Early 2015 11" MacBook Air i5 vs 2017 MacBook 12" "i7"

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by tsegreto, Oct 18, 2017.

  1. tsegreto macrumors newbie

    tsegreto

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    Oct 18, 2017
    #1
    I currently have an Early 2015 11" MacBook Air i5 4GB RAM (my first Mac), I would really like to get the 2017 12" MacBook "i7" 16GB RAM. I have been reading and I know the "i7" in the MacBook isn't really an i7 but rather a rebranded Core M. I browse the web with like 50 tabs open (Safari), Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, and maybe the occasional game of Starcraft. No video editing and no gaming with any game newer than 2005.

    What kind of performance difference should I be expecting from these two machines? What about graphics? What about battery life? I am concerned about thermal throttling. I ask because Geekbench scores apparently take full advantage of turbo boost on the processor, thus appear to be pretty inaccurate.

    Thanks
     
  2. EugW, Oct 18, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2017

    EugW macrumors 603

    EugW

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    Jun 18, 2017
    #2
    1. I personally wouldn't bother with an i7 in a MacBook. It does perform better, but probably not that much better, due to thermal constraints. Here is my m3 vs somebody else's i7, running Cinebench over time:

    https://forums.macrumors.com/thread...ing-sustained-cpu-load.2073415/#post-25140845

    2. It will likely be a significant performance increase, but more because you're running a bunch of memory hungry apps. 16 GB is a huge upgrade over 4 GB.

    Have you considered getting a 13" non-TouchBar MacBook Pro? That will give you sustained performance (because it has a fan), and it will give you more room on-screen for editing. It will also give you more ports, and a high colour gamut screen. That said, the MacBook's screen is already a vast, vast improvement over the screen in the 11" MacBook Air. In addition, the MacBook Pro includes Thunderbolt support. The MacBook does not. Thunderbolt is faster, and may be useful if you want to drive an external 4Kp60 monitor. It can be done on the MacBook, but the MacBook is not ideal for this. Having Thunderbolt adds flexibility here.
     
  3. robvas macrumors 68030

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    USA
    #3
    If you need something faster than the base model MacBook, just go to the 13" Pro IMO
     
  4. tsegreto thread starter macrumors newbie

    tsegreto

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    Oct 18, 2017
    #4
    The current performance constraints of my 2011 MBA is the [vertical] screen resolution and the 4GB of RAM. Besides those two things the only issues I have is laggy video AirPlay with VLC (really hoping that is resolved).

    If the processor meets or exceeds performance of my current i5 I think I will be pretty happy.
    --- Post Merged, Oct 18, 2017 ---
    That size and weight simply don’t lend itself to the application I need, I would rather get an i7 13” MBA with max RAM.
     
  5. ZapNZs macrumors 68020

    ZapNZs

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    Jan 23, 2017
    #5
    The MacBook Pro has a slightly smaller form factor than the MBA, and is the same weight. IMHO, the MBP might be a better match for your needs - partly because the options you are considering on the rMB will price it higher than the MBP, and the MBP has a much, much, much faster CPU/GPU.
     
  6. robvas macrumors 68030

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    USA
    #6
    I loved my 11” air and the thing I liked about it the least was the screen - but the MacBook fixes that, better quality and much higher resolution (I’ll run it at 1440x900)
     
  7. happyslayer macrumors 6502a

    happyslayer

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    Glendale, AZ
    #7
    I had a 2015 12" m5 MacBook and it totally kicked my old 11" MacBook Air's butt. It ran all my programs better, the retina screen was so so SO much better than the Air's. I just ordered a 2017 MacBook and went with the 16GB and i7 (m7) but the biggest thing I wanted was the RAM. Anyway, if you can run what you run now on the Air, the new MacBook should do well for you. Also, you've got 14 days to try it and return it if you're not happy if you get it from Apple.
     
  8. tsegreto thread starter macrumors newbie

    tsegreto

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    Oct 18, 2017
    #8
    Really a 2015 MB m5 was faster than a 2015 MBA i5? That's pretty surprising! Hows 1080p AirPlay mirroring with VLC?
     
  9. robvas macrumors 68030

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    Mar 29, 2009
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    USA
    #9
    Shouldn't be...

    [​IMG]
     
  10. tsegreto thread starter macrumors newbie

    tsegreto

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    Oct 18, 2017
    #10
    Do you have a chart like that with 2017 MB i7 by any chance? I would love to see.
     

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9 October 18, 2017