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Which M1 MacBook is better at $1500?

  • Total voters


macrumors 6502
Mar 6, 2009
A few reasons why I got the MBA over the MBP:
  • Even in that configuration (16GB/512GB), the Air is still £50/$50 cheaper than the MBP with 8GB/512GB (8GB RAM isn't enough and certainly isn't futureproof) or 16GB/256GB (256GB isn't enough storage for me).
  • The MacBook Pro is going to become/feel obsolete quicker than the Air because of the brand new redesigned 14" coming out next year.
  • The Pro has the Touchbar (no, thanks).
  • The design of the Air is more ergonomic for typing.
  • The Air comes in gold (if you care about that).
  • There's not that much of a performance difference between the two, and certainly not enough to justify the "Pro" moniker IMO.
  • The Air is fanless.


macrumors 68020
Sep 16, 2016
So Calif
The MBA is more than sufficient for 90+% of users.

The other 10% should get the MBP for true power users.

My base M1 Mini is way MORE than I need....
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macrumors 68040
Nov 17, 2008
For the majority of people having an additional 8 GB RAM will be far more useful than a fan that rarely turns on and is only needed under very high load after 10 minutes or so. And the Air has a more comfortable typing experience because of the wedge shape.


Nov 10, 2020
$1500 is too much to spend.

I'd buy the 128GiB M1MBA if it was available in the UK.

I bought the 8/7/8/256 and it's stellar at under £900.


macrumors 68030
Sep 13, 2002
Bristol, UK
For most people it comes down to the Touch Bar, if you like it go Pro, if you don't then go for the Air. Only other reason to go pro is if you do CPU / GPU intensive tasks for long periods and the extra 10-15% improvement in the Pro is worth it for you.

I bought the Air and loving it. I have always bought the 15" MBP in the past. I now have a completely silent computer that is twice as fast as my old 2016 MBP.


macrumors 601
May 20, 2010
Los Angeles, CA
Please vote and explain why?
I voted the Air, but only because it was your only option with 16GB. If I was buying this machine as a long term investment/commitment as a static Mac user, I'd go with a 16GB version of the Pro for $250 more, seeing as you list 512GB as the drive for both. You can't upgrade the RAM later and, if iOS, iPadOS, and Intel Mac devices are any indication, you'll eventually need more RAM, whether it matters upfront or not.

Personally, beyond my final Intel Macs, my investment in the Mac platform is mainly to stay current enough with hardware/software/maintenance/deployment technologies therein to be viable as an IT consultant for a Mac-based company, Mac user, or both, so, for me, the Air is fine. But if someone is actually serious about their Mac platform usage, I'd go Pro as it's better.
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macrumors 65816
Aug 17, 2008
MacBook Air (for me).

The M1 CPU looks squarely designed for the MacBook Air, with its fanless thermal envelope and only 2 Thunderbolt/USB-C ports. Usage in the Pro a mere afterthought.

With limited advantage in performance, the Pro 13" just doesn't seem worth the price difference.
Unless you absolutely need or love the Touch Bar.


macrumors 6502
Dec 12, 2006
My preference goes to the MBA, because I prefer more RAM (very useful to me), no touch bar (not useful to me), and less weight.

Captain Trips

macrumors 68000
Jun 13, 2020
Both the M1 Air and Pro are great, and I had planned on getting the MBA. But the Best Buy I went to did not have any of the base Airs, so I went with a base MBP (8 GB memory, 256 GB SSD).

I was willing to spend the extra $300 (compared to the base 8 GB / 256 GB MBA) because of the extra battery life, the fan for sustained performance if I need it, the extra GPU core, the extra brightness (500 nits verses 400 nits) and the better speakers and microphone.

I am neutral on the Touch Bar, never having used one before. Seems useful, time will tell how much I actually use it.

Like I said above, though, I would have been happy with a base MBA if one had been available when I was ready to buy.
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