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Acer, Asus, Lenovo Borrowing MacBook Air Design

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 48 comments

Thin is still in.

Apple's MacBook Air has always prided itself on being one of the slimmest laptop computers on the market. The new 2010 refresh of the MacBook Air made things even slimmer and more compact.

Part of that was thanks to neat tricks with the LCD assembly, by having the LCD makers finish only the cell portion of the LCD module and passing it off to the backlight manufacturer to finish the rest of it. This sort of process shaved off between 3 to 5 millimeters off of the thickness of the LCD.

While Apple was the first to put this into use, the same process is now available to Acer, Asus and Lenovo. Digitimes believes that this will mean that we'll see some thin 13.3- and 14-inch notebooks using Sandy Bridge chips by the end of the first quarter.

So, if you've been lusting after that sleek form factor of the MacBook Air, but you want a PC, there could be the answer in just a few months.

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  • -6 Hide
    gorillateets , December 22, 2010 3:47 PM
    I bet these slim laptops will be a major pain to work on. Count me out. I'd rather have more performance and sacrifice a tiny bit of convenience. This will be for morons.
  • 5 Hide
    trnddwn33 , December 22, 2010 4:07 PM
    gorillateetsI bet these slim laptops will be a major pain to work on. Count me out. I'd rather have more performance and sacrifice a tiny bit of convenience. This will be for morons.


    I would say the average consumer in the market for one of these doesn't really care if they're easy to work on or not. In fact, I'd say that's true of most laptop users. If you want easy to work on, get a desktop.
  • 3 Hide
    woofster , December 22, 2010 4:09 PM
    gorillateetsI bet these slim laptops will be a major pain to work on. Count me out. I'd rather have more performance and sacrifice a tiny bit of convenience. This will be for morons.

    Thats a bit of a narrow minded point of view i think. There are lots of people out there who this will be ideal for. I've used a macbook air on Windows and i found it more or less as capable as my laptop. If you're doing video editing or something similar then clearly this is not for you.
  • 1 Hide
    lamorpa , December 22, 2010 5:02 PM
    This sort off process shaved off between 3 off 5 millimeters off of the thickness off the LCD off.
  • 2 Hide
    noblerabbit , December 22, 2010 5:04 PM
    I'm afraid I'd physically damage one of these Air prototypes, just my looking at it, and doing 2 minutes of my job functions.
  • 2 Hide
    iceonfire , December 22, 2010 5:11 PM
    lamorpaThis sort off process shaved off between 3 off 5 millimeters off of the thickness off the LCD off.

    LOL got to love awkward sentences :) 
  • 3 Hide
    sunflier , December 22, 2010 5:13 PM
    Quote:
    I bet these slim laptops will be a major pain to work on. Count me out. I'd rather have more performance and sacrifice a tiny bit of convenience. Macs are for morons...


    Thats prolly what you meant to say.
  • 0 Hide
    chickenhoagie , December 22, 2010 5:20 PM
    i may be looking into the Asus model..sounds like it could be one sexy laptop!
  • 4 Hide
    dman3k , December 22, 2010 5:29 PM
    How is this copying Apple???
  • 2 Hide
    ender21 , December 22, 2010 5:29 PM
    How does having the LCD be thinner make a laptop (or desktop for that matter) easier or harder to work on? It's the monitor. I'm looking at it, not touching it (except to open it/turn it on).

    I can see how rugged use would put it to the test, but the first poster's closed-minded assertion is that the laptop will somehow actually be more difficult to work on as a result. I just don't see it being easier or harder to work on. Just more portable.

  • 0 Hide
    burnley14 , December 22, 2010 5:29 PM
    I think this is great news. After seeing how thin LCDs can be, it's shameful to see the huge, thick screens still on most laptops. There are some things that Apple has not done well, but style is definitely their strong suit.
  • 1 Hide
    fellskrazykayaker , December 22, 2010 5:51 PM
    gorillateetsI bet these slim laptops will be a major pain to work on. Count me out. I'd rather have more performance and sacrifice a tiny bit of convenience. This will be for morons.


    Sometimes slimness and weight are a priority for people. My wife has a 11.6" MacBook Air and she takes it everywhere. She carries it around with her at work and travels internationally with it. The thinness and lightness is well worth the price. It's an excellent machine. Though I love still love it, it makes my Dell Mini seem downright chunky.
  • -2 Hide
    wolfram23 , December 22, 2010 6:01 PM
    PC = personal computer, yeah? How then is Mac not a PC, and how is PC synonimous with Windows?
    I mean I get that that is the current way it is, but it really doesn't make sense.
  • 1 Hide
    fellskrazykayaker , December 22, 2010 6:08 PM
    Wolfram23PC = personal computer, yeah? How then is Mac not a PC, and how is PC synonimous with Windows? I mean I get that that is the current way it is, but it really doesn't make sense.

    Mac is a generally accepted jargon term meant to differentiation hardware that is normally meant to run Mac OS X from typical PC hardware. But YES, I think we all get that Macs are a subset of PCs.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , December 22, 2010 6:09 PM
    I think PC = personal computer got associated with computer for the masses, at Mac's price point it has never been seen as a computer for the masses but as a computer for the elite.
  • 1 Hide
    christop , December 22, 2010 7:05 PM
    I don't want to repair one..
  • 2 Hide
    jimmysmitty , December 22, 2010 7:12 PM
    Wolfram23PC = personal computer, yeah? How then is Mac not a PC, and how is PC synonymous with Windows? I mean I get that that is the current way it is, but it really doesn't make sense.


    You have to consider that there was a time when a Mac was nothing like a PC. It used to have specialized components that were not available to the masses, such as the old PowerPC CPUs from IBM. They were even more proprietary than they are now.

    Now they use x86 Intel based CPUs but are still proprietary and do not allow for the same customization. So because of that major difference back then, PC was always known to be the Windows based computer than you could customize.

    Also back then Macs were normally only used in very special cases and not as often by the general public. Mostly in music and video editing but now most Windows based PCs can do the same thing as a Mac so it really has no specialty.

    No matter what happens it will always be Mac and PC (Windows) not Mac and Windows.

    gorillateetsI bet these slim laptops will be a major pain to work on. Count me out. I'd rather have more performance and sacrifice a tiny bit of convenience. This will be for morons.


    I personally hate laptops. I just never understood them. I mean in most cases these days your cell phone can do the majority of what a laptop was designed for. Hell my LG Ally has ThinkFree Office which allows me to view, edit and create open word, excel and many more file types.

    As for working on them, I have very large hands so that may attribute to why I dislike them. I love full sized keyboards like my Logitech G15 and larger mice like my Logitech G500.

    if anything the worst part about thinner laptops is the fact that repairs are extremely hard. A regular laptop can be pretty difficult with very few being easy. The easy ones have panels to access all components while the majority don't and need to be taken apart.

    For the Macs its that plus the extreme cost. A normal laptop inverter cost about $10 bucks. A Mac inverter costs at least $50. The Asus and other kind wont have the same major price markup a Mac does but they will become harder to work on which will add to labor costs. I normally charge $65 on a pretty easy laptop for labor but the hard ones, the ones you have to take entirely apart just to get to the screen for example, I charge $95.
  • 1 Hide
    bystander , December 22, 2010 7:18 PM
    Quote:
    I think PC = personal computer got associated with computer for the masses, at Mac's price point it has never been seen as a computer for the masses but as a computer for the elite.


    Even Apple themselves had a whole series of comercials advertising Windows machines as PC's and their own systems as Mac's. It's an industry term that even the manufacturers use. PC may stand for personal computer, but it's a label that these companys came up with to describe the Windows machines.

    No need to be so litteral.
  • -1 Hide
    dextermat , December 22, 2010 7:57 PM
    i don't care about look: i want quality at a good price: basically no company but maybe Asus does that.... but i guess not anymore
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