Which one should I buy? Air, or Pro?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by RobertB123, Aug 2, 2012.

  1. RobertB123 macrumors newbie

    Aug 2, 2012
    Okay, for the beginning, sorry for my english. This is not my primary language.

    So, here it is: Im going to university and Im planning buy a mac. I will be student of computer science(or something like this, dont know correct name of this, you know, programming and other stuff). This will by my first mac. I have iPhone and iPod, and I decided to buy a mac 50% because apple stuff is very decent, and 50% because im planning to work with objective C and iOS stuff.

    I know that macs are expensive. In US. In my country, macs prices are horrendous. Example? Cheapest Air in US: 999$. Here: 1500$!!! Upgrading RAM to 8 GB costs 150$.

    Okay, end of the offtopic. As I said, I will use mac to:
    -surf interwebz
    -watch movies
    -some basic games rarely
    -Using windows(I don't know if i can have dual boot like in windows, if not, virtual machine)

    For now, im rooting for Macbook Air 13'. 8 GB would be the best, but 13' with 8 GB ram costs 1870$ without student discount... Why 13? Because this will be my main machine which i will take with me to university once on a week. And in future, I hope, my workstation :) And the screen is quite big with being portable.
    11' is cheaper, but I'm afraid that my eyes will blow out with this small screen :) And 11 is like a toy...
    Or maybe pro 13'? Price is the same like Air, but I can upgrade RAM in the future and replace/add SDD. Like this black frame outside the screen. And good processor. But worse mobility, bigger size and weight.

    So, what would you advise?
  2. mdlee2009 macrumors member

    Aug 2, 2012

    I would go for the Air as your personal workstation (WS) for a couple of reasons:
    Portability- 13 inch MBP weighs 4.5 lbs and 13 inch Air weighs around 2.38 lbs. This may not seem like a big deal, but if you're going to carry this all over campus 2+ lbs makes a difference.
    Durability- Almost everything is soldered onto the board for the Air. This can help prevent things from getting jumbled around while taking it everywhere. Just make sure you get all the upgrades you think you would want.

    It doesn't sound like you are going to be doing anything super intense on your WS so I think the reasons above should outweigh any cons (no optical drive, better processors on MBP, etc.)
  3. miles01110 macrumors Core


    Jul 24, 2006
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    I'd get the Pro if you're going to be using Windows.
  4. RobertB123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 2, 2012
    Pros for this solution:

    -much bigger disk, no problem for making a big partition for WIN
    -slightly better CPU
    -black frame! :D better for watching movies, looks better and no black stripes(16:9)
    -i can add SSD for Superdrive
    -I can upgrade RAM
    -worse resolution
    -slow HDD

    Well, tough decision...
  5. LaunchpadBS macrumors 6502a

    Nov 11, 2008

    The MBP will be the cheaper option and you can upgrade the ram and hard drive yourself saving you a lot of money, and 4.5lbs is not heavy c'mon!
  6. RobertB123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 2, 2012
    Prices are the same: 1590$ with student discount for MBP 13' 4 GB RAM and 1590$ with student discount for MBA 13' 4 GB RAM, but if I would choose Air, it would be with 8 GB RAM(1750$).

    Air will handle the value and is lovely with this weight. But, i can't upgrade(to 16 GB in future and SSD too) and Im not going to take laptop often with me. It's an ultrabook.

    Pro has bigger, but slower disk. But I can buy 128 SSD just like in Air and keep slower disk for joy stuff :) And upgrade RAM to 16 GB in future. And has great black frame. But is heavier, more laptop-style not ultrabook, and worse resolution.

    I don't know what about CPU. Both looks the same, but air keeps lower Ghz to save the power, I think.
  7. mdlee2009 macrumors member

    Aug 2, 2012
    If you're not going to be taking it around everywhere then I would definitely get the MBP. The Air would be more for on the fly things: web browsing, taking notes, watching a video, etc. For programming, a MBP would definitely fit your needs better. Simulating apps and compiling/running programs is very performance intensive and would run a lot smoother on a MBP.

    I do a ton of stuff with iMovie, Photoshop, and Cocoa so a MBP makes more sense for me. I don't think I would ever get an Air, but it is user preference.
  8. RobertB123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 2, 2012
    Hey mdlee, thanks for your reply. Really appreciate every single reply in this thread. You're right about Pro, but on the other hand, other says that CPU is similar to Air. You have pro, do you? BTW. I saw yesterday Pro for the first time in shop, looks sick.

    Okay, I'm completely confused. I'm going to buy Air/Pro morrow. After reading posts in this thread any many others in forum, I want to point out my doubt:

    -Pro is very thin, but what about heat? Won't the unibody melt after some serious programming(VM, iTunes, WebBrowser, some games like Portal 2)? Air looks so fragile... on photos, I didn't see Air live. But Pro, yes, looks very solid and I wouldn't have been afraid of overheat. As I read Air is also for serious things, but what about overheating?
    -Air is very light, but I'm going to buy some cover for expensive laptop like Air/Pro, it's obvious. Is there some solid covers for Air? I'm certain that for Pro are plenty of good covers. But covers have some faults: Air with solid cover won't be so ultraportable and light. Will the air have still sense with cover?
    -Buying Pro with HDD and Superdrive and 4 GB RAM feels... weird. I don't like buying things which is not with new components(8 GB RAM, SSD). Of course I can buy SSD and RAM, but... it's not cool. That feeling when I buy something extremely expensive without best components... 'Cause SSD and computer withous ODD is the future. Ah, BTW: I'll buy Pro with 4 GB RAM or Air with 8 GB RAM. Don't ask me why, I just have choice: Pro 4 GB/Air 4 GB/ Air 8 GB.
    -Screen. Ill watch on this element most of the time. And the problem is, Pro has apperently worse screen. And worse resolution. On the other hand, some people say that pro has better colour gamut. And has black bezel :) Air has better resolution and less glossy screen, but again: some people say that has worse colour gamut. And silver bezel :(
    -Will the keyboard glance aside off screen? I heard something about it in Air...
  9. RobertB123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 2, 2012
    BTW: This will be my main computer. I don't know if I will always take MB with me; it depends of that if I will live in solo room or with roomate who can steal my computer! :D I will study and work. So light laptop would be comfy with travelling and working on bed, but as I wrote: I have some doubt about Air with heat and cover.
  10. hazygnome macrumors newbie

    Jun 13, 2012
    i have a MBP 13 its not heavy so i agree with above lets face it, its 2012 in 1999 we wasn't exactly saying shall i get a laptop or desktop to carry around....
    2lbs extra is nothing so man up and hit the gym if you think it is....
  11. Lance-AR macrumors 6502

    May 7, 2012
    Little Rock, AR
    If your choice is Pro 4GB or Air 8GB, that makes an easy choice for running VMs. Enjoy your new Air.
  12. RobertB123 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 2, 2012

    I'm going to gym, I can handle many MBP on bench press, haha!

    Yay! Well, I precise: I have choice: MBA 11 4GBRAM/ MBA 13 8GBRAM/ MBP 13 4 GBRAM. First one is the cheapest, but has kinda small screen and 4 GB of RAM. If i choose MBA13, I'll go with 8GBRAM, because I will not be able to expand RAM. MBP is something between: bigger screen than 11Air, but worse screen than 13Air and 4 GB of RAM. Of course I'll expand RAM to 8 or 16, but in about 6 months later, because I'll have nothing from my budget! :(

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