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View Full Version : Hard decision between MBP and MBA




uriel1987
Jan 31, 2008, 04:40 PM
It's driving me crazy that I can't decide if I have to buy the MBP 15'' or the MBA.
The MBA looks so good and thin and classy but still isn't performing as the MBP I think... please advice me how to decide!!!:apple:



diabolic
Jan 31, 2008, 04:41 PM
It depends on what you are going to do with it. What software do you normally use?

overanalyzer
Jan 31, 2008, 04:43 PM
It's mostly an issue of what you're going to use it for. If you need more performance for video editing, Photoshop, music production or the like; or if you need firewire and extra onboard ports, you should go with the MBP. But if size, weight, form factor, etc. are more important to you, and your usage is more basic to browsing the web, checking email, word processing, etc. you should be fine with a MBA.

heatmiser
Jan 31, 2008, 04:44 PM
If you're deciding between an MBP and an MBA, you don't need an MBP, and would almost always be better off with an MB.

aiongiant
Jan 31, 2008, 04:44 PM
yea all depends what you plan to do with it

if yuou plan to do video edting, graphics work, games
then MBP is for you

if you do basic word processing and smaller task etc or even small graphics work the MBA should be able to handle it

also it's if you travel alot the MBA comes in handy

irishgrizzly
Jan 31, 2008, 04:46 PM
No contest the MBP! No, like the others said it depends what you're using it for. If it was my primary computer though I can't imagine going for a MPA.

uriel1987
Jan 31, 2008, 04:48 PM
Most of the time I use it when I am in university...but for fun I use it also to make some movies (vacation movies) and play with music...I was so excited when they talked about an ultra portable mac but had hoped for one with an optical drive and one with more ports such as an extra usb, ethernet, firewire...
I had a MBP 17'' but sold it because I thought it was to heavy... :apple:

instant hit
Jan 31, 2008, 04:49 PM
i think you've answered your own question. the air will never hold a candle to the pro's performance, and it seems to me (based on the limited information you've given) the MBP will satisfy all of your desires.

MacHappy2
Jan 31, 2008, 04:52 PM
I now have a 17" Macbook Pro but if I had it to do over (and Macbook Air was an option) I would go with the Air. That's because I do all my primary computing tasks on my desktop. I use the laptop for travel or doing minor jobs away from my desk (and in front of the tv). I bought the Macbook Pro because I always want the best specs but when it comes to my laptop, this was a mistake. Often I can't even take it out on the airplane (use my iphone) and it's so damn heavy that I need to take large bag to carry everything I need (power adapter, USB Memory card reader, headphones, etc). Live and learn. I will definitely get the MBA when I replace my MBP.

BPerdeck
Jan 31, 2008, 04:53 PM
I mostly use safari , itunes, ichat and the occasional iphoto and word processing. I dont video or photo edit. will the basic MBA be good and speedy for my basic needs or do I need to to 1.8 or MBP? I really love the MBA. Advise me on what to do please.

uriel1987
Jan 31, 2008, 04:54 PM
YEAH a MB would have been also good if the screen would have been a better quality and with back light on the keyboard... the 13'' MB in black looks great but again without back light on keyboard...

instant hit
Jan 31, 2008, 04:59 PM
Most of the time I use it when I am in university...but for fun I use it also to make some movies (vacation movies) and play with music...I was so excited when they talked about an ultra portable mac but had hoped for one with an optical drive and one with more ports such as an extra usb, ethernet, firewire...
I had a MBP 17'' but sold it because I thought it was to heavy... :apple:

didn't see this until after i posted. anyway, from experience doing work in imovie on an MB is not the most pleasant experience. it will still work, but the bottleneck in this case is its integrated graphics.

now, it would be a tough sell but to enjoy the mba you'll need another machine, imac or otherwise.

MAW
Jan 31, 2008, 04:59 PM
Most of the time I use it when I am in university...but for fun I use it also to make some movies (vacation movies) and play with music...I was so excited when they talked about an ultra portable mac but had hoped for one with an optical drive and one with more ports such as an extra usb, ethernet, firewire...
I had a MBP 17'' but sold it because I thought it was to heavy... :apple:

if your going to be using protools le for your music than you're s.o.l. with the one usb port on the mba and no support from digidesign for usb hubs. this is the deal breaker for me.

ob81
Jan 31, 2008, 06:10 PM
err. heh The Macbook Air and the MBP are completely different classes of laptop. Sounds like you need a Macbook.

Captain Beaky
Jan 31, 2008, 06:59 PM
Im in exactly the same position. currently own a macbook (1st revision - 1.83ghz core 2 solo, 60gb hdd, 1gb ram) which is heavier than id like and runs ridiculously hot. ive promised myself a new lappy so i can go leopard, and am torn between MBA and MBP.

the biggest deal breaker for me about the MBA is the restricted access to the ports. i dont want to carry around a usb extension cable cos my flash drive wont fit, or a headphone extender cable cos the jack on my phones wont fit. im not saying they wont fit at all, but from what ive seena nd read, its certainly an issue. can anyone else confirm this?

i feel to go MBP would be a waste as i dont video edit, i dont photoshop and i dont game on a lappy either. optical drive doesnt bother me but would be nice to watch dvd's on.

any advice?

robrose20
Jan 31, 2008, 07:13 PM
It's driving me crazy that I can't decide if I have to buy the MBP 15'' or the MBA.
The MBA looks so good and thin and classy but still isn't performing as the MBP I think... please advice me how to decide!!!:apple:

If you have another computer then the MBA may be an option, if it will be your only computer you are better off with the MBP. Also, it depends on what you want to do.....

tryiian
Jan 31, 2008, 09:50 PM
If you want to edit video and have firewire, but want less weight than the Probook and in the process would like to save quite a lot of money, the Macbook is easily one of the best computers available to suit your needs.

Anyone that can type without hunting and pecking will benefit little from an illuminated keyboard, honestly. Sure it`s cool, but I can`t believe anyone would actually see that as a serious deal maker/breaker in buying a computer.

The Macbook is lighter than the Probook and the same thickness.
The Macbook is less than twice as heavy as the Airbook and a mere .3 of an inch thicker all the way across.
The Macbook has Firewire (400), gigabit ethernet, an internal DVD burner, two usb ports (which you can actually plug anything into without worrying if it`ll fit).
The Macbook has every bit of the performance that the Probook has, save for the discrete graphics card and the marginally quicker clock speed on the processor, which btw, means the Macbook gives you better battery life.
If however, you just have to have a metal enclosure... or you`re just hellbent on spending your money... Do as you wish.

The Airbook is really for people who want to carry as little weight as possible with them wherever they go, (people who are almost surgically attached to their laptops) and people who feel compelled to be on the cutting edge of technology and style.

Let me finish by recommending this test to anyone considering a portable Mac.
Go to an Apple store and spend at least ten minutes in front of all three of your options.
Open Safari and browse the web, open iMovie and play with some video recording/editing, open Quicktime and play a movie in fullscreen. Pick up and really pay attention to how each of the computers feel in your hand(s). This should be where you make your decision at.

I, for example, don`t feel at home typing on the Probook`s keyboard, nor the feeling of being in front of its cold, gray body and looking at the grated covers of the speakers. On the other hand, I love the simple, uninterrupted, and perfectly symmetrical look of the Macbook. That alone is what makes me love one over the other. Try it for yourself.

cmm26red
Jan 31, 2008, 10:03 PM
It's driving me crazy that I can't decide if I have to buy the MBP 15'' or the MBA.
The MBA looks so good and thin and classy but still isn't performing as the MBP I think... please advice me how to decide!!!:apple:

I am a college student also who had the same problem; however, I am going with the Air. My school has steep discounts on the MBP's and I weighed out all the pros and cons of both and the Air came out on top. The main things that were working against the MBP for me is the fact they run very hot, they are heavier, and the displays have numerous problems. I just need a notebook to organize daily activities, do some office stuff, MathCAD, ChemDraw, and obviously access the net. This represents my second venture into Apple land with the first being an Iphone. I have a Core2 vista desktop at home and cannot wait to get this beauty in my hands.

One Question: Will I be able to migrate my contacts in my Iphone to my new Mac and if so, how?

Captain Beaky
Jan 31, 2008, 10:07 PM
youre probably right mate. i like the specs of the MBP, but i cant stand the styling. keyboard looks horrible and the grilled speakers only serve to make the machine "look" less than cutting edge. macbook (like i have) looks great, but i'd prefer it in aluminium and the air looks like the business. be nicer if it had a smaller screen bezel, but its no deal breaker. i'd also like to try first hand if my flash drive and headphones fit into the ports on the side. oh, and i use my lappy for MANY hours a day, and the macbooks hot underside isnt really conducive for laptop work, unless it want burnt legs. does the MBP get as hot too?

Kinetic
Jan 31, 2008, 10:12 PM
I now have a 17" Macbook Pro but if I had it to do over (and Macbook Air was an option) I would go with the Air. That's because I do all my primary computing tasks on my desktop. I use the laptop for travel or doing minor jobs away from my desk (and in front of the tv). I bought the Macbook Pro because I always want the best specs but when it comes to my laptop, this was a mistake. Often I can't even take it out on the airplane (use my iphone) and it's so damn heavy that I need to take large bag to carry everything I need (power adapter, USB Memory card reader, headphones, etc). Live and learn. I will definitely get the MBA when I replace my MBP.

This mirrors my experience exactly. I got caught up in having the best but when I sit down and really think about it, I used my desktop for my heavy stuff and my macbook pro just for basic stuff. When I was in LA recently, I NEVER took out my macbook pro and instead used my iPhone cuz it was easier. Also you might want to check out the Macbooks for your needs.

uriel1987
Feb 1, 2008, 05:38 AM
How is the quality of the display when watching a movie and the quality of sound from a MB compared to the MBPro??

beast
Apr 25, 2008, 06:59 PM
How is the quality of the display when watching a movie and the quality of sound from a MB compared to the MBPro??

The quality of the screen and the audio on the MB and the MBP are pretty similar... the MBP has the added bonus of having a brighter LED backlit screen.
This really depends on whether you would be happy working on a 13 inch display. (I personally hate doing any kind photo or video work on a screen that small)

Also, if you're planning on this purchase being your primary machine, you should forget about the MBA.

I think the best advice that anyone can give you is to go to an apple store and try out the machines for size, speed and weight. Then buy the one that meets your needs.... and if you're not happy with what you have bought, you have 14 days to return or exchange it for something else.

jjahshik32
Apr 25, 2008, 07:21 PM
It's driving me crazy that I can't decide if I have to buy the MBP 15'' or the MBA.
The MBA looks so good and thin and classy but still isn't performing as the MBP I think... please advice me how to decide!!!:apple:

I would get the 15" mbp. :apple:

mhnajjar
Apr 25, 2008, 07:53 PM
It's driving me crazy that I can't decide if I have to buy the MBP 15'' or the MBA.
The MBA looks so good and thin and classy but still isn't performing as the MBP I think... please advice me how to decide!!!:apple:

I have a MBP 17" and a MBA and I would say:

- Wait for a redesign of the MBP hopefully this summer if you can.
- Get MBA for the design, lightness and sexiness!!!
- Get MBP if you need something powerful unless you only surf the net and do slight tasks.

Those were my 3 cents :p

steve31
Apr 25, 2008, 07:54 PM
The quality of the screen and the audio on the MB and the MBP are pretty similar... the MBP has the added bonus of having a brighter LED backlit screen.
This really depends on whether you would be happy working on a 13 inch display. (I personally hate doing any kind photo or video work on a screen that small)

Also, if you're planning on this purchase being your primary machine, you should forget about the MBA.

I think the best advice that anyone can give you is to go to an apple store and try out the machines for size, speed and weight. Then buy the one that meets your needs.... and if you're not happy with what you have bought, you have 14 days to return or exchange it for something else. My MBA screen is brighter than my MBP.:confused: But the MBA is a nice addition....but not a stand alone unit. I love mine but I love my pro more!!!

Scott6666
Apr 26, 2008, 11:02 AM
I've tried both and I am much happier with the MBP. I bought the $2000 model and upgraded the hard drive to 250G for only $50 more. So $250 for a MBP than an MBA and much better specs.

The weight was great but the fans and the core shutowns on the MBA were intolerable.

Looking forward to a Rev B MBA but for now the MBP is the peace of mind way to go.

mtk75
Apr 27, 2008, 09:23 AM
One Question: Will I be able to migrate my contacts in my Iphone to my new Mac and if so, how?

Plug in the iPhone and sync. It works fine for contacts and calendar. You are only allowed to sync music and video with one computer, though.

-Matt

mtk75
Apr 27, 2008, 09:32 AM
Also, if you're planning on this purchase being your primary machine, you should forget about the MBA.

I still don't understand this prejudice. The MBA is my primary machine, and it is faster than my previous primary machine. (Disclaimer: My previous primary machine was also a 3 pound laptop.)

The MBA plays video and music fine. It is only when you get into creation of those when it becomes a more difficult. Even then, it is not impossible, just more difficult.

-Matt