Thinking about getting a 11" MBA

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by gadgetgirl85, Jul 14, 2014.

  1. gadgetgirl85, Jul 14, 2014
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2014

    gadgetgirl85 macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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    Mar 24, 2006
    #1
    Thinking about getting an 11" MBA to take to uni. Am just wondering whether it would be powerful enough to support a 21" HD monitor? Sorry if this is a silly question, I don't really know too much about monitors. Thanks.

    Sorry just to add on to my question - would it work ok connected to my iMac using thunderbolt? I would just be doing word processing, maybe running win 8 in bootcamp.
     
  2. BrettApple macrumors 65816

    BrettApple

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    #2
    The Intel HD 5000 GPU in the current MacBook Air is perfectly capable of driving a 1080P (full HD) display, so you should be just fine! I've had various Macs over the years, and I usually use an external monitor along with the integrated one, and they've only gotten better over time.

    With an 11" an external monitor is almost a must if you're doing much other than web browsing or simple office work as it gets cramped at 1366x768. The 13" has the same space as the 15" MacBook Pro. So it's not as big of a deal there.

    When you get the Air, I'd pick up a Thunderbolt to HDMI or DVI adapter to use with the monitor. I find DVI to work more often than HDMI, sometimes the mac will pick up an HDMI display as a TV and cause all sorts of issues. But not always the case.
     
  3. capathy21 macrumors 65816

    capathy21

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    #4
    To answer the question, yes the MBA 11 or 13 can power an external display with a resolution up to 2560x1600. Have you decided on which configuration you are going to choose (ram/SSD size etc)?
     
  4. mad3inch1na macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    Yes, it will be fine. At least in comparison to the 13" MBA. They have the same graphics card/processor, so they will run equally well.
     
  5. gadgetgirl85 thread starter macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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    #6
    I probably will just get the base. I just want something light weight I can run office on.
     
  6. capathy21 macrumors 65816

    capathy21

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    #7
    That's a good choice. My wife has the base model and loves it. I have the base model rMBP and have zero issues with the base model.
     
  7. Kristine macrumors 6502a

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    #8
    Wow, I just came here to search for information on this very same thing.

    I am about to start university in two weeks and although I already have the current top-end 15" rMBP, I do not want to carry it around university as I think it will be too large when sitting next to other students, so I was thinking one of three solutions:

    * Purchase the 11" MBA (base) for university and keep current 15" rMBP for at home.
    * Purchase the 13" MBA (base) and sell the 15" rMBP.
    * Purchase an iPad Air (base) with a keyboard case and keep current 15" rMBP.

    All I will be using my computer for is browsing the web, research and writing essays. I do not need much storage. All my files are double backed-up via NAS and cloud storage (if needed).

    I would like to keep my setup minimal (i.e. I don't want to own lots of computer stuff).

    This will be my first time back at uni in around fifteen years, and from what I have read, the students these days just type notes directly onto the powerpoint slides as the lecturer talks (i.e. students have a copy of the lecture slides before lecture starts) which is apparently better when studying for exams. I know using the 15" rMBP may be a little cramped, but all the other above possibilities could work.

    I could sell the 15" rMBP and not regret it (unless I get a dud screen), as it really is over-kill for my needs (and was bought for a special price due to problems with previous Apple 13" rMBP purchases). I did consider going back to the 13" rMBP, but all of those I have had did suffer image retention.
     
  8. gadgetgirl85 thread starter macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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    Mar 24, 2006
    #9
    Ahh you have the same pickle as me! I don't want to take my 15" rMBP to uni. But I have an iMac as well and I can't figure out what to do with my setup.
     
  9. Kristine macrumors 6502a

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    #10
    I had a 27" iMac but sold it as it felt redundant having the 15" rMBP as well.

    FYI, Dick Smith has 15% off today only on Apple Macs.

    Just deciding whether I will grab the 11" or the 13" MBA either way it'll be the base model.
     
  10. gadgetgirl85 thread starter macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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  11. Kristine macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    Both are showing in stock for me (home delivery option).

    Maybe they just replenished their available stock?

    I may head out to see if my local JB can price-match either the 11" or the 13".
     
  12. gadgetgirl85 thread starter macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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    #13
    I am tempted..do I do or don't I. Btw do you have a monitor that you hook your rMBP up to?
     
  13. Kristine macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    I'll be grabbing a monitor as well if I end up selling my 15" rMBP.
     
  14. gadgetgirl85 thread starter macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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    #15
    Ahh its all too hard LOL I think I'll pass on the sale for today. I get a pretty decent discount through my uni anyway I think about 11-12%. It's not huge on the MBA's like the rMBPs so I'm not fussed if I lose a few $$$. I need to sort out what I'm going to do setup wise before making any decisions. I only bought my rMBP 3 weeks ago so I'm going to keep that for sure. But it's definitely too big for uni.
     
  15. gadgetgirl85 thread starter macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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    #16
    Just a question - will it be faster than my 2013 iMac? For general word processing tasks etc.
     
  16. canuckRus macrumors 6502

    canuckRus

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    May 18, 2014
    #17
    memory size?

    Advised by BestBuy Geek Squad that MacBook Air 128GB does not have enough memory to properly add Windows O/S using BootCamp
     
  17. capathy21 macrumors 65816

    capathy21

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    #18
    Overall, the Geek Squad generally doesn't know what they are talking about. Your life will be better if you never seek advice from them moving forward. There are many people on these forums who actually know what they are talking about.

    I assume you meant that they said the 4GB of ram on the base model was what they perceived as "not enough memory." The 128 is the size of the storage and is more than enough to run boot camp.

    If you were running virtual machines, you may hit an issue with the 4GB of ram but for bootcamp, it is more than enough.

    As far as storage goes. 128 is pretty small if you are looking at using Windows and OSx on a regular basis. For someone like me, it would be plenty, but most users save more files locally than I do.
     
  18. MarvinHC macrumors 6502a

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    Belgium
    #19
    I tend to agree that 128GB is a bit on the low side if you want to run boot camp. For windows 7 plus office and a couple of small things you are quickly in need of 30 GB. If you want to have a bit of space for data you need to make a Bootcamp partition of about 40GB. That leaves about 80GB for the OS partition which is not a whole lot. Doable but you can rather quickly reach your limits, especially considering that you want to keep 20% or so empty to keep the SSD in good health.
     
  19. gadgetgirl85 thread starter macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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    #20
    So I've decided I'm keeping my iMac and will use that as a screen. Will interchange between the rMBP (current) and MBA that I plan to buy. Before I buy the base 11" MBA, does it make a difference on the amount of ram I have? I mean in terms of it being plugged in to the iMac and being used as a monitor.
     
  20. ioannis2005gr macrumors 6502

    ioannis2005gr

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    #21
    I am wondering ....are you happy with a "large" ipad (11" MBA monitor)? Can you write and read on a 11" MBA without glasses? I bet you need a 13" MBA with some extra RAM and you will be happy for many years ( at least 4-5) otherwise wait for the new retina 12" MBA....nothing smaller....
     
  21. Kristine macrumors 6502a

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    #22
    I've already got a top-of-the-range 15" rMBP. This is just for university lectures - so I don't have to travel with the 15" rMBP.

    I have since ruled out the 11" MBA. I will grab either a 13" base MBA or just use an iPad.
     
  22. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #23
    Why wouldn't you consider the 11" MBA?

    It's my only laptop, and I've typed 1000s of reports and notes on it. And no.....I don't have perfect vision. I have astigmatism and near-sightedness, and almost never wear my glasses.

    Heck, I started my PhD with a 12" PowerBook and was so incredibly happy with its size. Due to its 16:9 screen ratio, I can even have a Word document and PDF article open side-by-side, albeit with the Windows Snap feature turned on in BetterTouchTool, some window resizing, and playing around with the zoom until it's perfect. Having said that, the 13" MBA isn't any better for that.

    Besides, if you already have a 15" Retina MBP, why buy the 13"? The 13" could even serve as your regular home computer. Otherwise, sell the 15" rMBP and buy a higher spec 13" Retina MBP and use that in class.

    The 13" rMBP is only a tiny bit heavier than the MBA, and actually has a smaller footprint. It would fit better on small tables!!
     

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