2012 MacBook Air vs 2016 MacBook

japanime

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Feb 27, 2006
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Has anyone gone from a 2012 Air (11-inch i7) to the 2016 MB? If so, do you feel there is a significant difference in the performance of those two models?
 

double329

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Sep 10, 2008
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I really like the form factor of the MB. I tried making a move from 2011 MBA to base model 2015 MB earlier this year. I have had MB for few weeks. I decided to return the MB mainly due to its performance. There was not much of different in term of performance comparing to 2011 MBA. I am hoping to make a jump to 2016 M5 MB. I am waiting to see more review and test number.
 
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Prospekt

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Jul 5, 2009
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Has anyone gone from a 2012 Air (11-inch i7) to the 2016 MB? If so, do you feel there is a significant difference in the performance of those two models?

I did this and the main difference I see it obviously the screen. They are both pretty snappy. Not a huge difference in performance. My new Macbook seems very quick but I'm sure it may be slower encoding video or something.
 
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SteveJUAE

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Aug 14, 2015
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Has anyone gone from a 2012 Air (11-inch i7) to the 2016 MB? If so, do you feel there is a significant difference in the performance of those two models?
I gifted my son my 2015 rMB and he returned the old gifted 2012 MBA 11" top spec. I noticed it's the SDD and 8gb ram that makes the real difference in being snappy but as the MBA was pushing less pixels he could easily play WOW on the MBA all be it the fans running constantly but not so easily on the rMB due to the screen res mainly.

Yes it will feel faster just because things will load, file, page faster and the overall experience with the screen but probably sustained performance wise if you were say rendering or applying effects it may be negligible in just a few specific areas which is what the benchmarks seem to pickup/focus on especially with the new M7.

Not that I pay particular interest to benchmarks but on paper the old MBA 2012 appears to keep pace with the new M3/M5 but this does not reflect the overall user experience nor is a real measure of what the normal user daily activities are.

The rMB is all about footprint and performs most daily activities extremely well it's not meant for professional or development use, but will cope for occasional use in these areas. The MBA's were a much more all-round capable laptop and why the old 2012 MBA is still a fine laptop other than screen res by todays standard
 
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DarthBradicus

macrumors member
May 13, 2008
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Pittsburgh, PA
I upgraded from the 2012 base 11" MacBook Air (but with 8 GB of RAM) to the m5 2016 MacBook. I never really had any performance issues with the MBA. My issues with the MBA were with the 64 GB of storage. The best thing about this new MacBook is the screen, which is amazing. The battery life is also at least double what my MBA was. The MacBook did get a bit warm and jittery while I was using it at the same time it was downloading my 15,000+ iCloud Photo Library, but other than that I've been running it at "looks like" 1440x900 with no issues so far. However, I haven't really done anything to push it yet.
 
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japanime

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Feb 27, 2006
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Good feedback so far from everyone. Thanks!

This is going to sound crazy, but I use my 2011 Air for some occasional Xcode development and Final Cut Pro work (mostly videos under 5 minutes in duration). I know the Air isn't really designed for pro applications, but it works fairly well for me.

The only thing I really dislike about the Air is the fan noise. So, the idea of a fanless machine is particularly appealing.

My concern is that if I go to the 2016 MacBook M5/512, the thermal throttling will make it impossible for me to continue to work with Xcode and Final Cut the way I do with the Air.

Thoughts?
 

geachy92

macrumors regular
Oct 24, 2012
182
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UK
Good feedback so far from everyone. Thanks!

This is going to sound crazy, but I use my 2011 Air for some occasional Xcode development and Final Cut Pro work (mostly videos under 5 minutes in duration). I know the Air isn't really designed for pro applications, but it works fairly well for me.

The only thing I really dislike about the Air is the fan noise. So, the idea of a fanless machine is particularly appealing.

My concern is that if I go to the 2016 MacBook M5/512, the thermal throttling will make it impossible for me to continue to work with Xcode and Final Cut the way I do with the Air.

Thoughts?
Don't know much about Xcode, but the MacBook is well optimised for FCP as seen here


And that was with a base 2015 model, so if you're looking at an M5 I can't see you having an issue editing!
_________________________
Edit: I recently got the M5 and have done some Handbrake benchmarks on another thread, the CPU does throttle but it holds out at 2.0 - 2.2Ghz even under heavy load.
 

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
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Finland
I went from 2010 13" MBA to 2016 base 12" MB and I can easily notice a fairly significant difference. The MBA started to have some trouble with heavy websites like Facebook where scrolling would be laggy and the fan would come on due to auto-play videos. Also simple things like Mission Control had a noticeable delay, especially on newer OS X versions. Heck, even typing in Word sometimes had a delay.

So at least in my experience the MB is far snappier and the battery life is also amazing compared to 2-3 hours that I could get out of the MBA.
 
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abhi182

macrumors newbie
Apr 24, 2016
23
28
That's promising! Thanks for pointing it out.
Compared to a 2014 Air 13" , the rMB (2015) is marginally slower
It's a bit of a blink n miss but the MBA will scroll a particularly graphic heavy page without a hiccup while you may see an ocasional stutter on the rMB
I presume that the 2016 should be easily at par with the '14 MBA
One thing worth pointing out is that the wi-fi antenna is just a tad weaker on the rMB (probably the all metal casing) vs the MBA
Most people will not notice it but I have some areas in the house where my phones/a Dell/A Samsung laptop would stay connected but not really be able to talk to the router
The MBA on the other hand handled those areas like a champ
The rMB wifi handles the connection like the other devices - Point being that the MBA has a better antenna than other devices while the rMB is at par
 
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AJNovak

macrumors newbie
Apr 22, 2015
9
0
Cleveland, OH
How do you think the new MacBook with m7 would compare to 2011 MBA 13" I7 1.8GHZ 4GB RAM? I'm actually still pretty pleased with the performance of my MBA.
 

MXSkier62

macrumors regular
Dec 4, 2006
146
2
How do you think the new MacBook with m7 would compare to 2011 MBA 13" I7 1.8GHZ 4GB RAM? I'm actually still pretty pleased with the performance of my MBA.
This is my exact spot (well, I have the 1.7GHZ). The rMB seems spectacular in size. I don't do any pro work, just occasional VPN in to work which works fine. I want small and light and the screen looks amazing. I feel like I'm just being held up by the idea of a new rMBP in June. It's the fear of missing the next thing.

My "fear" about the rMB is ports. In reality, I only ever use the charger and headphones at one time. Occasionally I need to give a presentation or connect to a TV, but as is I need a dongle for that already...

The only reason I can't think to just go for it is because there is something new coming around the corner (as there always is...) Am I just being tech rumor crazy?

(Thanks for letting me vent/rant... haha :))
 

abhi182

macrumors newbie
Apr 24, 2016
23
28
Here is how I would (very subjectively) rate the performance of the following (on a scale of 10) for basic usage (i.e. browsing/youtube/video playback/some word processing/excel)

Macbook 11" i5 2011 - 5/10 - stuttering and slowdowns while multiple windows open/some degree of multi tasking

Macbook 13" i5 2014 - 8.5/10 - Nearly no stuttering/slowdowns with several apps open, minor slowdowns when pushed (batch jobs with photos etc)

Macbook 12 core 5 2015 - 7/10 - Quite comparable to the previous one but minor hiccups (e.g. web slideshows)

Now the i5 on the 2011 11" is older architecture (say gen 1) vs the i5 on the 2014 13" (say Gen 2)
By extrapolation, I would say that the 2011 i7 should be roughly at par or a tad below the 13" i5 2014

Since you are considering the newer architecture m7, the performance should certainly be at par /in all likelihood a tad better that your existing one