Thinking of getting a MBA 11.6" - But What Ram?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by aircanman, Jul 30, 2012.

  1. aircanman macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    Getting rid of the MBP as it hardly gets any use, but it has 8GB ram and uses about 5GB of it most of the time, but....

    Does the MBA need 8GB? - With it being a SSD even if it did use the swap file it would be much quicker than the HDD wouldn't it, or would I really benefit from the extra RAM?

    Any help would be appreciated.
     
  2. mrs1986 macrumors regular

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    Apr 21, 2011
    Location:
    Uruguay
    #2
    You have to have in mind that the OS generally uses as much ram as it can, if you have less it will use less...

    About the paging... I dont know how fast would be but a lot better than the hdd though
     
  3. aircanman thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #3
    My MBP was at the edge with 4GB, but works better with 8. Not sure what to do. Want to keep the bill down as much as poss. Will prob be speccing a 512GB SSD :s
     
  4. asting macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2012
    #4
    If you're trying to keep the bill down then pick up a OWC aftermarket ssd.
    Your price is then 1199+644 (1843) vs 2k. Add the i7 and 8gb ram and you're still only at $2043, which is $43 more than just the base i5, 512gb ssd, 4gb ram. You will also then have a 128gb ssd that you can sell on ebay for someone who needs a replacement or wants to swap it out for the 64gb in the 11", saving you even more money.

    link

    If you're thinking about getting the i5 and 4gb ram, you can save even more money. buy it from b&h for $1139 with no tax and free shipping. That will save you a lot more.
     
  5. mrs1986 macrumors regular

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    #5
    Why spend that much on a hard drive? Buy an external usb 3.0 and it will be ok
     
  6. MacLappy macrumors regular

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    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    Singapore
    #6
    OSX really benefits from increased ram as it actually uses it, so yes the ram upgrade is a really good choice. Also it increases the amount of ram allocated to the integrated video card which is a huge plus if you intend to game on the macbook air. :D
     
  7. Capt Underpants macrumors 68030

    Capt Underpants

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    #7
    If you're going to splurge on the SSD, it would be stupid not to upgrade to 8 GB RAM. You can't upgrade your RAM later; it's soldered to the logic board.
     
  8. mrs1986 macrumors regular

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    #8
    Thats a good point... I'm so angry about not having the oportinity of buying a 8gb ram air... Why is so hard to make them and sell them everywhere... :( :( :(
     
  9. MacLappy macrumors regular

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    #9
    I know how you feel, ordered mine from apple direct, would have been so much easier if I could just purchase it at an apple store. The wait was intense! :p
     
  10. plucky duck macrumors 6502

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    Jan 5, 2012
    #10
    paging to ssd, is it that noticeably slow? Or can one really get by not getting a significant hit on performance?
     
  11. ixodes macrumors 601

    ixodes

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    Jan 11, 2012
    Location:
    Pacific Coast, USA
    #11
    Use this procedure below on your current Mac. It will give you the most accurate read on what your currently using.

    Using Mac Activity Monitor

    Learn how to use Activity Monitor to read System Memory and determine how much RAM is being used. The types of System Memory are: Free, Wired, Active, and Inactive memory. Additionally, learn what Used, VM size, Page ins / Page outs, and "Swap used" mean

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1342
     
  12. mrs1986 macrumors regular

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    Apr 21, 2011
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    Uruguay
    #12
    My concern isnt the wait, that would be the less painfull lol, the problem is that apple store online wont charge my credit card, i'm from uruguay... You can only buy in the apple store online if you are from usa... B&H actually has the 8gb MBA, but it wont send it to me unless i'm in a residential adress... Bummer... I'm in a hotel lol :p
     
  13. MacLappy macrumors regular

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    Jul 28, 2011
    Location:
    Singapore
    #13
    Wow, sorry to hear that. Never would have figured that it would be hard to order direct from apple, somehow I had the impression that they shipped worldwide. Really hope that you can find a macbook air with the desired specification ASAP.

    P.S. Just a side thought, maybe you could drop Tim Cook a nice mail stating the issue that you have and hopefully an apple stuff would contact you to see how arrangements can be made to get the macbook air to you. He is known to be really helpful. Alternatively you could request your local mac dealer to custom order one for you but the wait would be major long, round about 6 to 8 weeks.
     
  14. mrs1986 macrumors regular

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    Apr 21, 2011
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    Uruguay
    #14
    I difnt think of that, seems like a nive idea... My friend (the one who will receive the laptop for me) is going to be like a month there... But sometimes the apple times are really large... Lets see what can i do with B&H...
    Thanks for the coment :)

    Ohh and its just policy <--- (Is that word correct?) of apple, they wont sent to a hotel because the laptops are not supposed to be exported, is reasonably, but hell, i could buy a plane ticket and come here to orlando or miami to buy the laptop and still be cheaper than in my country lol :p
     
  15. MacLappy macrumors regular

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    Jul 28, 2011
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    Singapore
    #15
    2010 13" = 13 inch, core2duo 1.86ghz, 2gb ram, 128gb flashdrive.
    2011 13" = 13 inch, sandybridge i5 1.7ghz, 4gb ram, 128gb flashdrive.
    2012 11" = 11 inch, ivybridge i7 2ghz, 8gb ram, 128gb flashdrive.

    All systems were used in conjunction with a Dell 30" monitor, native resolution of 2560x1600. For ease of explanation I will only be using gaming in world of warcraft as a reference point.

    With the 2010 13" paging happens relatively quick due to it's low amount of ram, the slow down is quite noticeable. If I had to give an analogy the difference would be between walking and crawling.
    With the 2011 13" paging happens after a longer period in the game compared to the 2010 13". At which point it "crawls". It does however "crawl" faster than the 2010 13".
    With the 2012 11" no paging happens thus no slow downs, ever after hours of prolong gaming.

    Hope that helps to shed light on your area of concern. :D
     
  16. plucky duck macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2012
    #16
    Sweet, you just saved me $100. I use it for the usual web browsing, email, casual gaming, and streaming of media. I don't use VMWare or Parallel, I simply bootcamp into Windows 7 for my gaming needs.

    Unless Windows 8 is a real memory hog otherwise it should be fine.
     
  17. MacLappy macrumors regular

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    Jul 28, 2011
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    Singapore
    #17
    Actually I was trying to express the huge benefit of the added amount of ram, the 2012 11" does not magically handle ram more efficiently, the reason that no paging was experienced in the above example is really due to the larger amount of ram. Although the faster flash drives would make paging seem more tolerable to some. :D
     
  18. aircanman thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Feb 2, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #18
    Looks like 8GB is the answer, in reply to someone saying use an external drive, I would do this, but am worried....

    For example, if I were to put my films on an external, would the mac recognise this when iTunes is on? Or would I have to 'search' for the files all the time? Would the same go for the iPhoto Library? Would I be able to map the library to this external drive permanently, even though the drive wont be connected permanently.
     
  19. aircanman thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Feb 2, 2011
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    UK
    #19
    Took the plunge and went for an 11.6" with 256GB and 8GB RAM, now the week and a half wait for it to be sent out!
     
  20. swordfish5736 macrumors 68000

    swordfish5736

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2007
    Location:
    Cesspool
    #20
    You can point iTunes and iPhoto to your libraries no problem. Sometimes iTunes will try and create a new library if the drive isn't there but only if you try to open iTunes when it's not hooked up.

    I used to keep my iTunes library on my time capsule and it worked flawlessly

    Congrats you'll love it
     

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