MBA 11" & 13" vs rMBP 13" & 15" (Haswell)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by NickPhamUK, Aug 19, 2013.


I will buy...

  1. MBA 11"

    1 vote(s)
  2. MBA 13"

    1 vote(s)
  3. rMBP 13"

    22 vote(s)
  4. rMBP 15"

    22 vote(s)
  5. cMBP 13", cMBP 15" or rMBP 17" if there are any

    2 vote(s)
  6. Refurbs or 2012 versions

    3 vote(s)
  7. No, I'll pass this year

    4 vote(s)
  1. NickPhamUK, Aug 19, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2013

    NickPhamUK macrumors 6502


    May 6, 2013
    Just want to know what folks here are intending to purchase this autumn & winter.

    I'm waiting for rMBP 13" because I think it's in the sweet spot: it has both portability of MBA 13" and raw power of MBP 15". MBA 13" is too weak for my liking: 1440x900 resolution, ULV processor & HD 5000. I think Apple should be pushing it to at least 1080p resolution already (Sony Vaio Pro 13" has it now). On the other hand, rMBP 15 is a tad pricey and a little bigger than its 13" counterpart; I usually carry my laptop around so that might be a huge turn off.

    I'll wait for early hands-on reviews of rMBP 13" (in October?). If it does not run laggy like the current version and runs some games like Diablo 3 fine on medium settings, I'll be delighted to give it a go.

  2. PDFierro macrumors 68040

    Sep 8, 2009
    Ordering the 13-inch rMBP the second it's available.
  3. etn macrumors newbie

    Feb 7, 2013
    Ordered a *matte* base cMBP a few months ago, fearing it might be discontinued pretty soon. I immediately upgraded it to 16GB RAM + 512 SSD for €500. That thing is a beast. I'm all set for at least 3 years! I also use Ethernet daily (our corporate network is wired only, no wifi except for guest access) and all my external drives are FW800.

    I do hope MBP's in 3-5 years will have >20 hours battery life and matte retina displays! (or at least even further reduced glare)
  4. Suraj R. macrumors regular

    Feb 17, 2013
    The 13" rMBP doesn't share the same specs as the 15" rMBP, its performance is much closer to the MBA. At least right now, the 13" MBA is greater than or equal to the 13 rMBP in terms of performance.
  5. dmk1974 macrumors 68020


    Sep 16, 2008
    For me, it depends on how much the Haswell 13" rMBP is going to cost and what the differences are. I currently have in my possession a 2012 13" base rMBP and a 2013 13" base MBA. The tradeoffs of cost/screen/battery life are really the deciding factors.
  6. yliu macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2009
    I just got an rMBP less than a year ago, so I'll pass the next few years.

    If I had to buy one, it would be a MBA... probably 13 inch. It does everything I need it to do and has a great battery life.
    The GPU in the rMBP 13' is underpowered considering it the 'pro' line. With the rumors of the 15 inch dropping the dGPU also seems to be a disappointment.
  7. GSPice macrumors 68000


    Nov 24, 2008
    Getting a Haswell rMBP this year. And if an amazing new rMBP comes out next year with an amazing new dGPU, I'll probably sell the Fall 2013 Haswell and get the 2014 MBP.
  8. sonicrobby macrumors 68020


    Apr 24, 2013
    New Orleans
    I disagree, but I wish it had the power of a 15" MBP. I love the form factor of the 13" but i went for the 15" because the 13" lacked power :[ Need the quad core and dGPU. If they can include those upgrade options in the next model, it would be perfect! :]
  9. Serban Suspended

    Jan 8, 2013
    I just bought the razer blade 14", that kick macbook pro assess
  10. PDFierro macrumors 68040

    Sep 8, 2009
    You're right, but I know what he meant by that. The new 13-inch rMBP with Haswell will definitely be a clear step up in performance from the MBA. No, it doesn't have the specs of the 15-inch, but it's clearly a Pro machine.
  11. tgi macrumors 65816


    Aug 29, 2012
    Fixed your post.
  12. Serban Suspended

    Jan 8, 2013
  13. Suraj R. macrumors regular

    Feb 17, 2013
    I still don't really believe that is true. Power wise, the only difference between the 13" MBP and MBA is the fact that the MBA uses an ULV processor. Haswell did very little to improve the actual processor power of the MBAs, so even the 2012 MBA was very similar to the 2012 rMBP (13s). Yes it will be slightly more powerful but the only real reason to get a 13" rMBP would be for the beautiful display and extra Thunderbolt ports (if you're into that). Those looking to do intense graphic work would probably go with the 15" rMBP beast.
  14. Serban Suspended

    Jan 8, 2013
    I think the macbook air will no longer exist..and from mid 2014 there will be only Macbook and will probably come in 11" 13 and 15". Is the right thing to do.

    Probably the 11" will feature 1080p resolution
  15. kaellar macrumors 6502

    Nov 12, 2012
    yep, with its gorgeous tn 1600x900 screen especially..:D
  16. Serban Suspended

    Jan 8, 2013
    Yea but on that resolution i can do ANYTHING SMOOOTH :D
  17. Doublea6 macrumors regular


    Aug 3, 2013
    How are you liking it? The razer blade is for sure a nice machine. Oh just wondering what screen do you think is better the razer blades or the macbook airs?
  18. NickPhamUK thread starter macrumors 6502


    May 6, 2013
    It's is not close to MBA 13" nor rMBP 15". What I meant is that it is in between: it is powerful yet it doesn't sacrifice portability. The MBA has an ULV processor whilst rMBP line has normal ones. Iris Pro 5100 gives more raw power than HD 5000.
  19. MathBunny123 macrumors regular

    Oct 19, 2012
    Toronto, Canada | Sibiu, Romania
    Man, I just wish I could run ANY application I want and not worry about battery life!


    MacBook Pro Retina 13.3'' or 15.4''...just those viewing angles & colours entice me to never go non-Retina again! :cool:
  20. akdj macrumors 65816


    Mar 10, 2008
    Don't worry. The dGPU in the 15 isn't going anywhere. Not yet. Maybe in a year or two...but for now, it'll stay.

    Maybe right now...before the MacBooks get the Haswell treatment. But WTF were they thinking with the display? From Anandtech's review:

    "The Razer Blade 14-inch may be enjoying a 1600x900 resolution that's perfect for the gaming hardware included within, but the panel itself is atrocious. Razer was able to jack up the brightness to a respectable 453 nits, but it's a linear boost: the black level is a heinous 2.24 nits. There's just no excuse for this; Lenovo was able to get a 14", 1600x900 panel in their X1 Carbon that walks all over the Blade's. And Alienware is offering a 1080p IPS panel on their Alienware 14, a notebook that may be thicker but offers the same GPU, an optical drive, and a faster CPU. I was stunned by the Blade's beautiful design, and I was equally stunned by its dire screen quality, which suffers from the same nasty "no correct viewing angle" problem that cheap TN panels typically do."

    Half the battery life and an awful screen (anandtech's review). Tough to spend that kinda cash while Razer continues to offer subpar displays in their products.
    Pretty sad...the pricing at $2000 for the 256gb SSD...and now you're bumping into the, albeit heavier....Alienware machines with the same GPU, 750gb HDD and 256gb SSD to boot. If you're going to buy a 'pure' gaming notebook, Apple isn't the place to look...Windows has always been better performing hardware if its FPS that you're after solely. But that price, there are faster machines with much better displays available.

    ...and when the rMBP is updated to quad core Haswell and the latest GPU, along with the beautiful retina display....unless gaming is all you do, the rMBP will trump the Razer in all other tasks (PCIe SSD, display, heat exchange and well as battery life)

    Still it looks like crap! And when you hook up an external 1080p the computer, the GPU gets brought to its knees. That 128mb pipe shows its bottleneck on the memory controller.

    Sounds like I'm 'hating' on the Razer. I'm not. It's a phenomenal package...and a slap to the face of companies like Alienware that the whole package can be a lot more refined. Other than the fingerprint magnet of the Razer finish, it's a beauty....but 90% of what we are doing with our notebooks is looking at the display! By charging what they are....why not another hundred dollar bill for a killer IPS panel @ 1600/900? Doesn't make sense. And DAMN do they heat up under load. Especially the top of the keyboard (we just bought one for our son). They absolutely got a LOT right on the 14". But how that display made it out the door is just a shame



    The 13" package isn't going to give you the 'raw power of the 15’ unfortunately. It's a dual core not a quad. It will rely on the iGPU, which is a big step up if they do the same they did with the MBA. But with the 15's quad core Haswell trimmings and even a bump to the GT750 (while just a performance boosted 650m)...and the HD5000 will be the power you're looking for it sounds like. We often run Diablo 3 on the current rMBP (15") at 'high' settings and its gorgeous. Maybe hold off for the Haswell update and buy this years model at a steep discount from the refurb department?

  21. mashinhead macrumors 68030

    Oct 7, 2003
    I'm waiting for a new rMBP, I'll see if its worth the upgrade. I kinda want a MBA but I can't bring myself to buy one. Just seems like waste of money to me, or I should say, overpriced.

    To be honest, I wouldn't even consider buying any other mac laptop less than a retina 13".

    The MBA, for the price, is underpowered, and will be obsolete soon. I don't think they are far away from putting a retina display in it so to invest in one now, seems like a wash to me. They are for casual users that want long battery life. I'm a graphics guy so for me power is the most important and the retina is thin and light enough that size isn't an issue. And to be honest I love the retina display and wouldn't go back. The MBA, at all levels, should be a sub $1000 computer at this point. At that point I would consider it as a supplemental machine.

    The 11" Air, I don't understand why that product exists. You might as well get an iPad.

    Mostly though, I'm sick of waiting. I wish they would just upgrade them already.. Apple is getting a bit slow these days... Or I'm getting impatient.
  22. mcarling macrumors 65816

    Oct 22, 2009
    Geekbench scores:
    13" rMBP 3.0GHz (early 2013): 7754
    13" MBA 1.7GHz (mid 2013): 7275
    13" rMBP 2.6GHz (early 2013): 6807
    13" MBA 1.3GHz (mid 2013): 5935

    I would buy an 11" MBA with 1080p resolution (1920x1080).

    However, at 190ppi I doubt Apple would call that a Retina display. The 13" rMBP has 227ppi and the 15" rMBP has 221ppi. 2400x1350 seems more likely, which would give an 11.6" rMBA 237ppi.
  23. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I'm passing on the Haswell iteration. I have a rMBP now, and so there's no need for me to upgrade for years.
  24. rabidz7 macrumors 65816


    Jun 24, 2012
  25. Suraj R. macrumors regular

    Feb 17, 2013
    Think you may be looking at the 32bit scores, because my 1.3 GHz mid 2013 scores 6800, and 1.7 GHz mid 2013s score 8200+.

Share This Page