11" or 13" - Which is better for couch surfing?

sofakng

macrumors regular
Original poster
Dec 5, 2008
222
13
I've owned every iPad but I want a "full laptop" to use only 100% on my couch. It will fill a similar role as my iPad (i.e. surfing the web while watching TV with my wife), but I want the full PC to play some light PC games and have a keyboard, etc.

Anyways... I can't decide between the 11" and 13".

The 13" looks nice but it seems a tad bit big for using on my lap on a couch.

I don't care too much about resolution though... I will be playing small/casual PC games about 90% of my time. (i.e. Dwarf Fortress, Minecraft, etc)

I'm leaning towards the 11" because it's so compact and light... but since I will almost never be traveling with the laptop, the 13" also seems nice for the bigger screen...
 

talmy

macrumors 601
Oct 26, 2009
4,705
266
Oregon
11" MBA for sure.

We have an 11" at our couch, and an iPad. I always reach for the MBA. I've also owned 13" and now own a 15" MBP, usually sitting in my home office. I've never gotten up from the couch to retrieve them.
 

LeeM

macrumors 6502a
Jan 1, 2012
603
0
my 11" has replaced my ipad, to the point i gave it to my mum. i never move my 13" from the desk anymore.
 

klover

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2009
775
46
Going against the grain here but definitely go with the 13".

I started with the 11" but discovered very quickly that I hated having every website page cut in half (vertically) and constantly scrolling to see everything. The added weight and footprint of the 13" was of no consequence to me knowing that I had so much more screen real estate.
 

LeeM

macrumors 6502a
Jan 1, 2012
603
0
Going against the grain here but definitely go with the 13".

I started with the 11" but discovered very quickly that I hated having every website page cut in half (vertically) and constantly scrolling to see everything. The added weight and footprint of the 13" was of no consequence to me knowing that I had so much more screen real estate.
cut in half? the 11" uses the same/similar resolution to cheap 15" windows laptop, its just smaller. theres no less on screen
 

Verix

macrumors regular
Jul 30, 2010
120
2
It would depend upon what you needed yours for and such. I'm pretty damn happy with the iPad.
Definitely, in the end it all comes down whether you want a full fledged computer or not. If you are well satisfied with an iPad, why spend more. For me it was too limited.
 

Steve121178

macrumors 603
Apr 13, 2010
5,032
4,106
Bedfordshire, UK
I'm leaning towards the 11" because it's so compact and light... but since I will almost never be traveling with the laptop, the 13" also seems nice for the bigger screen...
13" for the simple reason that the screen is bigger. You might as well just keep using your iPad than go for the 11".
 

klover

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2009
775
46
cut in half? the 11" uses the same/similar resolution to cheap 15" windows laptop, its just smaller. theres no less on screen
No, that's resolution, I'm talking about physical screen size. So, yes, there is less screen.

More importantly, the 11" uses a 16:9 ratio which makes working with standard document sizes difficult (especially things like Excel). In terms of web browsing, you end up having to scroll a lot more to see a standard webpage.
 

sofakng

macrumors regular
Original poster
Dec 5, 2008
222
13
Thanks for all of the replies everybody!

I've just taken another look at the two models in the store and as much as I love the extra space on the 13", I can just tell it will be a bit unwieldy on the couch.

I think what I want is an iPad-size full computer so I think the 11" is probably better for me.

However, I do kinda wish it was 16:10 ratio or maybe a full 12". It does seem a tiny bit small but the 13" is too large... (for couch use)
 

DisplacedMic

macrumors 65816
May 1, 2009
1,411
1
Thanks for all of the replies everybody!

I've just taken another look at the two models in the store and as much as I love the extra space on the 13", I can just tell it will be a bit unwieldy on the couch.

I think what I want is an iPad-size full computer so I think the 11" is probably better for me.

However, I do kinda wish it was 16:10 ratio or maybe a full 12". It does seem a tiny bit small but the 13" is too large... (for couch use)
i elected for the 11" as well but i can tell you that i've never had a problem with "couch surfing" with my 13" mbp... unless you have some skinny rickety couch arms, the 13"mba would probably be fine if you wanted the larger screen...
 

BenTrovato

macrumors 68030
Jun 29, 2012
2,868
1,881
Canada
Here's my 2 cents on couch devices. Typically a couch device is usually used while the TV is on. In my opinion - the 13" offers less strain on the eyes switching between the laptop and the TV. Each time you move your eyes from the laptop to the TV and back, your eyes need to refocus, like a camera lens. I think the 11" wins on being lighter and smaller to have on your lap but for me the 13" wins for being the optically healthier option long term :D
 

alice04

macrumors regular
Feb 15, 2013
136
1
13" is a good choice, but 11" is also okay. I'm happy with my iPad as well. hehe
 

talmy

macrumors 601
Oct 26, 2009
4,705
266
Oregon
For you maybe, but good luck squinting at the 11".
The difference in resolution (which determines the size of objects on the screen) is hardly noticeable. The 11" has 135 pixels per inch while the 13" has 128 pixels per inch, so the 11" is about 5% smaller.

A greater disadvantage of the 11" is in the screen area (in pixels) which limits the amount of data that can be displayed at one time. The 13" has 1,298,000 pixels while the 11" has 1,049,088 pixels, or 19% fewer pixels.
 

Bear

macrumors G3
Jul 23, 2002
8,089
4
Sol III - Terra
...
A greater disadvantage of the 11" is in the screen area (in pixels) which limits the amount of data that can be displayed at one time. The 13" has 1,298,000 pixels while the 11" has 1,049,088 pixels, or 19% fewer pixels.
Or why I would get a 13" in the OP's situation.

Also according to the OP, the 13" is too big for couch surfing? Really? The 13" is not much bigger or heavier than the 11".
 

PraisiX-windows

macrumors regular
May 19, 2011
185
0
11" MBA for sure.

We have an 11" at our couch, and an iPad. I always reach for the MBA. I've also owned 13" and now own a 15" MBP, usually sitting in my home office. I've never gotten up from the couch to retrieve them.
Jesus christ, why am I this irritable right now, this is like my third harsh post in a short while - each of which should be punished - HOW ****ING RELEVANT IS IT THAT YOU WOULD NOT WANT TO GET UP TO PICK UP A COMPUTER FROM A TOTALLY DIFFERENT ROOM WHEN YOU'RE SITTING IN THE COUCH WITH IPADS AND COMPUTERS - It makes no sense for you to use that argument to put the 11" over the 13"! D:
 

talmy

macrumors 601
Oct 26, 2009
4,705
266
Oregon
Jesus christ, why am I this irritable right now, this is like my third harsh post in a short while - each of which should be punished - HOW ****ING RELEVANT IS IT THAT YOU WOULD NOT WANT TO GET UP TO PICK UP A COMPUTER FROM A TOTALLY DIFFERENT ROOM WHEN YOU'RE SITTING IN THE COUCH WITH IPADS AND COMPUTERS - It makes no sense for you to use that argument to put the 11" over the 13"! D:
Perhaps because I feel the 11" is perfectly fine for couch surfing? Lets not forget the 13" costs more money and weighs more, meaning more effort to reach the coffee table to grab it.
 

yinz

macrumors 6502a
Apr 12, 2012
640
5
iPad is just better for anything without a table. It's also more affordable. I don't have an iPad right now, or I'd be on it surfing. The MacBook Air is a really great computer when you have a desk and have to do a lot of typing. By a lot, I mean a couple thousand words, not a couple hundred.