The perfect MacBook for college?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Koreos, Mar 4, 2008.

  1. Koreos macrumors member

    Mar 4, 2008
    Hello everyone,

    I'm a PC user looking forward to buy her first Apple computer. I'm going to start college this fall, and I can't decide between the white Macbook with 4GB ram, or the new sexy MacBook Air.

    I will be taking it with me everywhere, most of the time for college related stuff...
    But I have a few hobbies, such as Photoshop (I'm kind of a professional with a digital tablet and all, but would just use it for personal stuff...) and then will probably take on programming (as I'm going to major in MIS).

    I don't consider the HDD space a problem, as I want to get an external drive for backups anyway.
    I can pass without optical drive, actually I like the idea of not having one...

    Will the battery of both laptops be enough for college? what about the power/ram of the air for photoshop?

    Thank you...
  2. GimmeSlack12 macrumors 603


    Apr 29, 2005
    San Francisco
    An Air is not a primary computer and I doubt your made of money. Get the MacBook (a much better deal) and up the RAM to 2-3gigs, this is an easy decision.
  3. heatmiser macrumors 68020

    Dec 6, 2007
    What he said.
  4. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    Yeah, go the route of the MacBook. With the money you save, you can buy a 22" Display, keyboard, mouse and a 5.1 surround sound system. The chicks will dig you.
  5. AliensAreFuzzy macrumors 68000


    May 30, 2004
    Madison, WI
    I believe the OP is a girl, so I somewhat doubt that is a priority for her.

    I agree that the MacBook is probably the better idea for you. It has more power and is significantly less expensive for what you get.

    That being said, the MBA will serve you well for all that you have stated. I have an original CD MBP that I do way more than that on, and in a lot of benchmarks, the MBA is actually faster!
  6. chrismac00 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 17, 2007
    Pick the MacBook not the Air. The Air might be easier to travel, but it is in fact slower than the MacBook. It also has less HD space. Buy the MacBook and use the rest of the money that you were going to use on the MacBook Air to buy something else like an iPod, iPhone etc.
  7. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    Well, if that's the case, then the dudes will dig her.

    (I really don't want to get into the other permutations... :) )
  8. srl7741 macrumors 68020


    Jan 19, 2008
    In my world
    The MB or MBP will allow you to hit the campus running and be productive in the same ways you are with a PC. The MBA might work out as well but keep in mind some of the features or lack of features that will force you to do things differently (extra ports, disc drive etc)
  9. island macrumors 6502


    Feb 19, 2007
    Get the Air or a MacBook Pro. Personally, I hate the feel and quality of the plastic MacBooks, just my opinion after going through 3 of them.
  10. macanudo macrumors regular


    May 9, 2006
    Philadelphia, PA
    I've used all three and even though I *LOVE* my MBA, a macbook for college will probably work out better since you have all your ports and CD drive built in and it's cheaper for a lot more capability. But if weight is your #1 reason for getting a notebook, get the MBA.
  11. cherry su macrumors 65816

    cherry su

    Feb 28, 2008
    Get an external screen, keyboard, and mouse for your dorm.
  12. ChrisN macrumors 65816


    Aug 27, 2007
    Demarest, NJ
    If you said you were only going to take notes on the MBA then I said sure if you wanna spend that kind of money but because of photoshop is pretty processor intensive I would say go macbook even though the air can handle PS it will go slow on some parts.

  13. pcuser2 macrumors member

    Aug 29, 2007
    There is a guidence for what to buy. I think a macbook can be just good for you. And right now it is a quite a good time to buy a macbook, I have found a deal that apple is offering a sale on the macbook.
  14. skye12 macrumors 65816


    Nov 11, 2006
    Austin, Tx
    No air. I'd make the choice between the new MB or a refurb MBP right
    now for $1449.
  15. soms macrumors 6502


    Dec 10, 2007
  16. Koreos thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 4, 2008
    Thanks everyone for the help.
    It seems like it'll be the 2.4Ghz Macbook upped to 4GB RAM :apple:

    I think this is more powerful than my actual desktop...
  17. trip1ex macrumors 68000

    Jan 10, 2008
    I'll go against the majority and say that I would get the Air.

    I have a Core 1.83ghz iMac with 2 gigs of ram as my main computer. I find it plenty fast. A 1.6ghz Core 2 Duo Macbook Air is approximately the same speed (slightly slower clockspeed, but slightly faster architecture.) In my experience my iMac is plenty fast for compressing video, for example, on a consumer level.

    You're not going to notice the speed difference of a 2.4 ghz Macbook in daily use.

    You'll be happier carrying the MBA around campus than the Macbook. The size and weight really are dramatically smaller and lower respectively.

    The screen on the MBA is much nicer. IT's brighter. IT's an LED. It looks better.

    The MBA, of course, is sexy cool.
  18. dylangurl21 macrumors regular

    Sep 16, 2005
    Well, I personally like them both. I went and looked at a MBA and thought it was fabulous. As a main machine you might want an external HD for storage space. Depending on how much PS you do exactly, it might meet your needs for the occasional user, definintely not an everyday project. Just graduating from college having used an ibook and then a MB and now owning a MBP... I wouldn't have wanted to cart around my MBP to class and back. The MacBook was obviously the compromise between size and power but I think I could have gotten by on the MBA's power.
  19. cwebb15 macrumors newbie

    Jan 15, 2008
    Hopefully you're not buying the ram from apple! Get it from, I just maxed out my new MBP for a little more than $100. Also, check, they had the the Santa Rosa MB (black) on clearance for $1200.
  20. dylangurl21 macrumors regular

    Sep 16, 2005
    I forgot to add: I would wait until this summer when Apple traditionally runs the "buy a mac, get a free ipod" promotion that way you can get the free printer, the ipod to keep or sell to reduce the cost of your computer AND the student discount! I have used this discount on many of my machines.

Share This Page