Considering the 13" MBA

Fed

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jul 7, 2012
409
0
Liverpool.
Background
I use machine [1] in my personal and freelance capacity. It's a very good machine, but I would like some extra screen space. Initially the space didn't bother me as I use external monitors. However I don't seem to be occupying my desk that much, so the screen resolution is becoming a burden. I can hear you now: "What about the rMBP?". I bought one of these when they were released, but due to IR issues I returned it. So that's ruled out until it's second iteration, and I have been planning on investing in the new Mac Pros when they're released (I'll need the power when the freelance work above is steadily increased), so it may become irrelevant.

Second thoughts
Perhaps unfairly, I've always ruled out the MBA. But with the updates on Monday, it's got my attention. Things tipping the scale include the massive increase in battery life, the weight, TRIM-enabled SSD (currently disabled on [1]) and it's super-cheap.

Unanswered questions
How significant is the jump from 1280x800 to 1440x900? It seems small from afar, but maybe I'm underestimating it? I do consultancy with lots of development, so use lots of office-related software and various IDEs (eclipse, xcode) and development tools.
What's the SSD in machine [2]?
Any thoughts on machine [2]? I run a lean machine, so the 128GB SSD won't bother me too much.

Ref
1. MacBook Pro, 13", 2012, i7, 256GB Samsung 840.
2. MacBook Air, 13", mid-2013, i7, 8GB, 128GB @ £1149
 
Last edited:

mattopotamus

macrumors G5
Jun 12, 2012
13,271
3,412
Personally I find the difference between 1280x800 to 1440x900 to be a pretty significant one. I never work in full screen mode and always with tabs in windows. On 1280 x 800 I sometimes feel cramped and with 1440 x 900 it is just right. Obviously something like 1680 x 1050 would be perfect, but 1440 x 900 does a fantastic job and I think you would be very happy. I suggest you go down to a local apple store and check one out
 

Fed

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jul 7, 2012
409
0
Liverpool.
Personally I find the difference between 1280x800 to 1440x900 to be a pretty significant one. I never work in full screen mode and always with tabs in windows. On 1280 x 800 I sometimes feel cramped and with 1440 x 900 it is just right. Obviously something like 1680 x 1050 would be perfect, but 1440 x 900 does a fantastic job and I think you would be very happy. I suggest you go down to a local apple store and check one out
I think you're right, it doesn't sound very significant but I think it'll be totally different when I try it out. I will try and visit the store sometime this week. Only annoyance with the MBA design is the thick bezel. I can see this begin eradicated when it eventually gets Retina - which would be perfect.
 

techn0lady

macrumors regular
Apr 10, 2010
105
0
Background
Unanswered questions
How significant is the jump from 1280x800 to 1440x900? It seems small from afar, but maybe I'm underestimating it? I do consultancy with lots of development, so use lots of office-related software and various IDEs (eclipse, xcode) and development tools.
What's the SSD in machine [2]?
Any thoughts on machine [2]? I run a lean machine, so the 128GB SSD won't bother me too much.

The screen difference is significant. Not only is the screen "crisper" but you will be able to see more lines of code on a screen in a dev environment.

If you do development, as do I then yu will want the largest drive capacity you can afford. Tools and APIs are only getting larger as the months go by. I find myself limited by the 256 capability I have now (of course I use the machine for a lot more thing than just dev) so I opted for the 512 drive
 

majkom

macrumors 65816
May 3, 2011
1,374
662
SSD in Haswell air is epic - according to annandtech it reaches write/read speeds approx 800 MBs.. that machine screams:D