Is highest config 13" the same as the highest config 11" spec/performance-wise?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by DieterRams, Aug 16, 2011.

  1. DieterRams macrumors regular

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    #1
    Couldn't find a straight answer when searching the forum so apologies if it's been answered. You can get both at 1.8GHz i7, 256GB SSD, and 4GB RAM. So am I missing anything or are both the exact same in terms of performance? I realize there is a battery life, screen size, SD card difference but otherwise are both highest-configuration versions of each size the same?
     
  2. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

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  3. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #3
    The 11" should perform a bit better since it is slightly lower resolution, but the difference is probably not worth worrying about. At this point its a matter of size. Do you prefer a larger screen, larger trackpad/palm rest, and longer battery life, or do you prefer a smaller, even more portable package?
     
  4. DieterRams thread starter macrumors regular

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    #4
    :p I am so stuck

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    I wish I knew. I think I'd be happy with either so it's just hard to choose, yet I know there are pros/cons to both that I'd be missing out on if I went with one over the other. It'll be my primary and *only* machine so I should get the 13"... but the 11" is so tiny and small and light and awesome, it'll be fun moving it around the apartment and using it in bed and the cool novelty of it (which I hope won't wear off)... yet I don't travel and don't use an external monitor at all so I should get the 13"... but it's a regular laptop size except just thinner/lighter whereas the 11" is all-around smaller so that's so much more attractive... the palm rest and trackpad are both smaller on the 11".... but I could live with it? Perhaps I could...

    It might be a much easier decision if Apple neutered either one performance-wise, that's why I posted this thread to ask :p
     
  5. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #5
    Dunno man, if this is your only computer and you don't travel, I'd vote for the 13", but that's me. I travel a LOT for a living and find the 13" perfectly fine but I don't use it on the plane. I have the iPad for that... :cool:
     
  6. LeakedDave macrumors regular

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    #6
    I think Anandtech went over this and showed the 13" as being like 5% faster. In other words, not noticeable.
     
  7. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

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    #7
    Man, you're singin' my tune. You and I are in the exact same boat. The *only* difference is that I use an external monitor a good percentage of the time.
     
  8. DieterRams thread starter macrumors regular

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    What do we do!?
     
  9. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #9
    Buy both?
     
  10. Cynicalone macrumors 68040

    Cynicalone

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    #10
    :D

    A better combo is the iPad & 13" MacBook Air.
     
  11. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

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    #11
    I wish I knew... but I really don't. Not yet, anyway.
     
  12. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #12
    Indeed. I find it to be computing nirvana... :D
     
  13. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

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    #13
    I'm not sure I'd even need an iPad if I had the 11" MBA. I'd probably still want one with the 13". Maybe.
     
  14. DieterRams thread starter macrumors regular

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    #14
    If you're using an external monitor most of the time, what's stopping you from getting the 11"?
     
  15. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

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    #15
    Well, because I don't *only* use it while hooked up to the monitor. And, I'm guessing that I might use it away from the external monitor even more once I've got a smaller/lighter laptop. So I'm really torn about the size. Obviously. :)
     
  16. KPOM macrumors G5

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    #16
    He tested an 11" i7 but I don't think he had a 13" i7. Anyway, the 13" might perform marginally better because it has better heat dissipation, but again, it won't be noticeable. The 11" i7 and 13" i7 are essentially equals. It's purely a matter of preference between size, portability, and $50 savings; vs. extra battery life, higher resolution screen, and the SD card slot.

    The base 11" vs. 13" is a different story, however. The 1.7GHz i5 is quite a bit faster than the 1.6GHz i5 because the former turbo boosts 300MHz faster.
     
  17. DieterRams thread starter macrumors regular

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    #17
    I, as well :) however, if I were in your shoes, I think I would go with the 11" considering that I can hook up to a big screen and leave it on a table/desk when I need it and then carry around a super small 11" and enjoy its size when not hooked up. Best of both worlds. And both have, presumably, the same performance it seems so you would not be losing out that way. In my situation, I could go either way since I'll be mobile most of the time (ie. no external) so I wouldn't be leaving it on a table/desk and size would be a factor. Bigger screen while on my lap and no external to use vs. Smaller lighter size to enjoy more as I use it in more places whether it's on my lap or in bed or etc. But also have to consider doing work on such a device either way.
     
  18. Sounds Good macrumors 68000

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    #18
    Thanks, I'm strongly considering it! :) But I still wanna make sure I'm okay with the smaller 11" size when I am away from the external monitor.

    Your situation is tougher since you won't have the external monitor. On one hand, you're probably better off with the larger screen (since you don't have an external). But on the other hand, you're intrigued by the small size and light weight of the 11". Believe me, I get it.
     
  19. DieterRams thread starter macrumors regular

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    #19
    Yea man... totally intrigued. It sucks. I actually don't even have a computer at the moment at all except at the office. Been using my first-gen iPad at home and it's been just good enough but really need to get an OS X machine to enable doing my programming/design work.

    I am leaning towards biting on the 11" and just living with it. I already use my iPhone screen and iPad almost all the time, so what's the harm in a small screen laptop, I guess? But would I be selling myself short on the larger palm rest/trackpad/screen? Damn...
     
  20. Nioxic macrumors regular

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    #20
    i went with the ultimate 11 inch because its smaller.. I got a desktop at home so, this one will just be used as traveling companion and in school etc.

    Not that 2 more inches (or less than 2 actually since this one is 11.6") would be a big deal but if you like higher resolutions... go for it!

    i didn't feel like paying extra though. I don't even have any use of the sd card thing, but if you do, then that small upgrade might be worth it in itself
     
  21. DieterRams thread starter macrumors regular

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    #21
    Yea, I have no use for SD card either so that's not even in consideration. Since you have a desktop already, perhaps using the 11" is not as big a deal since you can always go to the desktop for bigger tasks and more screen space. However, what if you didn't have the desktop? Would your 11" be good on its own without an external monitor and using its shorter built-in keyboard palm rest and trackpad for hours doing work? I do development/design work with Photoshop, Xcode and iPhone/iPad simulators.. would 11" be good enough or would I be selling myself short in that case?
     

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