Trying to decide which Macbook Air to buy

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by rkellogg9, Jun 19, 2012.

  1. rkellogg9 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    #1
    I recently sold my 2010 13" Macbook Pro and have been considering buying a new laptop. I also have a 3rd gen iPad, so I have some reservations about going with the 11" Air since the iPad can serve as my go to device for when I want something really mobile for reading and web browsing. The reason I am leaning towards an Air over a Macbook Pro is because I really wanted something light but also capable of doing something more than just consuming (the Microsoft surface actually looks like a pretty good hybrid of what I want).

    The 13" i5 with 8GB of RAM is what I think would be ideal, but I can't decide if I should go with 128 SSD or the 256. I would prefer to be able to run Windows 7 in bootcamp as I need to run Windows for most of my work. The only reason I really need to run OSX is for a medical imaging program called OsiriX that only runs on OSX. Honestly, aside from this one program and the fact that I love Apple's hardware, I would probably be inclined to pick up one of the new Zen Primes. But I loved the quality of my Macbook Pro and do like some of the features of OSX and the versatility of having the ability to use both operating systems.

    With all that being said I really am trying to decide the following based on my needs:

    Should I go with one of the 2012 Airs or go with a refurb from last year?

    If I go with a 2012 model should I go with 128 or 256 for the SSD? I have a desktop running Windows 7 that has a ton of storage so I don't necessarily need to store a ton on the Air, but I worry that running Windows 7 in Bootcamp and having duplicate files on each partition may eat up a bit of room.

    Should I even consider a 11" given that I have an iPad?

    Thanks for the input.
     
  2. kylera macrumors 65816

    kylera

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2010
    Location:
    Seoul
    #2
    I would recommend 13 with 128GB SSD and 8GB RAM, supposing your Windows box is used for work.
     
  3. LaWally macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2012
    #3
    I know some people run bootcamp on a 128GB SSD, but I would go with a 256GB just to give myself breathing room. I do not enjoy having to manage disk space regularly because I'm running low. There's a price premium of course, so ultimately it comes down to what you can afford.

    Would definitely go for the 8GB of memory.

    Your screen size question is a very personal one. I can't work with an 11" screen, so it's a 13" screen for me. Tons of folks swear by their 11" MBAs though.
     
  4. BlakeBrattina macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 10, 2011
    Location:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    #4
    I would be considering the same. My major point would be to choose between the screen size. I would hate to figure that I don't have enough room to view pages, it seems that I already have that concern with my 13".
     
  5. GREEN4U macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2010
    #5
    I'm in the exact same predicament.

    I will probably order the base model with 8GB RAM and do in-store pick up. But prior to all that I will visit the Apple stores to test drive the laptops and double check that they don't have any configuration with 8GB that doesn't include the ultimate model.
     
  6. BigSaintDogs macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    Location:
    Rhode Island, USA
    #6
    Go with the bigger Bigger SSD.

    I use a Mid 2011 MacBook Air 13 i5 with the 256G SSD and I usually sit around 200-220G Capacity. I use it for travel as I have travel with a work issued, completely locked down HP that is the only way to get work email and can only do office tasks. If I want to do anything of my own, iTunes media especially photography, I need my own. An iPad will not support RAW format for my photos so I use Aperture 3 on my MBA. I also have a 10 foot cable that is Mini display (Works in the TB Port) to HDMI so I connect it to the hotels TV and use it as a second monitor to work or stream stuff like HBOgo. I do not think I could do all I want on my Air with a 128g SSD and if I was buying the 2012 update I would surely get the 512G version. My MBA is the best and most versitile computer I have ever used.

    Bottom line is I don't think anyone has ever wished they had less storage. The data was mor important to me that an i7 over an i5 and I have never had an issue with performance of any kind.

    my 2 cents!

    Good luck deciding. It is fun to upgrade!
     
  7. GREEN4U macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2010
    #7
    I don't know. $300 is a lot of money for an upgrade you "may or may not use," and even more so considering you can use an external HD if things get really bad. It ultimately depends on the user.

    I'm only using 65gb (out of 80) on my Powerbook G4. I don't see myself doing anything else on it now, that I already do/did, so why should 128GB be a problem?
     
  8. sacricide macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    #8
    as far as ive seen, you actually have only about 100gb left after OSX and apps.

    for me id fill it up without actually putting my REAL stuff on it, IE movies, docs.
     
  9. Kungshi, Jun 19, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2012

    Kungshi macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2011
    #9
    I heard somewhere that there are refurb 2011 256g 13" Airs that are about the same price as the base 2012 models. So if the price point for extra storage is a concern you can consider that as a potential option as well.
     
  10. latestmonkey macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    #10
    i keep asking this in every thread in hopes someone has seen one:

    anyone see 8/128 in stores?
     
  11. nylon macrumors 6502a

    nylon

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2004
    #11
    I also upgraded from a 2010 machine. However, it was the 2010 MBA not the MBP. I purchased the top stock config of the 13" i.e. 256 SSD and 4GB RAM.

    My 2010 MBA struggled to run a Windows 7 VM in Fusion. However, this new Ivy Bridge Core i5 has no problems given the same amount of RAM.

    In my view 8GB of RAM is not required in the current MBA in order to run a Windows 7 VM.
     
  12. hardax macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    #12
    Depends on what store from what I have been reading. I have read maybe 2 posts total where people have found 128gb models with the upgraded ram. These were in big cities (Grand Central and one other). Later on, the people started to think that these might have been returned or never picked up BTO's.

    According to my local store, the only models carried at the store itself are the base model and the maxed out models.
     
  13. latestmonkey macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    #13
    thanks. any spotting is fine with me. I'm near Delaware and would drive over for the tax savings.
     
  14. mattopotamus macrumors G4

    mattopotamus

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2012
    #14
    yeah, the only way a store will have the 8gb, not maxed would be if a BTO was not picked up or returned.
     
  15. latestmonkey macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    #15
    So I can do a BTO ship to store?
     
  16. Aniseedvan macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 14, 2012
    Location:
    UK
    #16
    Off topic, works fine for my Olympus and nikons..

    On topic, interesting to hear the thoughts of an iPad owner and MBA, the 11" form factor still appeals..
     
  17. rkellogg9 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    #17
    Anyone have a rough idea what a 256GB module will cost in a year given what aftermarket costs now?
     
  18. islanders macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2006
    Location:
    Charleston, SC
    #18
    The USB 3 on the 2012 is very fast, and a new concept to many Mac users. In fact I would prefer 64gb hd with USB 3 opposed to 128 and usb 2, as USB 2 would be painfully slow transfering files to another HD. TB is too expensive because USB 3 transfer rate exceeds the transfer rate of 7400 RPM harddive. However, if you need the extra capacity and don't want to manage space get the larger HD.
     
  19. jojoba macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    #19
    This was my reaction, too. I have an iPad 3 gen and didn't get the 11" because I think they overlap too much. I'm really happy with my 13". I got 256 as I'm planning to keep it for a good while, but looking at it now I would have been absolutely fine with 128 since most of my stuff is either on my work computer and/or in a cloud.
     
  20. rkellogg9 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2012
    #20
    Good to hear about the 128, I heavily use the cloud as well and was hoping that would allow me to get away with 128 initially and possibly upgrade in the future.
     
  21. BigSaintDogs macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    Location:
    Rhode Island, USA
    #21
    You must not use allot of media... I tend to have TV shows, Movies and Music as well as the photos I take on the road with me. The higher quality Audio in iTunes and HD Movies really can eat up storage fast. Just something to consider.
     
  22. Daws001 macrumors 6502

    Daws001

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    Location:
    The States
    #22
    Can you store iTunes movies on a flash drive or memory card? I'm looking at getting the base 13" Air (possibly get the 8 GB upgrade) but I figured I could get by with the 128 SSD via external storage.

    If you can store iTunes movies externally, can you also just stream them from a flash drive, etc?
     
  23. BigSaintDogs macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    Location:
    Rhode Island, USA
    #23
    You can. I have several movies that I don't have in iTunes in separate files on a portable hard drive. If I download a TV Show Season from iTunes as soon as I watch it I copy it to a portable drive and delete the episodes in iTunes as I watch them. If you drag them back into iTunes from the drive they are back.
     
  24. Daws001 macrumors 6502

    Daws001

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2011
    Location:
    The States
    #24
    Awesome, thank you :)
     

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