When do you decide/justify upgrading Airs?

maccokko

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 2, 2011
5
0
Hello!

I am trying to decide if this is the right time for me to upgrade my Air...

I was wondering when do you guys consider upgrading...besides
wanting the fastest, the newest and the shiniest toy...:p

How do you decide when to take the plunge???

I have a mid 2011 13 inch Air and thinking and wondering if I
should/need/want to upgrade. There is nothing wrong with it...
In fact, I still have close to 169GB available out of 250GB storage...
My day to day use involves mostly internet browsing and email, besides
holding my pics and music...it is sort of my main machine. I also
have iMac from 2010 but hardly ever use it b/c its sitting in not main
area...(also have ipad mini which is used for listening music purposes)
(I might or might not be going back to finish my BA online...so I am not
certain if I use iMac as possible display or not...I might...) Also, minor
detail...I will be overseas for the next 3yrs and so I don't know if my
current Air will be sufficient enough...(can't consider purchasing locally
since the currency exchange will make it considerably higher price...)

2014 Airs...are they so much better than my 2011?? Will I notice the huge
difference/improvement??
The question about the screen size, I am thinking of going to BB and see it
myself. When I decided on my Air back in 2011, I felt that the screen on the
11 was too small...but I might consider it...since I started to think 13 is kind
of big for me...(I make things small and have kind of wasted screen space)

If you wouldn't mind sharing what triggered YOUR past purchases or any
input, I'd be appreciative!

Thank you for reading my post.
 

Kaylor

macrumors regular
Oct 18, 2011
206
114
Long Island, NY/Houston, TX
The thing you would notice most is battery life. There's been a massive improvement since you bought your machine. That alone could be a reason to upgrade if you think you would benefit from it.

Personally, I got my MBA in August of 2012 and don't plan on upgrading until the summer of 2016. By then I should be done with undergrad and be moving on to future endeavors, and my machine will be an entire year out of AppleCare. If anything fails during my senior year, I'll have to pay for an out of warrantee repair.

Do I think in another 2 years my current setup will be run fine and suit my needs? Sure, but technology doesn't last forever and it's nice to have a warrantee to fall back on. In addition, I don't know how my needs will change after undergrad.
 

slipper

macrumors 68000
Nov 19, 2003
1,539
29
I'm also at this dilemma. I think i have a 2012 (but could be wrong). So only significant upgrade when going new would be battery life? If so i'll skip.
 

Kaylor

macrumors regular
Oct 18, 2011
206
114
Long Island, NY/Houston, TX
I'm also at this dilemma. I think i have a 2012 (but could be wrong). So only significant upgrade when going new would be battery life? If so i'll skip.
Battery life isn't the only improvement but it's certainly the one you would notice first and is quite substantial. Besides a generational improvement of the processor, the storage is also faster, so the system might feel snappier. Your best bet is going to a store and playing around with one to see if you notice a difference.
 

Boyd01

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 21, 2012
4,195
1,875
New Jersey Pine Barrens
I have a mid 2011 13 inch Air and thinking and wondering if I should/need/want to upgrade. There is nothing wrong with it...
I had the exact same machine as yours and upgraded one year ago. A close friend was visiting and needed a new laptop (had a terrible Windows netbook, although she had an iMac back home). So it was an "upgrade of opportunity" for me. I sold her my 2011 MBA at a "sweetheart" price and included a bunch of other stuff I didn't need, like an external drive and DVD drive.

But in addition to helping a friend, my reasons were:

* I wanted a 512gb ssd and that option was not available in 2011
* I wanted 8gb RAM and that wasn't available in 2011 either
* I wanted an i7 and my 2011 MBA was an i5
* I wanted to move down to an 11" screen

Really happy with the way this worked out.
 

capathy21

macrumors 65816
Jun 16, 2014
1,365
534
Houston, Texas
Hello!

I am trying to decide if this is the right time for me to upgrade my Air...

I was wondering when do you guys consider upgrading...besides
wanting the fastest, the newest and the shiniest toy...:p

How do you decide when to take the plunge???

I have a mid 2011 13 inch Air and thinking and wondering if I
should/need/want to upgrade. There is nothing wrong with it...
In fact, I still have close to 169GB available out of 250GB storage...
My day to day use involves mostly internet browsing and email, besides
holding my pics and music...it is sort of my main machine. I also
have iMac from 2010 but hardly ever use it b/c its sitting in not main
area...(also have ipad mini which is used for listening music purposes)
(I might or might not be going back to finish my BA online...so I am not
certain if I use iMac as possible display or not...I might...) Also, minor
detail...I will be overseas for the next 3yrs and so I don't know if my
current Air will be sufficient enough...(can't consider purchasing locally
since the currency exchange will make it considerably higher price...)

2014 Airs...are they so much better than my 2011?? Will I notice the huge
difference/improvement??
The question about the screen size, I am thinking of going to BB and see it
myself. When I decided on my Air back in 2011, I felt that the screen on the
11 was too small...but I might consider it...since I started to think 13 is kind
of big for me...(I make things small and have kind of wasted screen space)

If you wouldn't mind sharing what triggered YOUR past purchases or any
input, I'd be appreciative!

Thank you for reading my post.
If you don't NEED a new machine, I would hold out to see what the next generation of the Air line brings. The current Air's are fantastic machines outside of the display. If rumors are true, and the next generation of the Air has a retina display, it will be just about the perfect machine.
 

Ronnoco

macrumors 68030
Oct 16, 2007
2,568
521
United States of America
If your 2011 MBA has 4GB of RAM, I'd wait till the 2015 Broadwell Models are released (hopefully April of 2015). They'll have even better battery life and may have a retina display. Your 2011 should hold you over until 2015.
Don't get me wrong, my 2013 13” MBA is the finest laptop I've ever owned (upgraded from a 2010 11” MBA and a 2010 15" MBP), but if you don't need to upgrade right now, I'd wait.

----------

If you don't NEED a new machine, I would hold out to see what the next generation of the Air line brings. The current Air's are fantastic machines outside of the display. If rumors are true, and the next generation of the Air has a retina display, it will be just about the perfect machine.
This is correct. I posted almost the exact same response. I guess had I read the thread all the way to the end before posting, I'd have saved myself some time. :D
 

coldjeanzzz

macrumors 6502a
Nov 4, 2012
655
17
They'll have even better battery life and may have a retina display
I highly, HIGHLY doubt Apple will be able to increase battery life while also providing a higher resolution screen.
 

maccokko

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 2, 2011
5
0
Thank you everyone for your input.
Since this is weekend, I will probably be able to
go see Air in person~!
Then, I can decide...I might see the huge difference
and be pushed to purchase...or might not see the point
in having the newer one...who knows...
I appreciate you taking the time to reply to my post.
Thanks!
(Have a good weekend!)
 

Dweez

macrumors 65816
Jun 13, 2011
1,246
9
Down by the river
When my current device dies I will upgrade it with a new device. Until then, as long as it's functional and does what I need it to do it will stay in service.
 
Last edited:

nexus4life

macrumors regular
Jul 19, 2014
185
1
Understand that 3 years is quite a while and you may want to go ahead and get a new one just because of that reason.
 

Martin29

macrumors 6502
Nov 25, 2010
279
24
Quimper, France
I have a regular two year cycle for changing all my devices, so half are changed one year, the others the following..

That ensures my machines are always good for pretty much anything, but also means I can benefit from good resale values, and that those who buy the old machines can expect a good lifetime from them too.
 

Ray2

macrumors 6502a
Jul 8, 2014
624
107
Last month I upgraded my wife's 2010 Air (2.13 the, forget ram, 128gb, 10.8.x) for a 2014 Air (1.7 i7, 4gb, 256gb, 10.9.x). We travel a lot and I wanted more room for photos and more CPU when using Aperture.

I would not do it again. The speed bump is a trade off between a faster CPU and a slower ssd. While its quicker rendering raw files, its not that much quicker that it was worth bothering with, let alone spending the money. No idea if Mavericks has anything to do with the slower operation but we now have unreliable I/O as SafeSleep improperly ejects usb3 drives (3 different drive enclosures so far, all the same problem) and will not remount them without a reboot. I recently put on hold another 2 Mac buys until they get the I/O issue fixed (19.9.4 and the EFI firmware upgrade did nothing).

The 2010 always ran fine. And quite frankly, I'm rather tired of a series of problematic versions of OSX we've been given since Snow Leopard. I need a stable OS, working power management and working remote management. Not another feature for notifications, etc.
 

kapalua12

macrumors 6502
Jun 20, 2010
300
1
United States
Is the SSD in the newest MBA i7 really slower than the one in the 2010 MBA?

I've been considering selling my 2010 MBA and upgrading to the 2014 i7 maxed out or at least to to the 256 GB SSD. Now you make me wonder if I should.

Mine works fine but I miss the lighted keyboard and I admit to wanting the latest technology (not needing it).I'd also like to get Thunderbolt ports and USB 3 ports as well as the faster WiFi. I just can't stand the display on the MBA's after using Retina machines for years now.
 

robdrj45

macrumors member
Jun 11, 2012
63
0
USA
I have a 2012 13'' Air. It easily performs the basic tasks I need it to do. I can't justify upgrading anytime soon. Increased battery life is not super important to me since I often run on the power cord. What would interest me is a sharper screen. Not that the current screen is poor, but the retina is a bit easier on the eyes and looks great. All in all, the Air has been a pleasure to use. I'm very satisfied. Coming from the Windows PC world with its endless software/security updates, disk defragmentation and virus scans, which all waste time and slow performance, the Air just plain works.
 

capathy21

macrumors 65816
Jun 16, 2014
1,365
534
Houston, Texas
I just can't stand the display on the MBA's after using Retina machines for years now.
This would be the number one reason I would not recommend an Air owner from 2010 forward to upgrade now. Sure there are gains in battery and such. But I just can't advise investing in a 2014 Air with that display if you are planning on maxing out or upgrading specs on order. I think 2014 was the last time they can realistically get away with putting that display on a "premium" machine.
 

maccokko

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 2, 2011
5
0
Thank you guys for continuing input!

I did go to both the BB and the Apple store yesterday
and played with both 13inch and 11inch Air.
I really really liked the 11inch better! The size is perfect
for someone like me! (5'4 with smaller hands) The 13inch
felt much heavier and screen looked too big...(might come
in handy for editing photo/movies for those who needs those
features, I am sure...but I don't see myself using/needing it)
I tried to simulate my day to day situation by opening up
several applications while playing music, etc,...and it handled
it with no problem. I was really pleased with the speed!

Now off to clean up my current Air for the trade-in~!:D
 

pprior

macrumors 65816
Aug 1, 2007
1,440
8
We have kept apple notebooks 4-5 years average before upgrading. Mac Pro I kept 6 years and really probably could have gone another two more. Unless you really need more battery life save your money.
 

talmy

macrumors 601
Oct 26, 2009
4,703
266
Oregon
A new computer really shouldn't be an emotional decision. Only replace if your current computer no longer gets the job done.
 

Boyd01

Moderator
Staff member
Feb 21, 2012
4,195
1,875
New Jersey Pine Barrens
http://www.macrumors.com/2014/05/02/2014-macbook-airs-slow-storage/

One of many similar reports. To reduce cost to hold down the price probably.
I think that has been completely de-bunked in a followup article here at MacRumors as well as other places. The SSD speed from different suppliers is different and Apple has always used different suppliers, so it's more a case of the luck of the draw.

I don't think there's any way that a 2013 or 2014 MBA SSD could be slower than a 2010. The new machines have a faster interface. The 512gb SSD in my MBA writes at about 700MB/s and reads faster than 700MB/s. I believe all sizes of SSD have similar read speeds, but the smaller ones have slower write speeds, something like 500MB/s for the 128gb SSD perhaps.
 

flowrider

macrumors 603
Nov 23, 2012
5,540
1,965
A new computer really shouldn't be an emotional decision. Only replace if your current computer no longer gets the job done.
Yes, only if your current machine no longer gets the job done, or is no longer being supported by the latest OS.

Lou