Air Vs. Pro

Mr. Heckles

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 20, 2018
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yeah I know, another one of these. So my late 2008 aluminum lost support in August and it’s time for new one. I was going to get a MacBook Air with 16GB of RAM/512 SSD and I saw a refurbished 13 inch MacBook Pro for the same price, just 256 SSD.

I use a VPN and remote into work, and that’s a windows computer (use Microsoft Remote Desktop). I don’t do anything that I need power, but it’s nice to have. My last MacBook I had for 10 years. I added a SSD and 8GB or RAM and it was great. I know those new ones I can’t add RAM, so that’s why I’m getting 16 GB. I was never sold on mobile processors, but the air seems good. But how will these processors be in 5-8 years? Am I better off getting the pro for this reason alone?

The storage I don’t care, I always put photos on external hard drives anyways and back them up. Movies are on a Mac mini also backed up.

The air, price is lower because of Black Friday, was $1699
https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1441826-REG/apple_z0vd_mre5_bh_13_3_macbook_air_with.html

The pro, now it’s out of stock,but I’ll just wait. $1699
https://www.apple.com/shop/product/G0V70LL/A/Refurbished-133-inch-MacBook-Pro-23GHz-quad-core-Intel-Core-i5-with-Retina-display-Space-Gray?fnode=3f3dad04adb1020fc66e955059ce728a59d3d8b66195299393d72eb1fbcb2fcf09469cfba15c4341c68d3dac017b763eff8dacaff14cd533b3bd3edd7c565d85ee0f47082b0300627cf942043b7bf065
 

Mr. Heckles

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Mar 20, 2018
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Why not get a 2017 refurb instead of the 2018? Plenty on the refurb site.
And all the keyboard issues with the 2017 pros? And if your talking about the 2017 Air, I like the screen on the new Air. I saw on at Best Buy and I thought it looked nice
 

lambertjohn

macrumors 65816
Jun 17, 2012
1,025
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I meant a 2017
And all the keyboard issues with the 2017 pros? And if your talking about the 2017 Air, I like the screen on the new Air. I saw on at Best Buy and I thought it looked nice
I meant a 2017 MacBook Pro. Like this one.

https://www.apple.com/shop/product/G0UL1LL/A/Refurbished-133-inch-MacBook-Pro-23GHz-dual-core-Intel-Core-i5-with-Retina-display-Silver?fnode=986fed11daa0d658ee5c662e7e1071b68cdc7220f673ffd8245a3047adad9cb7f205c653e517cdd4637124533e7f9bf9835b944f351dfb44f02a09fa210777a7123c0dd079039c111ae86d349c719a65

Millions of people own these and millions of people are having no keyboard problems.
 

jmoore5196

macrumors 6502a
May 19, 2009
739
252
Midwest US
I think your decision depends on your planned usage. I needed a laptop for travel that was lighter than my 15” MPB.

I chose a 16/512 Air because I didn’t want to pay for MBP horsepower I wasn’t going to use, but I needed the 512GB SSD. I tried the 2018 13” MBP and found the quad core speed boost illusory.

As another poster has noted, the MBA will be a nice upgrade. Whether you need the Pro is, I think, a question best answered by your usage scenario.

FWIW, I quite like the Air so far ... much more than I anticipated.
 
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Salty Pirate

macrumors 6502
Oct 5, 2005
461
431
kansas city
But for the same price, wouldn’t the pro be a better deal seeing it has better processors?
If CPU horsepower is your #1 driver, then the air is not for you. Most people do not render video or otherwise constantly stress the CPU.

The appeal of the air is the form factor, the retina screen, the battery life and the Touch ID sensor......MacBook Pro's are better in every way.

The 2017 non Touch Bar is a fine machine, but in my opinion, I would choose the air.
 

Mr. Heckles

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Original poster
Mar 20, 2018
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If CPU horsepower is your #1 driver, then the air is not for you. Most people do not render video or otherwise constantly stress the CPU.

The appeal of the air is the form factor, the retina screen, the battery life and the Touch ID sensor......MacBook Pro's are better in every way.

The 2017 non Touch Bar is a fine machine, but in my opinion, I would choose the air.
The pro I was looking at is a 2018 w/ Touch Bar. My issues is, how will the Air perform in 5-8 years with stuff? Will it be hurting while the Pro is still a good machine?
 

nutmac

macrumors 601
Mar 30, 2004
4,171
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I think it depends on your usage.

I have 15" MBP (2016 with 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD) and picked up 2018 MBA for my kid last week (upgraded to 16GB RAM and 512GB SSD).

For apps such as Photos, Safari, and Office 2019, I am not noticing significant performance differences between the two. If any, MBA feels faster thanks to faster SSD.

More processor intensive tasks such as transcoding video and compiling code would no doubt favor refurbished quad-core 13" MBP, but for every day tasks, you need to weigh other tangible differences such as:
  • LCD: I calibrate all my displays with i1Display and find MBA to be perfectly fine for non critical work and using it indoor. But if you need accurate wide color (P3) display and/or use the computer outdoor, get 13" MBP.
  • Ergonomics: While MBA and 13" MBP are seemingly identical size wise and weighs nearly the same, the sloped keyboard case and cut out for opening the notebook can make huge differences in usability. It is significantly easier to open and carry, and I find typing to be much more pleasurable on MBA (no sharp corner hitting my wrist).
  • Ports: MBP having 2 Thunderbolt 3/USB-C ports on each sides means more devices you can connect simultaneously and easier charging.
  • Storage: 512GB can give much more breathing room over 256GB.