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vistokid

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jun 26, 2007
601
341
Got my i3 (base model) in the mail today. Haven't opened it yet. Any real world reviews? Most of the reviews I've seen are of the i5. Will it meet your needs? Or is it under powered for you?

Thanks!
 

lambertjohn

macrumors 65816
Jun 17, 2012
1,351
1,286
Just open it up and try it for yourself. You have until 14 days after Apple stores reopen to return it if you don’t like it.
I actually think Apple has extended the return period longer than 14 days, so OP might have more time to play with it. So OP, open the dang thing and let us know what you think.
 
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supertiffany

macrumors 6502
Apr 4, 2019
361
449
get the quadcore if you have extra $100 but dont expect you can use it for extended usage of intensive task since it doesnt have good fan systems
 
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Falhófnir

macrumors 603
Aug 19, 2017
5,105
5,701
get the quadcore if you have extra $100 but dont expect you can use it for extended usage of intensive task since it doesnt have good fan systems
Why bother if you're not using the extra power? Put the $100 towards upgrading earlier is the more sensible option, that's 1/10 of the price of a base unit!
 
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maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
67,686
35,070
Boston
Why bother if you're not using the extra power?
I don't know, I think in 2020 using most software and macOS, that a dual-core i3 will be too underpowered. for a 100 bucks you get a much more robust machine that will definitely last longer.

I hate to use the word future proof because its more marketing strategy to get you to overbuy, but a 100 dollar upgrade giving you an i5 quad core as opposed to a i3 dual core - that imo is a no brainer.
 
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Falhófnir

macrumors 603
Aug 19, 2017
5,105
5,701
I don't know, I think in 2020 using most software and macOS, that a dual-core i3 will be too underpowered. for a 100 bucks you get a much more robust machine that will definitely last longer.

I hate to use the word future proof because its more marketing strategy to get you to overbuy, but a 100 dollar upgrade giving you an i5 quad core as opposed to a i3 dual core - that imo is a no brainer.
I just really think it's easy to overestimate how much you will benefit from extra performance, though. Surfing, office productivity, even light photo and video editing will all be fine on an i3 (look at what people were doing with the even weaker 12" MacBook for example). Remember even 2017 MacBook Pro 13" models are dual core, I don't see people warning about struggling with those, despite even more constrained single core performance! Those models are still on sale from Apple refurbished for in excess of $1,000, this is a steal by comparison.
 
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CaptHook

macrumors member
Apr 27, 2015
81
13
I have an i3 and I’m surprised at how fast it is, but this is the first Mac I’ve owned. I have supported them occasionally years ago at work so I’m not totally new to them. I originally wanted the i5 but the i3 was ready to ship at Best Buy so I went with that needing it to work from home this week.

I have only used it for web browsing and working from home (remoting into a virtual desktop so no work on the MacBook Air) but again, I’m surprised at how fast it is. I do plan to push it a little this weekend by editing some photos and videos so I’ll see how it does then.
 
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roncron

macrumors 6502a
Aug 15, 2011
714
1,027
I have a 2018 retina MBA, which has an 8th generation core i5, just like the 2019 MBA. I was aware that the machine was underpowered--even by 2018 standards--yet that almost never affected me in real-world usage. (I rarely edit video, tho).

The core i3 in the base model 2020 MBA is 10th generation and is faster than the 8th gen i5 in the 2018 & 2019 models, though benchmarks indicate not tons faster. Also, the 2020 MBA has slightly better heat dissipation according to iFixit teardown, so the fan shouldn't come on as much.

So I expect that the base model will be fine for most users.

That said, anyone who can afford to spend the extra $100 to upgrade the processor to the quad-core i5 should do so. You might not need that extra power today, but your machine will have a longer usable life. And even if you don't NEED the extra power, the computer will probably feel a bit snappier in every day use.

I still like my 2018 MBA. But I ordered a 2020 MBA within a few days of the announcement. I ordered the quad-core i5, 16gb ram and 1TB SSD. But mostly for the keyboard.
 
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Seanm87

macrumors 65816
Oct 10, 2014
1,431
2,325
I have a 2018 retina MBA, which has an 8th generation core i5, just like the 2019 MBA. I was aware that the machine was underpowered--even by 2018 standards--yet that almost never affected me in real-world usage. (I rarely edit video, tho).

The core i3 in the base model 2020 MBA is 10th generation and is faster than the 8th gen i5 in the 2018 & 2019 models, though benchmarks indicate not tons faster. Also, the 2020 MBA has slightly better heat dissipation according to iFixit teardown, so the fan shouldn't come on as much.

So I expect that the base model will be fine for most users.

That said, anyone who can afford to spend the extra $100 to upgrade the processor to the quad-core i5 should do so. You might not need that extra power today, but your machine will have a longer usable life. And even if you don't NEED the extra power, the computer will probably feel a bit snappier in every day use.

I still like my 2018 MBA. But I ordered a 2020 MBA within a few days of the announcement. I ordered the quad-core i5, 16gb ram and 1TB SSD. But mostly for the keyboard.

Same for me. I have the 2019 model and never had any issues.
 
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