2013 i7 or 8GB RAM

yoyo5757

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 16, 2013
5
0
Hey guys I am now in the market for a new laptop and I have decided on a new 13" MacBook Air and since I am on a budget I am wondering what would be better an i7 or 8gb of ram, I will mostly be doing some light to medium gaming and using after effects with nothing to hardcore so I am wondering what would give me more performance for the price ( I will be using the student discount )
 

james1758

macrumors regular
May 26, 2013
195
10
UK
I'd say
- ALWAYS upgrade to 8gb RAM
- Recommended upgrade to 256gb ssd
- Depending on your usage upgrade to i7

If you've got the money then I'd say upgrade to i7, if not then you really wont see a massive difference between the two in everyday tasks
 

curtoise

macrumors 6502a
Apr 19, 2010
529
13
I'd say
- ALWAYS upgrade to 8gb RAM
- Recommended upgrade to 256gb ssd
- Depending on your usage upgrade to i7

If you've got the money then I'd say upgrade to i7, if not then you really wont see a massive difference between the two in everyday tasks
Probably slightly less battery on the i7, we are all waiting for the labs reviews.
 

james1758

macrumors regular
May 26, 2013
195
10
UK
I'm testing a base 11" i5/4gb/256 right now and I'm very close to 9 hours.

I'll be able to test a 11' i7/8gb/512 this coming tuesday.
I'm gunna hunt down comparisons of 13" i5 vs i7 to see what the differences are, hopefully it wont be a big difference!
 

coolio93

macrumors 6502
Apr 15, 2013
296
49
Houston, TX
I have the 13inch i7/512ssd/8gb ram and am typing up a paper with 6 tabs open and browsing this site as well. 83% and 11 hours 12 minutes remaining.
 

james1758

macrumors regular
May 26, 2013
195
10
UK
I'll do the same, can you post any links here that compare the two processors?
According to the intel website both processors have the same power draw.. but hey I'm not gunna trust them till I see real life stats!
 

Neeyul

macrumors member
Jun 13, 2013
69
0
Go with the RAM for your usage. I'd suggest the RAM over the i7 for 90% of users out there.
 

Neeyul

macrumors member
Jun 13, 2013
69
0
I'd say something like professional-level video editing, huge Excel number crunches, and high volume multimedia encoding/decoding might justify the i7. If you're just occasionally making video projects, doing casual graphic design, playing games, and as you said "nothing hardcore," the i5 would be enough.

If you honestly need that much more power for your daily tasks, you're probably better off spending that $150 on another machine.
 

yoyo5757

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 16, 2013
5
0
Go with the RAM for your usage. I'd suggest the RAM over the i7 for 90% of users out there.
And one more question what kind of performance gain would the 8gb over the 4gb give me while playing games and rendering video
 

B...

macrumors 68000
Mar 7, 2013
1,949
2
And one more question what kind of performance gain would the 8gb over the 4gb give me while playing games and rendering video
None. RAM is important for multitasking but won't give you any raw performance gain.
 

iPlodder

macrumors member
Apr 18, 2008
59
5
Hey guys I am now in the market for a new laptop and I have decided on a new 13" MacBook Air and since I am on a budget I am wondering what would be better an i7 or 8gb of ram, I will mostly be doing some light to medium gaming and using after effects with nothing to hardcore so I am wondering what would give me more performance for the price ( I will be using the student discount )
I'd say go for the i7 over 8GB of RAM. Loading up with ram used to be a big advantage in the pre-SSD days as once the RAM was full the OS used to swap the memory out to the hard drive. When laptops were fitted with slow 5400rpm dives this used to cause lag as data was written and read from the drive. Now we have fast solid state drives this lag is greatly reduced as to be nearly unnoticeable. Take read of this thread.

Based on what you're looking to do with MBA I'd even go as far as to recommend using the money on a larger SSD rather than the i7 or 8GB RAM.
 

DarwinOSX

macrumors 68000
Nov 3, 2009
1,511
71
Nope. SSD helps but ram is still thousands of times faster.

I'd say go for the i7 over 8GB of RAM. Loading up with ram used to be a big advantage in the pre-SSD days as once the RAM was full the OS used to swap the memory out to the hard drive. When laptops were fitted with slow 5400rpm dives this used to cause lag as data was written and read from the drive. Now we have fast solid state drives this lag is greatly reduced as to be nearly unnoticeable. Take read of this thread.

Based on what you're looking to do with MBA I'd even go as far as to recommend using the money on a larger SSD rather than the i7 or 8GB RAM.
 

snakes-

macrumors regular
Jul 27, 2011
132
21
Wiesbaden
I dont want hear the fan what maybe the issue is with the i7.
i ordered today my MBA 13 8gb/256 i5 i think its the best choice someone can make.
 

scaredpoet

macrumors 604
Apr 6, 2007
6,627
342
I'd say go for the i7 over 8GB of RAM. Loading up with ram used to be a big advantage in the pre-SSD days as once the RAM was full the OS used to swap the memory out to the hard drive. When laptops were fitted with slow 5400rpm dives this used to cause lag as data was written and read from the drive. Now we have fast solid state drives this lag is greatly reduced as to be nearly unnoticeable. Take read of this thread.

"Nearly unnoticeable" is subjective. It's still slower, it takes up CPU and system resources to page memory in and out, and worst of all, every page-in is a write operation, which adds premature wear to the SSD.

If it's something you're not keeping for more than a year, it'll probably be fine, though the second user you sell to will likely have to deal with it. I you're going to keep the MBA for a while though, then it might be a cause for concern.
 
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