MBA 13" - should I get the 128GB 1.83 version or the ULTIMATE ?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by CHSeifert, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. macrumors 6502

    CHSeifert

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2010
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark - Scandinavia
    #1
    Hey :)

    I need my MBA for these things:
    1. Microsoft Word and Excel
    2. Internet

    I already own iPad 32GB 3G and iPhone 4 32GB.

    Just need a laptop for portability and better typing than on my iPad.

    I've heard of heat issues with MBA ULTIMATE and that the fan runs more because of the bigger CPU.
    Since I have small use for the larger CPU should I just get the 128GB 1.83 which should run cooler and more quietly because of smaller CPU ?

    Thanks for help - tried a search but too much came up !

    ----
    Vh/Regards
    Claus [iPhone
     
  2. macrumors regular

    iNotion

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2008
    Location:
    Singapore
    #2
    If you are using it, just for Microsoft office & Internet, you should consider the 11" MBA... It looks damn good and performs better than most windows laptops or network around that size and weight.

     
  3. macrumors member

    s1lv3r

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2010
    Location:
    Germany
    #3
    Probably you won't be using all the "Ultimate" CPU because you aren't using CPU intensive applications.

    I've the 13" Ultimate and for ME it is the best computer possible.

    Damn portable and really fast. I play SC2 on it and run 1080p (plugged on my HDTV) and everything goes flawlessly. And sometimes I do some small edition on Photoshop, just that.

    For me the 11" is too small. Don't think I need all that portability. The 13" is already really portable, has a great screen size and it really light - a simple 100 pages notebook its heavier.
     
  4. thread starter macrumors 6502

    CHSeifert

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2010
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark - Scandinavia
    #4
    I also have the iPad with me so the MBA 11 is too close to the iPad in specs and I will appreciate the larger 13" screen, I think :)

    I will use all my mac portable devices at the university - taking long notes and doing some pretty serious excel work.


    ----
    Vh/Regards
    Claus [iPhone
     
  5. macrumors regular

    iNotion

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2008
    Location:
    Singapore
    #5
    For me, i chose the 13" ultimate to the 13" or 11" is because beside iWork & Microsoft office, I'm also using quite a lot of Adobe applications, especially Photoshop. I need the extra power/ speed for converting videos.
    Why i chose a 13"ultimate to a MBP is only because it is lighter and looks better! :D
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    sparkomatic

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    #6
    I have a 15" MBP and wanted to go more portable. So, I now have that MBP as a "home" mac and got the 13" Air with 1.86, 2GB RAM and 256 SSD.

    I setup remote access to my home files and moved some stuff to the cloud as well. Very happy so far. I do use VMWare but not all the time. Windows 7 eats up some RAM there but XP runs great on it.

    I'd go for the 13" with the 128GB unless you think you'll need more drive space. I got the extra drive space but really don't think I'll need it.
     
  7. macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    #7
    If you don't need the extra space, the 1.86GHz version should be fine. I'd suggest getting the 4GB model for the extra $100, particularly if you like to have a lot of applications open at the same time. Office can use up a lot of RAM.
     
  8. macrumors 68000

    topmounter

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
    Location:
    FEMA Region VIII
    #8
    I have the 13" ultimate and while I don't play SC2 on it, it runs as cool as a cucumber for me (even without Coolbook running). I don't think you'll notice much of a performance difference between the two today, but I went with the ultimate to make sure I'd maximize its useful lifespan.
     
  9. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    #9
    Since you use excel any 13" MBA is better than any 11" MBA
     
  10. thread starter macrumors 6502

    CHSeifert

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2010
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark - Scandinavia
    #10
    Think I'll get the MBA Ultimate (256 GB ram & 2.13Ghz) but 2 things worry me about this version.

    1. Rumours say this version runs hotter - same size chassis means hotter and more fan noise

    2. Rumours say you have a better chance of getting the faster Samsung SSD in the 128 GB version than in the 256 GB version

    Will probably also get Aperture - but have a HUGE home built PC as my home Computer for photo edit (12 GB ram, 3 (three) Intel SSD drives for Win 7, programs and most often used files and a 3 TB HDD for music and movies)

    So still not sure what to get - but leaning towards the MBA Ultimate :)


    ----
    Vh/Regards
    Claus [iPhone
     
  11. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2003
    #11
    I have the MacBook Air 1.83GHz/128Gb/4Gb and I adore the thing. It's my main work machine at a software company, and I work with pretty large projects (around 750,000 lines of code, I believe) and it's awesome at the task!
     
  12. macrumors 68000

    topmounter

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2009
    Location:
    FEMA Region VIII
    #12
    re: 1) Like I said above, my ultimate runs very cool and I can't say I've ever noticed the fan come on. I had a 15" MBP that could melt denim, even with the fans at full speed.

    re: 2) Mine has the "slower" SSD, but I really don't think the SSD performance is a bottleneck in the MBA... especially when I benchmark the drive performance of my 2.93GHz iMac and its HDD is still 5x or more slower than my MBA.
     
  13. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2010
    Location:
    Saudi Arabia
    #13
    I love my ultimate 13

    and it runs cool as can be, no fan noise unless I'm doing something processor intensive, which isn't too often

    get it, you won't regret it!

    :D
     
  14. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2010
    Location:
    Athens, Greece
    #14
    for word/excel/internet you will need no more than the basic 13" (if thats the size you want) macbook air. Unless you need more storage or ram, you should go for the lower-end model. But you certainly don't need the better CPU for those tasks!
     
  15. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2009
    #15
    I'm looking into the same setup and decision - can you elaborate on your coding environment, is that XCode or something else?
     
  16. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 7, 2009
    Location:
    Hamilton Island, Whitsundays, QLD Australia
    #16
    I have the 13"/1.86/4/128 - it flies and handles intensive tasks well.

    the only reason really for going to the 2.13 model is if you require the additional storage.

    whichever way you go though, do ensure you get the additional memory.
    this will stand you in good stead for now and into the future
     
  17. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2011
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    #17
    Get the ultimate if:

    1) You need the extra storage space
    2) You have extra money to burn
     
  18. 2IS
    macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2011
    #18
    Save your $400 and go with the 1.83. For what you're doing it's plenty. Honestly, if 1.83 isn't enough for whatever tasks one may have I'm not convinced 2.13 would be either. The larger capacity drive would be more of a reason to go with the Ultimate, not so much the CPU. So really the question becomes, do you need more than 128GB?
     
  19. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2010
    #19
    I had a HP 17" i7 laptop which I sold and got the 13" mba ultimate just a month ago. Mostly because the 11" screen size was too small for me to use at the library (looking at powerpoints and word documents) and the 13" is light as hell and the smaller bezel makes it look nicer. Also, I got the ultimate because I wanted to run parallels connected to a 27" monitor when I'm at home. It doesn't run crystal smooth like it did on my HP laptop but it runs well enough for me not to complain.

    If you have the patience to wait for apple to ship it to your house, I'd get the 1.83Ghz with 256GB SSD with 4GB ram. The extra CPU increase doesn't make much difference. I just got the 2.13 because I didn't want to wait.

    Also, the heat is NOT a problem. The fan does turn on occasionally when I'm updating Windows (like I did for Win 7 SP1 just now) but other than when you're using alot of your CPU, it hardly ever turns on.

    Finally, don't get the 11" just because there's a better chance for you to get the faster SSD. Is an extra 1-2 seconds really worth that much to you?
     
  20. Mr. Savage, Feb 22, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2011

    macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2010
    Location:
    Toronto
    #20
    Seconded. Seriously, for the needs you've described, the base 13 is more than adequate.
     
  21. macrumors 6502a

    sparkomatic

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2007
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    #21
    Whatever you get I'm sure you'll be happy. I just finished a day of being out at a job site using my Air off and on and still have 3 hrs. of battery left! Awesome!!

    No way I could have gotten that much battery from my 15" MBP. Never plugged into a power source the whole day. :D
     
  22. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2011
    Location:
    Bangkok, TH
    #22
    I also code on my Ultimate. But I use Flex, Flash, photoshop and sometimes an iphone simulator. No issues at all there...even with all of them running simultaneously. Once in a while FLash Builder and safari will eat up alot of my 4gb ram and start paging out. I also have XCode and eclipse installed but haven't used them yet extensively.

    As far as the fan/heat issue. Fan seems to come on watching flash videos. Always comes on when using Facetime.

    Finally, highly recommended to install clickToFlash. Flash gobbles up mem and batt life.
     
  23. macrumors 6502

    Mhaddy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #23
    For those commenting that the CPU bump isn't that big of a deal, have you thought about the longevity of the device? Will getting the faster CPU in any way extend how long you could realistically use it? The reason I ask is because I have one of the original 1.6/80 MBA's, which is reaching the end of its life for how I use it and I'm wondering if I had gotten the CPU bump to 1.8 back then, if it would have allowed me to use it a little longer. Thoughts appreciated!
     
  24. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    #24
    not to hijack the thread but i too am between these two models either the 13" 1.86/4gb/128 or the 2.13/4gb/256 i believe i read somewhere you cant swap out the SSD since its soldered to the logic board correct? because honestly i dont need the processor but the storage would be nice. thnx
     
  25. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    #25
    honestly 1.6 to 1.8 in really intensive applications wont make a huge lifespan difference. your best bet if your truely require intensive apps is to go with a pro and pop in an ssd the size is bigger but the cpu power is there. but all depends on your use.
     

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