2013 13" MBA or Haswell rMBP for photo/coding?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by cc2096, Oct 18, 2013.

  1. cc2096 macrumors regular


    May 13, 2005
    So like the title says, it's upgrade time and I am trying to decide which way to go. Obviously I need to wait for the 22nd to really know about the Hawell rMBP, but which do y'all think would be better for a mobile dev/photo lab? Mobile being the key word here. Which obviously puts the MBA into higher consideration, but can it handle LR5 & PS:CC as well as some serious coding?
  2. Lifter7 macrumors newbie

    Dec 28, 2012
    I'm buying a MBA soon, probably within 1-2 days, and I've really searched about it.

    From what I understand, people REALLY under-estimate the power of it. It should handle PS/Light room/Coding/etc fairly easy, unless you are at a professional level, and in that case you need something like a 15 rMBP Quad core or an iMAC + MBA/rMBP'13 combo..Get what I mean?

    If you get the MBA, make sure you upgrade the RAM, and it will suite your needs perfectly.
  3. yosemit macrumors regular

    Jul 19, 2013
    I've used lightroom on my 11" i7/8GB/256GB and an iMac 2010. The iMac has a quad-core i5 CPU and a mechanic hard drive. It takes about the same time for both machines to render a 30MB raw picture. I believe the MBA is helped by its PCIe SSD.
  4. NutsNGum macrumors 68030


    Jul 30, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    The Air will capably handle almost anything you throw at it. Lightroom and PS will not be a problem. However, I would suggest that in your case, as the screen is going to be a very important factor, that the rMBP might be the better choice.
  5. MrGimper macrumors 603


    Sep 22, 2012
    Andover, UK
    Remember the Air has a resolution of 1440x900 and the rMBP has an effective resolution of 1280x800, despite obviously being retina and clearer. The extra screen estate would be of benefit for coding so you can keep toolbars/palettes/inspectors open.
  6. Chicane-UK macrumors 6502

    Apr 26, 2008
    Have to say the Air has blown me away with its performance. I came from a 3.1GHz Core i5 desktop system and swapped down to the MacBook Air - it was a bit of a gamble as I had no way to test out the Air first, but was reassured by countless positive reviews.. it absolutely has not disappointed. I hook it up to an older 23" Apple Cinema Display (being driven at 1920x1200) and the system honestly flies - it's a real peach.

    I doubt there's much I could throw at it that would make it choke. I'd imagine that unless you were handling hundreds of enormous resolution images from a top level D-SLR, you would have no problems doing whatever you needed on an Air. But I'd have to say the screen is too low resolution to do anything seriously productive on it, and an external monitor would be a must have.
  7. Jezzza macrumors newbie

    Jul 24, 2013
    Don't underestimate how useful it is with the Retina to be able to display your photos in Lightroom at a 1:1 scale while the toolbars are scaled up to be nice and crisp. As well, you can always run the Retina in one of its scaled resolutions if you need that extra real estate.

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