Upgrading from MacBook White 2010 to MacBook Air

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by fjordstrom, Jul 22, 2017.

  1. fjordstrom, Jul 22, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2017

    fjordstrom macrumors newbie

    fjordstrom

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2017
    #1
    Hi everyone! I need your advice.

    I currently have a white MacBook (mid-2010 model), with Intel Core 2 Duo processor - 2.4 GHz - 8 GB RAM:
    [​IMG]

    I use it for work, fun, but also video editing in Final Cut Pro X, which does the job, but lately, my videos are becoming too big to render without the computer crashing. My video edits are mostly 10-minute videos in full HD (rendering files up to 1 GB), so it's more than just leisure, but not real pro/4K stuff.

    So now I'm looking for a replacement. My budget isn't high enough for the MacBook Pros, and considering I've been able to do my thing for 7 years on a 'normal' MacBook, I think I can live with a MacBook Air. It's better than the normal MacBooks nowadays.

    So my question is: which MacBook Air will replace this and improve the performance?

    OPTION 1: MacBook Air i5 - 1.6 GHz with 256 GB of storage and 8 GB RAM
    [​IMG]

    OPTION 2: MacBook Air i7 - 2.2 GHz with 128 GB* of storage and 8 GB RAM
    [​IMG]



    *I know 128 GB sounds low, but I think I can survive on it, as I use iCloud Drive a lot and always offload non-used video files.


    I just discovered that the benchmark test on the MacBook Air i5 1.6 GHz is DOUBLE than what I have now. The i7 is 15 % more than the i5.

    So I guess the dilemma is now:
    Will I go for the i5 with 256 GB of storage, or the i7 with 128 GB of storage? Can I base myself on these benchmark tests?

    Thanks in advance for your advice!
     
  2. pixelatedscraps, Jul 22, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2017

    pixelatedscraps macrumors regular

    pixelatedscraps

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2017
    Location:
    Hong Kong
    #2
    I would go for the i7 2.2Ghz, 8GB and upgrade it to 256GB or 512Gb. If you expect your MacBook hardware to last 7+ years (as mine have, I run 3x different Mac desktops from 2010) then you should seriously be maxing out the specifications upon purchase. You want to be thinking long term.

    Everyone is different but I for one cannot stand editing images or video on the Air (sold mine a year ago to part-finance an upgrade to a MacBook Pro 15"), its just so damned slow in comparison.

    If you can only afford the 256Gb SSD right now, grab yourself an external 1TB Thunderbolt SSD drive later on down the road for the video work.
     
  3. fjordstrom, Jul 22, 2017
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2017

    fjordstrom thread starter macrumors newbie

    fjordstrom

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2017
    #3
    I just compared the benchmark tests and discovered that the benchmark test on the MacBook Air i5 1.6 GHz is DOUBLE, compared to my current MacBook. The i7 is 15 % more than the i5.
    (I updated the OP with the numbers)

    So I guess the dilemma is now:
    Will I go for the i5 with 256 GB of storage, or the i7 with 128 GB of storage? Can I base myself on these benchmark tests?
     
  4. kohlson macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    #4
    If you provided the system specs, I missed them. That said, if you have a fixed budget I would prioritize RAM, disk, then processor speed. You can always add more external disk (and for video you'll probably have to do this anyway). But RAM should see you through a long life. For me, I could live with 15% slower speed, but the RAM would be a bigger deal, especially with FCP video editing.
     
  5. fjordstrom thread starter macrumors newbie

    fjordstrom

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2017
    #5
    Thanks for the advice. Sorry, I forgot the RAM. They both have 8 GB of RAM (added to OP).
    So it all comes to processor and storage.
     
  6. batlogic macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2012
    #6
    People here will disagree but I will give you my advice. This advice is based on using the 2015 MacBook Air, 2016 MacBook, 2012/2015/2017 MacBook Pros 13 and 15 inch.

    I do video professionally. You do not need to most powerful machine if you are not getting into FX. A couple filters here and there and maybe some green screen, speed grading. Either machine will do you fine. I use Final Cut Pro x, Premiere, and Avid.

    Note, my favorite size is the 13 inch. When I am in studio, I have a breakout box and if needed a render farm. I find on an actual real video shoot. The smaller books can be on set without much problem.

    Of the two machines that you are looking at, I would in my experience choose the i5 with more storage. The Air has to throttle too much with the i7. In real world use, the i5 will finish a video in compressor (for a 10 minute 1080 video) just about even the i7. The heat from the i7 will not allow it to run with turboboost for long. The i5 will run in turboboost for the full render time. That extra space will be useful for you footage. For most other uses, the i7 is a better machine.

    For your budget, I would choose the Air with the i5. Either machine will be great.

    One tip to remember, you don't have to have you full video in Final Cut X in one project. You can place different scenes into different projects and then combine them in compressor. It will keep your machines running faster with less to render at one time.
     
  7. ZapNZs macrumors 68000

    ZapNZs

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2017
    #7
    Both will be massive improvements over what you have now. If it were me, I would prioritize the i5 + more storage over the i7 + less storage, because, 1) video files are big, 2) over time, 128 GB may be even less practical than it is today - especially since you are working with video files, 3) having more free space on a SSD can improve performance and increase longevity, and 4) the larger SSDs tend to have higher write speeds, and these higher write speeds may benefit your productivity with the specific work you are doing.
     
  8. fjordstrom thread starter macrumors newbie

    fjordstrom

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2017
    #8
    Thank you all very much for your reply! You've been very helpful.
    Also thanks, batlogic, for the tip! I didn't know Compressor could do that.
    Indeed, ZapNZs, I also bought a 256 GB SSD for my current MacBook because the 128 GB had a lower 'longevity'. Thanks for reminding me!

    I've decided to postpone my purchase with a few months (so I can save more), and then go for the MacBook Air i5 2017 with 1.8 GHz and 256 GB. Thinking it has a higher CPU speed and more storage, it would be better than buying a 2015 model.
     
  9. FNH15 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2011
    #9

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