View Full Version : Get 2012 MBA 13.3 with 4GB and 256GB SSD or 8GB and 128GB SSD?

Aug 11, 2012, 01:45 PM
I currently have the 13.3 Air with 4GB RAM and 256GB SSD and it is still sealed in the factory plastic but I am having a hard time deciding whether to open it and keep it or just go ahead and sell it as new sealed for a small discount to any other buyer.

I don't know if it would be better to get the same 13.3 model but with 8GB RM and 128GB SSD instead or keep this one I have ?

Any thoughts on this or anyone have first hand experience to share ?


Aug 11, 2012, 01:46 PM
Depends on what you use it for. Odds are 4 GB RAM will be fine for you.

Aug 11, 2012, 01:49 PM
I'd rather have 8GB of RAM, as USB 3.0 makes it easier to migrate my files externally and leave more room for applications.

Aug 11, 2012, 01:50 PM
I was thinking that 8GB RAM may be better "future proof" and it is non changeable soldered to Motherboard. whereas there may be a possibility of upgrading the SSD later from OWC and even if not...we now have USB 3.0 so really fast transfers to store data on small external drive if absolutely necessary.

Makes any sense or disagree ?

Then again if all 4GB is used up, it is page filing to the fasssst SSD anyway right? So would the 8GB RAM make a huge difference speed wise instead of paging to the fast SSD if all 4GB RAM was used up?

I wonder if anyone has tested this and posted results anywhere?

Depends on what you use it for. Odds are 4 GB RAM will be fine for you.

Aug 11, 2012, 01:51 PM
IMO...get the 128 SSD & 8gb of RAM.

You can always get more external storage..but the RAM is soldered onto the motherboard, so you cant upgrade after you order it.

If you want this MBA to last you for 2 - 3 years, I'd go with the 8gb RAM & 128 SSD. I have a 3TB external USB 3.0 drive coming as well.

I just ordered mine yesterday after using a friends for the last week...GREAT computer.

Aug 11, 2012, 01:56 PM
I would love to find someone who practically tested 4GB RAM with 256GB SSD versus the 8GB RAM with 128GB SSD and maxed both machines out with open apps and processes or encoding or whatever and seen if there was really a significant noticeable difference with the 8GB RAM.

If we were talking old days here where it would be writing to the pagefile on a slow hard drive then there would be huge noticeable difference BUT how noticeable really could it be writing a pagefile to the an extra 4GB RAM versus writing it on to the fast as hell SSD?

If we are talking 1 or 2 seconds max out of a large long process....then that really makes no sense to go with the 8GB in my mind.

I'll start scouring the web to see if someone has done such a benchmark and posted results anywhere...

Aug 11, 2012, 01:58 PM
I wouldn't get less than 8gb of ram, especially if you plan to have the computer for a while and it's your main computer.

Aug 11, 2012, 02:32 PM
4GB is not enough for my daily needs - bunch of safari windows, xcode, powerpoint etc. With 8GB (I have a MBP13 w 8GB), I almost never have to use swap.

For me, I want a situation where I am NOT swapping to the SSDs (1. its slower than RAM 2. it eats away SSD life since SSDs have a limited write cycle).

Aug 11, 2012, 02:53 PM
I had the same dilemma. I decided to save some money and get both 256 and 8.

Aug 11, 2012, 05:46 PM
8! No I mean 8. Did I mention 8?

You can always get another SSD later. But the RAM - that's permanent. Get 8.

plucky duck
Aug 11, 2012, 05:58 PM
For normal use I rarely hit the ceiling, and with SSD as pagefile I am not concerned at all, so I went with the larger 256GB SSD/4GB 2011 combo.