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Old Nov 21, 2012, 09:49 PM   #1
Mark D
macrumors member
Join Date: Jun 2012
Here We Go

Been saving for a Mac this year (first ever), trying to figure out the right time. I just found out about the sale on Friday so I think the moment is here to finally pull the trigger. As a paranoid college student on a relatively tight budget, I just wanted to get some additional opinions.

At first I went with the iMac as the best option, most power for the money I guess. But after more thought I just can't give up portability. I've owned some laptop for the past 4 years and probably used them in every room in my house at some point. Not to mention school, traveling, etc. I'm not rich enough to have a desktop and laptop both, so my style of usage really dictates the latter.

What I'm set on now is a laptop and then in maybe 4-6 months getting a monitor + docking station. It is a much more financially effective way to have both experiences in the long run, which is important because this is in all likelihood a 3+ year investment. I want the most inexpensive Mac I can get that is portable and has an SSD. This is why my plan for Fri is to choose the 13" Macbook Air. 11 inch is moronic and I'd sooner get an iPad. After reading around the internet (more than I'd care to admit) I must say I'm still a little skeptical about the practice of having the Air as one's only computer. But after studying the specs, watching videos, trying it out in person in the store etc., it quite honestly seems more than powerful enough. My biggest, or at least most challenging, use for the computer is photography, and Adobe Lightroom. This is why the SSD at the expense of a slightly more powerful processor is so attractive. There are really no excessively intensive tasks but I desire the drive I'm working from to have a lot of responsive prowess. I'm also worried about screen size (you know 13 is not exactly ideal for photos) but I can't afford anything more in a laptop so I don't even know why I'm mentioning it. Just might be a little cramped until I get the extra monitor.

Anyway, does the Air sound like a good fit for me to do enthusiast photo editing, occasional short HD movie clips, music, internet, and word processing? Mind you - this will be the one and only machine. But no software developing, games or anything like that. And I'm coming from a comically abysmal 1.4 GHz AMD processor. I plan to go with 8GB of RAM as well, again to maximize its life.

P.S. - sorry to anyone who recognizes me and is thinking to themselves just ******** choose something and be happy. I have such a hard time with financial decisions, and this site has been helpful thus far.
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