So we know the Macbook M1 Air with M1 processor is a revolution. This low power 5 nm chip has created ripples in the computing world and will change the face of computing in the years to come. BUT, it’s not without its issues. Some of which may be a deal breaker for you. So Without wasting time lets get into
New found issues in MacBook M1 Air
USB Transfer Speed
USB transfer speeds are inconsistent on the new Macs. It has different speed when on a low battery and when connected to the mains. A good thunderbolt dock, such as the Caldigit TS3 Plus, largely does away with this issue, but this is still concerning for someone who is always on the move and needs to do many file transfers seeing the limited memory in MacBook M1 air.
Secondary screen and its issues with the refresh rate
The second issue is to do the refresh rates you get with external displays via a USB C connection. We all know that the M1 Macs cannot run two external displays natively, although workarounds are emerging for this. But what is more concerning is that if you have a nice 4K external display that is supposed to refresh at 60 Hz when connected to the MacBook M1 Air via USB C, it only does so at 30Hz.
The latest Big Sur update, 11.1, was supposed to fix the issue and has done some displays but not all. This is limited to M1 Macs exclusively, and people with Intel MacBooks have reported facing this issue after having updated Big Sur. Also, not all external displays are affected, and depending on the make of your
external display, this may or may not be an issue. But since many people rely on these machines for professional use. It is upsetting to see that a feature as fundamental as this is not working as intended from day one!
Macbook M1 Air Performance issues
Now let’s talk of performance issues, and this may surprise some people as that was exactly the area where these Macs are supposed to excel. And they do for the most part. We’ve all seen and heard about their fast burst performance and the speed at which they wake up and open apps.
In Final Cut Pro, the M1 Macbook M1 Air struggles a LOT. It skips frames occasionally, and if you add a transition, it will slow down so much that it can become frustrating. And what’s more concerning is that even on better performance mode, the Mac still struggles. You can juggle various settings such as better performance, better quality or even proxy and the Mac still struggles with many stuttering and performance issues. If you leave it for a while and allow it to render in the background, it is better. However, you would be happy to know that macbook pro was performing better in this, so probably a fan must be paying for its price.
In terms of RAM, there is good news and bad news. The good news is that most people will not feel a lack of RAM, even with the 8GB version. However, if you run programs like CleanMyMac, you will always run into notifications about the lack of RAM. Also, surprisingly, We found out that Mac will kill static web pages in the background if you leave them long enough.
But, for the most part, it handles RAM management very well, and the use of the swap file combined with the extremely fast SSDs means this will be an issue for very few people, if at all. But if you’re concerned even slightly about this or are you looking to keep your computer for a long time, make sure you spec up the MacBook M1 Air or Mac Mini or MacBook Pro to 16 GB of RAM.
I’ve also had lots of Internet connectivity issues with this MacBook M1 Air, and this is with the latest 11.1 updates of macOS big Sur. So once the Internet stops working, the Wi-Fi will not provide any connectivity at all, and the only solution is to restart the MacBook M1 Air completely. I faced this issue more than once for this to be an isolated case. Again this should not happen given that these machines are equipped with Wi-Fi 6. And this was one of the USP for them.
Now besides these issues, the other issues are to do with compatibility with plug-ins and software. If you use many plug-ins for programs like Final Cut Pro, you will find that many legacy plug-ins have not been updated yet to work with the new M1 Macs. And to be frank enough, that was expected as apple too is making a transition from intel to M1 and believe us, it will be much better in the future.
Also, the good news is that most of these issues are software-related. Sooner or later, these issues will be fixed, so if you go ahead into the purchase with this understanding, you will have a very pleasant experience with these machines. However, we would suggest you wait for the 14/16 inch MacBook M1 pro releasing 3 or 4 quarter this year. The New M1X would be a much-improved version and if you want to read more, then check out