Will the MacBook work for my business?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by oscarzeta2222, Nov 22, 2018.

  1. oscarzeta2222, Nov 22, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2018

    oscarzeta2222 macrumors newbie

    Sep 30, 2018
    I see these threads a bit so I’m sorry to start one of my own, but I’m having some difficulty deciding whether I’m good with the MacBook or I need to go for the new Air. I’m the owner and sole practitioner of a private psychotherapy practice.

    I actually just bought the MacBook and it seems great. I got the m3 256gb base version with AppleCare. Very quick, works great so far. But I just realized the new Air came out and I’m having second thoughts, mostly because of the camera on the MacBook and lack of power. But again, it seems fine and maybe it will work great for my use. That’s kind of why I’m posting. I absolutely love the form factor. That’s why I got it.

    It’s a very small practice and I would use the laptop for writing my notes in my electronic medical records software, word processing, working on my website through Wordpress, VMware online through my job at the hospital, viewing a lot of lengthy PDFs web browsing, Netflix, iTunes, etc. I also will need to occasionally use it for videoconferencing with patients one on one using a specific Hipaa-compliant app.

    Will I have any issues with this use? Will the camera be ok for that (I know it’s only 480p)? I’ve heard it overheats when using the camera? Could I expect it to last me 2-3 years? Will it handle the PDFs ok? Anything else I should think about? Thanks for any advice.

    Edited to add I also have an iPad Pro for notes during sessions and a gaming laptop for any photo or video editing or of course gaming.
  2. darkmatter343 macrumors regular

    Sep 18, 2017
    The form factor is hard to beat, I love my MacBook for this reason. If you travel at all then the MacBook makes a great companion. For what you do, the MacBook has more than enough power. It really comes down to screen size preference, because if you find the MacBooks screen size good for what you’ve been working on then I’d say keep it. If you need more space then you Air is also a great choice. Spec wise they are the same, so it really comes down to if the added weight and size are work the bigger screen.
  3. oscarzeta2222 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 30, 2018
    Are they the same spec wise? I thought the Air was a bit better spec wise. With the i5 1.6ghz to 3.6ghz.

    I do strongly prefer the MacBook, if only for the form factor. And I just saw that the Air has the 720hd camera. But I’m not sure if that’s a lot better than the 480 camera in practice. Or if the i5 will make a big difference in speed or something else.
  4. darkmatter343 macrumors regular

    Sep 18, 2017
    They both have 8GB Ram, although the Air has 128gb as vase, and the MacBook 256gb, mind you it’s irrelevant since once you add the 256gb to the Air they are the same price (almost).

    As for the CPU, the i5 (in the Air) and the m3 (in the MB) have the same amount of cache, what Intel is doing is bumping up the clock speed to 1.6GHz on the Air and calling it a i5. That being said though, the Air is using the newest 8th gen architecture vs the 7th gen in the MacBook. Will it make a difference for you? In my honest opinion no. Those applications you run will run the same on either laptop with literally no visual improvement. It really does come down to the screen size and if there added weight and size are worth it.
    As for the camera, are you going to be using it often? I don’t use the webcam on my MacBook and for the rare times i will, I can live with the 480p. 720p is nicer but if you don’t plan on using the camera much I wouldn’t give up the 12” formfactor just to get a better camera.
  5. oscarzeta2222 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 30, 2018
    Thanks for your help with this. I thought the i5 on the 2018 Air was the actual i5 and not the same as the one on the MacBook. You’re right in that I won’t be using the camera enough for it to matter much. And if I was going to do a lot of video therapy, I’d want to get a dedicated webcam in 1080p anyway. So I guess my only other concern is whether the camera will cause the cpu to heat up? I’ve read that in numerous places. But maybe it would be the same with the Air.
  6. iMi macrumors 65816


    Sep 13, 2014
    That's precisely what I thought as well, but after awhile I realized that I wasn't as productive and found the screen just a touch too small. It was also underpowered for what I need. Then I tried the iPad Pro as a "replacement" because of my obsession for traveling light (I mean light, as in carry on bag for a week in China light). Now I am back to a 13" MacBook and that is the minimum size and performance I need for travel.

    The rule is that if it's a day trip up to two days, I just take the iPad Pro. If longer, I pack my mobile office with me and take the laptop.
  7. KPOM macrumors G5

    Oct 23, 2010
    The MacBook Air uses a 7W version of the chip that is in the MacBook (which uses a 5W chip). You can get an “i5” or “i7” in the MacBook, too. None are the “real” i5/i7 in the MacBook Pro.

    7th gen vs 8th gen is all marketing speak. The underlying chip is the same in both the 2017 MacBook and 2018 MacBook Air.

    The MacBook camera isn’t great, but I’ve heard the Air’s isn’t much better, specs aside. You might be better using a phone.

    Bottom line is that the MacBook should be fine. As long as you don’t need to connect to 2 external monitors or a 5K display, there is not much the Air can do that the MacBook can’t.
  8. EugW macrumors 603


    Jun 18, 2017
    If you want more performance with a “real” i5 and a better camera, the machine to buy is the MacBook Pro, not the MacBook Air.

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7 November 22, 2018