Macbook or Macbook Air??

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by jamesgregory24, Jun 23, 2009.

  1. jamesgregory24 macrumors newbie

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    Jun 23, 2009
    #1
    I've been checking out a few Apple stores and looking around their notebooks to see which one is better suited for me, the Macbook or the Macbook Air. I like how the Air is presented. Being a frequent traveler, I'd like my apple notebook to be always handy and easy to carry. However, I'm aware that the Macbook air lacks certain features and have very limited slots/ports. Do you think it's worth buying an Apple Macbook Air?? Or should I get myself the standard macbook model?

    Please help. need your advice.
     
  2. richard.mac macrumors 603

    richard.mac

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    #2
    pretty much if you want the Air's low profile, aluminium casing and lightness and arent worried about the lack of ports and optical drive then its for you.

    the MacBook is more powerful and gains the ports and optical drive but is heavier and bulkier. you could also consider the 13" MacBook Pro for the aluminium casing and the built in battery with longer life.
     
  3. TheBonk macrumors 6502

    TheBonk

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    #3
    Do you already have another computer? If you don't, get the Macbook. The Air just isn't suited to be a main computer in my opinion. Even the Macbook is still pretty good for travel. Much better in comparison to those huge laptops other people might lug around.

    And like richthomas said, check out the 13" Macbook Pro too since you're willing to pay Macbook Air prices anyway. With the Pro you get more power, less thickness and weight than the standard Macbook.
     
  4. richard.mac macrumors 603

    richard.mac

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    #4
    i second the MacBook Air's use as a secondary computer; i was thinking of it but forgot to discuss.
     
  5. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #5
    I think the Air is a piece of crap for people who want to do anything besides e-mail and web surfing. Then again, this seems to make up 90% of Apple's user base....

    The 13" Macbook is really not that difficult to travel with at all.
     
  6. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    #6
    I would get MacBook. Air is perfect as a secondary computer but because it lacks ports, optical drive etc, it's not best as primary one. It's also more expensive than MB.
     
  7. eXan macrumors 601

    eXan

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    Russia
    #7
    I can't recommend an Air to anyone, especially after 13" MBP was released. Its just not worth it considering how much more you get with even the base 13" MBP:

    - much longer battery
    - faster CPU/HD
    - larger HD
    - RAM expandability
    - DVD drive
    - {Etherner/FireWire/1 extra USB} ports
    - SD card reader
    - glass trackpad
    - better thermal design (no constant 6200 rpm fan)
    - no screen lines issue
    - better case design (subjective, I admit)
    - 300$ cheaper

    Cons:

    - 700 grams heavier.
     
  8. macgrl macrumors 65816

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    Jul 17, 2008
    #8
    I think that the macbook is better value but then you need to decide if you want the extra weight when traveling. I don't think that I would have the air as my only computer:)
     
  9. Balty macrumors 6502

    Balty

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    #9
    I'd say to get a 13" Macbook Pro, one of the new ones. You'll get some more features compared to the Macbook Air, and for less money.

    Although if you are a frequent traveller, maybe the Macbook Air would be your thing. It really depends on what you are going to use it for, when travelling and whenever else. Do you need the extra portability, or do you need some extra features?

    The Macbook Air should definitely not be your only computer, rather a secondary one. Your primary machine would be a desktop computer.
     
  10. BaronvdB macrumors 6502

    BaronvdB

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    Oct 22, 2007
    #10
    get the Pro...i've had the air and now have the 13" pro...yeah it weighs a little more and it doesn't have the "wow" factor of the air but it's a better computer in my opinion plus it's cheaper.
     
  11. Scepticalscribe Contributor

    Scepticalscribe

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    #11
    Essentially, it's a trade off between more power, better battery, better spec and far better value if you choose the MB, especially the 13" MBP, on the one hand, and the "wow" factor of sheer coolness and wonderful portability on the other with the MBA, but at a higher cost and with far less by way of spec and power.

    I'd go along with most fo the other posters who suggest that the MBA is super as a second computer, but for a primary computer, I'd suggest that you choose the 13" MBP.

    Cheers and good luck
     
  12. EMKarelia macrumors regular

    EMKarelia

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    #12
    I would deff pick the Mac Pro over the Mac Air. When I first heard of the Macbook air i was disappointed. I dont believe that you'll need to mac a mac smaller then a Macbook Pro. Performance wise was not to happy with that too. And no cd/dvd drive! What is this? :eek:
     
  13. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

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    #13
    I recently had the same dilemma and went with the new 13" MBP. I love the MBA's weight but I just couldn't justify a computer w/ only one USB port for $1300, even $1000. Sure you can buy dongles and adapters but when you start down that road you just gave up why you bought a no-hassle, travel friendly laptop.
     
  14. Demosthenes X macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

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    #14
    "What is this"? It's a niche computer targeted towards a specific market. Apparently you don't fit into that market, but that's not a knock against the computer.

    The Air is a proper portable. It's not intended to be used as a desktop replacement. And why does a portable need more than one USB port? I admit, I use a hub with my MacBook, but only because I use it as a desktop replacement. When I'm on the go, I only need one USB port: to plug my iPhone in. One USB port is plenty for a portable.

    So yes, the Air is the wrong machine if you want a desktop replacement. But it's the best portable machine Apple offers.

    jamesgregory24, if you already have a home computer, and are looking for something to use while travelling, then buy the Air. You'll appreciate the weight savings (every bit counts when travelling - I know), and the size - the Air will barely take up any space in your carry on. But if you're after a machine that is fully featured to use for everything, the 13" MBP is a better fit. The Air could serve as a desktop replacement - the new one is a very respectable machine in its own right - but you'd be happier overall with the regular MBP if using it as a desktop replacement, imo.
     
  15. Loccy macrumors member

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    Jan 5, 2009
    #15
    No it isn't. A Netbook is a proper portable. The smaller sized Sony Vaios are a proper portable. The Air takes up the same amount of space, practically speaking, in a bag as a 13" Macbook. Sure, it's a nanometer thick but what use is that apart from the "wow" factor? To carry it you still need a bag with the same dimensions as one that would accommodate the smaller Macbooks.

    I was really disappointed with the Air when it came out. And in the here and now, if portability is your priority, I'd say get a Netbook and Hackintosh it. I have an MSI Wind for when I don't want to carry my big bag around with my Macbook Alu in. Or, if you are happy to have something with a 13" screen, get one of the new Pros. I'm assuming it's no heavier than my Alu; if so it's plenty light enough to carry with you without thinking too much about it. Certainly it's lighter than my old Whitebook. As soon as you put anything else in the bag with the machine any laptop weight is a drop in the ocean anyway.

    In my book the Air's "niche market" is pretty much people who value style over substance. As a rule I buy Apple because I value both - and in my book the Air let the side down.
     
  16. Demosthenes X macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

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    #16
    A netbook, with a small screen, cramped keyboard, and tiny trackpad? No - the Air is a far better and infinitely more usable portable than a netbook any day. I like netbooks - I think they fill a great niche - but I would take an Air over a netbook any day of the week.

    I find it amusing that you ask "what use" its thinness is. Well, for starters, it takes up less space. Yes, it has the same length and width as a regular MacBook, but it's half as thick. That means you can cram that many more textbooks, papers, and whatever else into your bag than you could with a MacBook.

    And it weighs less. You might think it's a "drop in the bucket", but if you're hauling around a bunch of textbooks and the like, than every gram saved counts.

    Just because you think thinness is not valuable, does not mean you're right. I would love an Air if I were shopping for a second machine.
     
  17. EMKarelia macrumors regular

    EMKarelia

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    Denver
    #17
    I so disagree with you. I don't think that Mac Air would be the best portable device. Macbook pro has much better features and at least it has a cd drive lol. I have 3 Mac's and i would never ever spend money on a Mac Air. ;)
     
  18. hellfire88 macrumors 6502

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    Apr 28, 2008
    #18
    The only thing the Air really has going for it is weight and slimness compared to the new 13" MBP. Everything else (value, power, upgradability, etc.). the 13" MBP is better IMHO.

    Before the 13" MBP came out the Air had a better quality screen, but now most people say the screens between the Air and 13" MBP is comparable.

    That being said, the 1.5lbs difference between the Air and 13" MBP (3lbs vs 4.5lbs) is noticeable, and having both the Air is just nicer to carry around since I forget I have it on me. Feel for yourself if carrying an extra 1.5lbs matters as a frequent traveler :)
     
  19. Balty macrumors 6502

    Balty

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    #19
    I think I'm going to have to agree with you there...
    Thinner, less weight; but less features. The Macbook Air definitely has it's own niche market. It's not for everyone, but only for some. :D
     
  20. Demosthenes X macrumors 68000

    Demosthenes X

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    Oct 21, 2008
    #20
    :rolleyes: Comments like this underline how many people that claim the Air is a stupid machine have little or no understanding of its purpose. If you're a buyer that absolutely needs an optical drive at all times, then yes, it's a poor choice. But I'll wager the vast majority of notebook users rarely ever use their optical drive - especially when travelling.


    Exactly. The Air is a fantastic machine, as long as you look at it from the perspective of those it's aimed at. If you look at the Air the same way you look at the 13" Pro, it does not seem nearly as good. But looking at it that way totally misses the point.
     
  21. will0407 macrumors 6502a

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    May 20, 2006
    #21
    i've owned an air and now have a 13" MBP. the air felt so much slower than this- apps took longer to open, you're limited with HD space, and you get one USB port....
     

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