Until March 18, 2020, the answer to this question was: “In a sufficiently large number of scenarios, the purchase will be justified in the current year”
But completely unexpectedly, in the style already beloved in Cupertino, Apple “rolled out” the updated MacBook Air 2020.
A major and welcome innovation is the return to the robust scissor keyboard mechanism.
If you nail in a Retina screen and a $ 999 (US) price tag for the simplest package, you get an almost perfect budget Mac.
What about MBA 2017?
The computer can still be found in a new state in the trade network. It is quite expected that discounts apply to the model. Can the 2017 MacBook Air be used in 2020? Quite!
This computer, without underestimating its merits (along with its disadvantage – the screen), is still good as an office machine connected to an external monitor.
This computer copes quite confidently when working with an external 4K monitor connected via Display Port. Working with FullHD displays will be more than comfortable.
So, if you would like to join the macOS ecosystem, are not ready to shell out $ 1000 (or more) for a computer, plan to work most of the time on an external screen (and sometimes take a laptop with you) – MacBook Air 2017 is at your disposal!
The rest of the article will remain unchanged. Draw your own conclusions.
The long-awaited update of the MacBook Air line has also taken place, which, by and large, has not received major updates for ten years.
The 2018 MacBook Air has already made quite a bit of noise.
It is also fair to say that against the background of the emergence of new devices from Cupertino, Apple has been repeatedly involved in scandals related to the quality of its products.
To be honest, the quality of products released by Apple over the past two years leaves much to be desired.
Buying a MacBook Pro laptop you no longer feel the chic and reliability for which the Apple products have always been famous.
Just worth the fact that the manufacturer acknowledged a defective butterfly keyboard, which was received by MacBook Pro 2016, 2017, as a warranty case.
Okay, if only the problems that plague the professional line of MacBooks were limited to this.
So, recently the shocking news appeared on the Internet that the majority of MacBook laptops produced have a much more serious defect in the form of a display cable that is frayed over time.
Returning to the question that this article is devoted to, we can give a short answer: In 2020, the purchase of a MacBook Air 2017 remains justified in many cases.
And against the background of the above problems with older MacBook models, the MacBook Air becomes almost an ideal device. True, with certain reservations.
Why you should buy a 2017 MacBook Air in 2020
The author of this article only expresses his opinion and makes arguments in favor of buying the MacBook Air 2017 in 2020.
MacBook Air 2017 design
There was a lot of criticism towards the MacBook Air, they say, the design is outdated and has not been updated for a long time. And it is true, nothing new in the appearance of the MacBook Air 2017 has been observed for ten years.
But on the other hand, Apple’s designers did their best in their time. And until now, the design of the MacBook Air laptop remains unsurpassed today.
If you pay attention to various art photographs on the Internet, website designs and advertising banners, you will often notice the captured MacBook Air.
2017 MBA Covers & Accessories
Probably due to the fact that the design of the MacBook Air has not undergone changes for a long time, manufacturers of covers and accessories managed to release and saturate the market with a sufficient number and variety of products for the MacBook Air.
In order to protect the laptop case from damage and scratches, you can easily purchase a protective cover plate. If you need to expand your storage, you can expand the capacity using special SD cards, which were released specifically for the MacBook Air.
Performance MacBook Air 2017
Despite the fact that the MacBook Air 2017 has a 5th generation Intel Core i5 (i7) Broadwell processor, its performance is still sufficient for most everyday tasks.
This processor model is manufactured according to the 14 nM technological process. All modern Intel processors manufactured as of 2020 are based on the same specifications. process.
Any breakthrough technologies that would give a clear advantage were not implemented in new Intel products.
Of course, there are certain positive changes and innovations. First of all, the graphics core has been significantly improved, which will allow better handling of video processing. This is especially true for hardware encoding in the H265 format.
Confident 4K display compatibility
MacBook Air 2017 provides a fairly high comfort of working with an external Ultra HD monitor.
Even in 2020, MBA 2017 with macOS Catalina installed (at the time of this writing, the current version of the operating system) provides the necessary comfort: smooth operation of the macOS interface, fast switching between application windows.
Of course, the 13-inch Retina display installed in MBA 2018, 2019, 2020 is very good. But he will not be able to provide such comfort of work, as an external 4K monitor allows (where we get FullHD in retina).
If you plan to work on a Mac with an external display connected, then the MacBook Air 2017 will do the job just fine.
High level of autonomy MacBook Air 2017
MacBook Air laptops have always been renowned for their autonomy. According to the manufacturer, the computer can work in video playback mode for up to 12 hours.
In practice, such results are quite achievable. If you are a travel lover or are often on business trips, this scenario of using a laptop is quite suitable for you.
As for the battery life of the MacBook Air 2017 during operation, it all depends on the tasks being performed. The author of this article has experience using the 2017 MacBook Air.
In the course of intensive use, when performing office tasks (writing texts, browsing the Internet, search engine optimization of sites, web development, and others), the computer operates on battery power for 10 hours.
This is a very decent level of autonomy, which not every model of modern laptops from leading manufacturers can boast of. From this point of view, buying a MacBook Air 2017 can be more than justified not only for professionals, but also for students.
All necessary ports in MacBook Air 2017
MacBook Air 2017 has ample ports for connecting a variety of peripherals. The user has access to two USB 3 ports, a card reader for SD cards.
Universal ThunderBolt 2 port, allows you to connect an external monitor equipped with a Display Port connector (or connect via HDMI using a special adapter)
And of course, for music lovers there is a 3.5 mm jack for connecting headphones or an Apple headset.
We should also dwell on the presence of a card reader, which can be used not only to transfer information from an SD card of a camera or camcorder.
Especially for the MacBook Air line, Transcend has released special memory cards that perfectly blend with the MacBook design, do not bulge out and have high indicators not only in read-write speed, but also in reliability. This important feature gives a significant advantage over the older brothers MacBook Pro.
Perfect keyboard MBA 2017
MacBook Air 2017 comes with a Magic Keyboard. Time-tested, has high reliability and provides the proper level of comfort, remains unrivaled in comparison with unsuccessful models of the butterfly keyboard.
If you type a lot, write program code, communicate a lot through various messengers – this is your choice.
Not everyone is happy with the new version of the butterfly keyboard used in the MacBook Pro 2016, 2017, 2018 and MacBook Air 2018 line. Many people still prefer the traditional keyboard.
MBA price 2017
Many potential buyers of the computer model under consideration were attracted no less by the price tag.
Fans of the brand were expecting an update to the MacBook Air line, wanted a Retina display (the only significant drawback of the 2017 model), but were disappointed after the announcement of the price of the cheapest configuration of the MacBook Air 2018, which was $ 1,200 (in America) In our latitudes, the price will still be higher.
But by the standards of 2020, the minimum configuration of the MacBook Air 2018 cannot be considered acceptable due to the small storage capacity – 128 GB, which cannot be increased (as in the case of using an SD card in the MacBook Air 2017)
The 2018 MacBook Air with a 256GB SSD is the same as the 2016, 2017 MacBook Pro without touch-bar. The conclusions suggest themselves.
Why buying a MacBook Air 2017 can be questionable
Of course, in addition to its many positive qualities, the 2017 MacBook Air also has disadvantages. The main one is the display, which has a TN matrix and a significantly lower resolution compared to its older brothers.
But this is all relative. A large number of modern computers are equipped with a TN matrix, which in terms of picture quality is significantly inferior to that used in MBA 2017.
The screen resolution of the MacBook Air 2017 is not high, the picture quality is inferior in quality to Retina displays. For those who find the elements of the MacOS interface small, you can always apply resolution scaling.
Yes, there is less information on the screen, but the display of operating system elements and fonts will be significantly improved.
In home or office applications, you can always connect an external monitor. If desired, a compromise can be found.
The MacBook Air 2017 has only one significant drawback – the screen. And nevertheless, not everything is so sad, the operating system MacOS is famous not only for its stability, but also for the quality of scaling the interface for different display resolutions.
The strengths include the unsurpassed design, sufficient performance, high level of autonomy, interesting connectors, comfortable keyboard, high reliability, affordable price.
If you’re on a budget, but want to get started in the Apple ecosystem, or just need a laptop with good specs, you might consider buying a 2017 MacBook Air.
Even in 2020, the purchase of this computer model can be justified both for professional use and for study.
If most of the time the laptop will be used indoors, then it makes sense to buy an external Ultra HD monitor and Retina quality will be provided to you. For outdoor conditions, the quality of the built-in display will be more than enough.
The author of the article, Evgeny Zakharov, is a regular contributor to the social knowledge sharing service Quora.