First Time Apple Laptop Buyer....HALP ME!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Dukesy2020, Sep 18, 2017.

  1. Dukesy2020 macrumors newbie


    Sep 18, 2017
    Howdy all! Just having thoughts about what Macbook I should buy but not every sure where to begin, I'm happy with 128GB SSD Storage as I keep everything up in the cloud anyways from my photo backups to my damn iPhone backups.

    I was eyeing off the MacBook Air but I'm still lost at what to buy, all I need it for is Emails, Web Browsing, movie watching, music and editing photos in PSE, nothing too serious.

    Thank you for taking the time to read this and hopefully I can get some help soon!
  2. shaunp macrumors 68000

    Nov 5, 2010
    If you have the extra money always go for the Pro over the Air. It's not much extra, but it's a better machine. The Air is getting on a bit now. However I would also consider an XPS 13...
  3. hinesmj macrumors 6502

    Nov 19, 2015
    New York
    Judging by OP's usage scenario, I'd argue the Pro is overkill. You'll be fine with the most updated Air or Macbook. However, I would suggest more storage, if you can afford it.
  4. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Oct 24, 2013
    Get the air if screen quality is not so important to you, get the non touch bar MBP if the screen and performance is important for you, get the MacBook if the most important thing is portability. They will all do your use case without breaking sweat so just buy whatever you fancy and your budget allows.
  5. kschendel macrumors 65816

    Dec 9, 2014
    If you can get to a retail store and handle the various candidates and see the screens for yourself, do that. In this case the ergonomics (screen size, resolution, weight) will dictate your choice, any of the machines can do the job from a compute power standpoint.
  6. 0947347 Suspended

    Aug 29, 2015
    Everybody will suggest to their needs, I guess.
    MacBook and MacBook Air machines are good enough and will handle even pro apps
    (I have used Logic Pro on Air for years, and it was very reliable)


    + extreme portability
    + beautiful screen
    - not so cheap
    - if you later decide, you want to do more advanced, may not the the best choice

    + portability
    + cheap-ish
    - outdated screen

    MacBook Pro
    + best of all
    - expensive
    may be overkill for you now, but if you discover you want to do more, later on, this is the full monty

    With all honesty, for a first buy I would recommend used one from reliable seller

    Best of luck
  7. Dukesy2020 thread starter macrumors newbie


    Sep 18, 2017
    Hey all, I thank you all for your advice so much!

    I have decided that I would go for the 128GB MacBook Air, brought a 2TB External Drive and some strong velcro. Currently replying to you all from it now and it works great! Stuck the external hard drive onto the lower right side and haven't experienced any issues with the screen moving as of yet!
  8. redheeler macrumors 604


    Oct 17, 2014
    I agree, the display on the Air is abysmal in 2017. Even $300 Windows laptops and Chromebooks are getting better-quality displays now.
  9. 0947347 Suspended

    Aug 29, 2015
    If it is your first mac experience, I would recommend to do some more detailed settings in the SETTINGS app (like continues zoom in accessibility setting, dictation, reading and highlighting text, active corners, ... ) and learn the trackpad gestures first

    Your workflow will speed up amazingly and it is a joy to use
  10. Dukesy2020 thread starter macrumors newbie


    Sep 18, 2017
    Thank you for the advice, I appreciate it! I used to have a 2009 model iMac that my brother gave me but it got zapped in a power surge when I went away for a weekend in 2016 so I've been using Mums old laptop. Just glad that I got my MacBook Air, it's amazingly fast and zippy for what I need
  11. shaunp macrumors 68000

    Nov 5, 2010
    True, but the screen on the Air is awful. I'd go for the MacBook over the Air as that has a wonderful screen. I'd then look at how many USB ports are needed. The MacBook only has one. I'd still go for the Pro as it's the best all-rounder and you don't have to pimp the spec up too high
  12. kschendel macrumors 65816

    Dec 9, 2014
    I think "awful" is overstating it. You want awful, try an old Toshiba Portege, or maybe my bronze keyboard Powerbook G3 (which still works, in a dark room). The Air screen is just OK compared to a retina display. It's not bad at all compared to other midline displays of the same vintage.
  13. shaunp macrumors 68000

    Nov 5, 2010
    But it is a similar price to the MacBook and not much cheaper than the Pro both of which have significantly better displays. I was comparing it against similar Apple products. The Air is just very dated now and not really worth buying compared to it's peers.
  14. kschendel macrumors 65816

    Dec 9, 2014
    The price differential for the base Air vs MB models is $300. That's not necessarily a trivial amount. I think you are still overstating it. For someone who just needs a computer and would rather spend that $300 on something else (say, a really good bottle of single malt), the Air is certainly worth buying.
  15. shaunp macrumors 68000

    Nov 5, 2010
    Everyone has a different concept of value. I'd think nothing of spending £3K, £4K on a computer, but £300 on a bottle of single malt.... Nah. I could have 15 bottles of Rum for that. ;)
  16. theluggage macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2011
    Actually, its tricky. The base MBA has 128GB storage, the base rMB has 256GB. If you need 256GB in the Air, that brings the price up to within $100 of the rMB. Frankly this, not the display, is the real issue with the MBA. However, the thread starter did say that they were perfectly happy with 128GB so the extra storage is of no value to them.

    It would be an easier comparison if the rMB was better in all respects, but the reality is that its only advantages are size and screen definition - at best, it is not significantly faster than the Air, many people prefer the Air's keyboard and the rMB it has far worse connectivity: That USB-C port is just a single 5Gbps USB3 port, a DisplayPort and a charging port inconveniently combined so that you need a multiport adapter for almost everything. The Air has two 5Gbps USB3 ports, a SD card slot, a 20Gbps TB2 port and a separate charging port so you don't need a dock just to charge and connect a single peripheral.

    Now, maybe you really don't care about connectivity - in which case, the MB may be fine for you - but for those of us who do need to connect stuff, the rMB is just hopeless. The non-touchbar MBP isn't wonderful in terms of practical connectivity either, but at least it has two ports and supports Thunderbolt and 10Gbps USB - so its more "swings and roundabouts" c.f. the Air's connectivity.

    Absolutely. The retina displays are nicer - but the Air's display is perfectly adequate for what it is. Any standard def display will look sub-par once you're used to using retina.
  17. kschendel macrumors 65816

    Dec 9, 2014
    I did try it once, a Springbank 21, split a £275 bottle with a friend. Worth every penny but I don't think I'd rush to do it again. Rum..urg...I don't think I'll be interfering with your rum supply!
  18. Euroamerican macrumors regular


    May 27, 2010
    Congrats, OP, on your MBA purchase. I think you made the right move, especially if you hook up an external display while at the desk. I have a 2010 MBP 13 and I don't really use the backlit keyboard and internal CD/DVD drive that much. I do find the weight of the MBP to be much more than I'd like, when I do take it on the road. That, however, seldom happens as I also have an iPad. If I did not have an iPad, I would be much more likely to tote the MBP 13 and be even more likely to be hankering for a refurb late-model MBA.

    I DO like having all the ports on my MBP though. I pretty much use them all, even the Firewire. I also am glad that I stuck with my original decision to get a 13 instead of a 15 (or a 17, back then). No laptop monitor is ever "big enough" once you decide you want dual 24s or larger at your desk!

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17 September 18, 2017