Tuesday, June 10, 2008

MacBook Air Might Envy Voodoo PC


The MacBook Air’s claim-to-fame is its ultra-thin depth, that, like the commercials illustrate, allow it to easily fit into a standard-sized envelope. But Voodoo PC, which was acquired by HP in 2006, has just announced its own answer to thin computing: the Envy133, a notebook PC that measures just 0.7-inches and weighs just 3.4 lbs. The MacBook Air measures 0.76” in depth, but weighs slightly less at 3 lbs. even.

Is this all just splitting hairs? Really, it’s the overall performance that counts. A thin and lightweight notebook certainly provides an advantage while traveling, and for overall ease-of-use (not to mention aesthetics); but whether it’s the thinnest or lightest of them all is really just good for one thing: bragging rights. I could care less whether my notebook weighs 3 lbs. or 3.4 lbs...unless ironically my carry-on luggage for a flight were to be 0.4 lbs. over the weight limit, in which case, I'd be biting my tongue on this one.

Nevertheless, Voodoo's Envy is a neat contender for those who haven't moved over to the Mac side. Housed in a carbon-fibre chassis, it has an Ethernet port built into its power supply. Like the MacBook, it has an LED display (13.3" and WXGA resolution as well), and a backlit keyboard with ambient light sensor. It also has a touchpad with finger tracking and support for "pinching" when you want to zoom in or out of a page, for example. The similarities continue with hard drive options: an 80 GB hard disk drive option or 64 GB solid state; and identical processors, with both incorporating Intel Core 2 Duo technology.

Based on basic specs, it looks like you'll get an hour-and-fifteen-minutes more juice out of the MacBook Air, with a rated 5-hours battery life versus 3-hours and 45 minutes with the Voodoo Envy133. And, of course, Voodoo's model comes with Microsoft Windows pre-installed: Vista Home Premium or Vista Business.

As a Windows user, the Envy133 certainly catches my eye more so than the MacBook Air, which I'd argue is marketed more as an objet for the "Mac fanatics" than anything else (although I will admit, it is darned pretty). Would I get either of these notebooks as my primary workhorse PC? Absolutely not. But when traveling to trade shows, or anywhere that I'll be lugging the notebook around, either would come in handy as a secondary device. As for the Envy133, it's nice to see that the Windows world has an equally "hip and cool" (not to mention Canadian-born!) brand marketing to us!

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3 comments:

Jim V. said...

Leave it to Apple once again to pave the way and set a bench mark for others to emulate

Anonymous said...

jim v. if you think this computer was designed and built after the macbook air you clearly don't know how long a project like this takes.

Anonymous said...

The Mac will work flawlessly and comes loaded with Leopard - where a PC is a PC is a PC - plus if you really like Windows - the Mac will run Windows thru BootCamp better than a PC.