Got an 11", but rethinking due to my setup. Thoughts?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by anthro, May 1, 2011.

  1. anthro, May 1, 2011
    Last edited: May 1, 2011

    macrumors newbie

    Mar 7, 2011
    I got an 11" MacBook Air with 128gb, 2gb, 1.4ghz. Been very satisfied with it. I just can't help thinking if a 13" would serve me better, because I use the Air as my primary home computer. Can't use my own computer at work so this is mainly at home (about 90% of the time), conferences, or vacation.

    On top of the Air, I got a 21.5" LED monitor, wired Apple keyboard, Magic Trackpad, and a 500gb passport hard drive. These turn my Air into a home desktop. Performance really isn't below adequate, but knowing that the 13's faster processor could speed things up is making me think twice.

    I'm planning to get an Android tablet (probably Galaxy Tab 10.1 or 8.9) and will have an iPad 2 in the office so this adds to my feeling that the tablet could satisfy my need for portability in some scenarios, except for events like conferences.

    Thoughts? I really don't know how different my experience will be if I switch to 13"


    Getting an iMac seems to be the popular choice, but it doesn't seem to be for me. I'd choose Air + external display over an iMac any day, because of my needs.

    Don't get me wrong about plugging my Air 11 to the display, keyboard, and trackpad. I do it only whenever I'm on "work mode" or watching a movie at home on my table. It's not primarily a desktop. Half or most of the time, I use my Air without the external monitor even at home. I also bring it with me for some vacations and conferences. Found the portability very valuable.

    As for power, I never really found my 11 inadequate. It's very fast. Feels much faster than the i7-powered Thinkpad I'm using right now at work.

    Just thinking if the Air 13's performance diff and battery would outweigh the benefits of the 11.
  2. macrumors regular

    Jan 1, 2009
    Why did you opt for the 11" over the 13" to begin with ?
  3. Guest

    Mar 13, 2009
    More importantly, if you already have an iPad to use, along with the plan to buy another tablet, why did you spend all that money on an 11" MBA and the accessories when you could have just bought an iMac as a main home computer and spent less money?
  4. macrumors newbie

    Apr 13, 2011
    Return all that stuff and get the iMac and have a talet
  5. macrumors member

    Mar 17, 2011
    If you need a computer and portability isn't of an issue (since you'll have two tablets) Then I would absolutely recommend that you get an iMac. Beautiful piece of machinery.
  6. macrumors newbie

    Aug 14, 2010
    Yea agreed the iPad along with an iMac will work great! Wait until this week ends tho since there's a supposed refresh due for the iMac (sandy bridge processor etc.) this week!

    Bonne chance!
  7. macrumors member


    Sep 1, 2006
    The Mile High Bovine Metropolis
  8. macrumors 68020

    Mar 31, 2011
    Tallahassee, Florida
    Well I would suggest selling the Air and getting a MBP, 13 inch. Doing this would give you a little bit of money back from the comp and help fund for the Pro which will have a bigger and higher specs.

    Since you have the iPad 2, you'll be able to do rudimentary tasks on that like document composition, web surfing, and games, but you would have a much more powerful system to use when at home or out to do real work.
  9. macrumors member

    Mar 29, 2011
    sell the air, have an imac at home + (galaxy 10.1/ moto xoom) at home. Killer set up.

    Then at work you said you have an ipad 2
  10. macrumors member

    Jan 8, 2011
    UC San Diego
    I personally like the mac mini set up with the 27" ACD. I know the iMac is a way better value and you get more performance. But the mac mini is just freakin awesome. I'd go for that set up with the 11 inch macbook air, that way you can hook up the macbook air to the display if you're ever so inclined. Also, the tablets would go well with either the iMac or the Mac mini. It's all up to you!
  11. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 7, 2011
  12. macrumors 68020


    May 9, 2008
    If you're planning on getting the 27" ACD as your external display, I wouldn't. Get a refurb 27" iMac instead. It's the same screen and only slightly thicker.

    Refurb 27" ACD is 849
    Refurb i3 27" iMac is 1439
    New 27" ACD is 999
    New i3 27" iMac is 1699

    So for just a couple hundred more, you get the same (frankly incredible) IPS display, same Mini DisplayPort input, but with a whole computer attached to it.

    Resale should also be better since, well, it's a computer, not just a screen.
  13. anthro, May 2, 2011
    Last edited: May 2, 2011

    thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 7, 2011
    Sounds reasonable for people who consider ACD. However, I'm happy with non-Apple external monitors. My 21.5" Samsung LED is just $230. That makes a lot of difference and is why I'm happy with connecting my Air to a monitor instead of needing a dedicated CPU for the monitor

  14. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 7, 2011
    In fairness, I'm compelled by this idea. I'd just miss having an ultraportable full-blown computer.

    The iMac that I could afford would have a 21.5" screen, which is matched by my existing external monitor. I'd choose the ability to carry OS X by disconnecting my Air from the monitor over the power that the iMac would give me.

    I think, my problem here is very tricky. There's no "real problem". My 11" Air doesn't feel underpowered for my needs and is portable whenever I need it to be.

  15. macrumors 68020


    May 9, 2008
    The ACD is incredibly overpriced/poorly priced since the iMac with the same screen is just a bit more. Other brand screens are a much better choice, so just ignore my message :)
  16. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 7, 2011
    At the cost of my 128gb 11" ($1,200 including tax) + 21.5" LED ($230 total), I think I got bang for the buck. Costs as much as refurb i3 27" iMac ($1439 plus tax, maybe).

    At this price, I have an ultraportable that can be converted to a desktop. The Air's performance can even be better for 90% of my tasks due to the SSD.

    The question is really 11" Air vs. 13" Air for me. Portability matters because I bring this MBA along with me during conferences and other trips plus I use this on my lap while lying in bed like right now. Performance matters because I use this as main home computer and this mainly stays at home.

    I think, 11" Air vs. 13" is too close for me to call. I'll just enjoy my setup and get a 13" when it's time to upgrade to a newer Air so I can experience both.

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