Development IDE Test (11 & 13)?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Xil3, Nov 26, 2010.

  1. Xil3 macrumors regular

    Oct 4, 2007
    I was just curious if anyone has used multiple IDEs at ones, and if you have, how's it working? Is it smooth?

    I normally have XCode, Netbeans, and Textmate open, which are all on separate spaces. Also, a number of other apps (Chrome, Transmit, ITunes, Android emulator, iPhone emulator, etc.) - using MBP (late 2009).

    If someone has tried a similar set-up and could shed some light, that'd be great! :)

    Also, if any fellow developers out there could maybe try that set-up, and let me know how it performs, I'd really appreciate it.

    Any other views?
  2. KnightWRX macrumors Pentium


    Jan 28, 2009
    Quebec, Canada
    This thread is new and on a subject never covered on this forum before. Try searching, I'm sure you won't come up with dozens of threads like this one before.
  3. Xil3, Nov 26, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2010

    Xil3 thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 4, 2007
    Umm, considering the fact that I was either involved, created, or read most of them (under the MBA forums), I think I would know whether this specific question was asked.

    Non of them address whether you could run ALL of those exact applications at once, without any noticeable sluggishness.

    If you don't like this post, don't read it, but stop trolling.
  4. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Apr 29, 2005
    It has been discussed many time before, and pretty close to the same question. Textmate in particular is a joke. It puts zero load on any system.

    Yes, I've run the above configuration and it runs fine. Why would you think otherwise? As a developer, think about it. Starting up a bunch of development tools doesn't increase the load on the system. Most of the apps, with Android emulator as the notable exception, don't do anything unless you're actively using them. So all they do it consume memory. If you have 4GB, its plenty. You can try the same setup on any 4GB machine and see how it performs.

    Depending on what you're doing, how many windows open, tabs open, etc. you could probably eventually make it swap, but even then it would be very fast because you're not doing much with multiple apps simultaneously.
  5. Xil3 thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 4, 2007
    Yeah, makes sense, and I did think about it, but wanted to get other peoples opinions before I splashed out for this device - it is a lot of money, after all.

    And yea, Netbeans and the Android emulator were my only 2 concerns, because I know they can both be memory hogs (especially Netbeans). As far as the processor, I honestly haven't really checked how much it uses, but going to assume not much.
  6. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Apr 29, 2005

    Not your exact question, but the important point is that overall, the MBAs feel much faster than a MBP. I have a 2009 mid year 13" MBP and the MBA smokes it. A more realistic question would be, how long does it take to do a compile or go through an edit to debug cycle. Thats more of a benchmark.

    Its interesting comparing to the MBP. The MBP is able to perform the build faster, but the SSD is so much faster than factoring in load times for various components, the MBA still ended up beating the MBP on the edit to debug cycle. And thats a 1.6ghz 11" w 4GB.

    For almost every task I ran on the MBA, it performed faster than the MBP. Again purely because disk access times are so much faster.

    The only time I've seen the MBA be notably slower is doing Handbrake compression where it took almost twice as long as my MBP. Not sure why so much slower. Thats more than the CPU speed difference.

    The other important place where I've seen the CPU speed have a detrimental effect is in real time processing, such as video playback. The MBAs have trouble playing highdef video which is being processed by the CPU. If the GPU does it, it does great. But if the CPU is involved, it will likely be choppy at best or may not play at all. Generally, if Quicktime plays it, it does better than VLC. Silverlight does better in Safari than Chrome for some reason.

    Overall a very fast powerful tiny machine.

    My concern and continued debate is if the 11" screen is too small, or too much of a compromise vs. my 13" MBP screen. For some reason the 11" seemed to give me some eye strain. The 13" MBA does not even though its pretty much the same font size. The 11" screen is notably less tall, because of the smaller screen and wider screen aspect ratio.

    I keep wondering if the 11" screen may be more difficult to work with when doing UI layouts with interface builder. In particular, laying out an iPad app screen is a challenge because an iPad window has significantly more vertical resolution than is available on the 11" within IB.

    I also wonder if running Photoshop or Illustrator or GIMP if it may become tedious to manage the smaller screen.

    Bottom line for me, I'm very impressed with the 11" in particular. It is clearly a compromise. The CPU isn't as capable as that of the MBP. So its a grey area debate. Is the much greater portability worth the sacrifice in screen size and CPU speed. You can always buy an SSD to add to the MBP.
  7. wpotere Guest

    Oct 7, 2010
    I guess my question is why? Why would you want to do this; what are you trying to achieve? Yes, you can run all the IDEs at once and you shouldn't have any problems but you can't actively work in all of them at once. However, I do know folks that just leave them open to make it easy to move back and forth.

    I have had XCode, Coda and NetBeans open all at once with no problems on my older white macbook.
  8. fswmacguy macrumors 6502


    Aug 12, 2009
    I can field that one.

    The 11-inch MBA has a higher pixel density than the 13-inch. So you are physically looking at smaller pixels.
  9. dmelgar macrumors 68000

    Apr 29, 2005
    But the difference between the 11 and 13 MBA is pretty small.
  10. cili0 macrumors member

    Jan 19, 2010
    has somebody instead tried to use matlab to code something? i'm really interested in its performances on the new MBA.


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