MACBOOK AIR GOOD FOR DESIGNERS?

marydubois

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Nov 22, 2018
10
0
Hello there i have an urgent question,

So i am a graphic designer student and i am using programs suh as InDesign, PhotoShop Illustratir etc.

Now i want to buy a MacBook, so now i know that i can better go with a MacBook Pro 2017 version but i do not want to take that risk because:
1. I read about the keyboard issues
2. Lack of ports
3. To be honest i do not like the design at all
4. My classmates who own a 2017 Pro told me they have heating and lagging problems

I also did some research and i read that there are graphic designers using an MacBook Air .
They are claiming that it works like a charm.

Now i of course prefer the MacBook Air because of the:
1. Old but comfortable keyboard
2. All ports
3. MagSafe charger.

Now there is a MacBook Air with a i7 processor that i want to buy, but indeed for a couple hundreds of euro's more i can better get a Pro.

So can you guys help me out please

Kind regards,

Mary Dubois
 

bearinthetown

macrumors regular
May 5, 2018
155
95
Hello, as an owner of MacBook Air 2013 and MacBook Air 2018, here's my two cents.

If you are going to use external display, I would go with MacBook Air 2013-2017. It's a decent machine with great design, battery life is good too. MacBook Air 2018 on the other hand, is falsely advertised as having better battery life, which is a lie. While there were people getting above 10 hours of battery life on older MacBook Air, it seems impossible on the new one. And I'm personally getting around 6 hours, not even doing anything heavy.

You are right about the problems with keyboards in MacBook Pro. I had no issues with MacBook Air's keyboard. If something got under they key, I just picked it up with my nail, cleaned it and put back in place. You can't do it with any other MacBook these days.

I don't like MacBook Pro design neither.

Keep in mind that the screen in MacBook Air 2013-2017 is pretty old technology and it doesn't look top great comparing to Retina display. I have used it for years, but as a graphic designer you may need better color accuracy and resolution.
 

AniNOW

macrumors newbie
Apr 4, 2019
5
0
Germany
Hello there i have an urgent question,

So i am a graphic designer student and i am using programs suh as InDesign, PhotoShop Illustratir etc.

Now i want to buy a MacBook, so now i know that i can better go with a MacBook Pro 2017 version but i do not want to take that risk because:
1. I read about the keyboard issues
2. Lack of ports
3. To be honest i do not like the design at all
4. My classmates who own a 2017 Pro told me they have heating and lagging problems

I also did some research and i read that there are graphic designers using an MacBook Air .
They are claiming that it works like a charm.

Now i of course prefer the MacBook Air because of the:
1. Old but comfortable keyboard
2. All ports
3. MagSafe charger.

Now there is a MacBook Air with a i7 processor that i want to buy, but indeed for a couple hundreds of euro's more i can better get a Pro.

So can you guys help me out please

Kind regards,

Mary Dubois

Hi, I'm an old Mac Man. I started with Mac since the beginning. I think they are the best. My son, when he travels, uses a MacBook Pro to do his work. He's a graphic illustrator. When he needs to scan something, he takes a picture using his iPhone, and transfers it to his MacBook. He has used PCs, and says they are not as efficient as an Apple.
 

GoldfishRT

macrumors 6502a
Jul 24, 2014
505
284
Somewhere
I would under no circumstance, unless money is a very serious issue, go for the old Air which is what I assume you're talking about, as you mention the i7 and lack of ports.

For a student though, just about any Mac will be completely fine. It's all about the type of work you do. Hobbyist level work can be done on just about anything - most pro level machines are all about making a process faster so you can make more money doing what you need to do.

I think it is worth noting however, that if your friends are complaining about heating and lag, that 2017 MacBook Pro will run circles around any Air you can buy especially as it relates to graphics. Any issues they have doing work will be compounded by going with an even lower end machine. If y'all are going to push the machine that hard, I would not consider the new Air either for that matter.

I understand all the concerns you have but if they are that big of a deal breaker for you, I would at that point recommend going for a more modern Windows machine rather than an Air with ancient hardware. If you do decide the buy the old style Air, find one as cheap as you can - don't bother with the i7.
 

Koh Phi Phi

macrumors regular
Nov 15, 2017
157
324
For Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign, a MacBook Air will be perfectly fine. Period, end of story.
Excuse me, but NO!

The new Macbook Air struggles real bad the moment you start adding some layers, filters, etc into a somewhat high resolution photo. The lag and choppiness I get is painful :(

Performance is abysmal on the new MBA if you push it just a little bit.
 
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progx

macrumors regular
Oct 3, 2003
175
56
Pennsylvania
I would spring for a 2015 13-inch MacBook Pro Retina. I've had mine for about 3 years, it's the best Mac laptop I've ever owned and still like a champ. Haven't dabbled with Photoshop much on the newer Macs, but it'll do just fine with it's i5.

The reason I bought this MacBook was an open box return at a local Best Buy. It was cheaper than the MacBook Air and I couldn't resist the price. The pricing is pretty fair on eBay. I wouldn't spring for the old MacBook Air.

Depending on your needs, a MacBook Air could help you, but don't expect powerful performance. They're not built for the Pro or Prosumer levels.
 
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Fattytail

macrumors 6502a
Apr 11, 2012
874
187
Excuse me, but NO!

The new Macbook Air struggles real bad the moment you start adding some layers, filters, etc into a somewhat high resolution photo. The lag and choppiness I get is painful :(

Performance is abysmal on the new MBA if you push it just a little bit.
The 2015 13” MBP benchmarks at about the same or worse than the 2018 MBA and we’ve used that 2015 MBP for tons of Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign work. Why would there be any difference with the MBA? I just literally added layers and filters to a photo in Photoshop on the MBA and it did perfectly fine.
 

waloshin

macrumors 68040
Oct 9, 2008
3,171
66
The 2015 13” MBP benchmarks at about the same or worse than the 2018 MBA and we’ve used that 2015 MBP for tons of Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign work. Why would there be any difference with the MBA? I just literally added layers and filters to a photo in Photoshop on the MBA and it did perfectly fine.
I have no problem with Final Cut Pro X, or Photoshop on my 2018 Air.
 

Ghost31

macrumors 68030
Jun 9, 2015
2,588
3,418
Excuse me, but NO!

The new Macbook Air struggles real bad the moment you start adding some layers, filters, etc into a somewhat high resolution photo. The lag and choppiness I get is painful :(

Performance is abysmal on the new MBA if you push it just a little bit.
Doesn't for me. So idk what's wrong with your air, but if it can't do simple editing without freaking out, you should take it to apple because its not working properly. Works perfectly fine on mine and others
 
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Dave245

macrumors 604
Sep 15, 2013
7,345
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Doesn't for me. So idk what's wrong with your air, but if it can't do simple editing without freaking out, you should take it to apple because its not working properly. Works perfectly fine on mine and others
Can I ask, how’s your keyboard doing? I’m still unsure if I should buy an Air now. Half of me says buy the other says wait until they fix the keyboard.
 

Ghost31

macrumors 68030
Jun 9, 2015
2,588
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Can I ask, how’s your keyboard doing? I’m still unsure if I should buy an Air now. Half of me says buy the other says wait until they fix the keyboard.
I’ll do you one better and expand it to be about my entire department. We ordered a crap ton of 2018 airs for executives as well as some of the designers for when they like to go on the road. We’ve had them ever since launch and haven’t had a single keyboard related complaint about them. Literally. Not even one. We did have keyboard issues on some dell xps laptops we ordered last year that drove up our costs and found there were a multitude of unfixable issues with those that the media never talked about which we thought was rather interesting.

And my personal MacBook Air hasn’t had a single issue. All the keys work just fine, I do some light pro work on it as far as coding and design and it handles it like a champ. Never even heard the fan come on. That’s one of the things I’ve absolutely loved about it over my more expensive MacBook Pro. On the pro, I would do what I consider fairly light tasks and the fan would come on and I’d have to consider what surface I was on. With my air, it’s never come on so I don’t even think about it. Feels like the fanless macbook to me.

Take all that for what it’s worth. Apple issues get publicized like no other. Not saying there aren’t any, but there are entire businesses that make money off of getting clicks for apple fear mongering. It doesn’t give good perspective as to whether it’s a good product or if it’s an issue that’ll affect you
 
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Dave245

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Sep 15, 2013
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I’ll do you one better and expand it to be about my entire department. We ordered a crap ton of 2018 airs for executives as well as some of the designers for when they like to go on the road. We’ve had them ever since launch and haven’t had a single keyboard related complaint about them. Literally. Not even one. We did have keyboard issues on some dell xps laptops we ordered last year that drove up our costs and found there were a multitude of unfixable issues with those that the media never talked about which we thought was rather interesting.

And my personal MacBook Air hasn’t had a single issue. All the keys work just fine, I do some light pro work on it as far as coding and design and it handles it like a champ. Never even heard the fan come on. That’s one of the things I’ve absolutely loved about it over my more expensive MacBook Pro. On the pro, I would do what I consider fairly light tasks and the fan would come on and I’d have to consider what surface I was on. With my air, it’s never come on so I don’t even think about it. Feels like the fanless macbook to me.

Take all that for what it’s worth. Apple issues get publicized like no other. Not saying there aren’t any, but there are entire businesses that make money off of getting clicks for apple fear mongering. It doesn’t give good perspective as to whether it’s a good product or if it’s an issue that’ll affect you
Thank you. After playing around in the Apple store a couple of weeks ago i really like the new Macbook Air. I was going to order one, then Apple issued that statement apologising about the keyboard issues, i also saw many posts on this forum about the keyboard problems that people were having.

The problem is, we just don't know how much of an issue it is, are we talking a small number? like 15% or are we talking about an issue that is more likely to happen than not? the problem i have is yes i could buy Apple Care+ (i would anyway with any Mac) but i don't live within walking distance of an Apple store, i have to jump on the train and travel 45 minutes to an hour.

It's great to hear that you can do some pro work, it just goes to show that the processor isn't as "underpowered" as some would have you believe. The most i would do is edit a few photos in Pixelmator Pro, which runs on my 2012 iMac so i'm guessing it would have no issues on the new Air.
 

Koh Phi Phi

macrumors regular
Nov 15, 2017
157
324
I’ll do you one better and expand it to be about my entire department. We ordered a crap ton of 2018 airs. for executives as well as some of the designers for when they like to go on the road. We’ve had them ever since launch and haven’t had a single keyboard related complaint about them. Literally. Not even one.
You have to remember that the MBA 2018, as a product, is barely half a year old. It is too early. These things break over usage and wear. The keyboard on my MBP 15" touchbar failed on month 14th from purchase.
 

Ghost31

macrumors 68030
Jun 9, 2015
2,588
3,418
You have to remember that the MBA 2018, as a product, is barely half a year old. It is too early. These things break over usage and wear. The keyboard on my MBP 15" touchbar failed on month 14th from purchase.
It’s a calculated risk. All I can do is share my experience so far and hope it all works out. We had previous generation butterfly MacBooks from 2016 and no issues with any of those besides someone spilling coffee on the keyboard.

As an older guy, I’ve been through this. Every generation has a new gate that we’re all supposed to be worried about. If I let them all stop me, I’d never have a computer to work on. I remember 2012 there was that big redesign and display issues were supposed to stop me from buying one. “It’s just not safe!” I remember issues with following macs as well that were front page news. Didn’t matter to me. I took the risk. I got lucky because I’ve never been burned. All my macs have worked exactly like they should.

Same with iPads, apple watches, the cars I buy where you read forums and see people complaining and saying “there should be a recall!” Meanwhile I’m over here totally happy with mine. I’ve accepted risk into my life and that’s ok with me. Risk is why I’ve gotten this far
 

Dave245

macrumors 604
Sep 15, 2013
7,345
5,196
It’s a calculated risk. All I can do is share my experience so far and hope it all works out. We had previous generation butterfly MacBooks from 2016 and no issues with any of those besides someone spilling coffee on the keyboard.

As an older guy, I’ve been through this. Every generation has a new gate that we’re all supposed to be worried about. If I let them all stop me, I’d never have a computer to work on. I remember 2012 there was that big redesign and display issues were supposed to stop me from buying one. “It’s just not safe!” I remember issues with following macs as well that were front page news. Didn’t matter to me. I took the risk. I got lucky because I’ve never been burned. All my macs have worked exactly like they should.

Same with iPads, apple watches, the cars I buy where you read forums and see people complaining and saying “there should be a recall!” Meanwhile I’m over here totally happy with mine. I’ve accepted risk into my life and that’s ok with me. Risk is why I’ve gotten this far
This is true! i've had a lot of Apple devices over the years and I've only ever had one issue, that was with my 2017 iPad Pro which died late last year. After some annoying back and forth with Apple customer service and an email i sent to Phil Schiller, i was contacted by executive relations who sorted the issue (i was sent a new 2017 iPad Pro). Out off all the devices for only one of them to have had an issue, that is really good.
 
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TokMok3

macrumors 6502a
Aug 22, 2015
582
361
Hello there i have an urgent question,

So i am a graphic designer student and i am using programs suh as InDesign, PhotoShop Illustratir etc.

Now i want to buy a MacBook, so now i know that i can better go with a MacBook Pro 2017 version but i do not want to take that risk because:
1. I read about the keyboard issues
2. Lack of ports
3. To be honest i do not like the design at all
4. My classmates who own a 2017 Pro told me they have heating and lagging problems

I also did some research and i read that there are graphic designers using an MacBook Air .
They are claiming that it works like a charm.

Now i of course prefer the MacBook Air because of the:
1. Old but comfortable keyboard
2. All ports
3. MagSafe charger.

Now there is a MacBook Air with a i7 processor that i want to buy, but indeed for a couple hundreds of euro's more i can better get a Pro.

So can you guys help me out please

Kind regards,

Mary Dubois
I will buy a MacBook Pro 13 2015 16GB RAM from eBay for $600 Grade A (perfect screen) and install a ADATA 8200 Pro in that machine for performance, portability and low power consumption.
 

Amplelink

macrumors 6502a
Oct 8, 2012
769
177
Thank you. After playing around in the Apple store a couple of weeks ago i really like the new Macbook Air. I was going to order one, then Apple issued that statement apologising about the keyboard issues, i also saw many posts on this forum about the keyboard problems that people were having.

The problem is, we just don't know how much of an issue it is, are we talking a small number? like 15% or are we talking about an issue that is more likely to happen than not? the problem i have is yes i could buy Apple Care+ (i would anyway with any Mac) but i don't live within walking distance of an Apple store, i have to jump on the train and travel 45 minutes to an hour.

It's great to hear that you can do some pro work, it just goes to show that the processor isn't as "underpowered" as some would have you believe. The most i would do is edit a few photos in Pixelmator Pro, which runs on my 2012 iMac so i'm guessing it would have no issues on the new Air.
There are really, really thin clear silicone keyboard covers on Amazon. Not only do these covers make the keyboard sound quieter and feel better, they also keep all of the dust out. I have had multiple gen 2 and gen 3 butterfly keyboard MacBooks and have not had a single problem 2 years. I chalk that up to the keyboard covers.

The other advantage is that when I go to sell my MacBooks, the keys look good as new.
 
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Dave245

macrumors 604
Sep 15, 2013
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There are really, really thin clear silicone keyboard covers on Amazon. Not only do these covers make the keyboard sound quieter and feel better, they also keep all of the dust out. I have had multiple gen 2 and gen 3 butterfly keyboard MacBooks and have not had a single problem 2 years. I chalk that up to the keyboard covers.

The other advantage is that when I go to sell my MacBooks, the keys look good as new.
Do they work tho? i mean is it confirmed that it's a dust issue causing the keyboard failure? i ask because if it's a heat issue a keyboard cover could make it worse.
 

smirking

macrumors 68020
Aug 31, 2003
2,182
1,590
Silicon Valley
The problem is, we just don't know how much of an issue it is, are we talking a small number? like 15% or are we talking about an issue that is more likely to happen than not? the problem i have is yes i could buy Apple Care+ (i would anyway with any Mac) but i don't live within walking distance of an Apple store, i have to jump on the train and travel 45 minutes to an hour.
15% would not be a small number when talking about failure rates. It would be bordering on being a catastrophic number.

I don't normally purchase extended warranties, but I think AppleCare+ is a no brainer for any of their laptops. My 2016 MBP had the battery degrade ahead of schedule and had an odd screen blotching issue that doesn't sound like any of the "gates" that have been described. They took one look at both repair requests and approved it without any fuss. AppleCare pretty much allowed me to restore my machine to almost refurbished status after over two years of use and I was able to sell it for top dollar.

Also, you don't need to go to Apple to have your laptop serviced by them. You can consult with someone on the phone and mail it to a service center if you wish.
[doublepost=1554896784][/doublepost]
You have to remember that the MBA 2018, as a product, is barely half a year old. It is too early. These things break over usage and wear. The keyboard on my MBP 15" touchbar failed on month 14th from purchase.
My 2016 MBP went the other direction. I had sticky keys intermittently for the first year. Then it went away. I run test servers and virtual environments and other things that are hard on the battery and lead to early battery death on my 2016. I knew I'd be getting a new keyboard when I got the battery replaced so I spent the months before I took my laptop in for service being intentionally rough and unsanitary on the keyboard.

I wanted to see if I could get it to fail if I became a key smasher... and it did break, but not in the way I expected. I hit the keys so hard that the binding of one of the keycaps snapped and the keycap fell off. After that, I decided that maybe I didn't need to test it THAT vigorously. As evidenced by my broken keycap, I was hard on it. It survived just fine.

The lack of sanitation didn't result in any stuck keys, but got really gross after a couple of months so I ended that experiment early.

I don't think the butterfly keyboards are inherently faulty as a design, but there certainly are some bad batches out there.
 
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Dave245

macrumors 604
Sep 15, 2013
7,345
5,196
15% would not be a small number when talking about failure rates. It would be bordering on being a catastrophic number.

I don't normally purchase extended warranties, but I think AppleCare+ is a no brainer for any of their laptops. My 2016 MBP had the battery degrade ahead of schedule and an odd screen blotching issue that doesn't sound like any of the "gates" that have been described. They took one look at both repair requests and approved it without any fuss. AppleCare pretty much allowed me to restore my machine to almost refurbished status after over two years of use and I was able to sell it for top dollar.

Also, you don't need to go to Apple to have your laptop serviced by them. You can consult with someone on the phone and mail it to a service center if you wish.
Sorry i was thinking more along the lines of 15% out of a 100% chance of it happening to me, that's just a number I've thrown out there since we don't actually know the failure rate and it was giving an example. The problem with Apple Care is i'm not sure if it's worth it, for example i had a 2017 iPad Pro that started playing up after about 15 months, there were lines going across the screen and it eventually died. After some discussion with customer service they wanted me to pay over £500 for out of warranty repair, i emailed Phil Schiller and Tim Cook my disappointment (i wasn't rude or nasty i just gave facts and got to the point) anyway to cut a long story shorter, i had a phone call from Apple executive Relations and after sending the iPad Pro back to them they sent out a brand new 2017 iPad Pro. I didn't expect that, my disappointment was in the product breaking so quick and the amount they wanted to charge.

That got me wondering if Apple Care is really worth it. For a Mac tho i probably would get it just for peace of mind, especially since i keep my Mac's for longer (i'm still using a 2012 iMac until they update them more substantially).

If i buy in an Apple store i won't have to go back to that store if there are any issues? i can just send it in regardless of buying in store or online?
 

smirking

macrumors 68020
Aug 31, 2003
2,182
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Silicon Valley
If i buy in an Apple store i won't have to go back to that store if there are any issues? i can just send it in regardless of buying in store or online?
I'm not exactly sure how it works, but when I was navigating their support menus to get some issues with my 2016 MBP fixed, I was presented with an option to send in my laptop in some spots.
 
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Amplelink

macrumors 6502a
Oct 8, 2012
769
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Do they work tho? i mean is it confirmed that it's a dust issue causing the keyboard failure? i ask because if it's a heat issue a keyboard cover could make it worse.
Never had a single heat issue on even the 15" MacBook Pro. Remember, heat is designed to escape through the vents on the back/sides and through the entire metal body. The keyboard is not a primary means of heat dissipation.