Intention to buy a MacBook Air 13 - 2015

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by Aeorath, Apr 14, 2015.

  1. Aeorath macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2015
    #1
    Hello everyone!

    As this is my first post here, I do apologize if posted in the wrong section.

    As title states, I really intend to buy a 2015 MBA 13, as I need to battery to last, and also need my laptop to be ultraportable. As I have been a Windows user all my life, this is not an easy decision for me, it seems like a jump into the abyss, especially since there's the new Dell ultrabook to consider.

    All things aside, I am asking you, MBA users, do you think I should take the plunge, is it worth it to switch from Windows yet?

    How's the overall experience compared to Windows-based systems?

    Thank you for your patience, I guess this kind of question has already been asked countless times, but I think it's different to each of us, so bear with me on this one.

    Have a nice day everyone!
     
  2. MaskedCarrot macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2009
    Location:
    Northern VA
    #2
    Depends on which model you are looking to get.

    I just recently got a 2015 13" rMBP and love it.

    I was originally going to get the Air, but when I added on what I wanted, like faster processor, more RAM...etc...it was only $50 cheaper than the rMBP which had all the stuff I added on the Air as default. So it seemed like a no brainer to just pay the extra $50 to get the rMBP.

    As far as switching from Windows to OSX, that also depends on what you plan to do with it. I switched to OSX years ago when I got my first iMac, but I still dual boot it with Windows since sometimes you still need to use Windows for some things. But once you switch to OSX, most people stay with it and don't return to Windows.

    Personally I don't understand why people keep looking at the MB or Air and mention portability. Do people on here not actually have any muscles and can't lift things?

    If people can't lift the rMBP then they have other problems to worry about. Put two stuffed animals on the end of the stick like SpongeBob and do some weight lifting. :)
     
  3. Aeorath thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2015
    #3
    Thanks for the reply!

    Well, my actual Windows laptop weighs a bit over 2.5 kilos and lugging that through airports is no fun AT ALL, let me tell you, mate.

    So I do need ultraportable, plus some stamina on the battery. I intend to buy the 2015 MBA, 8Gb RAM, 256 PCIe, the i5 version.
     
  4. motrek macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2012
    #4
    OS X is a complicated piece of software, and fairly different from Windows, so there will be a learning curve. It will be frustrating at times.

    But, remember that tens of millions of "regular" people use Macs and love them, and most of them switched from Windows.

    So, just think of it as something fun to learn that won't be immediately familiar or comfortable, and you'll be fine. Google is your friend if you get stuck (as usual).

    I don't think I know anybody who wanted to go back to Windows after using a Mac for a while, if that gives you some idea of which one is better. :)
     
  5. ZirkMan macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Location:
    Eternal now.
    #5
    You have a choice to use both

    Don’t worry. MBA is a great piece of hardware and you will surely appreciate its portability, long battery life and decent power.
    As for the OS, it gives you an option to use both OSX and Windows.

    Personally, when on a journey where I use the laptop itself, I use OSX because of the great trackpad which is quite lame on Windows by comparison.

    But when at work, where I use an external keyboard, mouse and a second monitor I switch to Windows via the Bootcamp.
    I prefer the Windows in this setup because of better windows management and readability (I really miss DPI settings in the OSX).

    I say, go for it. You will get 2 in 1 in one great package. No windows laptop will give you this choice.
     
  6. Aeorath thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2015
    #6
    I am not afraid of the learning curve, but the overall experience I'll be getting seems to be great, right?

    Which according to all of you, should be nothing less than better when compared to Windows.

    Thank you all for the great input, guys!
     
  7. Aeorath thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2015
    #7
    Well, in the end, I chose to buy the new Macbook Pro 13" with the Retina display.

    So far so good, a bit unused to the space between the keys on the keyboard, but I'll slowly make it somehow. It is such a little, nice piece of hardware, I must say. So far I am happy with my purchase.
     
  8. sracer macrumors 603

    sracer

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2010
    Location:
    Land of Bongos and Beatniks
    #8
    Congratulations! I would encourage you to try to make the switch completely over to OSX. When I first switched over, I had bootcamp and Parallels (to run Windows apps while running OSX) as a way of weaning myself off of Windows apps. Good in theory but it turned out to be an annoyance rather than a help.

    It requires re-thinking about how one does some tasks, and often requires different software, but in the end, being more fully immersed in OSX has made the switch even more enjoyable and satisfying.

    There is only 1 piece of Windows software that I still use (and heavily rely on) and I've been able to get it running very well in OSX using Wineskin Winery which essentially creates a interpretive wrapper around the Windows application.
     
  9. Aeorath thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2015
    #9
    This is my intention, switching over completely to OS X, am not really in need for any Windows-specific programs.

    Ended up in getting NTFS for Mac OS X, just to be able to fully use my external HDD though.
     
  10. leenak macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2011
    #10
    I'm looking for something with the best battery, I totally upgraded the MBAir and comparing it to the rMBP 13" that I'd want, the price difference is $200 (both having i7 processors). Now I don't mind the price difference (I have an rMBP 15") but it is more than $50 :)
     
  11. ET iPhone Home macrumors 68040

    ET iPhone Home

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    Location:
    Orange County, California USA
    #11
    I've always been a Windows user up to 2011 when I decided to take the leap and bought a 2011 MBA. It was a little tough at first figuring out the swipes and OS itself, but it only took me a couple weeks to get use to it and a few visits to Apple to inquire on things I didn't know what to do. You do have youtube as an aid. However, there are programs I miss using on Windows. Though I intend to upgrade my 2011 MBA to a 2015 or even 2016, I do plan on purchasing a Dell XPS 13.3 at the end of the year just to have Windows and use it as a backup laptop.
     
  12. Newtons Apple macrumors P6

    Newtons Apple

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2014
    Location:
    Jacksonville, Florida
    #12
    I suggest a non-retina MBAir to use WIndows via bootcamp. The retina models make WIndows apps hard to read.
     
  13. blesscheese macrumors 6502a

    blesscheese

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Central CA
    #13
    Anytime you try something new, there will be a learning curve. When you move to OS X, don't get frustrated, just search online for help (stack exchange has some good forums) and you will be fine.

    The MBA Air is super light, and I think you will (after getting used to it) find the trackpad to be much more efficient than any Windoze competitor.

    Re: software, if you need to run anything Windows, you can go Bootcamp, but you may be better off running a Parallels or VMWare virtual machine, to save on disk space.

    I think the i5 is the better choice, the i7 isn't that much faster, but can use up battery life faster.

    I just moved my wife from Windoze to an 11" MBA, and she brings the Air with her everywhere, uses it more often, and finds it more productive than her old PC laptop. The longer battery life is fantastic. Because she uses Word and Excel a lot, I put Parallels on here computer, installed Office in a virtual machine, and she uses the PC version of Office (so there is one less new thing to learn).
     
  14. z31fanatic macrumors 6502a

    z31fanatic

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2015
    Location:
    Mukilteo, WA USA
    #14
    Windoze? What are you, a 10 year old?


    OP, good choice. The 13 rMBP is a great machine and if you ever need to use a program that is only available on Windows, Apple has made it easy for us that want to also run Windows on Macs with Bootcamp.
     
  15. brdeveloper macrumors 68020

    brdeveloper

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2010
    Location:
    Brasil
    #15
    OSX is a different experience. Don't know if it's better than Windows. Sometimes I find it's a bit annoying (like when maximizing windows). On Windows, I never found comfortable hiding the taskbar. On a Mac, you have Exposé, a way of showing active apps by swiping three fingers on the trackpad towards the keyboard. My dock (taskbar equivalent) is always hidden.

    I think that Windows look like Android. A lot of apps, but a lot of low-quality ones. Windows 8.1 per se is a great OS. As long as you have a good hardware (like a Dell Precision, a XPS, a Lenovo Thinkpad) you'll have an experience as good as a Mac.

    My wife just got a base 13" Air. It's a great laptop, but I think its TN screen looks a bit dated and even worse than other TNs I already seen in Macs (like the one in the 2012 classic Macbook Pro). Not a big issue, but at least in Brazil, I could have got a Dell XPS with better specs (including a QHD screen).
     
  16. vanimal macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2014
    #16
    Every TN panel i have gotten in all the MBA i have owned from 2011 needed to be calibrated. For whatever reason most of them do not come calibrated correctly from the factory, if they even bother too. Granted its no IPS but i downloaded a custom color profile and its been night and day for my most recent 2015 MBA 13".
     
  17. motrek macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2012
    #17
    I'm surprised the stock calibration is so bad. I've never bothered to calibrate my MBA screens. They always seemed fairly close to me. The reds are a little off but I chalked that up to a deficiency of the panel technology.

    What do you use to calibrate the screen?
     
  18. brdeveloper macrumors 68020

    brdeveloper

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2010
    Location:
    Brasil
    #18
    I already tried that profile. I'm a color geek. I exchanged the retina screen from my rMBP 3 times and I'm not satisfied yet. I can see the yellowish bottom and the magentaish top pretty clear.

    The custom profile for Macbook Airs looks color-accurated (as the default Color LCD profile). However, it increases saturation and contrast in a way that kills subtle shadows. It looks more vibrant, of course, but the characteristic "negative" color effect from TN screens is not solved in any respect. I think the custom profile also make videos look "noir" even with brightness at 100%.

    It really makes the UI look crisper by increasing contrast, though, but that is all the custom profile can improve.

    ----------

    I think the default calibration was pretty "fair" in my wife's Air. It's low constrast, which is good for preserving subtle changes in color and brightness. However, the GUI doesn't look good this way, but it's the best profile for watching videos and editing images.
     
  19. tmanker macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 3, 2015
    Location:
    Midwest
    #19
    I recently purchased an early 2015 MBA and ordered it with 256ssd and 8GB ram. I've always been a windows guy, but took the plunge and couldn't be happier. All of my friends have the typical generalizations about MAC owners, but I do not fit that generalization and I'm still happy. I'm an engineer by trade and needed something light, small and speedy. It boots up extremely fast, wakes up fast and gets things done efficiently for me. I've only had this for about 2 weeks, but am getting more used to the commands and the interface. I mainly use it at home and for business while traveling. I'm extremely happy and enjoy learning something new.
     
  20. motrek macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2012
    #20
    It is interesting how Macs (and Apple products in general?) still have a reputation with a certain crowd of people who think of themselves as tech-savvy.

    The most technically sophisticated people I know all use Macs--people who have PhDs in computer science (and other sciences) and work for companies like Google and Amazon doing cutting-edge work.

    Next time you see a picture of Google employees at a conference or something, notice that they're almost all using Macs. You can shove that in the face of anybody who says Macs are for people who don't know better.
     
  21. brdeveloper macrumors 68020

    brdeveloper

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2010
    Location:
    Brasil
    #21
    I think that there are probably only three high-end laptop manufacturers: Apple, Lenovo and Dell. Anyone who says Macbooks are for hipsters should be using a Precision or a Thinkpad W-Series. Otherwise, they're people who buy computers based on CPU specs, but not on the entire product.
     
  22. bubbleboil macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2014
    #22
    In school of Computing in my university, most ppl using Mac rather than windows.

    Even my computer lab uses iMac even though prof uses windows to teach.
     
  23. MacBoook160 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    #23
    Now you'll really see that I'm older than dirt, but when I was in University, the "decision sciences" class I took used Mac 128Ks (or maybe Mac Pluses?)

    I still have some floppy drives. I should think about using them to make mobiles or tile something. Computer art. Then again, I also still have the Macbook 160 from so long ago, too. Too bad the battery died.
     
  24. motrek macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2012
    #24
    A lot of the reason why academic and technical people use Macs is because they learned unix(-like) environments in school and OS X is therefore something they're already familiar and comfortable with.

    Why not linux? Because OS X has the advantages of a mainstream OS, e.g., Adobe makes a version of Photoshop for it, streaming video services have their DRM working on it, etc.

    So basically you get an operating system that lets you do everything that mainstream consumers expect to be able to do with a computer, PLUS you get the software stack that's used in science and academia. Win-win.

    And also, if you're a computer science ninja and you have a PhD and you're pulling down a 6-7 figure salary at Google, you're going to buy whatever laptop you think is best for you and not care about irrelevant nonsense like "you can get a Dell with similar specs for $200 cheaper at Best Buy."
     
  25. brdeveloper macrumors 68020

    brdeveloper

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2010
    Location:
    Brasil
    #25
    Yes, but top Lenovos and Dells cost as much as a retina Macbook. Lenovo W-Series has some advantages which can be interesting for scientists, like GPUs with ECC RAM (can run long CUDA tasks) or 32GB RAM support (can handle a larger amount of data without swapping). They are cumbersome laptops, though.

    In short, you can have a laptop which runs games better than a Macbook. However, its case is a cheap plastic enclosure, it overheats and produces a lot of noise, and weights like a desktop. Also, the battery will last about a couple of hours. It's a nice all-in-one desktop, though.
     

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