Just bought an 11" as a main computer. Am I crazy?

dontwalkhand

macrumors 603
Original poster
Jul 5, 2007
5,177
1,183
I was at the store looking at both the 13" and the 11" MBA, and then something about the size of the 11" won me over.

So I bought the whole shebang with a new 11" MBA, a clear case for it, a Magic Mouse, and a new printer

I plan on this being my main computer, because I do travel a lot, and I do not have a "home office" that I can set the thing down and work from. My home office can range from the bed, to the couch, to the dinner table.

I also own an iPhone 5s and an iPad mini with 4G (non retina). Once Yosemite becomes final, I can't wait to use the instant hotspot feature from the iOS devices.

Anyone else here also uses an 11" as their main computer? Any recommendations?
 

upinflames900

macrumors 6502a
May 20, 2009
603
0
I don't use an 11'' but I do use a 15'' a lot. I think you just get used to the screen size and learn how to be efficient naturally. The only sudo-suggestion is try Spectacle for arranging windows on a small-ish screen.
 

Medic311

macrumors 68000
Jul 30, 2011
1,658
56
I was at the store looking at both the 13" and the 11" MBA, and then something about the size of the 11" won me over.

So I bought the whole shebang with a new 11" MBA, a clear case for it, a Magic Mouse, and a new printer

I plan on this being my main computer, because I do travel a lot, and I do not have a "home office" that I can set the thing down and work from. My home office can range from the bed, to the couch, to the dinner table.

I also own an iPhone 5s and an iPad mini with 4G (non retina). Once Yosemite becomes final, I can't wait to use the instant hotspot feature from the iOS devices.

Anyone else here also uses an 11" as their main computer? Any recommendations?
friend of mine uses the MBA 11" as her main computer. i don't how she does it b/c i know i couldn't. the screen is too small and it's in wide aspect too which makes things seem smushed.

i have a 13" MBA and i think 13" is the sweet spot.

if you find the 11" screen is too small when you're at home and working on a long project or something, you can always just buy an external monitor for $120
 

Lachhh

macrumors regular
Aug 30, 2014
207
11
Mainland Europe
Having recently played around with the 11" air I'd have to say no all the way.

Not viable IMO, though it's a great little computer, the usage scenario I'd envision would be similar to the way I use my iPad nowadays. Holiday computing and something for on the road when a smartphone just isn't cutting it. Making it my main computer? God no. My 15" MBP is my main and even there I have an external monitor incase the need for more screen real estate arises.

That being said, if it works for you, more power to you. Hope your eyes are good enough to handle that, I know mine aren't. :rolleyes:
 

ashman70

macrumors 6502a
Dec 20, 2010
916
0
I have read that more people have returned the 11" because they can't get used to the screen size then any other reason. If you honestly think the screen size is fine, then who are we to tell you otherwise? You do always have the option of connecting an external monitor too.
 

abta1

macrumors 6502
Jul 5, 2010
334
11
Paris, France
It all depends what you use it for. I have an 11" MBA as my main computer at home which I connect to an external monitor if required. But mainly I use it as a laptop because I mainly use it for web browsing, email and writing reports/scientific papers.

I have a workstation and server cluster that I use at work for all my heavy processing so my home computer doesn't need to do any of that. I can always VNC to my workstation if I need to work from home.

So for me, the 11" is a perfectly viable main computer and is especially good when you have to travel a lot.
 

flowrider

macrumors 603
Nov 23, 2012
5,545
1,967
I have an 11" MBA as my mobile computer. My main machine is a 2010 Mac Pro. Could I use the MBA as my main computer - Not In A Million Years! It's fine for it's intended purpose, but as my one and only - No Way!

Lou
 

ctyrider

macrumors 6502a
Jul 15, 2012
924
431
Anyone else here also uses an 11" as their main computer? Any recommendations?
Yes, me. Have a top of the line 2014 11", with i7 CPU and 8GB of RAM. It's a wonderful little machine, a real workhorse.

Most of the time when I do "real work" - I have it docked to my two 27" Thunderbolt displays, which it drives without breaking it sweat. Other times when I am on the go - 11" Air is as portable as a laptop can get. Just slightly bigger than the iPad, that I used to own. I sold that iPad a few months ago, and now 11" Air is my only machine.

The simplicity of having a single portable and versatile machine cannot be beat.
 

sracer

macrumors G3
Apr 9, 2010
8,359
8,719
Prescott Valley, AZ
I was at the store looking at both the 13" and the 11" MBA, and then something about the size of the 11" won me over.

So I bought the whole shebang with a new 11" MBA, a clear case for it, a Magic Mouse, and a new printer

I plan on this being my main computer, because I do travel a lot, and I do not have a "home office" that I can set the thing down and work from. My home office can range from the bed, to the couch, to the dinner table.

I also own an iPhone 5s and an iPad mini with 4G (non retina). Once Yosemite becomes final, I can't wait to use the instant hotspot feature from the iOS devices.

Anyone else here also uses an 11" as their main computer? Any recommendations?
As my main computer? No. A 21" iMac is my main computer, but my MBA 11 is my main portable computer... replacing all of my Windows ultrabooks, notebooks, and netbooks.

As I mentioned in another thread, there are a few things that I have set up differently on the MBA that I haven't done on any other of my OSX devices... because of the size.

- Set the dock to autohide
- Set the dock to the right side of the screen
- Use the "fullscreen" option for working with apps

These three adjustments have helped me manage with the 11.6" screen. As you mentioned, there is something about the screen and size of the device itself that is very appealing.
 

Medic311

macrumors 68000
Jul 30, 2011
1,658
56
That is not a statistic that Apple would have released so that is just pure speculation.
well one way to tell is how quickly refurbs pop up. the early 2014 MBA 11" had refurbs show up VERY quickly, the quickest i've ever seen for any Macbook model.
 

Boyd01

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 21, 2012
4,201
1,876
New Jersey Pine Barrens
I use a 2013 11" i7/8gb/512gb MBA as my primary computer. I connect a large screen when needed at home. But I like the size for use around the house, for e-mail, web and especially for watching movies (16:9 screen is great for that). Battery life is terrific, it can go 10-12 hours at reduced brightness or 5-6 hours at full brightness.

I find it fast enough for my needs, I am running older versions of Final Cut Pro, Photoshop, Logic Pro, VectorWorks, FileMaker Pro, MS Office, etc. But it especially shines for travel. I had a 2011 13" MBA for two years and also like it but the 11" is much better for my usage.

Before switching to the MBA, I had a 2008 15" MBP (2.4ghz core2duo) that ran the same software. My 11" MBA is so much faster - I can rip a TV show on the MBA in less than 15 minutes. The same show took about 75 minutes on the old MBP.

I also have a 2012 Mac Mini, but i only use that as an iTunes server. I access my library of 500+ movies and 400+ TV shows with the fast 802.11ac wifi on the MBA.

I also have an iPhone 5s but no iPad. For some reason, the iPad has never interested me although I've bought two of them for my daughter's family. :)
 

robdrj45

macrumors member
Jun 11, 2012
63
0
USA
I have a 13'' Air as my main computer. The screen size is fine, but I wouldn't want it any smaller.
 

charlyham

macrumors regular
Jun 30, 2012
158
28
Crazy?

I was at the store looking at both the 13" and the 11" MBA, and then something about the size of the 11" won me over.

So I bought the whole shebang with a new 11" MBA, a clear case for it, a Magic Mouse, and a new printer

I plan on this being my main computer, because I do travel a lot, and I do not have a "home office" that I can set the thing down and work from. My home office can range from the bed, to the couch, to the dinner table.

I also own an iPhone 5s and an iPad mini with 4G (non retina). Once Yosemite becomes final, I can't wait to use the instant hotspot feature from the iOS devices.

Anyone else here also uses an 11" as their main computer? Any recommendations?
If it is doing what you want it to do, how can that be crazy? The MBA 11" is a fine machine. You shouldn't worry about it. I have a 13" MBA and think it is the perfect size for me but I am 62 and my eyes aren't what they used to be, or I might have gone for the little guy myself.
 

flowrider

macrumors 603
Nov 23, 2012
5,545
1,967
^^^^What is this an age contest - who's the oldest guy here? I'm 75. And again, for portability, the 11" works best for me.

Lou
 

mikeray

macrumors regular
Jan 17, 2006
210
55
Brooklyn, NY
Anyone else here also uses an 11" as their main computer? Any recommendations?
You will love it! I am a developer, and a maxed out 11-inch Air is my main machine. The small screen keeps you focused. You will learn to just fullscreen everything.

It's basically the size of an iPad with the features of an actual computer. I keep it with me everywhere I go even when i don't know I will need it because it is so small and light.
 

APlotdevice

macrumors 68040
Sep 3, 2011
3,109
3,749
The 11" is my main computer, though I have an HDMI adapter to plug it into my 32" LCD when neccessary.
 

joeblow7777

macrumors 603
Sep 7, 2010
5,968
6,760
I use an 11.6" Windows laptop as my main computer. I don't find the screen to be too small. I love having such a compact yet fully functional computer.
 

dontwalkhand

macrumors 603
Original poster
Jul 5, 2007
5,177
1,183
I use an 11.6" Windows laptop as my main computer. I don't find the screen to be too small. I love having such a compact yet fully functional computer.
If you don't mind me asking, what Windows laptop are you using that is 11.6"?
 

MarvinHC

macrumors 6502a
Jan 9, 2014
756
221
Belgium
11" is just fine. Put the dock on the side rather than bottom and you have almost as much space as on the 13". Yes, you will rather work in full screen than having many windows next to each other but that is the case on the 13" too.