Aluminum Macbook or Macbook Air?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by VeganHipster, Jul 16, 2011.

  1. VeganHipster macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2011
    #1
    I recently got accepted into a music and video editing program where we will mostly be using iMovie, FCP, Garageband, Logic, etc., and I need a laptop to use for projects that we work on at home. I was thinking of the aluminum Macbook or the Macbook Air. As you can see, I don't need to run that much on this computer, I might play starcraft 2, valve games, mass effect, and sims, but I am not expecting 60+ FPS with every setting on ultra. I am not intending on getting the refreshed Macbook Airs, just the late 2010 model. So, which one would you recommend to me?
     
  2. talmy macrumors 601

    talmy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2009
    Location:
    Oregon
    #2
    Definitely the Aluminum MacBook. You will appreciate the much better processor performance and expandability (RAM and hard drive) especially for the video work.
     
  3. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #3
    It really depends on your needs. Essentially, you are trading power for portability; personally, I'd recommend the MBA. At present, the MBA is an uber-portable laptop, which is fast (thanks to SSD), has a very good battery, and excellent screen resolution. It will do most of what you ask of it, but the MBP line up has more power (I know you said MB, but I'd recommend base model MBP instead if power is what you feel you need).

    Best of luck with it.
     
  4. sumone macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2011
    #4
    And all of this addresses how the OP will be able to use the computer for his needs because....? Essentially the question was which device will be best for video editing not which one is more portable and has a better battery life.

    I know you and I have been down this road before but once again this doesn't seem like advice as much as it's a pitch to encourage someone to buy a MBA based on the fact that it's lighter and comes standard with a SSD. And based on overall performance benchmarks the current MBA tends to lose in just about every category http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-20039450-1.html
     
  5. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Location:
    The Far Horizon
    #5
    I also said that I'd recommend the base model MBP over the MB if power and higher specs are what the OP really felt was needed.

    We've all been down this road on an endless number of occasions, and probably, given the nature of the forums, doubtless, will be in future.

    Portability is usually the main point stressed with the MBA, but the screen resolution is also excellent, better than the MB, and better than the MBP (which I used to have). Both of them have far better specifications than the MBA and, in fact, both offer better value - I have never denied that - but the OP pointed out that the intended computer would not be needed "to do much".

    It is not a pitch as much as my two cents, as I have had both a MBP and a MBA. They are each good at - and designed to be good at - different things.

    Cheers
     
  6. clyde2801 macrumors 601

    clyde2801

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2008
    Location:
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    #6
    You could get a decent sata II SSD for the aluminum macbook (late 08 model, right?) and that would give you a good blend of speed and portability. The only advantages the air would have would be portability and battery life.

    I'm presuming you'd simply use this to take a project from work to home, not pull it out on a whim to spend ten minutes on it at a Starbucks.

    The MB, with the right EFI update, would also be able to use up to 8 gigs of relatively cheap ddr3 laptop ram.
     
  7. VeganHipster thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2011
    #7
    Thanks for the help everyone. After posting this thread, my parents sat me down and had a talk with me. They told me that due to my grades, they are willing to go halves on newer computer. So I think I will just save up 800 or 900 and try to get a refurb or used 2011 macbook pro. I hope to get my new macbook pro around the end of august or beginning of september.
     
  8. Cool Runnings macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2010
    Location:
    Sweden
    #8
    Good choice, the advantage is that the MBP both has FireWire 800 and ThunderBolt which can be useful for connecting cameras and accessories.
    And that model support up to 16 GB RAM.

    Both the Alu MB and the Air lack those ports.
     
  9. jljue macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
    Location:
    Brandon, MS
    #9
    I would say that you most definitely want a MacBook Pro for FW800 connectivity for external drives and video capture. Granted, many new cameras record to digital media, but older camcoders and miniDV decks will require FW. Be sure to include a decent computer monitor, if you don't already have one. Although I have a 15" late 2008 MBP, I still edit in FCP with the 20" LCD that I kept after selling my 20" iMac. It's a lot better than editing on the laptop screen when at home, but I wish that I a larger monitor with more resolution to give me more work space.
     

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