how would my current MBP compare to a 2011 13inch MBA

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by enochpeng, Aug 11, 2011.

  1. enochpeng macrumors regular

    Jan 22, 2008
    my system spec is posted below + i installed an ancient OCZ 64GB SSD and removed the broken optical drive for the HD came with the machine.?
    Im looking to getting a new lower end 13 inch MBA now, how would my experience vary compare the the one i have now....

    i normally use it for the following tasks

    browsing with 10-15 tabs at a time
    BT via Vuze
    Mail and Calendar running at all time
    and light photoshop and iMovie etc.

    occasionally VMware or Parallels for windows apps

    Attached Files:

  2. The-Pro, Aug 11, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2011

    The-Pro macrumors 65816

    Dec 2, 2010
    The MBA will offer you far more CPU power, however the GPU (intel HD 3000) is unbelievably slow compared to your 9600M GT. Also you currently have 8GB RAM, the MBA has a max of 4GB. So when you start doing photoshop work you are more likely to experience significant slowdowns when the RAM gets full.
    Video editing is CPU intensive, so the MBA will
    be a fair bit quicker then your current MBP.
    You need to consider that you will have far less internal storage with the MBA, and upgrades are very very expensive. Unless you buy a TB external, you can only use a USB. l myself would get really annoyed constantly having to read and write to a slow USB 2.0 drive, especially when you are dealing with videos and fotos (usually large files).

    Obviously the MBA is fsr more portable so depending on how much you are on the go and if you can deal with your MBP in terms of size or not probably decides if you should get an Air or not.
    If you dont need an ultra portable laptop, my opinion would be that you keep your MBP because:
    - screen size is bigger
    - lots more internal storage, cheaper to upgrade, and like you allready have, the possibility for SSD and HDD.
    - more ports, including firewire, Firewire 800 drives are usually quick enough, and cheap compared to current TB externals.
    - better thermals, less fan noise under heavy use
    - you can exchange parts easily: RAM fails, buy new ram for
    max 85 bucks, RAM fails in MBA = new logic board needed, long repair time and once warranty expires very expensive ( around 700)
    - more RAM. I think you would be happier with more RAM when photo editing, VMware, parrales which needs alot, then with a faster CPU.
  3. treestar macrumors 6502

    Feb 28, 2010
    Your MBP looks like a wonderful system. 8GB of 1333 is better than the MBA. I would wait a year or two before upgrading. You could update your SSD to something faster. Prices on SSDs are doing OK now.

    I understand the MBAs are very sleek, and quiet, and light. If you want to take a hit on RAM and graphic performance, it might be worth it to you. The MBA will operate a bit faster and the screen is nicer.

    I still say stick with the MBP.
  4. The-Pro macrumors 65816

    Dec 2, 2010
    The RAM he has installed might be 1333 but the MBP cant use it at 1333Mhz, it downclocks it to 1066Mhz. So the MBA's RAM is slightly quicker, however most people would choose more RAM over slightly faster RAM :D
  5. Young Spade macrumors 68020

    Mar 31, 2011
    Tallahassee, Florida
    Just keep it. For your usage, you'd see a very, very slight, if any, increase across the board that would warrant the time and money spent on getting the machine.

    Keep the machine for another 2 years and then, maybe, think about upgrading. Don't get caught up in the upgrade cycle; get what you need and use it until you don't need it or need something better.

    Half of the people on this site are upgrading their 09 10 machines for no reason, just because the newest one is "so freaking awesome". Then, a year later, they'll be right back at it again, all the while only using their computer for rudimentary tasks.

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