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Apple MacBook Air (2018)

Apple MacBook Air (2018)

from  $1199+
MacBook Air 2018 Review

MacBook Air 2018 Review

Posted   11.09.18
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84 Engadget Score
There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.
84

There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Review

The new Air is precisely the upgrade many users have been holding out for, with a slimmed-down body, sharper Retina display, long battery life and a useful Touch ID fingerprint sensor. Though it’s more than fast enough for common use cases, some might prefer to spend $100 on the entry-level MacBook Pro to get more processing power.

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Pros
  • Lighter
  • Slimmed-down design
  • Sharp Retina display
  • Long battery life
  • Spacious and reliable trackpad
  • It has Touch ID
Cons
  • Underpowered compared to a similarly priced MacBook Pro
  • No option to upgrade the processor
  • No more SD slot
  • Screen is dimmer than the Pro's
84 Engadget Score
There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.
84

There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Scores

Engadget

84
 

User Reviews

10
dontbeevil4
An awful product that should be avoided. You'll be sorry. - Engadget
90
forestdonkey
I like it a lot. It's my first Mac. I havent been using it for anything too...read more
80
Fateh
Been using the 2013 Macbook Air for quite some time and I'm sure impressed with...read more
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Score Breakdown

 
75
Average user Score
 
90
Philippe
02.12.19
I really like it, it’s fast and small... I got the 16Gb 1.5Tb SSD version since I don’t upgrade replace my laptop often (I had a 2013 MacBook Pro before). I just wish they made a core i7 version with a little faster processor, it’s still very light and quiet, perfect for me traveling for work.
 
90
cf
02.12.19
I upgraded from a 2011 17" MacBook Pro to a 16GB/512GB MacBook Air 2018. I've used it for about a month now. Thoughts: - I thought I would miss the giant 17" screen but I really do not. The retina display and portability makes up for it. - The size and battery life rock! I use it way more than my 17" since it is so portable, and the battery lasts 8-12 hours vs 2 hours on a good day on the 17". I no longer have chargers scattered across my house. - TouchID is awesome! Really nice for waking it up and unlocking 1Password. I also like having REAL function keys vs the touch bar! Annoyances: - 16GB ram should be standard - I miss having 3 TB of storage on my 17". I purged my files and offloaded to my Mac Pro and went with the 512GB config. I wasnt about to pay an extra $1k for the 1.5 TB config. A 1TB config would have been nice. - Whenever the CPU load is high, the fan sounds like a jet and the battery life goes to nothing. Not a good idea to run things that tax the system, especially on battery. I did play Minecraft for a bit as a test and the fan did not kick in. I've previously considered a 12" Macbook, but the 1 USB-C port was a deal breaker for me. I feel like the 2018 MacBook Air is the machine they should have made. I'm very happy with my purchase, I already bought a second one for my wife... she loves it!
 
80
tonyae198
02.12.19
I had the 2010 macbook air for about 5 years and loved it, never had a issue with. It was a dual-core processor and I owned it until when a co worker purchased it and uses it to this day. I purchased the new 12 inch macbook in 2015 and had so many issues with lag and speed I couldnt wait for the MacBook to finally be redesigned (at least a Retina display) and It was finally released in 2018 and I purchased the 1.6 GHz Intel Corei5 with 16GB of RAM. I have been using it for over 3 months now. I have had no random shutdowns or any issues with a lagging response. The display compared to the orginal mackbook is like night and day. I have not really monitored the battery life but it does last all day. The screen can be brighter I must say.
 
90
Dario
02.12.19
The new air is a huge update over the old version, although not as powerful as the pro it is perfect for its target audience, basically web browsing, light photo editing, few light games, multiple programs running in parallel. The usual complaints are the screen is dimmer, tuth is, it is compared to the pro, but what many people don’t talk about is that it is just as bright as previous versions of the macbook pro, which in real world scenarios is not a deal breaker, color reproduction, contrast ratio and uniformity is on point as you would expect from a Macbook in 2019. Touch sensor is just a refinement of the apple experience, works just as good as it works on phones. In conclusion: it is the perfect apple laptop for light to moderate users. I would not recommend it for moderate or high end gaming (no macbook is good at it anyways) video editors or heavy code programmers (it can handle moderate code very well). You will be happy with this machine, trust me.
 
90
Wendy
02.12.19
This is a great notebook quick, easy, and lightweight. I use it for grad school and it is perfect. My only complaint would be that I had to order separately the cord to use a USB with it, otherwise, fantastic.
 
10
Mac in tush
02.12.19
Awfulkeyboard.. extremely overpriced, limited ports. no 100% aRGB screen..lacking modern features like touch-screen, and dedicated GPU and are the slowest laptop in its pricerange :-(
 
100
Michael
02.12.19
I think this laptop has gotten a large number of unfair reviews. Yes, the screen could be brighter. Yes, there are advantages to a Pro. But this offered me the best combo of what I needed. Things run plenty fast for general use, including running a Windows VM. The display is great and I keep it under half brightness except in direct sunlight. I have Touch ID without a stupid touch bar. The keyboard is just fine. I debated long and hard whether I wanted to buy this, due to the fairly negative reviews that had been written, but now I don't regret the purchase in the slightest
 
90
Mark
02.12.19
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
80
Nope
02.12.19
Overall, the colours are nice, the form factor is similar but more refined and the laptop does a very passable job with macOS. Drive space on the low end is crazy small, and almost requires the 2nd tier model. Keyboard is nowhere near as bad as people like to say and is entirely passable. Really enjoy the Touch ID unlock, overall keyboard layout and the similar but better form factor. Really dislike the lower battery time (slight), the increased price tag and limited drive space in 2019.
 
70
Matthew
02.12.19
It's a great little computer, perfect for everyday tasks. The battery life is sufficient. However, the Facetime HD camera is absolutely horrendous and blurry. The Facetime camera on my older 2011 Macbook Air was markedly better and produced a clearer image. It's really a bit telling and sad that Apple's new MO is to skimp on certain parts across their product lines in order to expand their bottom line. Problem is: it's starting to piss off the faithful like me, who will have no qualms about moving on if this keeps happening.