11 vs. 13 MBA another perspective

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Leo Fischel, Oct 23, 2010.

  1. Leo Fischel macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2010
    Hey guys,

    The whole discussion here is like: "Ok, the 11 MacBook Air is much cooler, but what about the small screen and the weaker processor?"
    I can't see the point and argue from a vice versa perspective. I don't know why everybody thinks that the 11 MBA is cooler in the first place. I have to admitt that I haven't had my hands on it right now. However, on the pictures I have seen it looks like the 13 MBA is not that bigger than the 11 MBA. So, I can't see the advantage of the smaller MBA. I mean how do you carry your MBA? I have my laptop in my Bagpack or my shoulder bag. A 13 inch laptop is small enough for both. However, here I made the experience, that it makes a big difference how thick the laptop is and the same is true for cell phones!
    So at the end the 13 MBA has:
    + a higer resolution (very important in my opinion)
    + a longer battery time (even more important than resolution in my opinion)
    + a sd card slot (pretty cool)
    + a better processor (no i don't mean the 200 mhz, I mean the 6 mb l2 cache - anyhow, I don't care for the processor)

    The 11 MBA is:
    + more handy
    + 300 grams lighter

    Now my question, is the difference in perceived mobility big when you see it in real life? The question is quite important for me since I won't have the opportunity to go to an apple store in the next time ...

    Thanks, Fischel
  2. diablo2112 macrumors 6502

    Apr 16, 2010
    The 11" is roughly 1" smaller in each dimension than the 13". I've found this can make a very large difference in a couple of situations. First is airlines. The smaller 11" fits wonderfully on the tray table, with just enough room for other items, and you can easily open the screen and not hit the seat back. It's surprising how just that 1" makes a difference here.

    Another is on crowded tabletops at the coffee house. Same issues here. Having used the 11" for 2 days now, I'm just blown away. Perfect form factor for me, though admittedly, I'm coming from a 15" MBP. Screen resolution on the 11" is nearly identical to the 15" hi-res i7 I've been used to using. As a bonus, it has a native 16:9 screen, which is perfect for watching HD video.

    IMHO, Apple just nailed the size of the 11" perfectly. Fits places other laptops have had problems, but blows away the rest of the netbook category in resolution, performance, and ease of use.
  3. Gruber macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2009
    For me, the decision points are:

    - Do you want to carry this thing everywhere you go?
    - Are you going to hook it up with an external display when at home or in the office?
    - Can you live with a smaller SSD size (128GB as opposed to 256GB)?
    - Do you want to run processor intensive stuff a lot (especially games, Photoshop and iMovie)?
    - Is the price an issue?

    The more often you say "yes", the more likely you want to get the smaller one. Your weighting and mileage may vary.

    Also, bear in mind that the C2D is a compromise, because Apple wanted to retain the Nvidia graphics. This is going to change early next year, and we might see a substantial update soon, if we are lucky. I will upgrade ASAP in that case.

    The next update reason would come with resolution independence (perhaps in Lion?). This would enable Apple to use displays with a much higher resolution. Instant upgrade for me.

    Thus, I don't expect to keep my new Air for long. Not much pondering required.
  4. Leo Fischel thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 23, 2010
    Air plane, coffe shops ... damn it! I did not think about these situations, but you are right! Good points!

    I just realize that have to get my hands on this Books :( :rolleyes:

    Whoao, can you elaborate that a little more? Why do you think that will change early next year?

    I mean I really do not need processing power the only things I do with my computers are: Word, itunes, surfing, email, streaming and filing photos. However, I use to update my laptops every 4-5 years only. Therefore, a faster processor might be useful for the next generations of Mac OS.

    I definitely need a new laptop next May.

    I shouldn't post here. Before I was like: "Ok, I buy a 13 MBA now." Now I am like: "I buy a 13 or 11 MBA now or in May."

  5. Moodikar macrumors regular

    Mar 4, 2010
    Toronto, Canada
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    Because of legal issues apple chose to put the core 2 duo processor instead of the i3/5/7 processors which are newer. This allowed them to have the nvidia graphics card (which is better than the one intel makes you have with the i3/5/7 cards).

    Next year intel releases a new chip called sandy bridge that will be even better. Macs usually update every 8 months approx. Therefore chances that the new chip will be used is likely...unless intel has another battle to push their graphics technology on us.

    If you have no reason to buy, there will always be better stuff coming out. It's just when will you buy it and do you really need it?!

    I use to buy ever year and sell my old one but this time, I'm gonna try to make it last a while (even though when usb3 comes out I'll think that I'm missing the boat). So hard to resist...
  6. gostan macrumors regular

    Jul 23, 2002
    West of Boston
    I do not get on planes to often, or hang in coffee shops. But, the original points that you made comparing the two, really work for me.
  7. milan03 macrumors 6502


    Jul 16, 2002
    New York City
    In your case, I wouldn't even recommend MBA. Get any other mobile solution.
  8. ReallyBigFeet macrumors 68030


    Apr 15, 2010
    The 11" is the perfect Netbook form factor and still runs OSX better than any Hackintosh could or will. Its a cute little rig thats designed for casual users. In many ways, it is aimed at the same market that snapped up the iPad at first release proclaiming loudly on these boards that "the MBP is dead after using the iPad! I'm selling mine!"

    For these users, tiny computing devices take on a charm all their own, regardless of features or compromises.

    I wouldn't classify a 13" MBA as a "power users" machine by any means. Its only slightly larger than a Netbook, but it pretty much packs the same features of a 13" MBP "Junior" into that sub-notebook, svelte chassis. Its the "no compromise" model. You don't have to give up screen real estate/resolution and the CPU when coupled with 4G Ram and the SSD means you have a very fast machine in a small, but not tiny frame.

    Room enough for both models in the lineup, as evidenced by this forum.
  9. wptarcher macrumors newbie

    Oct 20, 2010
    I personally am going to wait a year or so and see if the price goes down to compete with Windows laptops that are targeted at people who don't want to spend over 1000 dollars for a laptop. Frankly the only reason I would buy an 11" MBA is if it is about 100+ dollars cheaper than the regular MB.
  10. echo44 macrumors 6502

    Jan 21, 2008
    I consider myself a power user
    I am typing this looking at my 30 inch monitor
    on a desktop pro 8 cores 16gb.
    If there ever was a spec freak it would be me.
    As I stated in my other post I intended to order the 13 with the faster
    processor and load up on ram. than when I got to the Apple
    store I was surprised how much screen real estate you actually get with the
    11 and it feels really fast!
    I use my desktop to do video editing and photo editing as well
    as build keynote presentations. I have a 15 in macbook pro decked
    out that I would use if i ever had to do any of those types of functions outside of my house. I do find I mostly use my laptop to present keynote presentations, surf the internet and write letters or read pdf files.
    The 11 is perfect for this and the small size is very welcome! The cost point
    that apple can sell these with ssd is awesome. they will sell a lot of these
    If I was in college this would be the perfect laptop to bring to class and to the library. If you need to do a little photoshop editing or use ilife applications its great. If this is going to be your only computer and your real into production you would probably be better off with a macpro. There is also a real coolness about this 11 that made me buy it on compulsion , the screen is really nice!!!!
  11. Mactrillionaire macrumors regular

    Oct 16, 2010
    My main complaint with MacBook Air and MacBook Pro is that Apple does not offer a BTO option for an internal wireless modem and a reasonably priced month-to-month wireless broadband deal with AT&T and/or Verizon (i.e., like the iPad and without the annual contract). The iPad could be useful, but it is more of a digital media consumption device than it is something that could be taken seriously for professional work such as programming (or even complex photo editing). Now, I am not knocking photography apps, but they just do not offer the level of complexity that is necessary for professional users.
  12. dacapo macrumors 6502

    Jan 25, 2010
    Just came back from the apple store and could not believe how cool the 11 MBA was! The 13 MBA was all right, but not something that made me consider selling my 13 MBP over. There just isn't much of a wow factor over the 13 MBP in my opinion.

    But the 11 seriously got me salivating.

    It was much lighter, and the keyboard is really full size as is the touchpad. The screen would be fine for anything except coding and or multitrack recording in my opinion. (If you have to do either of these, the 13 form factor is a minimum, but like I said, it's debatable whether the MBA or the MBP would be better in this scenario.) The only thing I worry about the MBA is that the screen hinge seems to be a bit looser than with the MBP, although I don't know if it's because people played around with the display models too much over the past two days.

    Suffice it to say -- As I sit here and type on my 13 MBP, my mind keeps wandering back to the 11 MBA and how it would be cool to be on that machine!

    If any of you are on the fence, definitely make a trip down to your nearest apple store. I can see why some of the other posters elsewhere in the forum mentioned that they ended up buying the 11 after thinking that they would get the 13.
  13. ReallyBigFeet macrumors 68030


    Apr 15, 2010
    I went to the Apple store today and saw and typed on both. It only confirmed my view that the 11" MBA is an OSX Netbook. I'm quite happy I ordered my 13"...it felt like a real, no-compromise OSX experience.
  14. gostan macrumors regular

    Jul 23, 2002
    West of Boston
    I do travel back and forth to work and to Vermont with a laptop so lightness of weight and form factor of the MBA is a benefit. I have a Mac Mini Server in my home and the 13 " MBA works fine for my mobile solution.
  15. GDOX316 macrumors newbie

    Jul 12, 2010
    does anybody see this as a poem as well?
  16. echo44 macrumors 6502

    Jan 21, 2008
    The bottom line after going to the apple store today
    I have never seen Apple with a more amazing lineup of products
    going into the holiday season. The imacs look amazing,
    ipads, no one comes close in the laptop arena. WOW
  17. gostan macrumors regular

    Jul 23, 2002
    West of Boston
    Great for the shareholders and end users alike!:D:apple:
  18. schulzmc macrumors regular

    Aug 13, 2006
    I picked up an 11" MBA this morning. After about an hour getting it set up I headed off to a coffee shop to get some work done. Email returned, a Keynote presentation modified, and some task planning (using Things - which I love) complete for next week.

    Had three people come and ask if it was the new MBA. One said it was "cute," the other two seemed seriously interested in speed, etc.

    But I am head-over-heels in love with this thing. Not since my 12" have I enjoyed lugging and using a laptop so much. Now it,, my iPad, and my Kindle will go everywhere with me!
  19. dschur macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2007

    I don't understand - I answered solid YES to these questions and I bought a 13". are you saying I was wrong?
  20. southnc macrumors member

    Mar 12, 2010
    I got a chance to play with both the 11" and 13" at the Best Buy.

    (Believe it or not, they still have the previous 13" MBA for sale and NO discount either. The BB guy said it was ridiculous, as that machine cannot possibly sell at retail with two newer, cheaper, better versions available).

    Both machines were the standard versions (64GB 11" and 128GB 13" with 2GB of memory). Regardless, they both were snappy in performance; they demo'd multi-tasking on the 11" model and it was quick. Looks like Apple was correct to pair the Core 2 Duo with the more powerful Nvidia GPU.

    What was interesting for me was that the 13" model felt lighter in my hands; probably because the weight per square inch might be lower than in the 11" model. Build quality on both was superb.
  21. macbook123 macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    Good points. I have a question about this: what processors are on the horizon that could potentially replace the C2D's, without sacrificing graphics performance by using an integrated chip? Or do you think they could put both SB as well as nvidia in?
  22. b11051973 macrumors 6502

    Apr 8, 2006
    I got the 11" because I just wanted a really small and light laptop. I only used my old MacBook for couch surfing and such. I don't need it to be powerful. I just want it to be smaller for laying it on end tables and such. So far, the thing is working perfect.

    I was worried about the 1.4 GHz processor. For what I do, it feels just as fast as my old 2.4 GHz MB. I'm sure if I try to fire up Handbrake, I'll be in tears. I have a Core i7 PC for that kind of thing though.
  23. macbook123 macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    Im' re-iterating my question as I hope somebody has more information: what processors are on the horizon that could potentially replace the C2D's, without sacrificing graphics performance by using an integrated chip? Or do you think they could put both SB as well as nvidia in?
  24. wirelessmacuser macrumors 68000


    Dec 20, 2009
    I don't give a rats ass what others think, or if it's "cool".

    It's a computer!

    The only person that knows what's best for my needs is me.

    If more fanboys would think for themselves, instead of turning to uncle Steve or others, maybe...just maybe Apple would not be quite so closed and dictatorial.

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