For people who are going for graphics performance...

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Panini, Aug 15, 2012.

  1. Panini macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2012
    Location:
    Palo Alto, CA
    #1
    I know the Air is not geared towards graphics, but if it is of the slightest importance, I can say that the 2.0GHz processor vs 1.8GHz processor makes a lot less of a difference than 4gb vs 8gb RAM in most games. (Starcraft being the only exception so far).

    It's not because games use 8gb RAM, but it's because with 8gb RAM, your available vram goes from 384mb to 512mb. And that makes a big difference. (I can personally verify this since my friend has an equivalent model with 4GB RAM (both brand new) and we've compared the two side by side).

    Just throwing this out there since I was really close to going for the 4GB model because I don't usually multitask a lot of apps.
     
  2. korbearus10 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2012
    Location:
    California
    #2
    Wow. I didn't know about the vRAM. Good to know.
     
  3. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    #3
    I thought 4gb of RAM would be enough (it would have) but I happened to read this little fact somewhere so I got 8gb. Thanks for bringing it up so more people can make an easy RAM decision! 384mb would not have been enough for me (512 just barely cuts it for the gaming and video work I do).
     
  4. shamash macrumors 6502a

    shamash

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Location:
    Taichung, Taiwan
    #4
    Ughhh why did you post this? I was nearly set at getting the $999 best buy base 13", but this makes me want the rambump which is going to be a lot more -_-
     
  5. adildacoolset macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2011
    Location:
    Lusaka, Zambia(If you know where it is)
    #5
    So get it if you can!

    ----------

    But in all seriousness this is a very good article
     
  6. shamash macrumors 6502a

    shamash

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Location:
    Taichung, Taiwan
    #6
    That's the problem, getting 8gb of ram would turn the air into an affordable machine into a hard-to-buy machine for me. But 8gb of ram keeps being made out to be a mandatory upgrade.
     
  7. Calot macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2012
    #7
    You can upgrade the base one to 8Gb. You do not need to get the one with 256gb ssd to be able to upgrade...

    And the upgrade to 8gb is like 100 dollars. So...
     
  8. shamash macrumors 6502a

    shamash

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Location:
    Taichung, Taiwan
    #8
    as a student:

    best buy base 13 = 999, 899 if open box + lucky.

    apple base 13 with 8gb ram = 1236.

    so an upgrade to 8gb is really 236-336 dollars, and you get a $100 mac store giftcard you can sell for $80-85 if lucky.
     
  9. Titanium81 macrumors 6502a

    Titanium81

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2011
    #9
    Yes, the $100 upgrade to 8 GB of Ram is probably the most useful and cheapest upgrade you can get on the 2012 MacBook Air. I wouldn't get one without it.
     

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  10. shamash macrumors 6502a

    shamash

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Location:
    Taichung, Taiwan
    #10
    Even for $300 instead of "$100"?
     
  11. LYFK macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    #11
    Just get the base model from Best Buy then. For you it's a principally a matter of $200. For other people it's a matter of their computer running properly for their applications.
     
  12. shamash macrumors 6502a

    shamash

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Location:
    Taichung, Taiwan
    #12
    I'm just a bit confused on how people are saying 4gb of ram won't be enough. My windows 7 acer had 6gb of ram which ran Skyrim just fine, and I'm currently on a Macbook 1,1 from 2006 that has no issues with 1gb ram.

    Everyone is saying that 4gb isn't enough though, which has me worried about getting it.
     
  13. Calot macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2012
    #13
    If you really, really do not plan on gaming much, then get the base one. I plan on keeping my ultimate 2012 for a least a couple of years so I know Ill use it.
     
  14. Ksh macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    #14
    Well, from my point of view 300$ for 116Mb of integrated video is worthless :(

    Get base model if you save that amount of budget because you won't notice improvements on gaming.

    Regards
     
  15. LYFK macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    #15

    Look if you're on a budget and need a portable gaming machine, why not just get a Maingear Pulse 11

    Starts at $999, and it's got a 2GB video card and 8GB of RAM only adds $30.

    I think for what you actually want to do, a Macbook Air might not be enough bang for your buck.
     
  16. filmbuff macrumors 6502a

    filmbuff

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    #16
    Who are you replying to? I've seen a ton of topics on here about MBA gaming capability and most people seem to have nothing but good comments about its gaming performance. (for an ultraportable)
     
  17. LYFK macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2007
    #17
    Replying to shamash, who doesn't want to pay $999 for a baseline MBA because he fears that 8GB isn't enough, but also doesn't want to pay $200-300 just to get the extra RAM BTO from Apple. It's all laid out in quotes above if you read them.
     
  18. Calot macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2012
    #18
    116 MBs and twice the RAM, is like a 40% increase in power, just saying.

    ----------

    Because it looks like it's from 1993, it's covered in plastic, and looks like crap.
     
  19. Titanium81 macrumors 6502a

    Titanium81

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2011
    #19
    Ha Ha Ha! That looks ridicules.
     
  20. shamash macrumors 6502a

    shamash

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Location:
    Taichung, Taiwan
    #20
    If I wanted a windows computer I would keep my 17" acer beast gaming machine, however, I can't really handle the windows anymore.

    Also, I wouldn't want an 11" screen or a HDD in lieu of an SSD for that price.

    I'm not a huge gamer. I play TF2, wow, diablo3, and a few other things occasionally. It's just the way everyone on this forum talks about it, not having 8gb of ram will make their computer unusable in 2 years.

    I'm starting to just not believe it, seeing as I'm on a 2006 Macbook 1,1 with 1gb ram at the moment.
     
  21. Titanium81 macrumors 6502a

    Titanium81

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2011
    #21
    For "YOU", 4 GB of RAM is probably fine. For people that use more resource hungry programs 4 GB is too limiting. 8 GB of RAM allows for some breathing room.
     
  22. usmaak macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2012
    #22
    The main reason I went with 8GB is for upgradability. Down the road, who knows how resource hungry updates to the OS will get. I have an original iPad that is virtually useless because I loaded iOS 5 on it. I'd hate to see that happen to my MBA. I'm going to keep this thing for a long time.

    I'm not a gamer, and it's safe to say that the most resource hungry game that I'll ever play on this thing will be Mine Sweeper. Oh wait. That's Windows... ;)
     
  23. DVD9 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2010
    #23
    When you log onto the Internet you're on your own. If you spend a lot of time online in discussion forums you'll run into people who have an agenda that may be criminal or the product of mental illness.

    Four GB of RAM is more than what 99.9% of laptop buyers will ever need. Programs are no longer RAM hungry with each new revision as they were ten years ago
     
  24. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #24
    That sounds quite laggy. My earlier macbook choked with more than that on Snow Leopard (and I wasn't even playing games).
     
  25. dreamsINdigital macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    #25
    I feel the same way as well. I'm on the 1,1 MacBook with 1 GB too (used to have 2 GB before one of the RAM slots died). While it takes some patience when running a lot of things at once, it's certainly still usable. It's hard to imagine 8 GB being a necessity. Maybe as new software is released, 4 GB will start to feel limited. Such was the case for the while I owned a 2008 1,1 MacBook Air. I felt like 2 GB was barely enough for Lion, but it may have just been that particular Mac.

    I don't play PC games that much and would probably stick to older, less demanding games. Does anyone have gaming benchmarks of the 2012 MacBook Air with 4 GB vs. 8 GB?
     

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