Which Macbook for MS Office?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Enrico, Feb 12, 2018 at 1:06 PM.

  1. Enrico macrumors 6502

    Enrico

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Location:
    Milano / Roma
    #1
    I'm looking to replace a Windows computer with a MacBook for work purposes: MS Office, Slack and Safari all in parallel.

    I would carry it in my backpack every day in a 20 minutes commute to work by subway, and since I'm a consultant I won't have a proper desk setup or an external monitor for my 8-9 hours typical workday.

    Would a MacBook 12 be enough or maybe the upgrade to a 15 inches would be beneficial for emails PowerPoint presentations and Safari browsing?
    Looking for comments of users who tried both machines... 13 is kinda in the middle so I would rather go small and light or big and full optional.
    iMac 5K at home for my Lightroom and photo video hobby.
     
  2. Glmnet1 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2017
    #2
    Personally I wouldn't like spending full work days in front of a 12" screen. I think, considering your relatively short commute, you would be better served with a 15".

    With that said, the 2017 15" are considerably more expensive and you don't seem like you'd need the better specs that come with the price tag. Maybe the base 2015 15" (they are still selling it as new) would be the most appropriate MacBook for you.
     
  3. chscag macrumors 68000

    chscag

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Fort Worth, Texas
    #3
    I would suggest a 13" MacBook Air or the MacBook 12". A 15" MacBook Pro might be more than you need. You might also wish to check to see if Apple has any of those in their on line refurbished store. I don't know if they have an on line refurbished store in Italy, but if they do, that would be a good place to get one at around a 15% discount.
     
  4. CrystalQuest76 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2015
    Location:
    West Cost A Lot
    #4
    A MacBook 12" would be more than meet your needs. What you will want to get is a display adapter (VGA or HDMI) so you can plug into a secondary monitor when you get to the office or a projector. Don't bother going with a 15". I have a 15" at home and a 12" at work. After using the 12" for a year, i would have bought one for home.
    Saving money is not a crime.
     
  5. Enrico thread starter macrumors 6502

    Enrico

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Location:
    Milano / Roma
    #5
    Do you prefer the 15 because it's easier to read vs the 12?

    Sure looking for a refurbished in any case!

    Happy to save money and I already have a USB C hub for my old MacBook 2015 that I sold a year ago.
    Do you find comfortable using the 12 for a full day of work?
     
  6. Glmnet1 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2017
    #6
    I worked on a 15" for a while and even that was too small for me. But I usually have a few terminal windows + a few chrome pages + editing multiple documents at the same time so maybe you won't see the need for a bigger screen.
     
  7. oldhifi macrumors 65816

    oldhifi

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    USA
  8. Enrico thread starter macrumors 6502

    Enrico

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    Feb 6, 2007
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    #8
    Did you find the 12 uncomfortable over a full workday?
     
  9. VPrime macrumors 68000

    VPrime

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2008
    Location:
    London Ontario
    #9
    I did this in the 12” for the last year and a half. It was fine. There were a few slow downs when watching videos online (while working in excel, word or photoshop). But overall the experience was pleasant. I didn’t find the screen to small or unusable and the portability of ten 12” was awesome.

    Unfortunately my 12” just died on me (ssd failed) and I’m replacing it with a 13” instead (mainly because I got a great deal on it and also need to do some video editing soon).
     
  10. oldhifi macrumors 65816

    oldhifi

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    #10

    a 12 inch is just too small to do any editing/generating documents..
     
  11. andreamb macrumors newbie

    andreamb

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2017
    #11
    Hi Enrico, I spent the last 3 years using has you office, slack and some VM in a 11” MacAir. The choice you have to do must be based on the screen size. Power computational speaking whatever choice will be good. Screen first! 13 size working with ppt and excel is a must. Immediately later memory size not less than 8 Gb.
    I move now to a new MBP and I am amazed. Is truly a great machine. Since I am using a Mac from about 8 years now I already understand that having it plenty of resources is a wise investment. I’ll keep them all their AppleCare life. My strong suggestion is 13” screen Air or Pro not less than 8 Gb ram and not less than 256 Gb ssd. Air is already a great machine, Pro is total luxury.
    every extra coin more ram and more disk.
    A note about external monitors. Today an HP 24” monitor cost about 90 dollar/euro I travel with my Mac but bot home and office I have my desk an extra monitor that I use or extending the screen or as principal.
    It will make your life high quality and is extra investment that can be done on the future way..
    Cheers

    Andrea
     
  12. kschendel macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2014
    #12
    If there is no way you can arrange an external monitor on the desk at work, I think you will be happier with the 15 inch. I have a 15 inch rMBP and I can't imagine doing any sort of serious document work on a smaller screen. The 15 inch is larger and heavier, but not by much, it doesn't bother me carrying mine around.

    If you can arrange a monitor at work, even if you have to buy it, the more portable 12 inch is probably preferable. Both machines will have plenty of power for doing office-y stuff.
     
  13. CocoaNut macrumors member

    CocoaNut

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2011
    Location:
    Switzerland
    #13
    MS Office tends to be quite resource intensive, so I would opt for a MacBook Pro. As for the screen size, this really depends on your workflow... do you create or work on documents that require you to e.g. copy content from Safari into Word, or bounce between OneNote and Excel? This would definitely warrant a 15" screen for me.
    If however you 1. write in Word, then 2. browse with Safari and 3. finally post messages on Slack, a small screen can work as well.
    I'm currently using my 11" MBA for a similar task as yours, and I don't suffer any major limitations if I only have two or three apps open.
     
  14. Enrico thread starter macrumors 6502

    Enrico

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2007
    Location:
    Milano / Roma
    #14
    I'm now trying a 15 inches! Fantastic screen.
    What I find unwieldy is mainly the footprint of the 15...which is not really handy when bringing it to a crowded meeting room.
    Plus the battery life is not that great, I'm getting about 6.5 hours from a single charge.

    I have those apps open but I generally don't use them at the same time like your first scenario.
    I am using a full screen space for Mail and a desktop space for the other opened apps so maybe I could try the 12 as well!
    --- Post Merged, Feb 15, 2018 at 11:39 AM ---
    Did you consider the 12 at all when jumping from the 11 to the 13?
    I'm not really seeing much difference from 12 to 13 but I could be wrong in longer usage!
     
  15. Shadow%20Mac macrumors demi-god

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2007
    Location:
    California
    #15
    13" macbook pro (sans touch bar) if you prefer a larger display, or a 12" MacBook. Both will last you a lot longer than a 13" air, and the I think the 15" pro is wayyy overkill for you. If you've got extra capital to spend and you want to treat yourself, you can get a 13" pro w/ touch bar. Its got more I/O and the bar is kinda cool, but it won't offer you a notably better experience then then 13" w/o touch bar
     
  16. VPrime macrumors 68000

    VPrime

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2008
    Location:
    London Ontario
    #16
    I've been using my 13" macbook pro for about a week now (had my 12" for 1.5 years before this). Honestly the screen size is not that much bigger than 12". I don't think the 12" is much of a compromise when it comes to screen size.
     

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