13" MBA rivals 13" MBP: Macworld

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by vistokid, Oct 26, 2010.

  1. Errroneous macrumors newbie

    Oct 25, 2010
    Thats pretty interesting and does make me feel better about buying the new MBA. Even better about ordering my 1.86 13" vs the 2.xx 13" which are almost identical in their tests.

    Thanks for posting.
  2. Jaro65 macrumors 68040


    Mar 27, 2009
    Seattle, WA
  3. ninjaslim macrumors member

    Jul 27, 2010
    It would be important to compare the 13" MBA to the 13"MBP with an SSD hard drive.
  4. vistokid thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2007
  5. itommyboy macrumors 6502a


    Feb 26, 2009
    Titletown USA

    The link posted in this thread does not test with the most recent released MBA "high end" with the 2.13 C2D. We could expect marginal gains most likely with the topped out proc, but gains nonetheless.
  6. falconeight Guest


    Apr 6, 2010
    It would but that is a $350 upgrade
  7. miata macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2010
    Silicon Valley, Earth
    I would also like to see this. I can only assume that the MBP is slightly faster in the CPU department based on most of the benchmark results. With a fast SSD like the OWC units the MBP would probably beat the MBA in the disk areas as well.

    Sure, the MBP would cost a bit more, but you get better battery life and a bunch of small creature comforts that got left out of the MBAs due to space/cost design constraints.

    But the real question is do you want the hotest little computer around?
  8. falconeight Guest


    Apr 6, 2010
    I wouldn't count the air out. Everything is built into the board and thats a big deal.
  9. lilo777 macrumors 603

    Nov 25, 2009
    Have not you read on the news recently that hot laptops may cause "Toasted Skin Syndrome"? ;)
  10. M87 macrumors 65816

    Jul 18, 2009
    Don't forget that the 13 MBA has higher screen resolution than the 15 MBP. The pros and cons are pretty even. IMO, if firewire isn't a deal breaker for you the MBA and MBP are viable competitors. The other tradeoffs are negligible.
  11. miata macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2010
    Silicon Valley, Earth
    My Analysis

    I've been going through the details for two maxed out system and this is a real mixed bag. I'm guessing after reviewing performance benchmarks that the two systems will be too close to call. Here are the other things...

    Advantage MBA:
    - 33% less weight
    - 28 - 88% less thickness
    - 27% more screen pixels
    - smaller and lighter MagSafe power adapter
    - cooler
    - all Apple support (no 3rd party stuff)

    Advantage MBP:
    - 43% more battery life
    - 100% more storage (by keeping HDD)
    - 150% faster IO (FW800 vs USB2)
    - Gig-Ethernet
    - backlit keyboard
    - mature design
    - Kensington lock slot
    - audio line in minijack
    - ambient light sensor
    - IR sensor
    - battery indicator lights
    - sleep indicator light
    - stereo speakers with subwoofers
    - iSight camera (1.3 MP versus FaceTime 0.3 MP)

    - Assume same performance:cool:
    - pricing would be very similar
    - 13" LED-backlit glossy widescreen display
    - 2 USB slots
    - SD slot
    - Airport Extreme
    - Bluetooth
    - Mini DisplayPort
    - MagSafe power port
    - support for Apple earphones with mic
    - Full-size keyboard with 78 (U.S.) or 79 (ISO) keys
    - Multi-Touch trackpad
    - omnidirectional microphone
    - no SuperDrive (replaced with OWC SSD with Dat Doubler for MBP)
    - same width and depth
  12. plathunter macrumors member

    Oct 25, 2010
    Since you mentioned the batterly life as a pro for the MBP maybe you should list the standy time and instant wake as a pro for the MBA
  13. miata macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2010
    Silicon Valley, Earth
    I can add the standby time, but really wonder who leaves their computer alone for 30 days.

    The instant wake is another one. Won't the MBP also get instant wake an SSD?

    Again, my 3 year old MBP essentially wakes instantly from sleep, so I'm not sure what the big deal is. I never turn my system off.
  14. BigCanoe macrumors 6502

    Jan 13, 2003
    Cost wise, how do they compare? I know a low end 13 MPB can be had for about $1000 refurb.
  15. miata macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2010
    Silicon Valley, Earth
    Very close on cost if you go 3rd party SSD. YOu may be looking at an older gen refurb for that price.

    13" MBA 2.13 GHz, 4 GB, 256 GB
    $1749 @ MacMall

    13" MBA 2.4 GH, 4 GB, 250 GB HDD ($1120 @ Amazon)
    OWC 240 GB SSD ($570 from MacSales direct)

    I would personally do the 8 GB ram upgrade on the the MBP and add the OWC Data Doubler to replcae my SuperDrive with the SSD . That comes to $1955.

    I've been buying macs for almost 20 years and this is the hardest decision for me. I am coming from a 3 year old 15" MBP. Between the 13" MBA/MBA and the 15" MBP choices this is really difficult.
  16. macbook123 macrumors 68000

    Feb 11, 2006
    This is actually the single most puzzling omission of the MBA. With skype and others all going HD, I imagine the current camera will be upgraded very soon, probably less than 6 months. One has to wonder what Apple were thinking when putting such a low res camera into a computer. I would have expected an upgrade to a full HD camera instead.
  17. citron230 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 17, 2007
    San Diego, CA
    size of the camera with increased MP vs. the available space to place the camera. That's probably what they were thinking.
  18. bcaslis macrumors 68020

    Mar 11, 2008
    Where do you see numbers for the new 13" 2.13? I only see the old MBA listed for this.
  19. aberrero macrumors 6502a

    Jan 12, 2010
    Ya, the lid is too thin to fit a higher res camera. Honestly, I don't care. I never use the camera anyway.
  20. miata macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2010
    Silicon Valley, Earth
    At first I was thinking that this was just another one of those compromises required to meet size/weight contraints. But the more I thought about it there is a long list of puzzling omissions on the Airs. I think that these are related to size/weight constraints -- but also cost constraints.

    What I have concluded is that the Airs were designed to not cannibalize the MacBook Pro line. Let's look at the list of little things you give up when going to the Air. And these things have been part of all MacBook Pros for the last 3 years or so.

    - reduced resolution iSight camera
    - no Gig-Ethernet
    - no Firewire
    - no backlit keyboard
    - no Kensington lock slot
    - no ambient light sensor
    - no IR sensor
    - no battery indicator lights
    - no sleep indicator light

    If some of these features were included in the Airs there would be big time MacBook Pro cannibalization. You can argue that these are all little things, but what is the difference between a Lexus and a Toyota? Answer: A lot of little things.
  21. Poochi macrumors 6502a


    Jul 30, 2010
    My personal opinion, I have a MacBook Pro and I don't use any of the above you indicated. My backlit on keyboard is turned off all the time, don't care about the light sensor as it doesn't adjust the brightness to my likings, I don't care about the sleep or battery indicator light as I plug them in whenever I bring the macbook back home.

    I only used Gig-Ethernet ONCE, for the initial time machine backup.

    I only used FireWire ONCE, to restore my broken 5400RPM HARDDRIVE (yes, harddrive failed within 7 months, nice that MBA has no more mechanical moving parts HD).
  22. falconeight Guest


    Apr 6, 2010
    Instant on means that as soon as it turns on it is 100% ready. No computer that uses an optical drive is capable of doing that.
  23. miata macrumors 6502

    Oct 22, 2010
    Silicon Valley, Earth
    I'm not sure what the optical drive has to do with it, but here are the results from Anandtech. With SSD MPBs are very close.

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