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View Full Version : Should I buy a new MBA now?




twistyblue
Apr 10, 2013, 07:06 AM
Hi, I have a few questions on my inquiry for the latest Macbook Air along with the Retina 13in. Ever since I used my girlfriendís 2011 macbook pro.. Iím really hooked with OSX and just feel more productive with it (of course thatís just personal thing =P).
I have a Sony Vaio TZ Core 2 duo 1.06ghz from 2008 that I have been using on and off, and to me the performance is a bit slow. I know if I slapped in 4gb ram and a SSD will bump the performance up by a lot, but I want a mac now.
My dilemma is will the macbook air 1.7ghz i5 with 8gb ram be sufficient? I am a bit skeptical about its 1.7ghz performance. I looked into the retina 13in but Iím leaning more to the air cuz of its size and battery life.
I use the laptop for school uses mainly excel and powerpoint, but also quickbook for work. And with free time I use Photoshop and Video editing, from my canon DSLR (I donít use it as muchÖonce a week about 2 hrs worth of time fiddlingÖ unless Iím compiling a family video which takes even longer). On top of this I plan to learn Object-C as an extra hobby. So will this be sufficient for my use? Also to mention I have few external HDDs so 128gb SSD will be sufficient for me. So will the air run smoothly without a slow/lag response like the vaio? And will this be enough that I wouldnít need the 13 retina? I know that just 300 more I can get a better screen and better performance, but donít see the need to have the performance if Iím not going to be playing games or be using photoshop/Premier intesivelyÖ am I correct? Along with few articles indicating retina display is slowing down the performances of the MBP.
Iíve done my research and looked through forums about Core 2 duo vs i5 performances, but I want a bit personal answer, and probably after few responses I will have my decision made up.
So what do you guys think? MBA 13in i5 8gb or MBP 13in i5 8gb?



DisplacedMic
Apr 10, 2013, 10:22 AM
my advice would be go to the apple store and play with them. i did that after being set on one option and now i've changed my mind entirely.

you can do pretty much anything you want in an apple store (except go to maddox's page of course ;))

i like to shut the computers down, turn everything on at once - open a million tabs, that sort of thing.

LeandrodaFL
Apr 10, 2013, 10:35 AM
I would go for the Retina cause it has a little more storage, right?

DisplacedMic
Apr 10, 2013, 01:07 PM
I would go for the Retina cause it has a little more storage, right?

no - the stock 13" mba and 13" rmbp both come with 128g SSDs

stchman
Apr 10, 2013, 04:15 PM
What's your budget?

You can get a 13" MBA with i7/8GB/256GB SSD for $1569 from Macmall. Of course, you could get a 13" rMBP with a faster processor, same RAM, same SSD, for ~$60 more. The Retina screen alone is worth the price difference.

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no - the stock 13" mba and 13" rmbp both come with 128g SSDs

True, but the rMBP can be had with a 768GB SSD if you wish.

kulimer
Apr 11, 2013, 11:30 PM
My dilemma is will the macbook air 1.7ghz i5 with 8gb ram be sufficient? I am a bit skeptical about its 1.7ghz performance. I looked into the retina 13in but I’m leaning more to the air cuz of its size and battery life.
I use the laptop for school uses mainly excel and powerpoint, but also quickbook for work. And with free time I use Photoshop and Video editing, from my canon DSLR (I don’t use it as much…once a week about 2 hrs worth of time fiddling… unless I’m compiling a family video which takes even longer). On top of this I plan to learn Object-C as an extra hobby. So will this be sufficient for my use?

It is sufficient for all Mac software, but it is horrible for MS word. It froze on me a few times. Random warning also comes telling it has been auto saved. When I am done, I see 10 auto saved copies, yes, you have to delete it yourself.

In MS ppt, some math symbols shows up as a wired looking eagle, I don't know why the eagle.

As for objective-c, it will be awesome as long as you don't run 200,000,000 like me.

twistyblue
Apr 12, 2013, 09:21 PM
Thanks guys for the replies... about getting i7... is there a significant performance boost? if there really isnt... i don't it justifies that extra cost. and regarding the ssd space, I'm fine with 128... since I have back ups I don't have trouble with my vaio's 100gb hdd. Well over the weekend I feel like i'm ready to purchase the air. :) thanks guys.

B...
Apr 12, 2013, 09:30 PM
Thanks guys for the replies... about getting i7... is there a significant performance boost? if there really isnt... i don't it justifies that extra cost. and regarding the ssd space, I'm fine with 128... since I have back ups I don't have trouble with my vaio's 100gb hdd. Well over the weekend I feel like i'm ready to purchase the air. :) thanks guys.
It is about a 10-15% boost with full CPU utilization. If you only could get one upgrade, I would get the 8 GB RAM over the i7, mainly because that will impact your daily use more than a 10% speed increase.

AnorexicPig
Apr 13, 2013, 12:45 AM
It is sufficient for all Mac software, but it is horrible for MS word. It froze on me a few times. Random warning also comes telling it has been auto saved. When I am done, I see 10 auto saved copies, yes, you have to delete it yourself.

In MS ppt, some math symbols shows up as a wired looking eagle, I don't know why the eagle.

As for objective-c, it will be awesome as long as you don't run 200,000,000 like me.

Well, MS Office has worked flawlessly on mine,no problems encountered whatsoever.

majkom
Apr 13, 2013, 01:16 AM
Ms ofgice for mac is the worstbever sw on mac, ever! Word, excel both are slow, laggy no matter yor hw config. Wrote my graduate thedis in word, after reaching several pages - it was horribly laggy, from time to time it screwed document and needed to be restarted - all that wgile using original retail ms iffice 2011 versiod in quad core imac with16 gigs of ram... Terrible sw

TC25
Apr 13, 2013, 03:39 AM
Ms ofgice for mac is the worstbever sw on mac, ever! Word, excel both are slow, laggy no matter yor hw config. Wrote my graduate thedis in word, after reaching several pages - it was horribly laggy, from time to time it screwed document and needed to be restarted - all that wgile using original retail ms iffice 2011 versiod in quad core imac with16 gigs of ram... Terrible sw

MSOffice was merely having an allergic reaction to your spelling skills and ability to compose a lucid sentence.

majkom
Apr 13, 2013, 05:18 AM
MSOffice was merely having an allergic reaction to your spelling skills and ability to compose a lucid sentence.

wrote it just after waking up, on iphone, without spell check...

LeeM
Apr 13, 2013, 07:49 AM
MSOffice was merely having an allergic reaction to your spelling skills and ability to compose a lucid sentence.

spellchecker must be pretty processor intensive haha

kulimer
Apr 13, 2013, 01:25 PM
Thanks guys for the replies... about getting i7... is there a significant performance boost? if there really isnt... i don't it justifies that extra cost. and regarding the ssd space, I'm fine with 128... since I have back ups I don't have trouble with my vaio's 100gb hdd. Well over the weekend I feel like i'm ready to purchase the air. :) thanks guys.

I played with my friends' rMBP i7, it is much faster. I have a i5 MBA, it's slow when running loops.

B...
Apr 13, 2013, 01:29 PM
I played with my friends' rMBP i7, it is much faster. I have a i5 MBA, it's slow when running loops.

That is because it is a rMBP vs. a MBA. The Macbook Air has a 1.8/7 GHz ULV processor while the rMBP has a 2.9/3.0 i7 full voltage processor. Obviously one will be be much faster. 30% speed increase according to GeekBench with i5 Air vs i7 rMBP. i5 Air to i7 Air is only 13% more.

halledise
Apr 13, 2013, 03:45 PM
if you can hold off for a couple of months, there are strong indications there'll be a refresh across the entire Apple portable range

JoEw
Apr 15, 2013, 01:15 PM
Wait for the Haswell chip refresh! The MBA will soon be refreshed and there is possibility of a new design as well. In either case, The Haswell will have better battery life fr the MBA, graphics boost and most likely a storage boost at same cost as now :)

stchman
Apr 15, 2013, 01:41 PM
Ms ofgice for mac is the worstbever sw on mac, ever! Word, excel both are slow, laggy no matter yor hw config. Wrote my graduate thedis in word, after reaching several pages - it was horribly laggy, from time to time it screwed document and needed to be restarted - all that wgile using original retail ms iffice 2011 versiod in quad core imac with16 gigs of ram... Terrible sw

I use LibreOffice for the Mac and it runs great. Not to mention it's free. I have found that users fell they HAVE to HAVE MS Office when in reality LibreOffice will more than satisfy their needs.

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Wait for the Haswell chip refresh! The MBA will soon be refreshed and there is possibility of a new design as well. In either case, The Haswell will have better battery life fr the MBA, graphics boost and most likely a storage boost at same cost as now :)

Word is that yes Haswell will have better battery life, but word is that Apple is going to put a smaller battery to decrease the MBA's weight. So in reality you'll get the same battery life with your MBA weighing slightly less.

Serban
Apr 15, 2013, 03:11 PM
Yea wait for haswell..you will get a 10H usage battery OR you will get a lighter air with the same 7 hours..so in any case you get a nice and welcome bump with the new hd4600 or hd 5000 will be a plus.