What makes the 11" Air so much more likable than the 13"?

JerTheGeek

macrumors 68000
Original poster
May 15, 2014
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Hi, I have an 11" 2013 Air. I've had mine for around 5 months, and I can say that I absolutely LOVE it! It is by far my favorite device ever! And I am super glad that I chose this one over the 13". But I would like to here from other 11" users: what is it about this 11" that makes the size so likable? I've heard many users who say that they like it better than the 13", even for home use; but what exactly is it about the 11" Air that makes it so easy to prefer over the 13"?
 

Pakaku

macrumors 68020
Aug 29, 2009
2,158
2,130
Maybe it's tiny, and therefore "petite" or "cute".

Personally I think a 16:9 ratio on a tiny laptop like that is too short, but I'm used to my 15-incher.
 

yosemit

macrumors regular
Jul 19, 2013
167
0
You're asking what makes the 11" Air so much more likable than the 13 for you, and only you know the answer. ;)

I have the 11" and I like it more than the 13" because the 11" fits me better. I use it with an external monitor 90% of time, so the large screen of 13" is not needed. But I can fully understand if another person likes the 13" more than the 11".

Hi, I have an 11" 2013 Air. I've had mine for around 5 months, and I can say that I absolutely LOVE it! It is by far my favorite device ever! And I am super glad that I chose this one over the 13". But I would like to here from other 11" users: what is it about this 11" that makes the size so likable? I've heard many users who say that they like it better than the 13", even for home use; but what exactly is it about the 11" Air that makes it so easy to prefer over the 13"?
 

rambo47

macrumors 6502a
Oct 3, 2010
589
101
Denville, NJ
I'm the opposite. I have the 13" MBA and love the overall size. The 11" model was just a bit too small. I'd buy a 15" MBA in a heartbeat if Apple would make it. :D
 

JerTheGeek

macrumors 68000
Original poster
May 15, 2014
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I'm the opposite. I have the 13" MBA and love the overall size. The 11" model was just a bit too small. I'd buy a 15" MBA in a heartbeat if Apple would make it. :D
Cool, to each his own I guess;). I think the 11" paired with an external monitor (which I am considering getting) is the perfect home setup; a balance of large screen and ultra portability from room to room. But if you want the most screen size actually on your laptop, without having to use a monitor, 13" is the way to go for sure.
 

MartinAppleGuy

macrumors 68020
Sep 27, 2013
2,243
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I feel that the 11" is too small for my needs (ranging from basic web browsing, the heavy photo and video editing). When I went out to buy my first Mac, I looked into getting the 13" Macbook Pro retina, get seeing it next to the 15", the 15" had much more space for me to work with. I was kind of put off with the price, but then realised that I was getting much better value for money with an iMac over a Macbook (and I didn't need the portability). I ended up getting the high end 21.5" iMac (2.9-3.6Ghz quad core i5 with Nvidia GeForce GT 750m 1Gb GDDR5 VRAM) over the base 15" MBPr (2.0Ghz quad core i7 with Intel Iris Pro). If I were to have gone for a 15" (or even the 13") Macbook Pro retina, I would have found myself using the scaling, to make everything smaller. I would have probably got annoyed that I wouldn't have been able to read anything though!
 

MartinAppleGuy

macrumors 68020
Sep 27, 2013
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Size doesn't matter. Repeat it and believe it. :cool:
It can matter though. I don't see anyone using FCPX with an 11" screen. I'm not saying by any means the 11" is bad (it is a great portable laptop), but size really does matter.
 

flowrider

macrumors 603
Nov 23, 2012
5,545
1,967
For me, the answer is quite simple - PORTABILITY. My home system is a Mac Pro, but for use one the road or maybe on the couch, my little 11" MBA fills the bill very nicely.

Lou
 

JerTheGeek

macrumors 68000
Original poster
May 15, 2014
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For me, the answer is quite simple - PORTABILITY. My home system is a Mac Pro, but for use one the road or maybe on the couch, my little 11" MBA fills the bill very nicely.

Lou
I agree, the 11" is perfect for the couch or in bed; just about anywhere in the house, really.
 

petsk

macrumors 6502
Oct 13, 2009
349
217
It is tiny and cute and it can do everything you want! It is by far the best Apple product I've owned and I've had most of them in recent years. And honestly, that 1.7 inch larger screen on the 13" isn't doing anything useful at all. You still need an external monitor and input device to do any kind of serious business with a laptops cramped screen (no matter if it's a 15" mbp or a 11" mba).
 

JerTheGeek

macrumors 68000
Original poster
May 15, 2014
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It is tiny and cute and it can do everything you want! It is by far the best Apple product I've owned and I've had most of them in recent years. And honestly, that 1.7 inch larger screen on the 13" isn't doing anything useful at all. You still need an external monitor and input device to do any kind of serious business with a laptops cramped screen (no matter if it's a 15" mbp or a 11" mba).
I agree totally! That is so true: if you want more screen, you may as well buy an external monitor and get the awesome form factor and ultra portability of the 11"!
 

yinz

macrumors 6502a
Apr 12, 2012
640
5
The 11" is appealing as an ultra portable machine. It's great if you need your files with you on a dedicated computer at all times.

However, it is a somewhat contradictory machine. First, it's ultra portable, but offers limited drive space, so you'd expect the internet to be essential. Well, no. It doesn't have built in cellular receiver, so an iPad simply works better. The iPad is better in terms of form factor too as you can use the iPad standing, sitting, lying down, upside down, free falling, etc. The 11MBA is only comfortable while sitting at a desk. You can argue that it can be used in those other situations as well, but I'd say that it is uncomfortable and unnatural in those situations.

"But an iPad is not a full-fledged computer", some might say. Well, what can an 11MBA do that the iPad cannot? It has no SD card slot, so it's not a photo editing machine. Base model and many subsequent models afterwards can't be used for video editing due to limits in hardware. Can it do programming? I'm not sure, as I don't do that stuff. Let's say it can and is probably the only thing it can do that the iPad cannot.

It can matter though. I don't see anyone using FCPX with an 11" screen. I'm not saying by any means the 11" is bad (it is a great portable laptop), but size really does matter.
Not only screen size, but track pad size as well. Who wants a smaller track pad? That's terrible.
 

datamonger128

macrumors regular
Dec 4, 2010
148
22
Newport News, Virginia
While the 11" MacBook Air is certainly a nice system, I personally feel as though 1366x768 is an unacceptable resolution. If it was a 1600x900 panel, then I'd feel a little different on that matter, but at 11 inches, that resolution may make things a bit hard to see. I'm also coming from using a massive 17" MacBook Pro as my main laptop for the past 2 1/2 years, so I've definitely been spoiled by the 1920x1200 resolution that it offers.
 

yosemit

macrumors regular
Jul 19, 2013
167
0
My two cents. The 11" MBA IS a full-fledged computer. That means it can be configured with 256GB/512GB storage, 8GB memory, 3.3GHz CPU (with turbo-boost). It can run OS X, Windows, and Linux (bootcamp or VM). With a 24"-plus monitor, it is a perfect machine for a programmer. It also runs Photoshop decently. iPad can do none of those.

That said, IMHO iPad may not be replaced by a 11" MBA. I have both and they serve for different needs.

BTW, Cellular receiver is not needed for either my MBA or iPad. I tether them with my iPhone. Works very well.

Enjoy what we have!

However, it is a somewhat contradictory machine. First, it's ultra portable, but offers limited drive space, so you'd expect the internet to be essential. Well, no. It doesn't have built in cellular receiver, so an iPad simply works better. The iPad is better in terms of form factor too as you can use the iPad standing, sitting, lying down, upside down, free falling, etc. The 11MBA is only comfortable while sitting at a desk. You can argue that it can be used in those other situations as well, but I'd say that it is uncomfortable and unnatural in those situations.

"But an iPad is not a full-fledged computer", some might say. Well, what can an 11MBA do that the iPad cannot? It has no SD card slot, so it's not a photo editing machine. Base model and many subsequent models afterwards can't be used for video editing due to limits in hardware. Can it do programming? I'm not sure, as I don't do that stuff. Let's say it can and is probably the only thing it can do that the iPad cannot.

Not only screen size, but track pad size as well. Who wants a smaller track pad? That's terrible.
 

happyslayer

macrumors 6502a
Feb 3, 2008
910
411
Glendale, AZ
I've owned two 13" Airs but when the 11" came out in 2010, I snapped one up immediately. Then I got the 2011 version and last year got the 2013 version (love the better battery life! My only complaint about the 2011 version.) My daughter has a 2013 13" model and when I take it from her to update it and/or back it up, I am always amazed at how big it feels.

For me, it's all about size. I carry this laptop everywhere I go, all day long. Weight matters; 2Lb vs 3Lb is noticeable in my pack. And though it is small, it is prefect for my daily work needs. When I need a bigger screen or want to do some gaming, I have a PC with a 27" monitor for that. Though, honestly, I do just about all of my real "work" on this little Air. I might consider the rumored 12" model if the weight doesn't increase too much, but I am very happy with this little laptop!
 

yinz

macrumors 6502a
Apr 12, 2012
640
5
My two cents. The 11" MBA IS a full-fledged computer. That means it can be configured with 256GB/512GB storage, 8GB memory, 3.3GHz CPU (with turbo-boost). It can run OS X, Windows, and Linux (bootcamp or VM). With a 24"-plus monitor, it is a perfect machine for a programmer. It also runs Photoshop decently. iPad can do none of those.

That said, IMHO iPad may not be replaced by a 11" MBA. I have both and they serve for different needs.

BTW, Cellular receiver is not needed for either my MBA or iPad. I tether them with my iPhone. Works very well.

Enjoy what we have!
I did not disregard the 11MBA as a programmer's machine. I've stated that that may be the only niche for this machine. iPad does photo editing just fine. Actually, some photographers recommend it for faster, more natural UI for photo editing. Of course you can't do some of the crazy stuff a full fledged Photoshop can, but not as many people need/know how to use that type of photo processing. Most photographers now-a-days prefer Lightroom or Aperture as it is easier to use and built for photographers, specifically.

Also, an MBA can connect to an external monitor as well.
 

J&JPolangin

macrumors 68030
Jul 5, 2008
2,564
5
Thule GL @ the TOW
For me its the foot print of the 11.6" machine vs the 13.3" machine = if they come out with the rumored ~12" machine that may be the best cross between the two...

While I like the SD card reader on the 13" models I liked the overall minimalist size of the 11" model as my "2nd" portable machine to carry with me all the time:D
 

mad3inch1na

macrumors 6502a
Oct 21, 2013
662
6
Do you mean that you can spot the <8 PPI difference? When you are 50+? The answer is no and if you could your statement is a clear contradiction.
Maybe because you can increase the text size and still fit a whole page on the screen?
 

majkom

macrumors 65816
May 3, 2011
1,354
650
I've owned two 13" Airs but when the 11" came out in 2010, I snapped one up immediately. Then I got the 2011 version and last year got the 2013 version (love the better battery life! My only complaint about the 2011 version.) My daughter has a 2013 13" model and when I take it from her to update it and/or back it up, I am always amazed at how big it feels.

For me, it's all about size. I carry this laptop everywhere I go, all day long. Weight matters; 2Lb vs 3Lb is noticeable in my pack. And though it is small, it is prefect for my daily work needs. When I need a bigger screen or want to do some gaming, I have a PC with a 27" monitor for that. Though, honestly, I do just about all of my real "work" on this little Air. I might consider the rumored 12" model if the weight doesn't increase too much, but I am very happy with this little laptop!
Hi, got question, u have air 11 and ipad mini - how does it work together? arent they like substitues? how do they complement each other? thx.
 

yosemit

macrumors regular
Jul 19, 2013
167
0
I did not disregard the 11MBA as a programmer's machine. I've stated that that may be the only niche for this machine.
That is wrong. ;)

The 11" MBA is essentially an ultra-portable and a desktop replacement (with an external monitor) at the same time. Very capable, general-purpose computer.

iPad does photo editing just fine. Actually, some photographers recommend it for faster, more natural UI for photo editing. Of course you can't do some of the crazy stuff a full fledged Photoshop can, but not as many people need/know how to use that type of photo processing. Most photographers now-a-days prefer Lightroom or Aperture as it is easier to use and built for photographers, specifically.
There have been arguments that iPads may replace laptops and desktops altogether, which is essentially your point here. Maybe in the future, but not really the case right now. And no, Lightroom may not replace Photoshop for serious photographers. ;)
 

Steve121178

macrumors 601
Apr 13, 2010
4,943
3,990
Bedfordshire, UK
It is tiny and cute and it can do everything you want! It is by far the best Apple product I've owned and I've had most of them in recent years. And honestly, that 1.7 inch larger screen on the 13" isn't doing anything useful at all.
Yes it is. The 13" screen is 16:10 (1440x900) and the 11" screen is 16:9 (a useless ratio for a notebook and a woeful 1366x768).

It isn't doing anything useful if you don't think vertical screen real estate is required ;)