Is the better choice the MBA or MBP(2012)?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by MrJSmith, Oct 29, 2012.

  1. MrJSmith macrumors newbie

    Jun 15, 2011
    It's one of those threads, fellas. I'm sorry you're getting another one. I feel like if I'm going to pay a grand or more for an item I'd want the best information.

    I'm updating my wonderful black MacBook (2008) due to some wifi issues that can't be fixed. I've been on the fence about which and when to get it. Now that I'm finishing my last year of college and dealt with this wireless issue for a year now, I think it's time.

    MacBooks are a great item. Like all notebooks, they have there pros and cons. Yet, I don't want to venture to any other brand. I just want to decide which model to get for longevity and ease.

    I'm debating between (both 2012) 13' MBA with 256 SSD or a (2012) 13' cMBP with 8gb of RAM. My problem between picking is relatively easy. I've just been out of the buying game so long that I haven't kept update with model enhancements.
    Between the two, the MBA seems amazing from all reviews. The storage is a big factor to me, though. I don't want to be stranded 2 years from now wishing I had more storage. A external HDD would be fine but I don't want to be based off of it. The MBP on the another hand, I believe can have an SSD updated into it which makes its life so much longer. I'm not a huge traveler (at least yet) so the MBA's pull to me is it sleekness.
    If I'm wrong about these details please correct me. It would be very helpful to know what I need to look into more. Overall, which is a better selection? If I need to give more info to help narrow that down, just ask away. I know this forum is very good about the help people receive, so I look forward to reading those posts.
  2. markus843 macrumors regular

    Sep 4, 2012
    North america
    My opinion is to get the Macbook pro. It is more durable, it will last longer, and you can upgrade it. (it says up to 8gb of ram, but alot of people including me have 16gb), and you can upgrade the hard drive to an ssd like you stated. It's really personal preference, if you like having a light laptop, but if you want something that would last a bit longer, I would say to go for the Pro :apple::):D;):cool::p
  3. Mr MM macrumors 65816

    Mr MM

    Jun 29, 2011
    you can also buy another ssd for the mba, they are more expensive than the usual 2.5'' drives

    the i7 on the mba gives the same performance of the i5 in the cmbp, i would go for the mba.
  4. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    What's more important to you? Answer that and you'll have your answer. There's no universal better with any two options.
  5. Naimfan Suspended


    Jan 15, 2003
    From what you wrote, specifically longevity, I'd suggest the MBP.

    The MBP offers the ability to upgrade both RAM and storage, which will likely make it longer-lasting than an Air. The MBP is also faster, comes with far greater (albeit slower) storage, and less expensive. The Air has a slightly higher resolution screen, albeit with noticeably inferior color and viewing angle. The Pro also offers noticeably better battery life.

    At the end of the day, you have to go and look at both of them - no one here can make your mind up for you.

    Good luck, and enjoy whatever you get!
  6. xAgustinx macrumors regular


    May 22, 2012
    I also think that cMBP is better option for you.
  7. MrJSmith thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 15, 2011
    They both offer a lot and its the differences between what they offer that have me on the fence.
    I figured for a longer time with it, the MBP would be the better option. If I had a desktop anymore, I'd feel more prone to the MBA. Yet, it's sleekness is still pretty captivating to me. I personally think that because I can do an SSD at a later time, the MBP will be my best bet. I just wanted some opinions on it.
  8. intz2nu macrumors 6502


    Oct 28, 2012
    I too love the overall looks of the MBA but honestly I wish the power of the RMBP's was available in it. I'm a person that mainly reads alot online and web-browse, a little movies here and there, and lots of watching youtube clips. However as they say no one needs a race-car but most people want one anyway I just feel the need for more power when looking at the kind of power the RMBP's have over the current MBA. But the whole unique slim factor of the Air is always making me give in. But now my feelings maybe changing due to the RMBP's thinner unibody. Keep in mind that RMBP is just a real tiny tiny bit thinner that the thickest edge on the MBA so the only area I should say that now makes the Air standout is the thinnest edge.
  9. MrJSmith thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 15, 2011
    If I do the MBP, should I go for the max 8gb or pay for the extra to max it out later from 3rd party?
    If I max it out I'll have to go through Apple. Otherwise, I can go to an authorized reseller near my hometown that'll have the models with the standard components.
  10. Mrbobb macrumors 601

    Aug 27, 2012
    The MBA's SSD is upgradable, not officially, but it's not soldered.
  11. scottrichardson macrumors 6502

    Jul 10, 2007
    Ulladulla, NSW Australia
    I just ordered the specced up 13" Air instead of the rMBP 13". I got the 2GHz Core i7 upgrade, 8GB RAM, and 256GB SSD.

    I just couldn't bring myself to press the button on the retina model after all the anecdotal reports of sluggish UI etc. I always expected the HD4000 to struggle with that many pixels. 1440 x 900 is a LOT less picture to push - and given my 2010 model was pretty damn smooth for day to day use, this 2012 model should be a beauty.
  12. iScreamSanWitch macrumors member

    Jul 24, 2012
    Yes, for upgradeability the cMBP is the way to go, but after seeing and playing with the rMBP and knowing the size of the air, my gfs 2011 cMBP feels like a brick now and that's right now in 2012. Imagine how old it will look like in three years. :(

    Part of the reason why I went and ordered the rMBP 13 inch. I wouldn't have minded the air either tbh, but I didn't mind spending the extra $s on the retina.
  13. AlexMaximus macrumors 6502a


    Aug 15, 2006
    A400M Base
    MBP all the way..

    In my opinion I would go for the MBP. I think it has a better heat management and it is more upgradable. On the long run it will last longer and it is way easier on parts swapping. Shold you have it even longer, it is also easier to swap the battery because it is not glued in.
    I would choose longterm useability, maintenance and upbgradability over a short time blizz factor.
  14. MrJSmith thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 15, 2011
    That's mainly how I feel about it. Weight isn't as big of an issue for me because I don't travel as often. My current MBP was acting as a desktop replacement for me. I didn't flood it with software, so it always stayed fast, but I gave my desktop to my folks since I didn't use it anymore. I want that same feeling out of this next buy. rMBP is nice but being 1st gen., I'm not taking a risk on it yet. I've read a lot of articles suggesting the MBA over the rMBP.
  15. cocacolakid, Oct 31, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2012

    cocacolakid macrumors 65816


    Dec 18, 2010
    Do the 4GB stock configuration and upgrade the RAM to 16GB yourself. It will cost under $90.

    I was debating the same thing for the last two weeks, the 13" MBA or 13" MBP. I finally chose the MBP because I can upgrade it to the max and not worry about it being low on space or speed in the next 2-3 years. You can also add a second hard drive in the optical bay. Amazon sells optical bay caddies for about $10-14. Put the new SSD in the regular HD slot and move the stock HD (or buy an even larger HD) and mount that in the optical bay. Now you can have a MBP with any size SSD and up to 2 TB of additional HD storage, and maxed out with 16GB of RAM. And the crazy thing is the cost is still inexpensive, in the ballpark or slightly less than the base price of the 13" rMBP.

    MPB $1100 (many sites sell it for $100 off with no tax and free shipping, I ordered from Amazon)
    max out RAM $90
    SSD 128GB $70-100, 256GB $150-200 512GB $300-400
    1 TB HD $100 or less (2 TB $230)
    as cheap as $1360

    (and you can find the RAM and 1TB HD for less if you shop around)
  16. Dick Whitman macrumors 6502

    Dick Whitman

    Oct 16, 2012
    I'm absolutely in love with the slim and sleek form factor of the MBA and can't wait to get mine soon. Just curious though, why did you bump up to 2 Ghz? I'm coming from a 2008 MBA so I feel like anything will feel far superior at this point.

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