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View Full Version : Purchased a MBP, but I want an MBA more.




Cicatrix
Mar 9, 2011, 03:32 PM
I think I am a lunatic.

Let me start by saying I have been a PC user who wants to go to Mac, and I wanted to start it off with a Mac Book Air. I do a lot of home recording. Using Firewire, or Esata external drives to record audio to is typical. Since the Macbook Air has neither I was afraid I was going to have to go with my second choice, a Macbook Pro, because it supports Firewire. Still a very nice machine indeed, but I just really like everything about the Air so much. The look of it, the taste of it! The smell of it, the texture." (Gold Member) Kidding aside, ideally I was taught that recording to an external USB 2.0 drive is typically a bad idea. Theoretically the speed is plenty fast at 480 Mbps. The thing is though, USB likes to operate in shorts bursts of info, not necessarily good for audio, as a steady stream of info is, which Firewire does.

I have never done any recording with a USB 2.0 external drive, but after doing some research on the matter, as it turns out it seems to work well for many home recordists. Since the MBA only has USB 2.0 ports, and an SD card slot. No express card, which means no Firewire I purchased a 2011 15" MBP instead, but it turns out I probably could have got away with using a MBA all along. I am wondering if I should return the MBP 15" and get an Air instead. I have been thinking, and flip flopping on this issue waaay to much already, and I am beginning to believe I am a crazy person.
Then, I thought I could always sell the 15" when the new MBA comes out with Thunderbolt which would let me connect to a host of different peripherals.

The bottom line is, I probably could get away with recording my small audio project needs with an MBA and an external USB 2.0 Drive after all. I hear so many people on hear giving the MBA such praise, and after seeing it in person I can see why, as it IS super nice. The MBP is a better suited laptop for audio work however, I still want the Air more. What to do?

Yep, I'm nuts.



thejoshhoward
Mar 9, 2011, 04:17 PM
In my experience, you'd be fine to record to an external USB drive if you're only capturing a one or two tracks at a time. Where you'll have bandwidth issues is in editing when you're playing back a project with multiple tracks.

But honestly, I'd stick with the MBP. What if your projects get bigger? Also, you're going to get much better performance in editing with the MBP (of course). I recently upgraded my computer so I wouldn't have to freeze tracks all the time. I have a Macbook Air and an iMac...I wouldn't ever use the Air as my main editing machine.

I know I probably didn't help you much, but that's my two cents. Don't go nuts.

Cicatrix
Mar 9, 2011, 05:52 PM
In my experience, you'd be fine to record to an external USB drive if you're only capturing a one or two tracks at a time. Where you'll have bandwidth issues is in editing when you're playing back a project with multiple tracks.

But honestly, I'd stick with the MBP. What if your projects get bigger? Also, you're going to get much better performance in editing with the MBP (of course). I recently upgraded my computer so I wouldn't have to freeze tracks all the time. I have a Macbook Air and an iMac...I wouldn't ever use the Air as my main editing machine.

I know I probably didn't help you much, but that's my two cents. Don't go nuts.

thejoshhoward,
thank you for taking the time to respond with your generous advice to my post. I know it was sort of long winded. I only track one, to two tracks at a time, but I see what your saying about editing. That is something I think I may have over looked, so thanks for this. Editing, and mixing down tracks can never have enough speed there.

Scottsdale
Mar 9, 2011, 06:11 PM
I am not into audio but I love the MBA. The great thing about Thunderbolt is Apple will be able to put several ports like FireWire, USB, and perhaps more on the ACD and make it the ultimate docking station. It will not matter that the MBA doesn't have FireWire, as it could still do it via Thunderbolt. I believe this is what Apple will do ultimately with the ACD.

It is hard to give up features you need for the MBA, but the MBA is so fun that it's difficult not to want one even over what might be more practical. I would switch to the MBA if it would allow you to be just as proficient via USB. If it OS going to slow you down for one of your main uses I think you should pass at this time and eagerly await the Thunderbolt MBA update.

I don't know how fast Apple will jump on the capabilities Thunderbolt provides, but if there is an updated ACD this year eliminating the need for USB cable and opening up new ports all controlled by Thunderbolt then I would expect all of the other Macs to get Thunderbolt too.

I love my ACDs, but if Apple does what I think they will, I will be upgrading just for the capabilities. The display panel is amazing, and it is already a great docking station, but Thunderbolt can change everything and make it the ultimate Mac system ever. All Mac notebooks will be instant desktops with features unavailable before Thunderbolt.

entatlrg
Mar 9, 2011, 06:55 PM
You're enthusiastic about the MacBook Air, (as am I), therefore I recommend you swap the 15" MBP for the 13" ultimate.

I don't think you'll have a problem with audio files, may take a little longer to complete tasks, but not that much longer.

There are so many pluses to the MacBook Air. Compared to the 15" you'll find you it's fun to use and take anywhere ... typing hours with it on your lap is no problem, it's a very very nice notebook.

So if you think you can get by with the power, there is not doubt you'll love everything about the Air!

Let us know what you end up doing.

andershoeg
Mar 10, 2011, 04:38 AM
Hi. I've got the air 11,6 basic, but with 128 gb.
I do record audio too. What are your needs in terms of audiotrack count, plugins, virtual instruments etc.? That could give a more precise picture of whether the air is up to this or you better keep the pro. Right now I have a project with 17 audiotracks, 3-5 plugins on each track, and no problems at all. But haven't tried alot of other things than that.

chris48559
Mar 10, 2011, 06:08 AM
I have an air I may me interested in selling/trading for your macbook pro :D let me know if you would be interested (13'' 1.86 4gb)

Cicatrix
Mar 10, 2011, 10:45 AM
Hi. I've got the air 11,6 basic, but with 128 gb.
I do record audio too. What are your needs in terms of audiotrack count, plugins, virtual instruments etc.? That could give a more precise picture of whether the air is up to this or you better keep the pro. Right now I have a project with 17 audiotracks, 3-5 plugins on each track, and no problems at all. But haven't tried alot of other things than that.

Wow, for an 11" Air basic model, that sounds like a pretty good deal of tracks, with plug-ins running. I could imagine the 13" high end could put out quite a bit more than that. Can I ask what DAW you are using? I have recently switched over to reaper and it is very stream lined, and quick compared to the overweight clunky Sonar.

Thanks for the useful information!

andershoeg
Mar 10, 2011, 12:59 PM
Wow, for an 11" Air basic model, that sounds like a pretty good deal of tracks, with plug-ins running. I could imagine the 13" high end could put out quite a bit more than that. Can I ask what DAW you are using? I have recently switched over to reaper and it is very stream lined, and quick compared to the overweight clunky Sonar.

Thanks for the useful information!

Well.....it's capable of ALOT more! With this project I am using about 30 % of the cpu power. and almost no ssd-power at all. This was just running a recent project I am working on. I'm using Logic Pro 9. i have only tried Reaper a couple of times, but seems nice.
I have made a test with my air, running 24 bit 44,1 khz stereo files on a bunch of tracks. Tested how many Space Designer reverbs it could handle before it choke, one space designer on each track. The tracks had to play for a whole minut without any problems. I could run 40 stereotracks with a space designer reverb on each before the cpu couldn't handle anymore reverbs. No probs regarding the disc performance. It stopped only because of the cpu.
Hope this gave you an idea of what this little devil is capable of. Alot more than you think "at first sight" :-)
B.r. andershoeg

thejoshhoward
Mar 10, 2011, 01:29 PM
thejoshhoward,
thank you for taking the time to respond with your generous advice to my post. I know it was sort of long winded. I only track one, to two tracks at a time, but I see what your saying about editing. That is something I think I may have over looked, so thanks for this. Editing, and mixing down tracks can never have enough speed there.

Sure thing! Looks like others have proven the Air to be more than capable! So, happy working! I guess my old system was probably lagging due to Drumagog and some other hefty plug-ins.

malexander
Mar 10, 2011, 06:24 PM
Hi, I don't mean to hijack this thread, but I'm having a similar problem. I posted this a little bit ago:

Hi,

This is my second post (I posted this in the MBA section as well), though I've been reading this site for a few years now. I'm trying to decide on my own first computer, although I'm definitely above an average user, and not new to Macs (family's first computer was iMac G3 circa Summer 2000.) In short, I'm really torn between the MBA Ultimate and MBP 15" with a 128GB SSD and glossy hi-res screen.

I like the idea a friend gave me, which is to run the OS and apps on an SSD, and replace the optical drive with a hard drive in a bay (this is what he did with his older non-uni 15" MBP.) He thinks the MBA is pretty "lame and bourgeoisie," which I can somewhat agree with, but it's hard giving up the portability. I read about there being a new optical drive part number, and that there is a potential issue trying to replace it with an HDD, looking at the Sandy Bridge/SATA problem. http://martin.cleaver.org/2011/02/apple-did-indeed-get-their-hardware-fix-for-sandy-bridge-in-the-2011-macbook-pro/ I also don't want to void my warranty.

I went to an Apple Store a week ago, and the guy reasonably recommended the 15" MBP to me. He said that it would be good since I game a little, but definitely not hardcore. Watching YouTube videos of people running high-end games on the MBA has me second guessing though.

I made a post on the Apple Discussion forums a few days ago describing my situation in detail; so it may put things in perspective:

I'm trying to decide on my first computer (that I own, anyway.) I'm a junior electrical engineering student, and managed to get by on campus computers and my mom's work laptop (2009 MBP 13".) But it's nice having my own computer for obvious reasons. Here's what I would be doing on whichever MacBook I get:

-Schoolwork, obviously (papers, spreadsheets, some circuit designing/programming, surfing, etc.)

-Music listening/movie watching

-Some gaming. I'm not a hardcore gamer, but I will dual boot and play. On Steam I own The Orange Box, BioShock 1+2, GTA IV, Dead Space, Mirror's Edge, Batman: Arkham Asylum, and Assassin's Creed.

-Some Pixelmator, GarageBand, Logic Express, iMovie, etc.

The obvious choice is a MacBook Pro, I know, but I have a few caveats. I love the size/portability of the MacBook Air, and the optimizations that give it great performance for its size. Also, the 256GB blade flash memory is very hard to match for its price. If I get the Air, I'll upgrade the processor, RAM, and storage to the fullest. Still, the C2D seems a bit old and less future proof.

But if I go with a Pro, I'm going to get the base 15" with a hi-res glossy screen and a 128GB SSD. I want an SSD for its durability and speed (although I read somewhere that the blade flash mem is faster than a standard 2.5" SSD.) The 256GB SSD would be ideal, but it's so expensive (from 3rd parties, as well.) Of course I'd get a Quad-core and Thunderbolt, AMD GPU, etc. Again, I'm only a casual gamer, but it's nice playing with a good discrete GPU, etc.

I like the new MBP update, but I just wish the SuperDrive were removed (I don't need it), flash storage became standard (and expanded), and the chassis was made Air-like thin. I see no point in getting the MBP 13", because I may as well get the MBA 13".

Compared to the Air, is the MBP 15" really that much less portable, and really that much more disproportionate in speed for its size, even with an SSD? And how does the Air perform with the games and apps I've mentioned? I just don't want a big heavy relatively slow (but still fast) slab, or an under-equipped under-powered less future-proof luxury item.

Either way, I'm going to wait until summer so I can get Lion pre-installed (as a college student, I'm rich enough to get a Mac, but poor enough to want to save.) I kind of already decided on the MBP 15", but the Air is just soo tempting.

Any advice?

Thanks,
Michael

Capt Underpants
Mar 10, 2011, 06:33 PM
It depends whether the look of the computer is more important than the work you're doing on it.

If the look is more important, get the MBA.

If you want to record audio, stick with your MBP.

USB < Firewire for audio recording. Less latency. More tracks.

Your other option is to wait until the MBA gets Thunderbolt. When that happens, the MBA will be a suitable recording machine.

Cicatrix
Mar 10, 2011, 07:37 PM
malexander, thanks for bringing that thread up. There's a lot of information to be taken into consideration within the post.

Capt Underpants, thanks for putting it like that. I really should quit worrying about it, and just keep the 15" and make some music already. If the MBA's come out with SB and Thunderbolt it will definitely offer more ideal setup configurations. Sometimes you just need somebody to word it to you the right way. I guess the bottom line is, get the computer that can do your work the most efficiently.

Side note:
I was actually wondering if the SD card slot could be used to record audio to as an alternative to an external Firewire drive since the MBA does not have Firewire. It's sort of like a mini SS drive. Panasonic has new Gold Series SD cards coming out with 85 MB/s write speeds. I'm still going to try it out of interest.

andershoeg
Mar 11, 2011, 01:59 AM
If you want to record audio, stick with your MBP.

USB > Firewire for audio recording. Less latency. More tracks.



Just to be clear, I was just trying to show that the Air is capable of alot more than most people think it is. There is no doubt that the Pro, for audio recording, is a better, faster in every single way, and more versatile machine!

Regarding the USB being greater than firewire for recording purposes, that is definitely not my experience. But maybe you meant "USB < firewire". Right?

Capt Underpants
Mar 11, 2011, 10:06 PM
Regarding the USB being greater than firewire for recording purposes, that is definitely not my experience. But maybe you meant "USB < firewire". Right?

Yes. Good catch.

Ravenwolf40
Mar 23, 2011, 02:41 PM
I have been reading MacRumors Forums quite a lot lately and I love this site. So this is my first post, and it's on my day off, and well I'm bored, so it's a big one :P.

I am in a similar situation right now (except I did not buy a MBP yet or a MBA, but am stuck in the same decision process as others on here).

Lost in the novella verbiage below is my own personal take from my visits to best buy and my countless hours of youtube videos being viewed in trying to make my crazy self (I'm right there with the starter of this thread in being crazy, but hey, it's a lot of money and you want to be sure). I personally think that waiting for Lion and the next release of the MBA or maybe even a new Macbook?? may be the "smartest" thing to do, but I don't know if I have that kind of patience personally.

Everyone's needs are different, my needs are known from my pc experiences with notebooks. I owned a 14" acer laptop, it was big and took forever to start up and I never used the thing, like ever. I bought an asus eee 1000ha (or 1000he, hmmm don't remember now) and I used it ALL the time, I actually wrote a novel on the thing at my kitchen table/bedroom/back porch/car/etc over an 8 month time period that I self-published through lulu.com (but didn't take the isbn plunge but rather just bought 60 copies and gave to family and friends), bucket list novel writing checked off the list. Next, music album... er cd... er whatever you kids call it nowadays ;). But thinking back on why I used the netbook so much was because for my crazy self I:
A) wasn't afraid of breaking it because it was so cheap and easy to transport
B) ran linux and openoffice on it under ubuntu remix so it was fast (for the time)
C) it had an AMAZING battery life of like 9 or 10 hours so I was not turning it off and on repeatedly all the time but rather just left the thing on all day and then charged it every night (the thing still runs and is still amazing 2? 3? years later, I don't remember when I bought it in all honesty). But I am Mac OsX all the way now and I need that netbook feeling again, except with a Mac!

So yes, I bought my first iMac, and my life changed forever. OsX is everything I loved about linux versus winblows, but better! things are supported, things are pretty, things are just perfect from my viewpoint.

I use my iMac for writing, photos, web browsing, emails, youtube video watching (but not much movie watching as I'm old and still use a tv for that :P), and then my music hobby that I've been doing for the past 2.5 decades or so (yes, i'm a dinosaur, but I've seen a lot and have learned a lot). When I got the iMac I immediately bought Logic 9 thinking I would use it all the time. In reality, it confused me with all of it's fine details. I would be creating and bam, 1 hour later I'm still scouring websites trying to figure out how to make it do what I need at that moment. So I have learned yet again in life that simple is almost always better. So I now use Garageband almost exclusively (but still have Logic 9 there if I ever decide to take that plunge again, which I may, who knows). But Melodyne, IK Multimedia's soft synths, Native Instruments plugins, ezdrummer, etc... all work great in Garageband (and it is the same audio engine as logic 9 so it is just as high quality as well).

So... long way to get back to the MBA, but now you know my needs. So I go to my local best buy and start to play on the 11" MBA and the 13" MBA and my first impression was that they were toys and in no way should be trusted for my music hobby (everything else, sure, fast enough for everything else I personally would do, including watching movies if I wanted to). But then I started reading more and seeing youtube videos so I went back to Best Buy determined to test these things and I had an idea of what I could test (as I couldn't very well load in my software to test on their machines).

I opened Garageband on the MBA 11" (2gb and 64gb $999 model), I then opened the demo files one at a time and started adding effects and such. My first test was to open the amp simulator demo, the one that the tracks look like this (where the xxx are the audio on the track):
xxx
xxx
-----xxxx
-----xxxx
-----------xxx
-----------xxx

And I clicked and dragged all of the audio files to the left to make them look like this (below is an example of only 3 stereo tracks, the actual amp demo has like 10 or so stereo tracks i think):
xxx
xxx
xxxx
xxxx
xxx
xxx

And then I looped them out about 30 measures or so like this:
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

And then I lowered the volume on the thing and tried to play like 10 stereo tracks or so (whatever the number of tracks were on the demo originally) with the amp sims on and whatever effects were setup on the tracks by default. And the 11" crapped out immediately and stated it could not play. So I tried the same thing on the MBA 13" and it did play it without error, but then I started to add effects to each track and I eventually got it to crap out as well. But what I learned from this test (and others I tried) was that for my needs (as a second Mac), the 13" would work with more than enough horsepower for me. Because I have to be realistic on how I will use it. More than likely I'm not going to be plugging guitars or my cond mic into this thing. I'm going to be starting songs and messing with beats and synths etc... while on the couch or at lunch at work, etc... and then adding the vocals and guitar on my iMac at home, and then moving it back to the MBA to work on some more for mastering, etc. In my own personal situation I would probably never have 10 stereo guitar tracks (20 tracks) all going at the same time. Realistically maybe 4? or 6? tops.

I also know that the 7 hours of battery life on the 13" versus the 5 hours on the 11" make a difference to me as well. That 9 or 10 hour battery on my little eee pc taught me that, it would drive me bonkers when my acer 14" died after 1.5 hours of use, it was pointless. So even the chance that some odd usage of mine would kill the 11" in 3 or 4 hours is enough right there to scare me away from that model. Plus the screen of a netbook, although usable for sure, does involve extra scrolling and some squinting at times, something the 13" would not have me doing as much.

So for me, it is a tossup between the 13" mba and the 13" mbp. Logically the MBP should be the winner, but I keep looking at that mba as I could really see myself just picking it up and carrying it around all the time, and honestly, that is the bottom line for me. What will I really use and what will sit on my desk collecting dust. if only the MBA had the backlit keys, I would stop thinking (doubt it, because again, I'm crazy too). But again, smartest move for me is to wait, but I have a feeling I'll be in here writing another novella about my new MBA 13" in not too long a period of time :P. The real dilemma for me currently is MBA 13" 2GB ram or 4GB ram? And sadly it's not the $100, it's wanting to buy at the store versus waiting for the delivery (pathetic, I know), but the stores only have the standard model and the maxed out model (not the ones in between normally, at least when I called that's what they told me). I also have best buy gift cards from my job that I'd like to use and that shoots the delivery from apple down as well.

In the meantime, this guy posted a lot of really useful MBA 13" reviews on youtube and I personally found his to be the most useful to my decision making process. Even though he doesn't do audio, this Scottish dude really put the MBA 13" through a LOT of testing. Thank you very much theunits3 you really did a good job on the reviews!

http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=24F0BA3CAFAF5583

I liked his 2 months on with his MBA 13" as well
http://www.youtube.com/user/theunits3#p/search/5/jhhwWki59vw

If and when I get my 13"MBA I think I may make my first youtube video showing how it works with garageband and au/vst plugins and such as I am having a hard time finding anyone actually showing the number of soft synths and such that the thing can handle. But until then, more driving myself nuts with the pre-shopping research. Sometimes I think I enjoy this research time period more than I actually enjoy the purchase itself (sad huh?). :P

Anyway, I hope that all this typing has helped someone out there that may be in the same boat.

Peace...

Ravenwolf40
Mar 23, 2011, 10:54 PM
So I opened garageband and also Activity monitor on my iMac and realized just how much RAM is used by SampleTank and EZDrummer and other plugins. I really don't think that 2GB of RAM is going to cut it for my use. I also learned what the Free, Wired, Active, Inactive, and Used mean on the system memory tab of the Activity monitor. I'll share if you don't know.
-Wired is what OsX needs to run.
-Active is what other apps are currently using.
-Inactive is what apps that were just opened before just used, they keep it available in "Inactive" figuring these apps may be opened again soon and saves loading time
-Free is what is free (easy enough)
-Used is the total of Active, Inactive, and Wired

So to see what your DAW is using, either look at your DAW in the list, or look at the change in "Active" from before you open your DAW and after you open it and add plugins, virtual instruments, etc...

So I'm back to the drawing board and the Macbook Pro is once again looking good to me. LOL :P. I am so indecisive!

Why couldn't Apple make one a different price completely? They are very smart indeed. The Air at $1299 needs a $100 upgrade to 4GB of RAM which takes it to $1399. The Macbook Pro needs the 128GB SSD to be "modern", which adds $250 to the $1199 price which takes it to $1449. So basically the same price for what I want ($50 difference).

So is the slimness that important to me???

What would be perfect would be a new Macbook, no longer white plastic, but aluminum casing, 4GB Ram, SSD drive, 7hr battery life, 13" screen, basically the air with more RAM, more ports, but big like the pro, and $1000 to $1100 range.

Sigh... I'll sleep on it, again...

Scottsdale
Mar 24, 2011, 12:29 AM
So I opened garageband and also Activity monitor on my iMac and realized just how much RAM is used by SampleTank and EZDrummer and other plugins. I really don't think that 2GB of RAM is going to cut it for my use. I also learned what the Free, Wired, Active, Inactive, and Used mean on the system memory tab of the Activity monitor. I'll share if you don't know.
-Wired is what OsX needs to run.
-Active is what other apps are currently using.
-Inactive is what apps that were just opened before just used, they keep it available in "Inactive" figuring these apps may be opened again soon and saves loading time
-Free is what is free (easy enough)
-Used is the total of Active, Inactive, and Wired

So to see what your DAW is using, either look at your DAW in the list, or look at the change in "Active" from before you open your DAW and after you open it and add plugins, virtual instruments, etc...

So I'm back to the drawing board and the Macbook Pro is once again looking good to me. LOL :P. I am so indecisive!

Why couldn't Apple make one a different price completely? They are very smart indeed. The Air at $1299 needs a $100 upgrade to 4GB of RAM which takes it to $1399. The Macbook Pro needs the 128GB SSD to be "modern", which adds $250 to the $1199 price which takes it to $1449. So basically the same price for what I want ($50 difference).

So is the slimness that important to me???

What would be perfect would be a new Macbook, no longer white plastic, but aluminum casing, 4GB Ram, SSD drive, 7hr battery life, 13" screen, basically the air with more RAM, more ports, but big like the pro, and $1000 to $1100 range.

Sigh... I'll sleep on it, again...

You're wrong in thinking the slimness is key as the ultimate number one factor is weight primarily with thinness coming in a ways back. The MBA is only amazing if it can do exactly what you need it to do while being more mobile.

However, for me there is no comparison vs a 13" MBP. You have to remember the MBA has a high resolution display and it has the same workspace as the 15.4" MBP.

In addition, SB brings a small CPU bump but the C2D is more than capable and the 320m is far superior. If you need a professional Mac, the only ones available in notebooks are 15" and 17" as the 13" MBP is far less Pro than the 13" MBA.

I think if you used both for a week you would absolutely be over the MBP and go for the MBA. When considering 13" notebooks the MBA is Apple's Pro model.

Ravenwolf40
Mar 25, 2011, 08:00 PM
I went back to Best Buy to check out the MBP and MBA again, and I see what you are talking about! I never noticed the screens before really. I spun the MBA around (because they have the MBA and MBP back to back on the display table) and sure enough the air's screen was not only clearer (the MBP looked "fuzzy" in comparison), but indeed I could see more of everything. Now can you just change the MBP settings to make it like that too? Or is that setting (15 MBP workspace you had said) only like that on the MBA?

I like the lightness and thinness, but in all honesty to me personally I like the following: doesn't heat up, I won't feel all OCD about "hurting" a traditional disk drive by bumping it, etc..., the speed that things open (because I'm always feeling like I'm waiting on computers - like a lot!, and the fact that the fan is the only moving part REALLY puts my OCD at ease (it would make me happier if there were no moving parts at all!).

So the only real question I have left is: MBA 13 standard with a 4gb upgrade? $1399 OR MBA Ultimate $1799. I may just go with the ultimate and use my Best Buy gift cards for a new TV later on or something (I had mentioned in my previous post I was bummed that Best Buy only carried the low end models as I received a few hundred dollars of Best Buy gift cards from my employer recently).

I just hate this, I'm cheap by nature and I love how I go from "I'm going to get that $999 macbook air with no applecare, to now the $1799 possibly with applecare (my cost just doubled for no other reason than my head is insane and I think I need things that in reality I probably do not, but hey, that is life as a US consumer I guess. Make it, and spend it :P).

Thanks for the advice man, I appreciate it :).

Scottsdale
Mar 25, 2011, 11:12 PM
I went back to Best Buy to check out the MBP and MBA again, and I see what you are talking about! I never noticed the screens before really. I spun the MBA around (because they have the MBA and MBP back to back on the display table) and sure enough the air's screen was not only clearer (the MBP looked "fuzzy" in comparison), but indeed I could see more of everything. Now can you just change the MBP settings to make it like that too? Or is that setting (15 MBP workspace you had said) only like that on the MBA?

I like the lightness and thinness, but in all honesty to me personally I like the following: doesn't heat up, I won't feel all OCD about "hurting" a traditional disk drive by bumping it, etc..., the speed that things open (because I'm always feeling like I'm waiting on computers - like a lot!, and the fact that the fan is the only moving part REALLY puts my OCD at ease (it would make me happier if there were no moving parts at all!).

So the only real question I have left is: MBA 13 standard with a 4gb upgrade? $1399 OR MBA Ultimate $1799. I may just go with the ultimate and use my Best Buy gift cards for a new TV later on or something (I had mentioned in my previous post I was bummed that Best Buy only carried the low end models as I received a few hundred dollars of Best Buy gift cards from my employer recently).

I just hate this, I'm cheap by nature and I love how I go from "I'm going to get that $999 macbook air with no applecare, to now the $1799 possibly with applecare (my cost just doubled for no other reason than my head is insane and I think I need things that in reality I probably do not, but hey, that is life as a US consumer I guess. Make it, and spend it :P).

Thanks for the advice man, I appreciate it :).

The 13" MBP does NOT have a hi resolution option at all while it's standard on the 13" MBA. I think MBP buyers were most disappointed that it didn't get the same hi Res display as the 13" MBA when it was updated last month as most considered it guaranteed since the consumer MBA got it.

If you don't need more than 128GB SSD, just get the base 13" and add the 4GB RAM. It only costs $1189 refurbished from Apple.com and it's the same as new with a full year of AppleCare. In addition, right before the year is up you can add AppleCare for another two years giving it three years total.

I would advise you to spend the least possible that will last you the longest to do what you need it to do. If you only keep them a year, spend less... If you keep it for three years, it's likely you will need more drive space. Only get the ultimate if you need it or plan to use the same MBA for several years.

Best wishes.

Ravenwolf40
Mar 29, 2011, 10:02 PM
I have to thank you man. You and a few others on this forum took the time to answer questions for me regarding the MBA.

I just ordered my MBA 13", 4gb ram, 128 ssd today and I feel really psyched about it. I should have taken the advice on waiting on the applecare, but I figured get it all paid at one time and be done with it then I can enjoy for 3 years without thinking anymore :P.

But seriously, thanks again for taking the time. I can't wait to run tests and post back in this forum with my experiences and screenshots and the like to help others out as well :).

Peace

KPOM
Mar 29, 2011, 10:26 PM
I have to thank you man. You and a few others on this forum took the time to answer questions for me regarding the MBA.

I just ordered my MBA 13", 4gb ram, 128 ssd today and I feel really psyched about it. I should have taken the advice on waiting on the applecare, but I figured get it all paid at one time and be done with it then I can enjoy for 3 years without thinking anymore :P.

But seriously, thanks again for taking the time. I can't wait to run tests and post back in this forum with my experiences and screenshots and the like to help others out as well :).

Peace


Good luck with the 13" MacBook Air. I think you will enjoy it. In all likelihood, you won't notice a difference between the 2.13GHz and 1.86GHz Core 2 Duo. I went from a 13" Ultimate to an 11" Ultimate since I wanted the extra portability. The 11" is great and the only things I miss are the extra battery life of the 13" and the extra vertical pixels. Besides, that, the 1.6GHz Core 2 Duo model has been more than sufficient for me. The 1.86GHz 13" model is a great primary computer, IMO.

Scottsdale
Mar 29, 2011, 11:05 PM
I have to thank you man. You and a few others on this forum took the time to answer questions for me regarding the MBA.

I just ordered my MBA 13", 4gb ram, 128 ssd today and I feel really psyched about it. I should have taken the advice on waiting on the applecare, but I figured get it all paid at one time and be done with it then I can enjoy for 3 years without thinking anymore :P.

But seriously, thanks again for taking the time. I can't wait to run tests and post back in this forum with my experiences and screenshots and the like to help others out as well :).

Peace

Congratulations. Enjoy and share your experiences!