Macbook Air 2017 for college

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by marianFCBT, Dec 8, 2018.

  1. marianFCBT, Dec 8, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018

    marianFCBT macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Location:
    Botosani, Romania
    #1
    Good evening! I am a new user on this forum, and I would need some buying advice from you.
    I have been a Windows user for ages, but recently Windows 10 is driving me nuts, and the laptop I have hasn't aged so well. So, I am willing to get a Macbook Air, because of macOS and because of the amazing build quality this laptop offers.
    Unfortunately, my budget is limited to say the least, so the only Macbook I can afford is the 2017 Macbook Air. I had the chance to test it and think it is a lot faster than my current computer, and I appreciate the chiclet-style keyboard and the traditional ports. Even the screen is more than enough for me.
    The only thing that worries me is the performance. The 5th gen Intel Core i5 sounds a little outdated, and from what i've tested I don't know how well it will laat over time. I want to use it for programming, especially coding on Microsoft Visual Studio, and I may try some light video editing on it. However, I need to use it at least four or five years from now, and I don't know if the i7 upgrade help it much.
    What do you think? Should I buy one? Thank you in advance!
     
  2. kreasonos macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2013
    #2
    If you want it to last that long I would save and buy the new one. I think the new MBA should last 5 years without much difficulty. It kind of depends on what Apple does with Mac OS.
     
  3. marianFCBT thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Location:
    Botosani, Romania
    #3
    Thank you very much for the quick response! I will take this into consideration!
     
  4. auxbuss macrumors regular

    auxbuss

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2014
    Location:
    UK
    #4
    I agree with this. Also, cores are important these days (for concurrency), especially, though not exclusively, for development work. I'd say more important that the age and speed of the CPU, since pretty much any CPU is powerful enough for regular use and has been for some years now.
     
  5. marianFCBT, Dec 8, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018

    marianFCBT thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Location:
    Botosani, Romania
    #5
    I wish I could got a 2018 13 inch Macbook Pro, which has a quad core processor:(. I will think about the new Air and the 2017 base model Macbook Pro, since they are decently priced. Thanks for the advice!
     
  6. kreasonos macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2013
    #6
    Trust me, as a developer you will probably dislike the Touch Bar.
     
  7. marianFCBT thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Location:
    Botosani, Romania
    #7
    Yeah, a seller from my local Apple Store proudly showed my how the Touch Bar works, but sincerely I can only describe it as "interesting". Anyway, the 2018 Macbook Pro is only a dream for me, since I was thinking about the old Air, although a refresh to the non Touch Bar Macbook Pro would have been a bless for me and for others I guess.
     
  8. xraydoc macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2005
    Location:
    192.168.1.1
    #8
    Just bought a 2018 MBA for my daughter for college (she's a senior in high school currently, but college soon enough). She needed something new as her old 2013 MBP wasn't keeping up in the battery department and weighs a good amount more than current machines.

    Goals were battery life, portability and performance.

    The 2018 MBA should be great on battery life; Apple gives it 2 hrs over the nTB MBP. While the weight is only slightly less on the MBA as compared to the MBP, every little bit helps when in a backpack with loads of other stuff. Performance will be more than sufficient for college work. She's not much of a gamer and what she does play is on her Nintendo Switch. And since she's not connecting to 4K/5K monitors with any kind of regularity, I'm not worried about the slight iGPU performance edge the nTB MBP has.

    We thought about a rMB, but she preferred the 13" screen on the MBA as compared with the 12" rMB and I thought she'd be better off (just in case) with two TB3 ports instead of one USB-C port.

    I did order her's with 16GB of RAM in case she finds herself doing any big multitasking or in case the next version of MacOS requires some ridiculous amount of RAM, though kept the 256GB SSD to keep the price in budget. She can always connect to a portable drive if she needs to for extra storage, but she's only 50% full on her old machine (also 256GB) anyway, including junk she doesn't need (other user accounts).

    And, being an 18 year old girl, her preferred color is available in the MBA and not in the MBP (gold, of course). But that was at the bottom of the priority list.

    She's super happy with the machine. Battery seems great, it's light, slim and does the job.
     
  9. marianFCBT thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2018
    Location:
    Botosani, Romania
    #9
    Thank you for the detailed response! I will try the new Macbook Air when I'll be in the neighbour city which has an Apple Store :)
     
  10. Airboy1466 macrumors 6502

    Airboy1466

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2015
    #10
    Hey I can honestly relate to you with this one I started college in 2014 began with a 13 inch 2013 mbp it was a great portable machine but I closed a pencil in the lid on accident and it cracked the screen and a replacement screen cost just as much as a brand new 2013 MBA which was amazing for the two years I had it ended up switching to a 2015 mb and the terrible camera one port and trash processor killed it for me took a loss in reselling it and I switched to a 2015 MBA which is what the 2017 air honestly is a clocked up 2015 and it has lasted me for the many years I have had it the screen isn’t the best but it gets the job done and honestly isn’t that terrible to look at you will honestly love the 2017 air it’s a great budget beast.
    --- Post Merged, Dec 9, 2018 ---
    Hey I can honestly relate to you with this one I started college in 2014 began with a 13 inch 2013 mbp it was a great portable machine but I closed a pencil in the lid on accident and it cracked the screen and a replacement screen cost just as much as a brand new 2013 MBA which was amazing for the two years I had it ended up switching to a 2015 mb and the terrible camera one port and trash processor killed it for me took a loss in reselling it and I switched to a 2015 MBA which is what the 2017 air honestly is a clocked up 2015 and it has lasted me for the many years I have had it the screen isn’t the best but it gets the job done and honestly isn’t that terrible to look at
     
  11. AlexJoda macrumors 6502a

    AlexJoda

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2015
    #11
    I think the 2017 MBA is a much better deal especially with the recent price reductions. The 2018 version cost 50%-100% on top of the old one and you get no improvements regarding CPU/GPU performance, a subpar Retina display and keyboard, no standard USB ports, no SD card reader and no MagSafe . The relation is getting even worse if you upgrade the MBA which becomes even more expensive for this underpowered machine....

    The 2017 MBA maybe old technology now but it is a prooven classic and if the new one is not substantialy better in every regards (which is not the case) I am not willing to spend so much more for it....
     

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10 December 8, 2018