Apple MacBook Air (2020)

Apple MacBook Air

Apple MacBook Air (2020)

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BEST RATING
Build Quality:
5.0
GENERAL USE: Good7.6/10
GAMING/AI: Fair6.3/10
ENG/DESIGN: Good7.2/10
SOFTWARE DEV: Good7.5/10
CONTENT CREATION: Good7.7/10
PORTABILITY: Very Good8.9/10
BATTERY: Excellent9.3/10
OVERALL SCREEN QUALITY: Good7.6/10
OVERALL PERFORMANCE: Fair6.8/10
SIZE: 13.3"








Evaluation

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Pros
  • Lightweight and portable design
  • High-resolution, color-accurate screen
  • Silent, fanless operation
  • Long battery life for typical usage
  • Excellent build and keyboard quality
Cons
  • Limited port variety, mostly USB-C
  • No touchscreen or high refresh rate
  • Average 3D rendering, machine learning capability
  • Not upgradeable, RAM or storage

Ratings by Category

Build Quality:
5.0
PerfectRec’s Build Quality Score incorporates case materials, display and keyboard flex, hinge quality, chassis rigidity, and overall reliability. Our assessment of build quality includes many details that are difficult to quantify. Our laptop experts use their best judgment to produce the final score.
Operating Noise:
5.0
PerfectRec’s Operating Noise Score is based on fan noise measurements. Laptops with a fanless design, such as Macbooks, receive the maximum score.
Keyboard Quality:
4.9
The Keyboard Quality score is based on the PerfectRec experts’ assessment of tactile feedback, typing comfort, keyboard reliability and typing noise.
Battery Life:
4.8
PerfectRec’s Battery Life rating is based on hours of battery life in typical usage scenarios.
Portability:
4.7
PerfectRec’s portability rating takes into account the volume and thickness of the laptop as well as its weight.
General Use:
4.3
The Apple MacBook Air (2020) is fitted with a powerful Apple M1 processor and 8 GB of RAM, ensuring smooth performance for everyday tasks, while the high-quality IPS screen with a resolution of 2560 x 1600 provides crisp and vivid images for a pleasant viewing experience. Its thin and light design combined with a long battery life makes it extremely portable, which alongside the silent, fanless operation, makes it ideal for general use without the worry of frequent charging or distracting noise.
Content Creation:
4.3
PerfectRec’s Content Creation Score takes into account the many different features of the laptop that make it more or less suitable for photo editing, and video editing work. In addition to a strong emphasis on overall performance, this score also places very high importance on screen quality. Heat management, storage, keyboard and speaker quality are also incorporated, with fan noise rounding out this score.
General Use Screen Quality:
4.3
The general use screen score is based on the screen technology, contrast ratio, resolution, brightness, color gamut and color accuracy. This score does not take into account specialized display features for specific use cases, such as high refresh rate for gaming.
Software Development:
4.2
PerfectRec’s Software Development Score takes into account the many different features of the laptop that make it more or less suitable for software development. In addition to a strong emphasis on overall performance, this score also places very high importance on screen quality. Heat management, storage, keyboard and speaker quality are also incorporated, with fan noise rounding out this score.
Engineering & Design:
4.1
The Apple MacBook Air (2020) is well-suited for engineering and design use primarily due to its capable Apple M1 processor with integrated GPU, delivering efficient performance for complex tasks, along with ample RAM and high-quality IPS display, which ensures sharp visuals with accurate color representation.
Gaming & AI:
3.3
PerfectRec’s Gaming and AI Score strongly emphasizes graphics processing capability as well as AI performance, while also taking into account other factors that impact suitability for gaming and AI work. While performance (especially graphics performance) is the most important factor determining this score, we also give modest weight to screen quality, heat management, keyboard quality, and storage.

Full Specs

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GENERAL

Price
$968
Release Date
November 1, 2020
Overall Dimensions
12'' x 8.4'' x 0.63''
Weight
2.8 lbs

INTERNAL

Processor
Apple M1
Graphics
M1 (7C)
Mux Switch / Advanced Optimus
No
RAM
8 GB
DDR Memory Version
4

BATTERY

Battery Life
15 Hours
Battery Capacity
49.9 Wh

SCREEN

Diagonal Size
13.3"
Display Technology
IPS
Resolution
2560 x 1600
Refresh Rate
60Hz
Display Brightness
395 nits

RELIABILITY, APPEARANCE & ACOUSTICS

Build Quality Score
PerfectRec logo
10/10
Portability Score
PerfectRec logo
9/10
Gaming Laptop Appearance
No
Fan Noise Score
PerfectRec logo
10/10
Keyboard Lighting Color
White
Warranty Period
1 year

HARDWARE FEATURES

Keyboard Quality Score
PerfectRec logo
9.5/10
Speaker Quality Score
PerfectRec logo
9.5/10
Webcam
720p
Fingerprint Reader
Yes
Backlit Keyboard
Yes
Number Pad
No

CONNECTIVITY

USB Type-A
0
USB-C ports
2
USB-C Charging
Yes
Display Outputs
1
Thunderbolt Version
3

Shopping

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Apple MacBook Air (2020)

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Dig into reviews and images

NotebookCheck

Andreas Osthoff | July 2022
"The Apple MacBook Air M2 Entry is a very good, but too expensive daily MacBook. The new MacBook Air M2 is undoubtedly once again a very good mobile companion, but we are still a little bit disappointed on a very high level, which is definitely connected with the increased price point. The new chassis is extremely slim and the front edge is no problem during typing, but the bezels are pretty wide for a modern device and in addition with the vertical space required for the notch, the new Air has larger footprint than some Windows rivals."

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Why trust us

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This information was produced and vetted by the PerfectRec laptops team. We are a product research and recommendation organization that meticulously reviews and evaluates the latest laptop information and makes it digestible for you.

By the numbers

380
Laptops evaluated
48,640
Laptops stats compiled
13
Proprietary Laptops ratings developed
50,895
Recommendations made
11,028
Consumer hours saved

About the laptop team

Joe Golden, Ph.D

CEO and Laptops Editor
Joe is an entrepreneur and lifelong electronics enthusiast with a Ph.D in Economics from the University of Michigan.

Nick Landia, Ph.D

Chief Data Scientist
Nick is a machine learning expert with a Ph.D in recommendation systems from the University of Warwick.

Aaron Koller, Ph.D

Head of Product
Aaron is a product leader and recommendation enthusiast with a Ph.D in philosophy from Syracuse University.

Jason Lew

Staff Expert & Software Engineer
Jason is a staff expert and software engineer that has been making laptop recommendations for 7 years and moderates one of the largest laptop subreddits.

Chandradeep Chowdhury

Staff Expert & Software Engineer
Chandradeep is a staff expert and software engineer and expert in televisions and monitors. He’s been making monitor recommendations for ten years.

Craig Russell

Laptops Expert
Craig is a UK-based laptops expert. Craig works in IT, where he recommends and supports laptops and PCs for clients and has been recommending laptops on Reddit for five years.

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