13" rMBP vs 11" Air

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by yanathin, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. yanathin macrumors member

    Jan 11, 2006
    Alright, so this may seem like a dumb question at first, because obviously the 13" rBMP is going to be faster than an 11" Air (mid-2012). But my main concern is more about UI responsiveness and lagginess. I've read things about the 13" rMBP with scrolling, switching spaces, etc due to the weak graphics card powering such a high resolution. I currently have an 11" Air and am thinking about going for the 13" rMBP, and I'd just like to know if the lagginess of the UI can compare to the 11" Air in this regard. I notice a few lags and frame rate dips on my Air every once in a while (usually scrolling in full-screen Safari), but if the 13" lags some more with its higher resolution, I'm not sure I'd be able to handle it. Has anybody compared the two?
  2. Mercmanman macrumors member

    Nov 24, 2012
    I went from 2011 model 11" Air to mid-2012 loaded i7 13" Air, and now have the i7 rMBP 13"

    No lag at all. Machine is faster all around, but the Air of course is very fast as well. I work in 1680 x 1050 resolution when using the LCD, or I drive a Thunderbolt Display and use the LCD as second screen. I have never noticed a lag, including doing photo work in Aperture (120 GB Aperture library onboard), and doing 1080p video editing and basic imovie stuff. I have a couple of co workers on the 15" rMBP, and it is faster for sure with the quad core chip, but the 13" handles all of it just fine, and offers better battery life than the Air or the 15" rMBP (in my usage anyway).

    Why did I switch to the rMBP - screen is fantastic (again..no lag), and the footprint is smaller than an 13" Air.

    As another side note, the rMBP has superior wi-fi. It has three antennas and goes at 450 mbps 802.11n. An Air only has 2 antennas, and tops out at 300 mbps 802.11n. So if you place them right next to a router, the rMBP is 50% faster. If they are far away from a router, the rMBP is almost always with 50% better signal and speed. For a student or someone on wi-fi a lot...this is a big difference.
  3. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    I lost my 2012 i7 MacBook Air (8GB/256GB) and replaced it with an i5 13" rMBP. I do not notice any lag at all. It is a nice machine. I think what some people report as "lag" is that if you scroll through a website with lots of graphics, sometimes it is a little choppy, and I do mean a little. For the most part, it is pretty smooth. After all, this has the same resolution as the Apple Thunderbolt Display.

    Going from the ULV i7 in the Air to the base i5 in the Pro is mostly a lateral move in terms of performance all around. The screen is significantly better on the rMBP. The weight takes a little getting used to. The rMBP weighs 50% more than the 11.6" Air, but the battery life is more like the 13" MBA. Plus, you get a built in SDXC card slot, and HDMI port, so hooking it up to a TV is easier (no adapter needed, which frees up the 2 Thunderbolt ports for the Ethernet or Firewire adapters if you use them).
  4. Dr Charter macrumors 6502

    Feb 26, 2011
    I'm facing this exact choice as well. I keep trying to talk myself out of the retina but the iPad spoiled me. The form factor, weight and price of the Air are strong selling points. It's even more than powerful enough for my needs as a secondary computer. The only reason for me to go with the rMBP is the screen, but what a screen it is.

    An 11" retina Air would be the ideal computer IMO but I'm sure we're still a few years away from that.

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