system unlocking, verifying your identity for Apple Pay, and also acts as a power button.


When I looked at the trailer for Midsummer, I noticed solid color rendering from the MacBook Air's high-rise display. From bright white linens to the rich clay colored exteriors of the ceremonial barn and the strong May Sun crowns, the shades were precisely executed through the clip. The 4K movie Tears of Steel looked particularly sharp on the MacBook Air screen, showing tiny pieces of tough fabric of war-torn clothes and all scratching on giant spray-painted mech robots.

The MacBook Air also features Apple's True Tone display technology that adjusts the color temperature based on ambient lighting. I find True Tone to look much more consistent on the air – when I took the laptop from office to office – than it has ever seen on my iPhone XS Max, where I have often believed it made color wrong. [19659021] 4-inch Tears of Steel looked amazingly sharp on the MacBook Air screen, showing tiny pieces of tough fabric of war-torn clothes and all scratching on giant meek robots.

Our color meters have rated the MacBook Air display to produce 100% of the sRGB spectrum, a rating that is definitely respectable, even though it is less than the 129% premium notebook average. The MateBook X Pro is just a notch higher at 104%, while the Specter x360 (150%), MacBook Pro (165%) and XPS 13 (4K: 119%; 1080p: 126%) displays gave higher ratings.

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The MacBook Air panel produces 343 brightness levels, very close to 346 premium laptop averages. We saw brighter numbers from XPS 13 (4K: 375 nits, 1080p: 357 nits) and 497-nit MateBook X Pro, while Specter x360 (287 nits) was dimmer. Still, I would have liked the air to be a little brighter, like the 428-nit, 13-inch MacBook Pro, as the hyper-saturated colors of the Billie Eilish's "Bad Guy" video turned dark when I looked at a laptop from 45 degrees to left and right.

Sound and "Hey, Siri"

MacBook Air continues Apple's strong legacy in sound, with speakers that you can rely on to enhance your favorite songs. Listen to Eilish's "Bad Guy" filling one of our medium-sized conference rooms, I noticed accurate vocals, crazy snapping and solid bass.

MER: 5 Big Changes Coming To Siri | Tom's Guide

By trying out the MacBook Air's Siri skills in our chat newsroom, I found that the notebook could easily interpret my voice and not include the bitter behind me. The virtual assistant was able to make decent requests, such as showing directions from the Central Park office in Maps, opening the favorite tabs, and making reminders.


Armed with an Intel Core i5-8210Y Y Series processor With 8GB of RAM, the 2019 MacBook Air has the same "just enough" kicked off performance we saw in the 2018 MacBook Air.

I saw no one stuck as I multitasked in Chrome on Air, splitting a 1080p episode of the Hot Ones YouTube show with a baker's dozen of browser tips (including Giphy, Google Forms and Google Doc where I worked with this review). That response continued when I started chatting in our company Slack, using the Things Productivity app to handle my to-do and write in the Bear text editor.

However, in benchmark testing, MacBook Air became concerned about the competition, which all rock faster U-Series processors. Take the Geekbench 4 General Performance Reference, where the Air Net scores 7,880, which is only 53% of the 14,678 premium notebook average.

We also saw higher points from Apple's rivals, such as 14936 from XPS 13 (Core i7-8565U, 16 GB RAM), a 14,935 from Specter x360 (Core i7-8565U; 8 GB RAM) and 17 134 from the MateBook X Pro (Core i7-8565U, 16 GB RAM). Want to have that kind of power from a MacBook? The 13-inch MacBook Pro (Core i5-8257U, 8 GB RAM) scored a 17 366 on the same test.

MORE: Which portable CPU is right for you?

256GB SSD in MacBook Air landed a writing speed of 1.011 MBps on the Blackmagic Disk Speed ​​Test, which is fast but not the fastest. The MateBook X Pros 1TB NVMe SSD has a blowing speed of 2.190 MBps, while the 13-inch MacBook Pro writing speed was 1.220 MBps.

On our hand brake video editing test, the MacBook Air took 36 minutes and 6 seconds to encrypt a 4K movie to 1080p. It's much longer than 21:55, 19:20 from XPS 13, 14:42 from 13-inch MacBook Pro and 22:50 from MateBook X Pro.

Battery Life

Battery Life

The MacBook Air has OK battery life, so you can probably forget about the USB-C cable at home if you are looking for a bit of the day. On the Laptop Mag battery test (Wi-Fi Wi-Fi browser of 150 rivets), the air's battery was turned off after 8 hours and 51 minutes, more than half an hour longer than the 8:19 premium portable average.

The Specter x360 (12:07) lasted much longer, as did the 1080p version of XPS 13 (12:22). The 4K XPS 13 (7:50) and the MateBook X Pro (8:19) ran dry in no time. The MacBook Pro lasted longer, at 10:48.


MacBook Air's 0.7 megapixel webcam shows that virtually all laptops, even an Apple laptop, can disappoint you when it's time to take a Skype call or shoot a selfie.

The picture I took of myself at Air in our office is splotchy and offers little detailed information. I barely recognized my colleague in the background. The color quality is also not great, nor, as my white shirt has a pink shade (probably taken from our warm lighting).


Credible for the name called MacBook Air as cool as a breeze. After streaming 15 minutes of HD video on the laptop, we took temperatures on the keyboard (82 degrees Fahrenheit) (91 degrees) and the underside (88 degrees) that did not come close to our 95 degree threat limit. [19659005] macOS Mojave (MacOS Catalina beta if you feel risky)

MacBook Air is currently delivering with macOS Mojave, which included a few new features I love, including Quick Look Markup for editing photos quickly and Stacks to Keep your desk organized. I have grown into the dark mode of the whole system, but it is about aesthetics rather than productivity or performance.

One thing I must recommend Apple for, although it can be taken for granted, is the complete absence of bloatware on the air. Many PCs can't say the same about their set of predefined applications, such as Specter x360, which has five HP documentation apps that should be merged into one, plus a couple of Candy Crush titles, Fitbit Coach, Netflix, and LinkedIn.

MORE: macOS Catalina's music dress Rocks: iTunes is not really dead

Want to taste the Mac's future? You can install MacOS Catalina Public Beta to see how music, podcasts and TV apps make sense in a post-iTunes world, and try the Sidecar mode if you own an iPad. Just be aware that grazing is buggy and slow in performance. Check out my review of Catalina Public Beta to learn more.

Bottom Line

MacBook Air is a decent battery life, crisp display, strong sound and elegant gold color scheme, making it a sturdy laptop for Apple fans. If only the processor had a little more kick to it, it would be much easier to recommend Air.

For faster performance, you can spend $ 200 to upgrade to the MacBook Pro. If you're not tied to the Apple world (and you're OK with a lower screen), look at the 1080p Dell XPS 13 we tested, which is faster, lasts longer and costs $ 100 less than our MacBook Air, at $ 1,199.

But for those who want to save some money, do not need the Touch Bar and have a modest workload, the new MacBook Air is a solid option. I wish I could rely on the keyboard. Because only time will tell.

Credit: Laptop Mag

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