Souped-up 13" MBA or 11" MBA + iMac?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by ltsching, Oct 27, 2010.

  1. ltsching macrumors member

    Feb 7, 2008
    I currently have the Rev. A MBA with the RunCore 128 G SSD. The machine is about two years old and runs fairly well except for running Aperture 3 and iPhoto. The one USB port is very limiting. I am thinking of upgrading to the new MBAs and am having a hard time figuring out the ultimate setup. I am afraid the maxed out new 13" (256 G, 4 G) might not be too much of a upgrade over my present machine. I am tempted by a two-machine setup with an iMac and the 11" MBA (128 G, 4 G) where I will put all my media on the iMac and run CPU-intense task on it and use the 11" for writing, surfing, video viewing and making presentations on the road. So, the simple question: one machine or two? Thanks.
  2. MUBiomed macrumors 6502


    Apr 24, 2010
    Just my opinion:

    I would rather have a 2 machine setup (similar to the one I actually have). You can see my machines in the signature. I use the iMac for any heavy lifting (video encoding/CS4/gaming), but I can tell you that the base model 11" MBA is very capable. It loads CS4 very quickly (mainly using dreamweaver/photoshop) and plays games very capably as well. I would not be concerned about a faster clocked processor or more RAM if this is to be a secondary machine. It has been very useful while carrying around campus. It is amazingly portable. The 13" is as well but nothing can beat the size and feel of the 11.6" MBA in terms of feel and mobility. I definitely recommend Dropbox or MobileMe if you do go with the two machine setup. Nothing beats taking notes in class and then going home to find them automatically on your iMac too.

    I personally prefer two machines but ultimately it is up to you. Opinion threads are so pointless in that you are basically looking for someone to convince you enough to make a decision. You are the final person who has to deal with it though. GL :apple:
  3. ltsching thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 7, 2008
    Thanks for the response. I guess I just needed someone to nudge me toward the two-computer setup. I've always had only one computer so am a bit hesitant. Thanks again.
  4. Fuchal macrumors 68020

    Sep 30, 2003
    I think two computer is the way to go. Can't beat the large IPS display and pure speed of the desktop with any laptop.
  5. Jaro65 macrumors 68040


    Mar 27, 2009
    Seattle, WA
    Just like MUBiomed noted, the Dropbox or MobileMe is the way to go. I use MobileMe and I love the fact that it will take care of synching my files, contacts, calendars, etc. This to me made the use of multiple machines almost transparent.
  6. i0Nic macrumors 65816

    May 17, 2006
    Sydney, Australia
    I'm in the same boat, deciding whether to keep my MBP+display setup or get an iMac and MBA 11''. Look forward to hearing more responses.

    Mainly concerned with keeping things in sync - I think media will be the most difficult.
  7. 1appleAday macrumors regular

    Mar 27, 2008
    Definitely 2 machine: iMac as workhorse, 11" Air for travel or get around the house. If you can afford it, why limit yourself? ;)
  8. PaulMarkZA macrumors newbie

    Jul 20, 2010
    I'm facing the same decision. I have a 2.8Ghz Quad Core iMac for the heavy lifting. I would use the Air mainly for e-mail, browsing, working with the Office suite and for transferring photos and videos to when my camera's memory card fills up. Only on rare occasions will do I envisage needing to do any editing of photos or movies on the Air. It seems like the 11 inch will suffice as whilst it may not be the most efficient for Aperture, PS etc it is at least capable in a pinch.

    Has anyone tried importing 1080p video from a high-def camera to the 11 inch air? I accept it will be very slow but is it as least workable?
  9. MacModMachine macrumors 68020


    Apr 3, 2009

Share This Page