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Old Mar 16, 2011, 09:06 PM   #1
entatlrg
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MacBook Air owners, appreciate your input on this setup decision

What notebook, particularly what screen size you choose for this:

- will be the primary computer.
- 8+ hours a day usage, not hooked up to an external monitor.
- working in various area's of my home/office, couch, easy chair, desk, kitchen table etc
- notebook won't leave the house often.
- used for work, 50+ emails daily, iWorks, light photo and video editing, entertainment, surfing, no gaming.

The amount of power isn't a concern, both can handle the work. Instead I'm looking for input on mobile screen real estate for long hours use.

Stick with the lightweight 13" MacBook Air or go for the screen real estate of the 17" and accept it's over twice the weight of the air and much larger to work from.

Having the 17" screen anywhere is appealing but I wonder if too cumbersome compared to the Air and I'd end up using the Air instead.

Any MacBook Air owners have experience making similar decisions?
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Old Mar 16, 2011, 09:28 PM   #2
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13" Air (4gb memory) with a big external display for home use is more than adequate for what you're talking about.

works for me anyway
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Old Mar 16, 2011, 09:39 PM   #3
yippieskippy
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13" mba

I had a 17 MBP used for similar uses and hated it. Too big and bulky difficult to use unless you were properly seated at table. 13 MBA is slick and portable, goes with me from couch to table and anywhere else. So for what it's worth here's one vote for MBA.
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Old Mar 16, 2011, 10:00 PM   #4
wisty
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13". It has the same number of pixels as the MBP 15". Winning.

You don't really need to worry about upgrading it, but more RAM wouldn't hurt.
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Old Mar 16, 2011, 10:00 PM   #5
gglockner
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So far you have two posts suggesting that you get an external monitor. I'd agree with that. So why aren't you considering that?
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Old Mar 16, 2011, 10:04 PM   #6
entatlrg
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^ because I'm not often working from one desk.

Regardless, the suggestion of using the 27" is good and not a problem to work more often from location if I choose to.
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Old Mar 16, 2011, 10:09 PM   #7
ndredsox
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Quote:
Originally Posted by entatlrg View Post
What notebook, particularly what screen size you choose for this:

- will be the primary computer.
- 8+ hours a day usage, not hooked up to an external monitor.
- working in various area's of my home/office, couch, easy chair, desk, kitchen table etc
- notebook won't leave the house often.
- used for work, 50+ emails daily, iWorks, light photo and video editing, entertainment, surfing, no gaming.
From what you just listed above, it looks like any MB will work. The fact that you won't leave the house with it makes me want to tell you to look at an iMac. If you have to be portable inside your home, then the MB question makes sense.

8+ hours battery - should be good with most of the newer models.
I do all of the things you listed here on my MBA 13 ultimate, but I also did it with a 13 MB and 13 MBP. The only thing that jumps out is the "video editing"....how involved are you looking?

Personally, the 17" is not attractive to me, unless it will sit on a desk/table only and then I would still look to an iMac to handle the needs. Especially since the 17" is so damn expensive.
Of course, you can get the 15 MBP and have a happy medium.

G' Luck with your decision.
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Old Mar 16, 2011, 10:21 PM   #8
uniforms
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I recommend 13" MBA with 4gig of ram. If you can afford the ultimate I would go that way. I also highly recommend the cinema display. You will use it more than you know. Good luck.
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Old Mar 17, 2011, 12:28 AM   #9
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I agree with what everyone else has said, go for the 13" MBA. Use an external display when yoh need it and the notebook display when you don't.
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Old Mar 17, 2011, 12:32 AM   #10
petvas
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Actually I would recommend you get a 15" MBP. It strikes the perfect balance between weight and screen size. Since you won't be taking it out very often, the extra size compared to the Air shouldn't matter.
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Old Mar 17, 2011, 02:12 AM   #11
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I highly recommend the 13" MBA with 4GB RAM. Consider how long you will have it and your storage needs before deciding 128GB or 256GB SSD. I wouldn't upgrade to 2.13GHz unless you're buying refurbished and getting a deal anyways. The 1.86GHz, 128GB, 4GB RAM, 13" MBA refurbished is $1189 and shows up in the refurbished store once or twice per week. Or you can get the ultimate 13" for $1529 refurbished.

If you read refurbished, they're not used and most will tell you they're brand new with zero cycles on the battery. I have a feeling most are brand new and Apple is just selling a percentage at lower prices to attract multiple segments of the market, but others swear they're all open box returns. On Apple's site, it even says the internal components could be refurbished but they use new external components like aluminum which is why they look new... and they have the same one year warranty. I recently ordered two for a client and they both were made two weeks prior and had one and zero cycles on the batteries.

The 13" MBA gets you a high resolution display that is the same amount of desktop space as the 15" MBP. I highly recommend it. For all of your needs, the 13" MBA sounds perfect. I would also consider an AirPort Extreme Base Station with attached backup drive and printer... and a MobileMe account. I would avoid the 11" MBA as you plan to use it as your primary computer, and the 11" seems to me to have very few advantages in mobility and yet has huge disadvantages in capabilities.

Best wishes whichever route you go.
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