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Jinbei

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 18, 2018
72
72
Hello,

I am junior web developper and I am hesitating between the macbook air M1 512GB 8 Core and Macbook pro M1 256GB (same price).

MBP Pros :
- Better battery life (around 20%)
- Brighter display
- Fans to reduce throttling
- Better sound
- Better microphones

MBA Pros :
- More storage (faster ssd ??). On my current 256MBP I have 50GB free only.
- Better form factor and more pleasing to my eyes
- No touchbar (my first mbp had a hardware failure on the touchbar)
- Design that will not get refreshed next year, hence will likely lose less value

Which one would you chose ? I am also not sure if the MBP has a faster power plug ?
 

Jinbei

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 18, 2018
72
72
For what it is worth, I’m a full stack web developer and app developer and use a base MacBook Air.

Don’t need a lot of juice to run a Text Editor.
What made you chose the air over the pro ?
 

revs

macrumors 6502
Jun 2, 2008
439
338
UK
Choose either. Both are more than fast enough for web development.

I can't see any sort of web development ever stressing or kicking on the fans. Even if it had a pretty complicated backend (e.g. .NET server side code) that would be a few moments of compiling and then nothing.
 
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wyrdness

macrumors regular
Dec 2, 2008
229
244
I'd go with Air with more memory / ssd over the Pro. Let's look at your list:

MBP Pros :
- Better battery life (around 20%) - only useful if you're away from power for a very long time
- Brighter display - Air display is still plenty bright. I usually keep mine at 50-75% brightness.
- Fans to reduce throttling - Web development shouldn't cause throttling. It only happens when running cpu's flat out for >8 minutes.
- Better sound - Not necessary for web development. Air sound isn't bad, but I haven't compared them.
- Better microphones - as above.
 
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Zazoh

macrumors 65832
Jan 4, 2009
1,502
1,093
San Antonio, Texas
What made you chose the air over the pro ?

1. No touch bar. I like tactile use of function keys.
2. No fan, working remote I use Zoom daily, fans suck on open Mic.
3. Simplicity, one thing less to break, no fan.
4. Unless you compile large code repositories, programming is the least intensive workflow on a computer.
5. Cost. With my Mac Mini trade, final cost was $669. When I buy a new computer in 18 months I won’t feel bad.

People will argue with me, but “Pro” means nothing. The M1 MBP is not specked for pros, whatever that means. To me, it is Finneas O’ Connell, Billie Eilish’s brother making an album, or a Pixar animator, or graphics 3D designer, or an A/V person who never has enough ports.

Coding, office work, white color workers do not need high end machines. I’ve done my job on a Chromebook for a year. Not one single issue.

Most us us just need a portal to a server somewhere to work. The internet serves this purpose.
 
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Jinbei

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 18, 2018
72
72
You guys made pretty good points.

One of the most compelling aspect of the air would be the lowest chance of hardware failure : no touchbar and no fans. I've had a pretty bad experience of my Touchbar blinking all the time, had to replace the whole bottom part of my MBP.

I've also read that a computer with low storage available might get slower. I've only got 50gb of free storage on my current one...

So the MBA with 8cores and 512GB of storage should hit the sweet spot for me.
 

usernametakenforever

macrumors newbie
Mar 19, 2020
28
22
Coming from 2014 MBP 15" it was a torture to work on 13" MBP. By the end of the day my palms were crying in pain due to sharp edges. I sold my 2020 4tb 13" MBP for M1 air and its been such a relief. I'm a SRE at big fintech and I work 90% on cloud using safari, terminal, and VScode and with slack, WhatsApp, Spotify running locally.

Battery has been nothing but amazing. Unplugged it yesterday morning before work and I still have 20% left. This should see me through for another 2-3 hours before I pack up for the day.
 
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