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MacBook Air: A reprieve for the best travel computer


Normally when I travel for more than a couple of days I am used to taking the 15in MacBook Pro Retina which acts as my desktop at base. My three-year-old MacBook Air, which I previously doted on, has been unloved in my office since I resigned myself to the extra weight of the Pro.

This week, however, I decided to resurrect the Air for a four-day visit to Denmark, primarily because I wanted to do some serious writing and I balked at carrying the heavier laptop. The catalyst was the arrival of my new carry-on bag, the Tom Bihn Synapse which I wrote about while in Washington.  This really is a great solution. The backpack is small, very light but holds a mountain of equipment, including the Air, a couple of cameras, two or three lenses, cables, connectors, cash, cards and all the paraphernalia needed when boarding a plane.

I immediately appreciated the weight saving of the Air. The Mac Book Pro will not fit in the Synapse, so would have had to take a larger, heavier bag if I’d opted for the Pro, thus adding even more to the burden.

The experience so far has been extremely positive. The Synapse feels great, has loads of pockets and, of course, I have added pouches and wallets for all the small stuff. I am also enjoying reacquainting myself with the lightweight MacBook Air. I enthused about it mightily in the past and actually went through three iterations of the model, one 13in and two 11in versions. As a travel computer it is without compare; I have even left the iPad at home on this trip and will content myself with reading on the iPhone. 

A couple of months ago I nearly sold the Air but I am glad I didn’t. I had convinced myself that I should use just one computer and not have to worry about keeping two devices up to date. Now, I have revised that opinion and feel that I will hang on to this particular 11in Air  just for travelling.