Now that the first users are enjoying their new MacBook Air, we can make the comparison between the two versions , the standard version so to speak that offers us a processor to 1. 6GHz and 80GB HDDs with the 1.8GHz version , with 64GB SSDs and which is worth more than 1000 euros more .
In the extended entry we analyzed these results that practically confirm what had been suspected: the SSD option is much faster on startups and depending on which operations with the files and the processor are a little more powerful, but is it worth the price difference between the two models? Let’s analyze it.
For the test, the two MacBook Air models were used along with the XBench 1.3 software that is used to perform various performance measurements of both the processor and disk operations . The results you see are measured so that the higher the value the better is the performance.
As you can see in the figure, the 1.8GHz processor of the SSD option shows a much higher performance than the lower 1.6GHz model but it is not as spectacularly higher as you would expect, especially if you look at the other memory and graphics performance tests that get slight improvements in the SSD model.
However where the superiority of the SSD model is clearly seen is in the performance of the disk , because in addition to the fact that SSD technology is said to be safer, more durable and less energy consuming (it is speculated that SSDs would have more autonomy although it has not yet been possible to measure it clearly), it shows a performance almost double that of its homonym in HDD, because from the 24 points that it gets we go to the more than 47 that get the disk with SSD.
So in the random read operations (booting, accessing files in different parts of the disk) it is clear that the SSD option is a mercy to HDDs showing a much higher performance and as for sequential reading (long files, memory loads, disk dumps) both behave quite similarly with some slight improvements of the HDD option.
In summary, the price difference is very important for a really brutal increase in disk access speed and for small improvements in the graphics aspect and a noticeable increase in the processor. Is the expensive model worth buying? Looking at the results I get a clear DEPENDE , if our budget allows us to face the expensive option we will gain a faster system, a more immediate boot, a plus of processing speed (that having a limited capacity is worth it) and a better general performance, However, if what we want is mobility, without worrying about whether we have the fastest option, if what we need is a lightweight, functional laptop that allows us to perform the actions that we would do in a consumer desktop without us bothering to be a little more time with it in hand, the option is direct: let’s buy the HDD option, which will save us a huge amount of money.
Finally, we can draw yet another conclusion to the benchmark and that is the following: if Apple is already betting on SSD technology and you can see such spectacular improvements in performance, durability and battery life, don’t be surprised that in subsequent updates of the portable range these incorporate this type of disk as it clearly points to the future as far as disk hardware is concerned.