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Kylekest

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 26, 2014
3
0
Hello everyone, if I were to order a new base configuration 13' MBA but upgraded to 8gb ram (I have been told it would be more beneficial to upgrade ram than processor, correct?) would I expect to lose or gain battery life, based on mainly a college workload (typing, internet, multitasking, lots of video watching)? Thanks!

Kyle
 

maflynn

Moderator emeritus
May 3, 2009
69,969
38,309
For your stated usage, 8gb will be more then enough, I'd say its not really needed. Likewise for any cpu upgrade, you'll not see any appreciable performance improvement.

As for impacting the battery, it really won't have a negative effect on battery life.
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G5
Jul 30, 2003
12,502
3,837
Delaware
Just my opinion - if you have more memory to use, you can multitask more effectively. Running more apps at once, so more processor use, and higher battery drain. But, you'll get the tasks done more quickly, so the high drain will be somewhat shorter duration. So, I think that battery use with more RAM will balance out - (not a lot of difference due to the amount of RAM installed.)
But, some activities, because there's more RAM available, may run more efficiently, and result in some improvement in battery life, given exactly the same tasks.
 

Meister

Suspended
Oct 10, 2013
5,456
4,309
For your stated usage, 8gb will be more then enough, I'd say its not really needed. Likewise for any cpu upgrade, you'll not see any appreciable performance improvement.

As for impacting the battery, it really won't have a negative effect on battery life.

Maflynn is right. If your stated usage is complete then 4gb are more than sufficient.
i7 instead of i5 supposedly decreases battery so ive heard.
 

BrickbookPro

macrumors regular
Jul 26, 2011
175
99
On my 2013 base config 11".
I have had no issues running my mail app, pages, numbers, keynote, while backing up with time machine and listening to iTunes and then uploading pictures with lightroom 4 (yes, all at once). I don't see you needing 8gb but I suppose it will hurt nothing but your wallet.
 

alphaod

macrumors Core
Feb 9, 2008
22,182
1,240
NYC
You're not going to lose or gain battery life.

And the other member saying you lose battery going to the i7? No, actually since it completes tasks and drops to idle (low power) states faster, you actually save power. But you don't need it, so don't bother with this upgrade; the base processor is more than fast enough to do everything you listed and more.

For a computer that you can't really upgrade later, I would get the 8GB even if you don't think you'll need it. This is because 4GB is just enough for now, but what about when you need to run those heavy applications for school? Now if this was some other Mac and you were asking about 16GB, I would sway you away from it.

Save the money from that processor upgrade and buy yourself AppleCare; that's better value.
 

MacLC

macrumors 6502
Oct 18, 2013
408
262
Hello everyone, if I were to order a new base configuration 13' MBA but upgraded to 8gb ram (I have been told it would be more beneficial to upgrade ram than processor, correct?) would I expect to lose or gain battery life, based on mainly a college workload (typing, internet, multitasking, lots of video watching)? Thanks!

Kyle

Great question and great decision. Some info on the ram type is available at this website with which I have no affiliation.

MBAs use LPDDR3 which basically means that any RAM not used uses virtually zero power. It's a win-win situation for users who get 8gigs because as others have said you'll get some stuff done faster thus using less power and anything unused won't use power. Regular DDR3 and even DDR3L still use a bit of power even when not in use.
 
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