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currywurst 05-11-2014 07:11 AM

MacBook Pro vs Air 2014
 
Hi,

I am considering buying a MacBook. (Please note that this would be my first mac.) The ones that I can afford are:
1) 13" MacBook Air, 1.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5, 4GB DDR3, 128GB Flash
2) 13" MacBook Air with Retina display, 2.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5, 4GB DD3, 128GB Flash

And I have a couple of questions:
1. Is the Air as strong (I mean physically) as the Pro?
2. How long is the lifetime of a Flash drive?
3. Are Windows ultrabooks with the same hardware cheaper or more expensive? (Could you please recommend some good Windows alternatives?)
4. In general, what are the pros of MacBooks over Windows laptops?
5. I was also thinking if Apple was about to update it's models. How often does that happen? Are there any rumors about the new models? Should I wait?
6. Which one (Air or Pro) would you recommend and why?

Thank you very much

McBie 05-11-2014 08:27 AM

Welcome to the forums.
The important question you need to answer first is " What will I be using my computer for ? "
( Web browsing, Video editing, etc ......... )
That will guide you towards the technical specs of your new computer.
Please be aware that in todays computing environment, technical specs is not the only criteria for choosing a new computer :-)
With regards to Windows or OS X, that is an endless debate that I will not get into and I suggest you buy an OS that you feel most comfortable with and will do the job for you.
Transitioning from Windows to OS X needs an open mind and you are best leaving the windows ' mindset ' behind :-)


Cheers ... McBie

currywurst 05-11-2014 08:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by McBie (Post 1582599)
Welcome to the forums.
The important question you need to answer first is " What will I be using my computer for ? "

I am going to study computer science at uni. Thus I guess browsing, text-editing, coding.

I see that you have an air... How is it going? What do you use that for? Is it the base model or which one?

McBie 05-11-2014 09:13 AM

If you are not going to do CPU intensive activities ( video editing, CAD design etc ) I would go for the Air for reasons of portability and battery life.
I have the MBA, fully maxed out ( i7, 8 GB, 512 SSD ) and I love this machine. I had a 17" MBP before that, but this Air is a whole new experience.
The reason I went for all the extra's is that you can't add it on later, and 128 GB SSD just wash"t enough.
May main use is MS Office documents, web browsing, mail and working with my iPhoto library.
Pretty standard stuff, nothing fancy.

Cheers ... McBie

currywurst 05-11-2014 09:47 AM

Don't you miss the retina display? How is the Air's display?

McBie 05-11-2014 09:51 AM

The display of the Air is great by itself.
I don't miss the retina display as I have never used one, so I can not compare :-)

Cheers ... McBie

lclev 05-11-2014 09:59 PM

My 2 cents worth:

1) 13" MacBook Air, 1.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5, 4GB DDR3, 128GB Flash

- hard drive will fill up fast - really fast.

2) 13" MacBook Air with Retina display, 2.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5, 4GB DD3, 128GB Flash

- Did I miss something? MBA does not offer retina display option that I know of.

And I have a couple of questions:
1. Is the Air as strong (I mean physically) as the Pro?

- They both will dent if hit or dropped. I guess the pro is "tougher" but heavier but both are really sturdy. I put a speck case on my MBA and carry it in a zipped case when transporting it.

2. How long is the lifetime of a Flash drive?

- Longer than a mechanical drive? All drives can fail but they do not have moving parts and handle movement shocks better.

3. Are Windows ultrabooks with the same hardware cheaper or more expensive? (Could you please recommend some good Windows alternatives?)

- Wrong forum for Windows recommendations! I will tell you any Windows ultrabook you get will not be as tough as a MBA (most tend to be plastic cased) or as light weight and it is tough to beat the 12 hour+ battery life. Also if you match all the specs of a windows ultra to a MBA the price will be very competitive.

4. In general, what are the pros of MacBooks over Windows laptops?

- Biggest plus, IMO, next to no malware issues. Another plus, better hardware, better OS, better reliability, better resell value.

5. I was also thinking if Apple was about to update it's models. How often does that happen? Are there any rumors about the new models? Should I wait?

- Apple just did some major updating with the Haswell addition which BTW is amazing. I am not sure of what is coming out but there will always be the next latest greatest.

6. Which one (Air or Pro) would you recommend and why?

- Depends, you indicate using it for note taking which the MBA would work well for given the battery life and light weight. The MBP would be good for intense jobs like coding although I think the MBA would do alright too. Hard to tell because I am not sure how processor intensive your needs will be. I edit video on my maxed out MBP but would not attempt it on my MBA.

- I would recommend going to a mac store and getting your hands on a MBA and a MBP. Look at the displays. I like the retina display (I have it on my iPad) but I just don't see it as that wonderful that it is a must on my laptops but go look and make your own decision. It really helped me decide on screen size.

Hope this helps!

Lisa

currywurst 05-13-2014 05:57 AM

Thank, you helped a lot!


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