@$1399, 11" "ultimate" or base 13" with 4GB ram?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by how2mac, Oct 30, 2010.

  1. how2mac macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2010
    #1
    I'm sort of curious as to what you guys think about this unique price point. Both the 11" and 13" will share the exact same internal specs save for CPU (1.6 vs 1.86). Otherwise they have the same memory, same SSD, etc.

    I'm leaning towards the 13" because the CPU will be better for Starcraft2 and the better battery life.

    As far as I can tell the 11" only has an advantage in being lighter by 0.6 pounds right?
     
  2. WardC macrumors 68030

    WardC

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    Oct 17, 2007
    Location:
    Fort Worth, TX
    #2
    You are right. When you configure the 13" with 4GB of RAM it is $1399.

    So comparing the 11.6"/1.6GHz/4GB/128GB Flash to the 13"/1.86GHz/4GB/128GB you are getting a larger, higher resolution 1440x900 display and a 266MHz faster CPU, same RAM, storage and video card.

    It all comes down to your portability needs and your graphics display preferences, really, and if the slightly faster CPU will really be a real deal breaker for you.

    I just loved the portability of the 11.6" and I already own a Rev C 2009 model 2.13GHz/SSD 13" model, so i decided to go with the 11". It's up to you. Also, the display on the 11.6" has a higher PPI and is sharper, but the display on the 13" delivers better contrast and color gamut, and more screen real estate. If you do alot of photo editing or video, I would go with the 13", but if you really like the size and portability of the 11.6", I'd go with the smaller one, like I did.
     
  3. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    May 3, 2009
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    Boston
    #3
    The other advantage (and its biggest) is the size. The 11" MBA is really the ideal portable machine.

    Personally, I think this is a better buy when you can get a 13" MBP for less money then the 13" MBA and the MBP is more expandable (and has a backlit keyboard).

    Just my $02
     
  4. WardC macrumors 68030

    WardC

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    #4
    So you are saying you would go with a 13" MacBook Pro rather than the MacBook Air if you were going for the 13" size portable? Even though the 13" MacBook Pro has much lower display resolution and weighs over twice as much? At least with the MacBook Pro you get FireWire, HD expandability to 1TB, SSD up to 512GB, RAM up to 8GB, a DVD/RW drive that can be swapped for a second hard drive or SSD, a backlit keyboard, a security lock, a sleep indicator light (if this matters), and built-in gigabit ethernet. A much more expandable machine but the display is half as good. I guess it's a trade-off.
     
  5. SidBala macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2010
    #5
    Yes, It is a difference of ONLY 300 grams between the 11 and the 13.

    Get the 13. It is still very portable and you get a faster proc, better screen. IMO, the 11.6 screen estate is unusable.


    The two PPIs are about the same 127 vs 135. You won't notice much of a difference. However, you will be very pleased with the extra screen estate.

    Go 13.
     
  6. Loonytik macrumors 6502a

    Loonytik

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2008
    #6
    I tossed this question back and forth myself but after 3 trips to the Apple store I ordered the 13.

    I agree, the 11 is certainly portable but after looking at the screen for 10 minutes in the store I knew it would be too small to stare at for an extended amount of time.
     
  7. gwsat macrumors 68000

    gwsat

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    Apr 12, 2008
    Location:
    Tulsa
    #7
    In addition to its faster chip and twice as much flash storage, the 13 inch model also has a much faster frontside bus, 1066Mhz versus 800, and twice as large an L2 cache, 6MB v. 3MB. For me the deal breaker on the 11 inch was its 128GB storage limitation. I run Windows 7 in a 13GB VMware Fusion virtual machine. After I got all my apps and data migrated from my MBP, I had used up 126GB on day one. That means that even with 256GB of storage, half of it has already been used.

    EDIT: And I forget to mention that the 13 inch MBA has a battery rated at 7 hours between charged, whereas the 11 inch MBA's battery is rated at only 5 hours.
     
  8. gloryunited macrumors 6502

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    Oct 29, 2010
    #8
    I wonder what you all think about the 16:10 Vs 16:9 screen ratio, apart from the size difference.
     
  9. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

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    London
    #9
    Guys, apart from the 1/2 lb. (which does seem a valid issue), how is the 11" so much more portable? What are you guys carrying your laptops in? Will the 13" footprint make any difference at all in your bags apart from the weight?

    To me, the only advantage of the 11" is 1/2 lb.

    The 13" has a better display, more work space, better battery life, more L2 cache, a faster bus, a faster processor, and an SD slot and it can have up to 256GB of storage.

    Oh, that's right. When on the airplane, the guy in front of you may lean back and then your 13" won't fit. Okay. For some, that's true, but really for how many of you?

    The 13" seems like a no-brainer to me. I think people have just been seduced by the novelty of this teeny-tiny Mac. Really, the 13" is VERY portable. Much lighter than a MBP and not much heavier than an 11" Mac netbook (which is what it is).
     
  10. krillin macrumors newbie

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    Oct 19, 2010
  11. WardC macrumors 68030

    WardC

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    #11
    11.6" is 16:9 @ 1366x768

    13" is 16:10 at 1440x900

    11.6" is more rectangular than the 13", the 13" is more square.
     
  12. Adidas Addict macrumors 65816

    Adidas Addict

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    England
    #12
    13.3" is 16:10
     
  13. Maven1975 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    #13

    11" = 16X9

    13" = 16X10

    If they would have used a 13.1" 16X9 screen on the 13" Air, it would make the decision easier.

    I have been using a Sony Z for a few months and have really fallen in love with 16X9. The 16X10 ratio just looks odd to me now.
     
  14. highscheme macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2009
    #14
    To be honest if you just compare the numbers between the two machines the 11" is not percentage wise that much smaller or lighter.

    However, in real world experience, the size and weight difference is much more significant.

    The 11" is the ultimate ultra portable secondary mac.

    The 13" is the ultimate svelte laptop replacement for a non power user.
     
  15. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

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    Feb 6, 2006
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    London
    #15
    I'd argue that the 13" is the ultimate ultraportable secondary Mac. It just happens to be so good that it might install itself as your primary one. You can't say that about the 11".

    I'm just not seeing how the iSquint is really more portable than the 13"? In what bag will one fit but not the other?
     
  16. Maven1975 macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 24, 2008
    #16
    The "isquint" has a smaller footprint all around. The 13" is just a thinner MBP.

    If you look at it this way, like many of us, it is the only true ultra portable Mac on the market.

    Out in the field witth clients, in and out of the car, rushing between appt's without putting the lap in a bag (grab and run's) appreciate the size.

    Some of us have been trying to shoehorn the ipad into our everyday business as a laptop replacement without luck.

    For those of us, this buds (11") for you!
     
  17. highscheme macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2009
    #17
    I'm just telling you my anecdotal experience. When I went to look at the two machines, the 11" feels much smaller and lighter than the actual difference.

    It all comes down to how you use it. If you are carrying a computer on your person in a city, I would argue that every little weight/size difference makes a much bigger impact. Think living in Tokyo, Japan or NYC. (London as well I assume)

    I agree that it is not that great as a universal computer unless you are a very light user without many demands. However, in certain situations 20% weight and size savings pay far bigger dividends than the numbers alone tell.
     
  18. catalyst6 macrumors 6502a

    catalyst6

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  19. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

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    #19
    I do agree about the weight, as I said earlier.

    I had a Rev. B SSD, and many MBP users just never seemed to be able to grasp what a difference the 1.5 lbs made for me. What a difference in my bag!

    So yeah, for those who really want to shed another 1/2 lb., I get that it can be important.
     
  20. wirelessmacuser macrumors 68000

    wirelessmacuser

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    Dec 20, 2009
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    Planet.Earth
    #20
    @ Maven

    Please don't take my comment personally, it's not aimed at you but rather the broader general public. I'm simply using your comment which is very typical today.

    Why is it that users choose a computer based on it's looks?

    I choose my computer based on what I need it for, what I will use it for. The looks do matter, but not as a higher priority over what I will be _using_ it for.

    I have both a new VAIO with a 16:9 and a new 15" MacBook Pro with 16:10. I can tell you first hand the 16:9 is woefully short of space when it comes to anything other than movies which is something I could care less about. I have a home theater for movies.

    It never ceases to amaze me that people buy a computer because it's "cool looking" ... it's as though they could care less about it's functionality.

    Amazing.... :)

    Another example: Those that buy a glossy display, because the "Have to have the cool looking black border" Oh Please...

    Surely I'm not the only one that buys a computer to USE, instead of sit and STARE AT.....:eek:
     
  21. diablo2112 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2010
    #21
    Not my experience. One critical application for me is airline tray tables. Night and day difference between the 11 and 13". This was a deciding factor in my purchase of the 11". Amazing what that 1" does in actual, cramped use. The 11" rests fully-open, no interference with the seat back, and still room for other small items. The 13" still gets squished when the seat in front is reclined.
     
  22. Maven1975 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2008
    #22
    No problem, I appreciate your kindness.

    I do find the 16X9 better for my type of work. Excell sheets, and multiple webpages. Yes, the screen is squashed more than a 16X10, but open two web pages and split them on the screen. They will be a mess on the 16X10 compared to a 16X9 screen.

    You are correct, it depends on the USERS needs.
     
  23. jazz1 macrumors 65816

    jazz1

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    Aug 19, 2002
    Location:
    Mid-West USA
    #23
    While I'm saving for an Air I too have made several trips to the Apple Store trying to decide on which Air model. I don't know if it was just the low table or the smaller screen but after a few minutes the 11 wasn't doing it for me.

    I even went to the slightly higher table along the Apple Store Wall and I was still not happy with the size of the screen. Granted I would not probably be using the same angle sitting, so maybe my issue with the small screen is simply the odd angle force on me while standing at either table? On the other hand I was feeling like I had to do a lot less head bobbing and angle adjustment of my head when using the 13" Air. To each his own. It is great to have a choice!
     
  24. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

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    #24
    I mentioned the airplane issue. I also said it doesn't really apply to most here, but I appreciate that it does for you.
     
  25. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

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    Feb 6, 2006
    Location:
    London
    #25
    But don't you find that you're hard-pressed to view two pages side by side on the iSquint?

    On my ACD 30 or on one of the new ACD 27s, sure, but on an 11" monitor? I don't see that working out too well.
     

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