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Old Nov 28, 2012, 08:50 AM   #1
Jeff Charles
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MBA 11 as only computer?

I use a 2009 Mini with a 2.0 dual core processor and 8GB. It's performance is OK for most things, but it is slow for Lightroom tasks that are processor dependent. I also have a 2009 MBP 13 that I use for web, email, and when I travel, for Lightroom. There's a 120 GB SSD in the MBP.

My plan has been to replace the Mini with an i7 2.3 2012 Mini, but I'd also like to replace the MBP with an 11" Air. Just to replace the MBP, a "low-end" Air would probably suffice.

Now, I'm thinking about just getting the Air with an i7 2.0, 8GB, a 256GB SSD, and a docking station. According to Geekbench scores, the Air with the 2.0 i7 is 2.5 times faster than my Mini. It's only about 60% as fast as the 2012 i7 2.3 Mini, but I believe it would be good enough for my non-pro use.

The Landing Zone dock looks like a good option. They've informed me that they will release a version with USB 3.0 ports in December.

I'd appreciate feedback on this plan. Is anyone using the Air for Lightroom? [edit: I just saw another post about this. It seems to be OK for LR.] Are there other/better docking stations that I should consider?

Jeff

Last edited by Jeff Charles; Nov 28, 2012 at 09:04 AM.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 09:53 AM   #2
hutch34
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I don't use lightroom, but I do run a BUNCH of apps throughout the day including Windows 8 in a virtual machine.

I'd say you'd be perfectly fine with it! The SSD makes everything quicker, and the turbo boost works perfectly. The Macbook Airs really are some pretty good workhorses.

I hardly have any hangups at all. I have a 2011 i5 1.7ghz 4gb RAM Air.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 10:05 AM   #3
tersono
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I use an MBA 11 as my primary computer. I run Adobe CS6 on it (mainly Photoshop and Indesign) along with some other heavyweight stuff with no problems.

All I'd say is that the screen is awful small for serious work, so when I'm doing anything major I dump it into a Henge dock which is connected to a decent external screen. Best of both worlds imho - it's certainly faster than the two year-old 27" iMac I use at the office.
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 11:11 AM   #4
marcperrot
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I use the 11" MBA as my main computer and I love it. It's really convenient and portable, and can do a lot for such a small machine. While doing some things on the small screen can be annoying, just use your dock to connect it to a monitor and you'll be fine.

Also, that looks like a really cool dock!
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 11:22 AM   #5
robvas
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If you can live with 1366x768, do it!
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 11:58 AM   #6
Jeff Charles
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marcperrot View Post
Also, that looks like a really cool dock!
Thanks to you and others for your replies. I think that a 2012 MBA will likely do what I need.

The dock does seem to be well thought out and nicely constructed, but it looks like it blocks the mike and the headphone jacks. Also, I don't think it will work with any kind of hard shell case on the computer. I like to put something, at least on the bottom, to protect from scratches.

Jeff
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Old Nov 28, 2012, 12:43 PM   #7
Jeff Charles
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Originally Posted by robvas View Post
If you can live with 1366x768, do it!
I just did . I ordered a refurbished 2012, with the i7 2.0 processor, 8GB RAM, and a 256GB SSD. I think it's going to be a fun computer that performs well too.

Jeff
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