According to my needs which MacBook should I buy?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Apokaliptor, Oct 31, 2014.

  1. Apokaliptor macrumors newbie

    Oct 31, 2014
    Hello folk's,

    I'm planning to buy a macbook, but I don't know which one should I buy. I have a powerfull desktop for all heavy stuff (gaming etc). But sometimes I need something more portable for my projects (I'm developer), because sometimes I want to code outside home or outside my desk to be more comfortable.

    I'm Android developer and I plan to start iOS development so I decided to take a macbook, but I don't know which one I should buy. I want something with great battery and small (Both macbook pro retina and macbook air are enough for me). I like macbook Air since is very portable,tiny and cheaper, but non-retina screen scares me since I'm a programmer I think retina is very important for my eyes no? I'm looking for 13'' inches models.

    So my macbook will be only used for:
    -Unity development.
    -Android apps development (native, Java + Android Studio).
    -iOS apps development.

    Which model you advise me to buy? And should I buy it with maximum RAM? (Since RAM now is not upgradable).
    And which model you think is best in quality vs price comparison?

    Thank you!

  2. dan1eln1el5en macrumors 6502


    Jan 3, 2012
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    macbook air 13" the upper one, doesn't need to be the top-class, but just one with the extra space and perhaps extra RAM, should be good.

    though you get close to the retina I think the portability of the air could be important for you as a secondary machine.
  3. Apokaliptor thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 31, 2014
    Yes I like alot Macbook Air, but retina screen makes me think :eek:, because coding is about reading text, and good screen's are important no? Sometimes I have eye's strain , I valuable alot screen resolutions and quality
  4. Pootan macrumors member


    Oct 28, 2014

    I work in windows apps and previously in android apps. I bought a 13" rMBP 2.6/16/512 but it was overkill for my needs (although your needs may differ). Although the screen was very nice, I didnt need the ram/space/processor for what I did.

    I just needed it to type and do quick builds, if I needed to do a full build I would just dump it in to git and do a full build at home and run it through automated tests. It depends on your workflow for sure, but for making apps it should be fine.

    Since then I replaced it with a baseline 11" macbook air i5/4/128. It runs parallels win 7 visual studio flawlessly while running safari with tons of tabs and video running in the back. I got it cheap so I can be rough with it, I can abuse the heck out of it and take it anywhere and use it in any awkward weird place (on a packed sofa at a party, sitting on a planter in a tiny coffee shop, standing on a crowded bus, etc).

    the 13" air is good too for the battery life.
  5. GreatDrok macrumors 6502a


    May 1, 2006
    New Zealand
    I had a MBA for three years and now have a rMBP. I liked the MBA for the portability and battery life. The screen was good enough for programming as the resolution was 1440x900. Switching to the retina screen reduces the aparrent available space to 1280x800 so feels a little more cramped. It is possible to scale the screen to a higher virtual resolution but that isn't the optimal for retina. I do tend to run mine scaled when I am only using the laptop without an external monitor. Frankly it is a wash and shouldn't be the deciding factor. The main benefit of the air is longer battery life and less weight. The pro has more connectors and can be bumped up to more memory than the air but is also quite a bit more money. They're both fine machines for programming and the only reason I switched to the pro was because I run a bunch of virtual machines for testing on different operating systems so needed more than the 4GB my air had.
  6. nightlong macrumors 6502a


    Jun 16, 2012
    Screen is the major difference, so you need to decide whether the not huge extra cost for retina is worth it for your needs. For text, I wouldn't consider anything else now. The few advantages of an MBA don't compare, for me, with the advantage of retina screen.

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