Upgrade MBA to 256GB or purchase external HD?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by vazelos, Aug 21, 2011.

  1. vazelos macrumors member

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    Aug 7, 2011
    #1
    Helllo I recently purchased a 13" MBA. I am very happy with it, I actually love it which is why I am considering exchanging it from the 128GB model to the 256GB, and if I am to do that I would definitely see if they have any i7s.
    My only reason for not doing so is I`m wondering if it really is worth it. I have another laptop that I can download movies/music and store pictures so I don't have to use this MBA for those purposes but like I said I love it and want it to be my main laptop, not be limited in any way.
    So is $450 worth the upgrade to 256 GB and i7?
    Can I purchase a very quick reliable, large portable external HD and a very good large micro sd card to keep in the machine as another way of increasing the memory, for much less?
    I`ve heard of things like server2me and the capabilities of cloud, I`m wondering if I can manage keeping all the files(movies/photos/music) on the aforementioned software and have access to all that media on my mba just as easily as it being stored here?

    Please chime in, sorry for the disorganized post :eek:
     
  2. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #2
    For you, if you can afford it, yes. :D
     
  3. vazelos thread starter macrumors member

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    #3
    I mean I'm a law school student, not really going to be working until the spring of 2012 lol, once the school year ends. I can afford the $450 but it's not like I have it to just throw it down.. if you get what I'm saying
     
  4. AppleTech22 macrumors 6502

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    #4
    The MacBook Air is my main machine and I just simply would not be able to have it fit into my life if it didn't have the 256GB option. I have too much stuff for 128 and to have a ton of drives to be screwing around with, it is just easier to have more onboard. I use one USB 320GB drive that has extra iTunes movies and Final Cut Projects and then some backed up personal files.
     
  5. vazelos thread starter macrumors member

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    Aug 7, 2011
    #5
    thanks for the post apple tech. It looks like I`ll upgrade to the 256GB.. Do you know if I have to erase all my data before I bring it in for the exchange?
    Also do you have any recommendations on an external HD? Something light/portable.

    Do you recommend spending another $120 or so to upgrade the processor?
    I have heard there is not much difference between the i5 and i7, not enough to justify $120-$140 whatever the price is.
    Is it true that the i7s also get much hotter than the i5s?
     
  6. IngerMan macrumors 6502a

    IngerMan

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    #6
    If you want time to consider, you always have the option of doing an upgrade from OWC (otherworldcomputing.com) They sell speedy blade drives for the new MBA and the prices keep dropping. At the moment the 240 GB SSD is $479, that along with selling your old 128 SSD on ebay for an easy $100.

    Just an option down the road. You are not stuck with the lower storage, and the price for an upgrade is pretty close to Apple.
     
  7. jmpnop macrumors 6502a

    jmpnop

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    Aug 8, 2010
    #7
    MBA is for portability. If you're carrying loads of portable hard drives and stuff along with it, it doesn't serve the purpose. If you can afford it, go with it.
     
  8. kilonet macrumors member

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    Jul 21, 2011
    #8
    You can upgrade later even bigger than 256GB by replacing the SSD drive by yourself.
     
  9. vazelos thread starter macrumors member

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    Aug 7, 2011
    #9

    I`m not very tech savvy :( but I`m sure I am capable if I took the time to research/learn.
    That's good to know though, thank you

    ----------

    Yea, like I mentioned before, I didn't know that, so that's good. I`m just wondering how difficult it is to do?

    ----------

    well I have seen small external hard drives that are very light and portable and only need a usb cable to connect to the laptop, i believe. I'm just not sure which brand/model is the best in terms of speed/price/reliability.

    Also, the hd would mainly serve as a means to hold ALL my movies/pictures/music, and I would put a select few files on my MBA.
     
  10. IngerMan macrumors 6502a

    IngerMan

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    #10
    Many users on this forum have done it. They have a very nice video on there website showing how to do it. otherworldcomputing.com type macbook air in the search tab and you will see the ssd blades. Pick one 180, 240, 360, 480. in the lower specs it will have video on installation. Looks pretty darn easy and they even give you the tools.

    ----------


    I have a Western Digital 320 GB passport USB 2.0 and I also have a OWC 500 GB Elite Pro something. There are many great external HD's. If I was going to buy just one I would probably pick the OWC on the go HD which is USB3 & 2. I like the looks of it mostly and it is USB 3 compatible for the future.
     
  11. vazelos thread starter macrumors member

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    #11
    thanks for all the help..
    It does seem though that the prices for SSDs is rather high and even if I were to sell mine would still be about $200 more than just getting the upgrade of the whole machine from apple?
     
  12. bizzle macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    I'd get an external if you just need it for data rarely accessed. Keep the stuff you need daily on the machine. They may external hard drives so small these days its no big deal.

    http://g-technology.com/products/g-drive-slim.cfm

    Saw one of these at work and they are so slim they'll fit in a sleeve with your Air.
     
  13. phyzics101 macrumors regular

    phyzics101

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    #13
    I just did this a week ago. If you have the money do the same. I love having the extra room.
     
  14. IngerMan, Aug 21, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2011

    IngerMan macrumors 6502a

    IngerMan

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    #14
    I am not sure how you get $200 more. The cost of a 240GB is and people are selling the 128 for Difference is .... The cost for the apple 128 to 256 is

    Apple upgrade $300, OWC $479, Sell it on ebay easy $179 = Net cost 300 - 300 = Same..... Save your money it's an option you can do down the road if you really need to.

    Or just do what you want to do, but I wanted to give you some facts on options.
     

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  15. AppleTech22 macrumors 6502

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    #15
    Not sure about the erasing as I have never replaced anything from an Apple Store, but I assume that you won't have to because some pretty clueless people are always at the genius bars. For my external I use the Western Digital MyPassport because it is of course usb powered and they are really cheap. You can probably get more than me for the money as prices just keep on dropping.

    As for the processor I didn't even bother to ask about the i7 because the increase is very small on the 13" opposed the the 11". I used to do a lot more video stuff, but not at this point. Still though, if I need to, my i5 will be able to make some cuts pretty easily. Also look around on the i7 vs i5 battery posts, I think there might even be a temp one. Should be on the first page.
     
  16. wiregen macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2004
    #16
    I have the 128GB version. I keep all my iTunes, Movies & photos on my external. I have owned a silver lacie rakiki (500gb) http://www.lacie.com/products/product.htm?id=10515

    I bought a samsung 1tb HD (they're at 9.5"mm height now which fits the smaller rakiki size) just swapped the 500gb out with the 1tb. Viola. Smallest 1tb HD out in sleek form to match the air. :)
     
  17. 73CortinaV8 macrumors 6502

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    #17
    OWC SSD sticks have SandForce controllers. Aren't there issues with SandForce in general?

    Apple's SSDs use the Samsung 470 series controller...

    To quote Anandtech:
     
  18. accessoriesguy macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 8, 2011
    #18
    Sandforce is better and faster then the ones that macs come stock.

    OWC's regular SSD's are better then Intels SSD's also.

    OWC rocks!!!
     
  19. ZBoater macrumors G3

    ZBoater

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    #19
    I was pretty impressed with the Samsung 470, so much so that I picked up a 256GB drive from Newegg for $399, free shipping, and a desktop adapter kit included. I am going to see how my 4 year old Dell XPS 720H2C reacts to an injection of Samsung SSD goodness.... :cool:
     
  20. IngerMan macrumors 6502a

    IngerMan

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    Michigan
    #20
    accessorieguy answered your question. There are many people on this forum that have done the upgrade on their 2010 MBA. They seem pretty happy from what I have read and I also read OWC customer service support is outstanding.

    I have purchased a few items from OWC and have been pleased with their product and service.
     
  21. erasr macrumors 6502

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    Sep 18, 2007
    #21
    I love the new MBA and went into the store to buy one. But at the last minute it really hit home that 128gb wouldn't be enough.

    If I have an expensive cool laptop like that I definitely don't want to have to think about an external drive - that might seem weird. I just like things simple.

    My MBP 13" will have to do now because the extra £250 for the 256gb was a no go, I mean...I already have the Pro 2010 and really am not a hardcore user so it just wasn't worth paying out nearly £1400!

    Shame, I adore the new Airs but it's the HD and price that has let it down for me :(
     
  22. vazelos thread starter macrumors member

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    Aug 7, 2011
    #22
    I feel the same way... but I`m sticking with the Air, it's so lovely, the design/speed swayed me... But... I am keeping an eye out for the rumors of the new pro and would consider selling this mba for a newer pro
     
  23. jsolares macrumors 6502a

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    #23
    Yep that's the price of SSDs, hopefully they'll come down even more, but don't hold your breath on it, currently they're not that far from being at cost.
     
  24. cucullin macrumors newbie

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    Aug 23, 2011
    #24
    for me it was a no brainer. I went with the 128gb option. My home pc only has 100gb used up after 4 years so thats all I needed. Maybe you should check yours. I couldnt justify the crazy price tag either. You can buy a lot of space on an external hard drive for that money and still have plenty of change.
     
  25. erasr macrumors 6502

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    Sep 18, 2007
    #25
    Funny you should say that because for some reason I thought I'd used nearly 200gb, but I checked again and I'm at 120gb on my Pro.

    By the way this pro has a unfixable trackpad (unless logic board replaced) thus the reason for wanting an Air.


    Sooooo, now I'm thinking....I have 7-8 movies I never watch on it and loads of crap no doubt....maybe I could get away with 128gb.
     

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