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Old Dec 6, 2012, 12:26 PM   #1
DeadLockCo
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MBA 11 - 2GB Buy?

I was browsing Macconnection.com and noticed the MBA (Mid-2011) 11' was on sale for $699 brand new. I was wondering if I should buy this for college and some Java/C++ programming work. Is this a good deal or should I wait?

I wanted to buy the newer version but got declined for the Barclay Visa interest. And I cannot pay it in full.

Thanks in advance.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 01:59 PM   #2
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Hello, I jumped on one, and I think its great, I have had an Air 13" 2011 and it was great too BUT it all comes down to what you are going to do with it. For me, the key was the size and portability, not heavy specs, I have a mac mini for a desktop and I like that too. At 699.00 new it is a value, you get the 1 yr warranty too. I have seen them sell for more used with no warranty.

Simple stuff like sitting on a couch and putting on your lap, it fits perfectly where the 13" by comparison is a tad bulky, airline travel, it is ideal.

Most people who use a computer probably won't tax its capabilities, that being said, most people who comment on this board probably would tax its capabilities. So it depends on what you are going to use it for, but it is very cool.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 02:03 PM   #3
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2gb is not enough for what you want to do, i'm using one right now with 2gb and sometimes opening up a lot of pdfs and microsoft words would slow down the macbook air.

also i don't do c++ programming, but i use MATLAB for programming and when i would go to compile, it sometimes slow down the computer by a lot...like it would show that i only have 20mb of ram left over...

i think the macbook air is great but 4gb is best.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 04:28 PM   #4
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For that sort of money its a bargain, and 2GB will be fine for what you want to do.

It did for me.
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 07:45 PM   #5
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for $700 if youre only going to be browsing/light work etc then just get an ipad instead
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 07:49 PM   #6
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2GB would be a deal breaker for me. I need at least 4GB for development (Xcode for Objective-C/C++).

(my main machine has 8GB and a secondary has 4GB. The 4GB one lags fairly frequently due to low memory)
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 08:58 PM   #7
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2GB works for me but more is better. I just sold my 2011 4GB/128GB for 700, look for a used one
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 09:39 PM   #8
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why spend $700 for ancient specs just because it's a Mac? Spend 700 on something that won't handicap you
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Old Dec 6, 2012, 11:49 PM   #9
phoenixsan
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Post For some reason....

that price is a bargain. But seeing the hard facts, 2 GB can be too little. And Apple laptops get updates very fast....so, if you dont really, REALLY need it, wait....



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Old Dec 7, 2012, 12:35 AM   #10
DeadLockCo
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Thanks for the replies guys.

I will look around craigslist for one. Though most people getting rid of their MBA are selling it for $750 (same model). Guess I'll wait until the summer.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 06:46 AM   #11
sostoobad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post
why spend $700 for ancient specs just because it's a Mac? Spend 700 on something that won't handicap you
Ancient specs ?? it is all of last yr. When it came it was the cats meow, now it is dog food ?

I agree if it doesn't do what the OP needs it to do, then free won't help.

But if it works for him, then I think it is a great buy, it works for me.

Last edited by sostoobad; Dec 7, 2012 at 07:25 AM.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 08:38 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post
why spend $700 for ancient specs just because it's a Mac? Spend 700 on something that won't handicap you

That is such a simpletons reply.

If anybody actually believes statements like that are good advice then they might as well join you in the queue for a slice of sense.

2 GB is not ancient, it is also not going to handicap you.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 09:48 AM   #13
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You'll be fine with it go for it. If you needed more processing power; there always remote desktop. As a stand a lone computer it will be fine.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 09:50 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post
why spend $700 for ancient specs just because it's a Mac? Spend 700 on something that won't handicap you
Is there really another computer out there that's as portable as the Air and costs $700?
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 05:01 PM   #15
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That is such a simpletons reply.

If anybody actually believes statements like that are good advice then they might as well join you in the queue for a slice of sense.

2 GB is not ancient, it is also not going to handicap you.
I was using 2 GB of RAM back in 2006. Just because you used a 2 GB RAM laptop and want to justify how awesome it was doesn't mean it's worth it to purchase.

If you willingly spend $700+tax on a laptop with 2 GB of RAM and a 64 GB SSD in 2013 I just feel sorry for you

Quote:
Is there really another computer out there that's as portable as the Air and costs $700?
It's a simple matter of costs and benefits. Sacrifice a little bit of portability for a better computer.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 05:15 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post

If you willingly spend $700+tax on a laptop with 2 GB of RAM and a 64 GB SSD in 2013 I just feel sorry for you

What other Apple laptop can you buy new for $700?
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 05:51 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post
If you willingly spend $700+tax on a laptop with 2 GB of RAM and a 64 GB SSD in 2013 I just feel sorry for you
Then I would guess you feel bad for people who buy iPads? Just about the same specs as the MBA.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 07:05 PM   #18
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I am new here but I will throw my .02 cents in. I am not trying to start a fight just telling what is working for me. I have been using an iMac 2009 with 2gb ram since it came home. Working fine for me and am seriously considering this deal if I don't mess around long enough before they are all gone.

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Old Dec 7, 2012, 07:06 PM   #19
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Quicker, faster, more ram, more storage etc is ALWAYS around the corner.

One has to determine value...do I think the rMacbook pro 13" at 1700 is a good value....er um NOPE....why ? because in just a very short time ALL macbooks will have retina for less $$...and those who ponied up for the 1st version will pay a bit more....no big deal as long as one understands it....kind of like paying over sticker for a car...cause its hot...don't worry, they will make more..and the price comes down....remember when the Miata hit or PT cruiser...my god !!

so for 699.00 new, with a 1 yr warranty, yes I think it is a good value...and for most people, it will do the trick.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 08:02 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by sostoobad View Post
Quicker, faster, more ram, more storage etc is ALWAYS around the corner.

One has to determine value...do I think the rMacbook pro 13" at 1700 is a good value....er um NOPE....why ? because in just a very short time ALL macbooks will have retina for less $$...and those who ponied up for the 1st version will pay a bit more....no big deal as long as one understands it....kind of like paying over sticker for a car...cause its hot...don't worry, they will make more..and the price comes down....remember when the Miata hit or PT cruiser...my god !!

so for 699.00 new, with a 1 yr warranty, yes I think it is a good value...and for most people, it will do the trick.
Agree. Whenever you buy new tech a newer version will always come out within 6 months. That is one thing I hate about buying a computer, buyer's remorse. No way to get around it. But I have seen mid-2009 Macbook Pro's 13' (8GB, 500GB HDD) going for $700 on CL so I may get that instead.
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Old Dec 7, 2012, 08:17 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post
It's a simple matter of costs and benefits. Sacrifice a little bit of portability for a better computer.
Maybe certain people are willing to trade a "better computer" for more portability. And really "better computer" given modern computer's specs is a bit of a nebulous term. For most people's applications the specs of the Air from 2011 are more than sufficient. Unless you do very intensive things on your machine the 2011 Air is more than enough and "better" is only seen on benchmarks and reviews where the differences are academic more-so than real-world.

I have a 2011 Air because I want ultra-portable and a keyboard and the iPad just isn't my thing. It works for me. I have a desktop for photo editing and other things and I can have a "less better" computer in exchange for ultra-portability.
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Old Dec 8, 2012, 10:04 AM   #22
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Agree. Whenever you buy new tech a newer version will always come out within 6 months. That is one thing I hate about buying a computer, buyer's remorse. No way to get around it. But I have seen mid-2009 Macbook Pro's 13' (8GB, 500GB HDD) going for $700 on CL so I may get that instead.
I don't really understand this. A 13" MacBook Pro feels like a tank compared to the Air, feels much heavier especially with a case, and a C2D processor will handicap you more than the Air's 2GB in my opinion. Also, why buy an almost 4 year old used computer with no warranty? Get the Air. I have the same model. It's great.
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Old Dec 8, 2012, 10:21 AM   #23
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I don't really understand this. A 13" MacBook Pro feels like a tank compared to the Air, feels much heavier especially with a case, and a C2D processor will handicap you more than the Air's 2GB in my opinion. Also, why buy an almost 4 year old used computer with no warranty? Get the Air. I have the same model. It's great.

I agree. No one will claim this will play the latest games. It really excels as a lightweight, thin, easily portable laptop that will allow you to do everything the typical user needs a computer for: email, Internet, YouTube, Hulu/Netflix, MS Office...etc. if you need more processing power than that for heavy photo/video editing or for heavy gaming, get a MBP or a desktop.

I recently sold my mid-2009 MBP and I am seriously considering getting in on this deal. Keep it for a year and sell it when the Haswell MBA is released. I'll lose out on a few $ but it won't be bad as ill probably recoup a good portion of my money. New MBA with 1 yr warranty + potential for AC is a win win.
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Old Dec 8, 2012, 10:50 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by coldjeanzzz View Post
I was using 2 GB of RAM back in 2006. Just because you used a 2 GB RAM laptop and want to justify how awesome it was doesn't mean it's worth it to purchase.

If you willingly spend $700+tax on a laptop with 2 GB of RAM and a 64 GB SSD in 2013 I just feel sorry for you
Age and time have nothing to do with it, so just because you were using 2GB in 2006 means absolutely nothing, or actually it tells me a lot about you as a person, perhaps believing that you have to have the most up to date, perhaps you fall for the marketing hype, perhaps you just don't understand what RAM does...

Either way, i'll say it again, if you don't need more than 2GB of RAM because the apps you use and the work you do simply doesn't require that much RAM then why the heck waste your money buying 4GB, especially when you've been offered a NEW machine with 1 yr warranty for such a good price!? If the OP doesn't want it, i'd certainly buy it!

I know exactly what RAM does and my iMac does require higher amounts because of the work I do on it, but my MBA (this one has 4GB) doesn't use anywhere near 2GB, because I use it solely for the same kinds of things that the OP has listed above, and my last MBA was 2GB and that never needed for more.

Please don't feel sorry for me, I'm doing fine without you fella.
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Old Dec 8, 2012, 11:20 AM   #25
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Either way, i'll say it again, if you don't need more than 2GB of RAM because the apps you use and the work you do simply doesn't require that much RAM then why the heck waste your money buying 4GB, especially when you've been offered a NEW machine with 1 yr warranty for such a good price!? If the OP doesn't want it, i'd certainly buy it!
1. This is a good deal but not a fantastic deal. You can get a refurb with full warranty for about $150 more.

2. Mountain Lion needs 2GB to run well and with only 2GB it's really not that snappy. With one or two more OS updates it's going to be brutal on 2GB. So apps aside there is a limitation to buying a year old machine. What is made to be quick and current for 3-4 years will now be 2-3 for you.

3. It's more than just the ram amount. There is not only a jump from 2GB to 4GB but the ram speed itself is faster on the 2012 model. Add that the processor speed bump and the graphics boost the 2012 is overall a pretty big bump up from the 2011.

2GB is not the worst but you will feel it in about 2 years. For many with a quick update schedule that is fine but for me I like a major purchase to last as long as possible. With so many refurb deals out there it's hard to settle. However the price is decent. If it were me I would get this find an older copy of Snow Leopard and do a clean install to that. SL would run fantastic on that machine and as long as the owner is OK with rocking an older OS it would make a great machine.
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