Will the Air be good enough?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by bluewomble88, Aug 8, 2013.

  1. bluewomble88 macrumors regular

    Oct 9, 2009

    In January I am starting a graphic and web design course and I've decided to splash out on a Mac. I will be using mainly Adobe products such as PS, InDesign etc.

    Will the 13" Air (8GB) be powerful enough to keep me going for the foreseeable future? I know the MBP retina would probably be a better option but I can't justify that additional expense.
    Also, everyone says the Airs come with the Haswell chip but I can't see any mention of that on their store. Have I missed something?

  2. IndoX macrumors 6502

    Oct 12, 2011
    The Air is an extraordinary computer and I'm sure you'll love it. However, if you're going to be doing web and graphic design having a correct color profile and gamma is going to be extremely important for those times you will be doing print work.

    The Air just doesn't cut it if you want accurate colors. For reading and everything else it's fine. Even the occasional design is okay. But if you're going to be doing that as your main focus I would probably wait until the new rMBP haswell refresh or even going for a cMBP.

    Whatever you do you'll get an amazing computer.
  3. bluewomble88 thread starter macrumors regular

    Oct 9, 2009
    Thank you for the reply.
    What about connecting the Air to my HDTV - wouldn't that be a suitable solution to the non-retina display?
  4. Mike in Kansas macrumors 6502a

    Mike in Kansas

    Sep 2, 2008
    Metro Kansas City
    I'd propose that the HDTV would be even worse from a color calibration perspective than a laptop/notebook display.

    To be fair, the TN panel on the MBA is not the best technology for color reproduction; IPS displays are much better in terms of gamut, top-to-bottom and side-to-side consistency, gamma and luminance. However, plenty of folks in the graphics arts & web graphics industries have used TN panels in the past. Also, doing coursework and going to college/uni are very different than working in the industry at a paying gig. It's my guess that the school/professor doesn't expect everyone to have a high end IPS panel at their disposal.

    What you may want to do is go to an Apple Store and look at the panels on the MBA vs. the MBP, and see if you can live with the viewing angle variations and smaller gamut of the MBA. Also, no matter what you select, definitely consider getting color checker/profiler/correction hardware so at the very least you can keep your display consistent week to week. Having a lessor display that is always color corrected is more important than having a better display that is not color corrected IMHO.
  5. palpatine macrumors 68040

    May 3, 2011
    I do some web design work. The Air is awful for it, because it is too washed out, and the colors aren't what everyone else is seeing. Don't get me wrong. I love the Air, and it is the perfect computer for my main work (writing and research).

    However, if you are going to be doing web design work and you are paying $1200 for an MBA (without education discount), then what is $300 more for an MBP that is one of the best displays on the market and perfectly suited to your work? I guess this seems like a no-brainer to me.

    Hooking it up to an external monitor (who uses the web on an HDTV?) is a possible solution, but any monitor worth using for this is going to cost a lot.
  6. AXs macrumors 6502a


    Sep 7, 2009
    Wait for the Haswell pros to be released. Macbook Air is not ideal for these particular tasks.
    You will quickly feel justified when you realize that the Air's screen is not ideal for a designer.
    You're going to want to want to work on a Retina screen, and the faster processor will guarantee you can design through the foreseeable future.

    Sure, an Air maybe can run what you stated, but so can a 2008 Macbook Air run Mountain Lion just fine... doesn't mean it is ideal.

    So yea, wait for the Pros to be released in a month. It is likely to get a $100 price drop - since everything Apple has launched in 2013 thus far has all seen price reductions. And even if you decide to save a couple hundred bucks next month if you go with the Air, you would at least know what the Retina Pro had to offer.

    Goodluck with whatever you decide.
  7. Razzosinni macrumors member

    Aug 8, 2013
    I would not go for the Air for design. I know, it's thin, portable, sexy, super fast, but it's not suitable as a tool.

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