Upgrade Air or go Pro?

joshuaginter

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 19, 2011
152
0
Canada
This is another one of those "should I" threads.

I have a 2011 11" base model 11" Air with 4GB of RAM and the 64GB of storage. This is my only computer. I have worked hard with keeping my iTunes library on an external drive and keeping major files off of the main storage. I am sick and tired of worrying about what I can and can't put on my computer.

So, the question is: Should I grab a 180GB SSD via OWC or sell the Air and get a base model 13" Pro?

I would have to add an SSD to the Pro. Either aftermarket or BTO. Once you go SSD, you can't go back.

Of course, people are going to say that it is all dependent on my needs. But put yourself in my shoes and let me know what you would do!

Thanks a bunch in advance!
 

Kyllle

macrumors 6502
Apr 25, 2011
290
0
Why not get a 13" 128gb air? It would end up costing less than a 13 pro + ssd, and you get to keep the form factor of the air.
 

joshuaginter

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 19, 2011
152
0
Canada
Why not get a 13" 128gb air? It would end up costing less than a 13 pro + ssd, and you get to keep the form factor of the air.
Valid point. Very valid point.

Any idea on the performance of the 13" Air on a Thunderbolt Display? Right now, the 11" Air really gears up to power the Display. I just assumed the Pro would handle it in a more efficient and cooler way, therefore I had completely disregarded the 13" Air from my list of options.

Thanks.

----------

I would go 13" Pro with 64GB SSD + 500GB in an optibay.
What is your reasoning?

Thanks.
 

johnhurley

macrumors 6502a
Aug 29, 2011
777
55
This is another one of those "should I" threads.

I have a 2011 11" base model 11" Air with 4GB of RAM and the 64GB of storage. This is my only computer. I have worked hard with keeping my iTunes library on an external drive and keeping major files off of the main storage. I am sick and tired of worrying about what I can and can't put on my computer.

So, the question is: Should I grab a 180GB SSD via OWC or sell the Air and get a base model 13" Pro?

I would have to add an SSD to the Pro. Either aftermarket or BTO. Once you go SSD, you can't go back.

Of course, people are going to say that it is all dependent on my needs. But put yourself in my shoes and let me know what you would do!

Thanks a bunch in advance!
If you can wait ... then just sit until march 2012 at which time future direction of apple's product line should be clear.

There's nothing wrong with the macbook pro's and a base 13 inch pro with an ssd upgrade is a very nice machine.

Lots of 2011 air's now starting to appear as refurbs on apple store ... they go pretty fast I think but they are out there.

Another option is find someone to trade with that has what you want and ante up some cash.
 

Maven1975

macrumors 6502a
Aug 24, 2008
893
118
If you have another device for heaving lifting (Video Compression) and or not relying on it to be an all in one wonder, get the Air.

IMHO, the 13" MBP is garbage. Sure it has a faster CPU, but no dedicated graphics lower resolution screen and heavier. If your gonna go pro, 15 is the only option.
 

joshuaginter

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 19, 2011
152
0
Canada
If you have another device for heaving lifting (Video Compression) and or not relying on it to be an all in one wonder, get the Air.

IMHO, the 13" MBP is garbage. Sure it has a faster CPU, but no dedicated graphics lower resolution screen and heavier. If your gonna go pro, 15 is the only option.
I do not have another machine to do heavy lifting. I don't need a computer to do heavy lifting at all. Simply text documents and beginner iOS programming for me.

I figured the 13" Pro might have been more of a "future proof" idea in regards to app development. Maybe I am dreaming.

Thanks
 

Maven1975

macrumors 6502a
Aug 24, 2008
893
118
I do not have another machine to do heavy lifting. I don't need a computer to do heavy lifting at all. Simply text documents and beginner iOS programming for me.

I figured the 13" Pro might have been more of a "future proof" idea in regards to app development. Maybe I am dreaming.

Thanks
It might be more future proof (Due to CPU), but I think the spread between the two over a couple of years, possibly less depending on your upgrade habits, is not worth the extra cash. If the HD size works for you in the Air, go for it.
 

odin2free

macrumors member
Oct 10, 2011
46
0
Throughout time and space
Go with the air for lighter stuff..
only problem i have with the air is that you cannot get that extra memory, your limited to 4gb if i knew and really searched the macbook air would have gone pro instead and a 15 inch, only with a 128ssd prob would have gotten the ssd from another place instead of apple though...

But im working with aperture and photoshop...so its intensive of course...
get to take baby steps though which is nice for learning patience...
 

cedwhatev

macrumors 6502
Oct 22, 2011
312
33
Canada
How many gigs of music do you need to hold?

Reason I ask is because I was worried about the same thing going from my 320GB HDD to my 128GB SSD, but it's worked out pretty good so far, I must say. I had alot of movies, music and TV shows on my old laptop, but I put all the show and movies on my WD External Hard Drive, and put all my music on my SSD, and still have over 100 gigs left.
 

jmoore5196

macrumors 6502a
May 19, 2009
767
261
Midwest US
I'm not sure how you concluded that the 11" MBA has to work hard to power the TBD, but I won't argue the point.

The Achilles' Heel in your current machine is the size of the SSD. I'd opt for another 11" - if you like the form factor; 13" MBA if you don't - with a larger SSD.

As another poster has already said, moving to the 13" MBP is a downgrade in many ways. If you're going to go Pro, go to the 15" instead.

I daresay you'll miss the 11" form factor if you opt for something else. To my mind, the 11" i5 with 128GB is the sweet spot in the lineup ... thus far, it's handled everything I've thrown at it. Performance difference from my C2D machines is night-and-day in many instances.
 

cedwhatev

macrumors 6502
Oct 22, 2011
312
33
Canada
Yeah, stuff like music, I'd keep on... but I've learned to keep my movies on the external drive, because really, if you want to watch a movie, you can just as well copy it onto your SSD then delete it. I've got over 600GB of movies and TV shows on my 1TB WD HDD. It just becomes too much after a while, no matter how big of a drive you have, and a line has to be drawn.

My advice would be sell your Air, and if you're willing to spend the money, go with the 128 or 256 SSD, because I understand where you're coming from. Or if it's cheaper, go with the 13" Pro and upgrade to the SSD. It's really moreso what you want to spend and what you want. IF I were in your predicament, I would sell my Air, and buy another 11" Air with 128 or 256, which I plan on doing eventually. :)
 

joshuaginter

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 19, 2011
152
0
Canada
I'm not sure how you concluded that the 11" MBA has to work hard to power the TBD, but I won't argue the point.

The Achilles' Heel in your current machine is the size of the SSD. I'd opt for another 11" - if you like the form factor; 13" MBA if you don't - with a larger SSD.

As another poster has already said, moving to the 13" MBP is a downgrade in many ways. If you're going to go Pro, go to the 15" instead.

I daresay you'll miss the 11" form factor if you opt for something else. To my mind, the 11" i5 with 128GB is the sweet spot in the lineup ... thus far, it's handled everything I've thrown at it. Performance difference from my C2D machines is night-and-day in many instances.
I have a Thunderbolt Display, and I do not know if the Air is actually "working hard" to power the Thunderbolt Display but it sure gets loud after 15 minutes of browsing the web. The fan gets loud and the entire body gets surprisingly warm, so I just assumed the Air had a difficult time powering the big display.

I definitely know what you mean in regards to the power of the Air. I have no problems in regards to processing power, I was just worried about the heat of the machine when hooked up to the big display.

Do you have any real experience in regards to the difference in form factor between the 11" and the 13"? Is it quite different from day to day use?

Thanks for your advice!

----------

Yeah, stuff like music, I'd keep on... but I've learned to keep my movies on the external drive, because really, if you want to watch a movie, you can just as well copy it onto your SSD then delete it. I've got over 600GB of movies and TV shows on my 1TB WD HDD. It just becomes too much after a while, no matter how big of a drive you have, and a line has to be drawn.

My advice would be sell your Air, and if you're willing to spend the money, go with the 128 or 256 SSD, because I understand where you're coming from. Or if it's cheaper, go with the 13" Pro and upgrade to the SSD. It's really moreso what you want to spend and what you want. IF I were in your predicament, I would sell my Air, and buy another 11" Air with 128 or 256, which I plan on doing eventually. :)
I agree. Having the movies on the external is the plan. But even just my music would fill what is left of my 64GB of storage.

I guess I made a mistake when grabbing the 64GB....
 

cedwhatev

macrumors 6502
Oct 22, 2011
312
33
Canada
No worries, man... live and learn. I knew going into getting mine, that 64GB wouldn't do me, so I opted for the 128. You should be able to get most of your money back selling yours, as it's a 2011 and still pretty much brand new.
 

seepel

macrumors 6502
Dec 22, 2009
471
0
I have a Thunderbolt Display, and I do not know if the Air is actually "working hard" to power the Thunderbolt Display but it sure gets loud after 15 minutes of browsing the web. The fan gets loud and the entire body gets surprisingly warm, so I just assumed the Air had a difficult time powering the big display.
I have an 11" that I use with a 27" ACD all the time and I haven't experienced this... I do use click2flash though maybe flash is causing it? The graphics card is plenty to handle the display, I also ran the same display with the old 9400M in my previous MBP without a hitch.
 

Risasi

macrumors 6502
Sep 16, 2011
338
0
Not a very sizable iTunes library. Overall, 20GB, which includes music, movies, apps and books. But that would grow if I actually had some space to take up.
20GB? Yeah, it could grow, but how much between now and April of next year? The reason I asked is there are plenty of guys how have ghetto rigged micro SD cards into the Air for an extra 32GB or so. You could do that on the cheap and tide yourself over until next year, then decide. Just a thought...
 

Neolithium

macrumors 6502a
Jun 4, 2010
563
0
Wherever the army needs me.
TBH if your current MBA suits your needs speed wise I'd just get an OWC upgrade on it. There's no point in grabbing the next gen or next model size up just to get a bigger SSD in it, when you can actually just upgrade the puppy. That's just my take, everyone is different so no matter what it's best to tailor it to your own personal needs.
 

joshuaginter

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 19, 2011
152
0
Canada
TBH if your current MBA suits your needs speed wise I'd just get an OWC upgrade on it. There's no point in grabbing the next gen or next model size up just to get a bigger SSD in it, when you can actually just upgrade the puppy. That's just my take, everyone is different so no matter what it's best to tailor it to your own personal needs.
This was what I was thinking going into the creation of the thread.

The hardest part about getting a brand new machine is the fact that I have to sell my current 11" Air. Yes, I should be able to get almost full value. But selling it is never the easiest thing in the world.

----------

20GB? Yeah, it could grow, but how much between now and April of next year? The reason I asked is there are plenty of guys how have ghetto rigged micro SD cards into the Air for an extra 32GB or so. You could do that on the cheap and tide yourself over until next year, then decide. Just a thought...
Right idea, minus the fact that I have an 11" Air, which I think I specified earlier. SD Card slot would be very nice; another positive for the Air/13" Pro idea.
 

joshuaginter

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 19, 2011
152
0
Canada
Bummer, sorry I missed that.

---
P.S. How about something like this:
http://www.amazon.com/Lexar-Echo-ba...f=sr_1_19?s=pc&ie=UTF8&qid=1321936391&sr=1-19

Do you think you could live with it sticking out and maybe move your music to it for the time being? (I'm just looking for a way to give you breathing room for a few months until we see what comes out next year)
Wow. That thing is tiny! I could definitely live with something like that. Will consider it.

I appreciate the help.
 

Risasi

macrumors 6502
Sep 16, 2011
338
0
Ok, cool.

Just be sure to shop them. I'd read through reviews on a couple different brands. It looks like there are a few out there in the 32GB size that can be had for around $50-60.
 

VMMan

macrumors 6502a
Mar 29, 2009
766
238
Just carry a USB flash drive?

The MBP 13" is not bad. You can add RAM and an SSD in an "OptiBay" so it is more like buying a pair of pants with an elastic "comfort" waist -- grows with you.
 
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