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View Full Version : About to return my rMBP for a 13" Air...thoughts?




dbdynsty25
Sep 4, 2012, 06:13 PM
So, I have had a few MacBooks in the past few years and really the only one that really satisfied me was my original aluminum 2008 13" MB (they weren't Pros back then). I used it for 3+ years and sold it last winter and got a 2011 11" Air. It was fine...I loved the portability compared to the 13" MB it replaced, but after the first few months (and the arrival of the retina iPad) I realized I never used the Air unless I was hooked up to my 24" monitor at work. Never broke it out at home at all. So I tried to decide between the 13" Air and the rMBP a week and a half ago.

I admit it...I'm a sucker for technology...I buy a new phone ever few months even though I'm under contract. Yes, I flip the last one on eBay, but it still costs a bit to change phones that often. I was smitten with the look and the build quality of the rMBP and the cost didn't really matter to me as much as the hardware. So I bit on the Retina w/ my buddies work discount so I got the base model version for ~2200 out the door with an extra AC adapter.

Now, here we are on the 14th day w the rMBP and I still like it...but I don't LOVE it. The whole device is a bit too big and I realize that it mostly could be because I'm coming from the 11" Air, but just something about it makes it too big to comfortably sit on the couch with if I do what to do that. Now, keep in mind, I've still got the retina iPad and I've got a gaming PC that I recently built so I don't game at all on the MacBook so it's really just a toy for me to use.

Anyway, so I think I've decided that I'm going to return the rMBP tonight and get the 13" Air. Kind of a compromise between the two...sure, the screen isn't as good, it's not nearly as powerful, but like I said, if I need horsepower, I've got my desktop for that. I've been wrestling with this decision virtually all weekend and I guess I'm just here to vent and write it all out and look for confirmation that I'm doing the right thing. You know, if I'm being honest. :) It'll also help that I'll save about a grand, so that doesn't hurt he situation at all.

The performance issues with the lag on the rMBP are noticeable when compared to the air, so that doesn't hurt my decision either, but I know those will get ironed out in the next few updates...at least I hope they do because it's pretty significant.

Anyway, has anyone else made the switch from rMBP to 13" Air...do you feel better now that you've done it?

Thanks for reading guys/gals...I feel better. Kinda. :)



Dark Void
Sep 4, 2012, 07:15 PM
I think you're going about it the right way - hard to justify the rMBP if you have a desktop that will handle what you need. The 13'' Air seems to be better for you with everything that you have discussed.

Good luck!

iAppl3Fan
Sep 4, 2012, 07:29 PM
You can always get both and replace your desktop with a TBD.

entatlrg
Sep 4, 2012, 07:57 PM
13" Air sounds like the right machine for you. I own a 15" rMBP and have come to the same conclusion, it's the 13" Air I use the most and we have an 11" Air in the house, (my wife's), so I've been able to spend time on it as well.

13" Air for me is THE sweet spot. Now if the 13" rMBP becomes a reality and if it's no more than a 1/2 pound heavier than the 13" Air, then that's going to be very tempting :)

dbdynsty25
Sep 4, 2012, 08:04 PM
Thanks guys...but as I sit here during the 11th hour (have 3 hours till store closes), looking at this ridiculously awesome screen and hardware, it keeps telling me to stall, stall, stall...lol. From a functional and financial standpoint it makes sense to go 13"...but from a warm and fuzzy place, it's tough with this beauty sitting on my desk.

iaymnu
Sep 4, 2012, 08:26 PM
Thanks guys...but as I sit here during the 11th hour (have 3 hours till store closes), looking at this ridiculously awesome screen and hardware, it keeps telling me to stall, stall, stall...lol. From a functional and financial standpoint it makes sense to go 13"...but from a warm and fuzzy place, it's tough with this beauty sitting on my desk.

My Air is collecting dust. I haven't touched it ever since I got the rMBP.
If returning the rMBP then picking up the Air will help you in a financial way, then the choice is to return it. If not? I don't see why you should let it go. The weight is not extreme and with the 15" screen there is so much more space to work with.

Alan-in-NC
Sep 4, 2012, 08:38 PM
Thanks guys...but as I sit here during the 11th hour (have 3 hours till store closes), looking at this ridiculously awesome screen and hardware, it keeps telling me to stall, stall, stall...lol. From a functional and financial standpoint it makes sense to go 13"...but from a warm and fuzzy place, it's tough with this beauty sitting on my desk.

Aren't there rumors of 13" rMBP due out soon? That could fit your screen size needs, give you the latest tech and still save a little money :)

I recently sold my 2010 13" MBP and got a new BTO 11" Air (which I love!), so I know how difficult those decisions can be ;)

Good luck!

sviato
Sep 4, 2012, 10:57 PM
Thanks guys...but as I sit here during the 11th hour (have 3 hours till store closes), looking at this ridiculously awesome screen and hardware, it keeps telling me to stall, stall, stall...lol. From a functional and financial standpoint it makes sense to go 13"...but from a warm and fuzzy place, it's tough with this beauty sitting on my desk.

what'd you end up doing?

dbdynsty25
Sep 5, 2012, 12:37 AM
Ended up returning it for the 13" Air with about 20 minutes to spare. It wasn't about the money, more the principle of the thing. I hate to buy something that I will never use, so it's really a waste of money overall. I swapped it for a base model 13" Air and maybe when the 13" Retina comes out someday, I'll consider dipping my toes back into the Retina pool, but for now, I'll save the 988 bucks I got back and be on my way. I was thinking about getting an upgraded version, but figured the more I upgraded it, the more money from a percentage perspective, I'd lose when I went to resell. Maybe it's a flawed theory, but less money spent now, so I suppose it's a decent strategy.

Thanks again everyone for your opinions...ultimately it helps reading what others think even when all these laptops are completely a personal thing.

BTW...I have to commend Apple's customer service. I walked in the store at 8:40pm, was greeted promptly, they asked why I was exchanging it and I was out of there in like 7 minutes. No hassel at all...definitely a pleasure to deal with.

toondw
Sep 5, 2012, 02:08 AM
Bit late now.......but I've just sent back a rMBP for the 13" MBA. rMBP was lovely but it was a case of want not need, so saved a bit of cash and got the air.

dbdynsty25
Sep 5, 2012, 02:25 AM
Bit late now.......but I've just sent back a rMBP for the 13" MBA. rMBP was lovely but it was a case of want not need, so saved a bit of cash and got the air.

That's pretty much the perfect way to put it. Want not need. Sad to say.

Daud
Sep 5, 2012, 04:03 AM
Funny, I am pulled the opposite way.
I have my personal MBA 13 2010 which completely changed my use of a laptop. It is so light I have it every day with me at work and use it. Now the employer gave me an offer to get whatever laptop I want. Spent some time with the RMBP and am tempted. I am concerned only about the 700g weight difference. For me, an MBA 15" 1680x1050 (older eyes) even not retina would be an ideal machine.

ixodes
Sep 5, 2012, 04:35 AM
Contrary to Apple lore, you won't be a failure if you don't use a rMBP.

A 13" MBA was all the rage until Apple decided they wanted more of our money. Their retina strategy is brilliant. Give em a better display with a "Magical Name" and presto, the company wins big again.

Even their users love to brag about Apples money.

It's good to be Apple these days :)

dbdynsty25
Sep 5, 2012, 06:22 AM
Contrary to Apple lore, you won't be a failure if you don't use a rMBP.

A 13" MBA was all the rage until Apple decided they wanted more of our money. Their retina strategy is brilliant. Give em a better display with a "Magical Name" and presto, the company wins big again.

Even their users love to brag about Apples money.

It's good to be Apple these days :)

There is no doubt all of that is true, but I personally am a HUGE build quality guy. The design and aesthetic of the rMBP was more of a draw to me than the actual display even though that thing is awesome as well. I'm getting so used to high resolution displays (720p on a phone, are you kidding me?) that when it's not in that vicinity it does actually look pixellated...so that of course is a huge draw.

The 13" Air, yes, is awesome, but it's more of a "been there, done that" type of thing since I had the 11" 2011 model so I wanted something different because outside of the novelty size, I never fell in love with it. So we'll see how this 13" Air goes for me, though I have a feeling if/when they release their 13" Retina, I'll be all over it assuming it's designed how the 15" is. :)

wolfpuppies3
Sep 5, 2012, 07:31 AM
That was the decision I came to after weeks of comparisons. I bought a maxed out 13" MBA and love it. When I do need a larger screen (to process photographic images), I have a 27" Apple monitor.

elppa
Sep 5, 2012, 12:13 PM
The real problem is that the 13" Pro is a bit of a nothing product at the moment. There is no good reason for most people to buy it over the 13" Air.

I think when it is revised it will probably hit the sweet spot in terms of portability and performance.

toondw
Sep 7, 2012, 05:01 AM
emmm,

i said earlier i was returning the rMBP for the 13" air.......

i didn't, ive kept the rMBP. The main reason is simply that with the discount i got it cost me 220 more than the spec of the air i was getting.

for that extra 220 i get a better cpu, better gpu, bigger beautiful screen. worth the money i suppose. even if it was a matter of want over need.

also i know i will play the odd game or 2 and from what i read the air does not quite cut it. portability is not a issue, i dont take it out out of the house and i can easily prop the rMBP on my knee or in bed without any problems.

and that screen.........did i mention that? ;)

bubbleboyjones
Sep 7, 2012, 08:58 AM
emmm,

i said earlier i was returning the rMBP for the 13" air.......

i didn't, ive kept the rMBP. The main reason is simply that with the discount i got it cost me 220 more than the spec of the air i was getting.

for that extra 220 i get a better cpu, better gpu, bigger beautiful screen. worth the money i suppose. even if it was a matter of want over need.

also i know i will play the odd game or 2 and from what i read the air does not quite cut it. portability is not a issue, i dont take it out out of the house and i can easily prop the rMBP on my knee or in bed without any problems.

and that screen.........did i mention that? ;)


Yeah really depends on where do you think you'll be spending most of your time with the laptop. I spend the majority of my time with it on my lap and coffee table so the Air works out better than a rMBP.

I have a 16.4" Vaio that is almost 7 lbs and it just collects dust. The 2 things I hate the most about it is the weight and the startup time from sleep since its a HD. theres nothing better than having the Air wake from sleep in seconds ready to go.

entatlrg
Sep 7, 2012, 09:28 AM
My Air is collecting dust. I haven't touched it ever since I got the rMBP.
If returning the rMBP then picking up the Air will help you in a financial way, then the choice is to return it. If not? I don't see why you should let it go. The weight is not extreme and with the 15" screen there is so much more space to work with.

Where do you use your rMBP most often? On a desk or table?

I have an rMBP and an Air and my usage is the opposite. I wish I used my rMBP more, the screen is beautiful, the added screen size is great.

Since I bought the 15" I've been mobile and traveling more, lot's of typing on my lap and that's why I'm using the Air more, it's a better fit for the situations I'm using it in.

If my schedule would allow my to sit at a desk or workspace more then for sure I'd be using the rMBP.

chrisrosemusic1
Sep 7, 2012, 09:45 AM
13" Air sounds like the right machine for you. I own a 15" rMBP and have come to the same conclusion, it's the 13" Air I use the most and we have an 11" Air in the house, (my wife's), so I've been able to spend time on it as well.

13" Air for me is THE sweet spot. Now if the 13" rMBP becomes a reality and if it's no more than a 1/2 pound heavier than the 13" Air, then that's going to be very tempting :)

I'm on for a new laptop in November and I *REALLY* hope the 13" retina is announced. 13" is the perfect size for me and I have held off on the 15" rMBP (although mainly because I think it's just too expensive for me).

SuperRob
Sep 7, 2012, 10:27 AM
It was fine...I loved the portability compared to the 13" MB it replaced, but after the first few months (and the arrival of the retina iPad) I realized I never used the Air unless I was hooked up to my 24" monitor at work. Never broke it out at home at all.

Now, here we are on the 14th day w the rMBP and I still like it...but I don't LOVE it. The whole device is a bit too big and I realize that it mostly could be because I'm coming from the 11" Air, but just something about it makes it too big to comfortably sit on the couch with if I do what to do that.

I would like to point out that based on your own statements, you were rationalizing replacing the MBPR with an Air because the MBPR isn't comfortable to use at home, while previously you said you never used your old Air at home.

Personally, I think you were dealing with a case of buyer's remorse. The MBPR is a hefty chunk of change. When it came time to get a machine for my new job, I got the 13" Air over the MBPR because I just couldn't justify the massive price difference. The quality of the experience of the MBPR isn't THAT much better, in my opinion. Better, no doubt, but not enough to justify costing as much as an 11" and 13" Air combined.

Give your Air year or two. By then, I think you'll see the cost come down and Retina available across most of Apple's product line.

dbdynsty25
Sep 7, 2012, 12:02 PM
I would like to point out that based on your own statements, you were rationalizing replacing the MBPR with an Air because the MBPR isn't comfortable to use at home, while previously you said you never used your old Air at home.

Personally, I think you were dealing with a case of buyer's remorse. The MBPR is a hefty chunk of change. When it came time to get a machine for my new job, I got the 13" Air over the MBPR because I just couldn't justify the massive price difference. The quality of the experience of the MBPR isn't THAT much better, in my opinion. Better, no doubt, but not enough to justify costing as much as an 11" and 13" Air combined.

Give your Air year or two. By then, I think you'll see the cost come down and Retina available across most of Apple's product line.

No doubt there was a bit of buyers remorse, which I admit to of course, but, the main reason I didn't use my previous air at home is because it was 11" and I'd rather just sit with my 10" iPad w/ the retina display if I'm at home on the couch. So that's why that came out contradictory. :)

toondw
Sep 7, 2012, 12:24 PM
I must have a large lap then because i have no problem resting the rMBP on it, infact i find it rests easier than the air i borrowed for a couple of weeks, it kept falling between my legs everytime i moved a bit. loved the air however but i wouldn't want to marry it, more a 1 night stand! ;)

stchman
Sep 7, 2012, 01:48 PM
It all depends on what you need the laptop for.

If you are going to be doing some heavy duty video editing the rMBP is a better choice. If you need something light to surf the web, check email, play music, etc. the MBA will more than suffice.

iaymnu
Sep 8, 2012, 12:04 PM
Where do you use your rMBP most often? On a desk or table?

I have an rMBP and an Air and my usage is the opposite. I wish I used my rMBP more, the screen is beautiful, the added screen size is great.

Since I bought the 15" I've been mobile and traveling more, lot's of typing on my lap and that's why I'm using the Air more, it's a better fit for the situations I'm using it in.

If my schedule would allow my to sit at a desk or workspace more then for sure I'd be using the rMBP.

I use my rMBP for my daily traveling solution. Every 2 months I also fly to Hong Kong for work. For me there is no difference between traveling with the MBA or rMBP in terms of weight. But the screen of the rMBP wins hands down My MBA is oddly my desk workstation plugged to my TBD.

ducatiti
Sep 9, 2012, 05:57 PM
Ended up returning it for the 13" Air with about 20 minutes to spare. It wasn't about the money, more the principle of the thing. I hate to buy something that I will never use, so it's really a waste of money overall. I swapped it for a base model 13" Air and maybe when the 13" Retina comes out someday, I'll consider dipping my toes back into the Retina pool, but for now, I'll save the 988 bucks I got back and be on my way. I was thinking about getting an upgraded version, but figured the more I upgraded it, the more money from a percentage perspective, I'd lose when I went to resell. Maybe it's a flawed theory, but less money spent now, so I suppose it's a decent strategy.

Thanks again everyone for your opinions...ultimately it helps reading what others think even when all these laptops are completely a personal thing.

BTW...I have to commend Apple's customer service. I walked in the store at 8:40pm, was greeted promptly, they asked why I was exchanging it and I was out of there in like 7 minutes. No hassel at all...definitely a pleasure to deal with.

Did the same. Might wait a bit till the 2nd gen rMBP comes out. I will then sell the MBA or give it to my wife.

So what config did you purchase?

dbdynsty25
Sep 10, 2012, 02:04 AM
Did the same. Might wait a bit till the 2nd gen rMBP comes out. I will then sell the MBA or give it to my wife.

So what config did you purchase?

Just went base model 13"...so 1.8, 128gb SSD and 4gb ram. Literally saved 988 bucks. :)

Been about a week and I'm fairly happy w/ the decision. The 13" is more the size I'm looking for, so once a retina 13" comes out...look out...I'm in. LOL.

ducatiti
Sep 10, 2012, 03:35 AM
Just went base model 13"...so 1.8, 128gb SSD and 4gb ram. Literally saved 988 bucks. :)

Been about a week and I'm fairly happy w/ the decision. The 13" is more the size I'm looking for, so once a retina 13" comes out...look out...I'm in. LOL.

Thanks for your reply. By any chance, do you have a Toshiba SSD on your base MBA?

dbdynsty25
Sep 10, 2012, 01:11 PM
Thanks for your reply. By any chance, do you have a Toshiba SSD on your base MBA?

I have a Toshiba.

APPLE SSD TS128E

dcorban
Sep 11, 2012, 01:31 PM
15" is too big for lounging around.

Return the 15" and wait a couple months for the 13" Retina Pro.