Advice on buying a new Macbook


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2020
Hi 👋 in desperate need of advice here and hoping someone can point me in the right direction. My old windows laptop is dead and I’m thinking of getting a new MacBook, either air or pro 13inch. It needs to be portable so the 16inch is a no go for me. I’ve never owned a MacBook before but have all the other apple products so it seems to make sense for me to get a MacBook.

I am really put off with what I’ve read about the butterfly keyboards. I know many will advise for me to hold off until they release the new MacBooks in the summer but I’m a writer so that isn’t an option as I need one as soon as possible. And because of what I do I need a good keyboard! I’m wondering if I should get a MacBook Air as it’s cheaper and then trade or sell it next year for the newer model. I only need it for word processing and web browsing so doesn’t need to be as high powered as a pro.

Part of me is also thinking I could buy a really good windows laptop for that price but using windows has always frustrated me which is why I wanted to try macOS. I would appreciate any advice, thank you.


macrumors 603
Feb 13, 2012
Perth, Western Australia
If you can wait a couple of months, definitely wait for the 13" to be refreshed.

If you can't wait, I'd go for an Air (if a dual core is enough for what you do) and re-sell it and upgrade a new machine with a non-butterfly keyboard when the 13" Air or Pro is updated.

Also... something you maybe didn't consider...

If you're just using it for writing on the go - seriously consider an iPad or iPad Pro with the keyboard.

I actually really like the keyboard feel on the smart keyboards, and if you're just entering text into a word processor, even the base model iPad will do that - more portably, with better battery life than either of the macbooks.

Definitely, definitely go play with some iPads and see if they will do what you need. Far cheaper, better battery life, more portable, replaceable keyboard, etc.
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macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2020
Thanks for that guys! I do have an iPad pro with a Bluetooth keyboard which is great for using at a desk but I can’t have it on my lap as it’s two parts. I could get the Apple keyboard built into the case but I wasn’t sure how sturdy that would be in my lap. I can’t spend long sitting up a desk as I have back issues.

I think I might get the MBA and then upgrade next year once the new one has been out a little while and gone down in price a bit.


macrumors 68000
Jul 23, 2008
Hearst Castle
Wait for the refreshed 13 with the new keyboard. I own the 16" Pro, the new keyboard is really great, especially with the repositioned touchbar and ESC key. Best laptop on the market, IMO.


macrumors 601
Jul 29, 2011
And because of what I do I need a good keyboard!
Remember there are two problems with the butterfly keyboard:

(1) the reliability problems. Note that a new revision of the butterfly keyboard (not the same as the scissor mechanism in the 16") came out in summer 2019 which may have improved the reliability, so whatever you get, check the Roundups on MacRumors to make sure it has the new version.

(2) even when it works, it is very much a case of "love it or hate it" - the second mistake Apple made was relying on such an extreme design as their only laptop keyboard option.

(1) is a real issue (or Apple wouldn't have launched a massive extended warranty campaign and dropped it in the 16") but (2) is genuinely subjective - if you ask here about the feel of the butterfly keyboard you'll get everything from "best keyboard ever!" to "used it for 5 minutes and my fingers fell off and my dog died".

Given what you do, you really need to get to a store and try the keyboards- both the butterfly and the new scissor-switch one on the 16" to see if its worth waiting for (t's not quite the same as the 'classic' design) - preferably alongside some PC competitors like the Dell XPS or MS Surface Laptop.

Normally the "buy now if you need it now" advice is sound, but the keyboard issue is a dilemma. However, also note that the rumours about new Macbooks with the scissor keyboard are just that - plausible rumours who's reliability relies a lot on people forgetting about the false ones.

My guess - for what its worth - is that the 13" MBP (or its hypothetical 14" replacement) will get the scissor keyboard but the Air (who's selling point is being ultra-thin) may stick with the butterfly.

(Remember I said that if it proves to be right - otherwise, quietly forget about it :) ).


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 19, 2020
Thank you for that. I’m definitely going to go in the Apple store and check out both because I need to check how the keyboard feels.

I get how it probably seems as the logical solution to wait until the new ones come out but I really can’t. I’m using the screen of a 2gb windows laptop (that has a broken keyboard) and a Bluetooth keyboard at the moment because I’m setting up my business website and it doesn’t work on mobile.

I am also going to check out windows laptops to see how they feel as I can get better specs for the same price as a MacBook but I have all other Apple products hence why I’m stuck on the idea of getting one!
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