Switch from Pro to Air

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by dissdnt, Oct 18, 2011.

  1. dissdnt macrumors 65816


    Aug 3, 2007
    I've been toiling for weeks now on what way to go. I have a 2 year old macbook pro 15 inch that i'm selling soon to get either a new pro (when the refresh comes) or a top of the line air.

    My question is there anyone that switched from a pro to an air and what are your impressions. I mostly use it for photoshop if that helps.
  2. JHUFrank macrumors 6502a


    Apr 16, 2010
    This is probably the only time you would see me arguing against the Air. I absolutely love my Air, and I'm an IT professional.
    However, if I was going to do a lot of Photoshop/Image work, I would be all over the 15" Pro with the high resolution screen, and replace the DVD with an extra drive for all of my RAW files.
  3. Benguitar Guest


    Jan 30, 2009
    I'm with you on the more hard drive space, But, Just out of curiosity wouldn't it make more sense when working with graphics to use an external monitor with a laptop anyway?

    I myself am considering making the switch from my 2008 15 inch MBP to an 11 inch MBA. I don't use any graphic intensive applications, and I don't have that much media that needs to be native on my device. (i.e. I'll just carry 2 external drives, One will have media one will be a system backup)

    If I might add a question or two to the thread, How hot does the MBA get under heavy use and how does the battery compare when you watch movies, (compared to iPad 2, iPod Touch, etc)

    I'm not really worried about battery life when it comes to my job because I will always have something to plug into, But more along the lines of watching videos off of a flash-drive on the airplane.
  4. NutsNGum macrumors 68030


    Jul 30, 2010
    Glasgow, Scotland
    Battery life on the 11" is disappointing to say the least. If you're watching videos, expect to get around 2.5 - 3 hours on a full charge.

    It can heat up quite a bit, but never so much that its uncomfortable to hold, or have sat in your lap.
  5. Benguitar Guest


    Jan 30, 2009

    So, when it comes to enjoying my media on the go, I might as-well get an iPod touch or an iPad and use a MacBook Air/MacBook/MacBook Pro for work exclusively.

    I've had little experience using the iPad in person, But I've heard it has an incredible battery life.
  6. daftpunkstu macrumors member

    Oct 17, 2011
    The ipad is the only device where i never worry about battery life, it's unbelievable, even when playing media
  7. richlee111 macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2011
    I went from the current 15" Pro that was spec'd out w/ the high-res antiglare screen and 2.3ghz processor upgrade to the 11" i7 w/ 256GB SSD. I also went and bought the Apple Thunderbolt Display to go along w/ this setup.

    I am glad I made the switch and I don't feel that I have downgraded much at all. I mainly do database and coding work, so any sort of external monitor is a must. I just happened to get the ATD.

    As for performance, I don't notice that much of a hit going to Air from the top of the line 15" Pro. Yea, some compilation and wait times are a little longer, but it isn't too bad. IMO, the performance hit will be noticeable for those who play games or do any sort of video and rendering.

    Heat-wise, I would say that the 15" does run about 10 degrees Celsius cooler on the average. Where the 15" would run between 40-50 degrees at idle to low load, the 11" would be at a bigger range of 40-60 degrees, with 50-60 being the average. And this is with the fans running at the minimum of 2000RPM. But in the end, when it comes to games, flash, and video, both machines get equally hot and the fan equally loud.

    So why did I do it? Mainly because of the portability and flexibility factor. I found that the 15" was great, and w/ the hi-res screen I did not have to use an external monitor. But it was also heavier and bulkier to carry around in general. As for the 11", this is working out as it performs well enough to be a primary day to day machine that I can either hook up to the ATD or carry around easily without feeling like I have a big laptop.

    Conclusion: You can't go wrong either way. It just depends on how you want to work.
  8. cjgonzales1900 macrumors regular

    Jan 10, 2009
    I just switched from the 2010 Unibody MacBook Pro 15". I purchased the Low end 13" air. To tell you the true I have only had my air for a couple of days. I love it so far. I use it at work and home. Its great for just laying in bed and surfing the internet. Or at work doing simple tasks. I would suggest buying the external DVD drive if that worries you about not having one.

    What i would suggest to do is when you sell your macbook pro go to apple and buy the Air. Apple has a 14 day return policy, they will give you back all your money if you return the device within the 14 days. So if you don't like it within 2 weeks you can take it back and get the pro.
  9. dissdnt thread starter macrumors 65816


    Aug 3, 2007
    Very cool. How is it on the external display, is there any graphic lag?

    I have a 30 inch dell right now I hook up to my Macbook Pro and was thinking of maybe selling this too and getting a thunderbolt, so any input on that would be great too.

    Thanks guys!
  10. Snesley Wipes macrumors regular

    Jun 29, 2009
    Went from a 2009 15" Pro fully loaded (except ssd) to my MBA. I absolutely love the portability of this little guy but miss the screen size and vid card of the pro. I don't have any regrets for the switch right now because I need mobility really bad for about 6 months, but will definately go back when the refresh/redesign occurs. I would really like to see the Pro adapt the slim design of the AIR but that probably wouldn't be good business for Apple.

  11. richlee111 macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2011
    No graphic lag.

    Do know that the ATD has a glossy screen. If you are use to that, and dont' mind it or even prefer it, it is what it is.

    Lastly, the price is not cheap, but consider the fact that other comparable displays of this type and picture quality will cost about the same, if not more. The advantage of the ATD is that it is both a display, hub, and dock all built into one. So you are getting a lot for something that just works.
  12. brandon8u macrumors member

    Aug 16, 2009
    My House
    I came from the exact same position. I have the 15" macbook pro 2009. I got the 11" air and love it, it sooooo freaking lightweight and thin. People be jelly in college classrooms when they see me. However, you might want to get the 13". 11" is tiny (however when I go back to 15" it's wayyyyy too large). But anyways I recommend the 13" because of the same resolution as our 15". So you will not notice a big difference in screen size, even though its 2" off.
  13. henry72 macrumors 65816


    Jun 18, 2009
    New Zealand
    I used to love the Air and I've owned one before (Late 2010 model).
    After all the research and compare it side by side, I just noticed that the colours on the MacBook Air is not as deep and nice compare with the MacBook Pro.

    I'm same as you going from a MacBook Pro to Air which make sense, who doesn't want to carry around a cool and light laptop? BUT, you need to consider the down side of the Air such as screen would be a big issue for you since you use Photoshop a lot and the storage as well.

    Now I''m waiting for the new MacBook Pro comes out this year. They are both awesome machine, they both have their advantages. If you ask me, I'd say get the MacBook Pro, the 15-inch is really powerful. Ask yourself is your current 15-inch too heavy for you to carry around or is fine?

    Good luck with your decision.
  14. ecib macrumors regular


    Jan 4, 2011
    As a MBA owner, I say get a 15" MBP. Don't get me wrong, -the air will be quite capable...until you compare it to the MBP :) You have to go with the best tool for the job, and in this case, the MBA is not the superior choice.

    Edit: For comparison, my girlfriend went from a 15" MBP recently to a 13" pro, so I've used all 3. I forgot to point out, as someone mentioned, that the colors on the MBP blow the MBA away (though the resolution is not as high). I thought people were just being nit-picky until I sat down with both. Media looks much more vibrant and less washed out on the MBP.
  15. jamesr19 macrumors 6502

    Nov 7, 2009
    I had a 13" pro 2009 and went to the 13" i7. It was a huge performance improvement for me and well worth it. I was looking at the 15" MBP when thinking about the Air and I slowly edged to the Air because the portability is fantastic! I can get about 7.5 hrs of lectures (I only use it for 5 but use internet, word and preview). Or take it on the train and do my work work.

    Work work involves programming using Xcode, sometimes using dreamweaver and fireworks/photoshop for graphics. It is more than capable at running all of these at once on battery. Laptop is really responsive and I don't find myself regretting not getting the MBP because the screen res is fantastic on the 13" Air and the SSD is nimble!

    Like most other I too have an external display (24" 1900x1200). With my 1280x800 MBP i would always use the display at home but now I sometimes prefer just using the Air on the desk with monitor sitting quietly behind doing nothing. I'm thinking about an ATD but can't justify the price to save plugging in one cable and I don't really need the screen res. Instead i might buy a thunderbolt -> PCI or thunderbolt->express->PCI for using a graphics card on the monitor for any video work/games
  16. henry72 macrumors 65816


    Jun 18, 2009
    New Zealand
    Agree with the screen. You have to compare it in order to know how bad the colour on the Air actually is, especially if you use Photoshop, you will need a nice screen :) The Pro is your choose man, not to mention you can upgreade the RAM on the Pro to 8GB. I believe this would be very helpful for your work.

    Well I mean the Air is still better than most Windows PC laptop though :rolleyes:
  17. convergent macrumors 68030


    May 6, 2008
    Just this week switched from a 15" 2.6Ghz Core 2 Duo Macbook Pro with 6G of RAM and Dell 30" display, to a 13" 1.8Ghz Macbook Air with 27" Thunderbolt display. I do a lot of photography and am an avid Adobe Lightroom user, and also do some Photoshop. I've not used Photoshop on it yet, but have cranked up Lightroom and it flies on the Air compared to my Pro. When I scroll through full res images on the 27" by dragging my finger across the mouse, its like flipping pages in a book. The overall speed of everything is awesome. I keep my master images on a NAS, so that's why I got the display. This gives me GigaE and if I want to add a Thunderbolt array, I've got that as an option. So far I don't think I'll need it. Its really a matter of if I can keep my steady state usage of the 256G SSD low enough to use it for my working space when processing a shoot. I was very skeptical about whether this thing was going to do what I needed, but so far I couldn't be happier.
  18. dissdnt thread starter macrumors 65816


    Aug 3, 2007
    Welp. I bit the bullet last night and picked up a 13 inch Air with 4gigs of Ram and 256 ssd. All I can say is wow. This little bastard is soooo fast. It's at least 4x faster then my macbook pro, kinda sad actually. I had it hooked up to an external 30 inch monitor all day, used photoshop etc and no problems.

    Very happy camper.

    Thanks again for all the advice. Anyone on the fence just go for it. :)
  19. Neolithium macrumors 6502a


    Jun 4, 2010
    Wherever the army needs me.
    I'm glad I did too :) These little puppies are still fantastic.
  20. convergent macrumors 68030


    May 6, 2008
    That was exactly my reaction too. If one more person says that you must go with a MBP because it has more RAM, I think I'm going to scream. RAM-SPAM... there are not a ton of users that need more than what the Air provides. I was in Best Buy tonight and walked through the Apple section and picked up the 13" MBP and MBA which were sitting there side by side. The MBP felt like a boat anchor after I've been using the MBA for a week.
  21. M-5 macrumors 65816


    Jan 4, 2008
    For the past two years I've been using a 13" MacBook Pro, 2.53GHz, 4GB Ram, 250GB HD, Intel Core 2 Duo (Mid 2009).

    I began noticing that I would get the beach ball a lot, and yesterday I downloaded from the AppStore iCleanMemory which has helped a lot, but I still feel like I want to upgrade.

    I had been using my iPad 2 for the past two months to take notes in class, and I've loved the battery life, but I felt that typing on it was too much of a pain, especially trying to format text in Pages while your professor is talking quickly. And I never really used it much to surf the web since I'd either use my MacBook Pro or iPhone 4, so I sold it yesterday.

    Now I want something in between the iPad and MacBook Pro in terms of size, and I decided on the 11" MacBook Air i5, 4GB Ram, 256 GB SD. It's going to be my sole machine, and I'm sure it will blow this MacBook Pro away. I was going to spring for the i7, but I decided against it because of the heat issue, and the fact that the speed boost wasn't very much and would only benefit me if I did video encoding or similar things like that.

    I think my mom is going to keep my MacBook Pro, and she might sell our iMac that we have at home that is beginning to age. It's an aluminum iMac, but it won't even support Lion because I think it doesn't support upgrading to 2GB of Ram. My MacBook Air won't arrive until next week, so I'll have to find a way to make-do without a laptop for a few days since I'm sending her the MacBook Pro this weekend. It's going to be quite difficult, since I'll be needing a computer for school work. :(

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