Will a MacBook Air be enough for me?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by anna4712, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. anna4712 macrumors newbie

    Jul 7, 2013
    Currently running a 2011 iMac, 27" 4GB RAM 2.7GHz, 1TB HD, planning on getting MacBook Air 2013, 13" 8GB RAM, 1.3GHz as well as the iMac.

    What I want to know is how the two compare (I'm probably far more ill informed than most of you) and what I'll be missing out on that I'd be used to with the iMac. While I don't use a lot of files (mainly photos as I do part time editing for a website, and some personal video footage) I'm not overly fussed about going from a massive 1TB to 128GB as I know that I can always back up files I don't always need onto an external. What I'm wondering is HOW actually little space 128GB is. I don't have many apps, just office, photoshop, LOGIC, and FCP X. I remember having to constantly free up space and transfer files on my older laptops (mind you I have a tonne less files now) and it was really annoying.

    (Keeping in mind I know nothing about processors) will the new Haswell processor be comparable to the faster iMac/macbooks? This will be my first mac laptop and I'm a little worried, remember back to the days where I'd edit footage on a little old Sony Laptop and the thing would CONSTANTLY lag.

    I definitely want to keep THE MBA, but will reconsider keeping the iMac after a while to see if I could survive off the one laptop. Interested to know how the MBA will cope running programmes (not so much multitasking) such as FCP..Photoshop..etc. Any insight would be appreciated. :eek:
  2. Steve121178 macrumors 601


    Apr 13, 2010
    Bedfordshire, UK
    The MBA should be fine for your needs.

    You are definitely making the right decision going for the 8GB upgrade. I'd be concerned if you were keeping it at the base 4GB level.
  3. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Other then the storage I think you'll be fine. I think its a good idea to keep the iMac for a period of time just in case.

    Things to watch out for, the MBA uses an integrated GPU (where as the iMac has a discrete GPU) so you may see a performance difference there.

    Ram, make sure you have sufficient at time of purchase, i.e., 8gb. Personally I'd go for a larger SSD then the 128. You'll run out of space pretty quickly in that
  4. \-V-/ Suspended


    May 3, 2012
    If you're going to be doing a lot of video editing, I would get as much RAM as possible. I would get a 1 or 2 Terabyte external drive like a WD Passport that you can use for storage as well as a scratch disk. It's easy to carry around and is powered by the USB port.

    I wouldn't get less than a 256 GB drive.

    A 15" MBP with a dedicated GPU would be a better option though... especially if video editing is going to be a big thing.
  5. comatory macrumors 6502a


    Apr 10, 2012
    i had to use 11" 2011 MBA w/4GB RAM and 128GB SSD as my main computer for approximately a year. it wasnt always easy but in the end i was really surprised on how it stood up to the tasks.

    i did quite a bit of video editing in CS5 (I am video editor by profession), compositing work in After Effects and use the same computer for encoding everything. sure, there were times i wished I had more RAM but honestly it did a really good job.

    oh yeah, i was constantly running out of space on the SSD because i didnt have fast external storage, so i kept all the video on internal drive but since 2012 Macbook Airs have USB3 which means getting fast external drive is really cheap - it will edit HD video over USB3 like a champ (even better if you'll use FCP X and ProRes codecs).

    side note: 128GB SSD is enough for OS X and many applications. i had CS5 Production Premium installed and many many other apps. i didnt keep my music library or archival data on Air of course, I still had around 30-40 gigabytes of free space that i used for exporting.
    i believe that Macbook Air has gotten quite powerful and versatile, even if it has ULV processors and is not very expandable. i wouldnt hesitate if i were active hobbyist (editing 2-3 videos every week), coupled with external storage you can do almost anything (i dont think 3D work and gaming would be great but possible to some degree).
    i would definitely get 13 inch version with 8 gigs RAM, I know i would be satisfied with 128 SSD.

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