Which Mac Book to buy, Air vs Pro (Retina)

  • Posted: 10 July 2012 12:45 PM

    I’m looking to buy a Mac book and the difference in price is not an issue. I am looking at a Mac Book Air 13” with 2.0 Intel, 8 GB RAM and 512 GB Flash storage vs 15” Mac Book Pro w/ Retina, 2.3 Intel, 16 GB RAM, and 256 GB Flash storage. What I need advice on is if the new Mac Book Pro is the better value than a fully loaded Air?
    I will use the laptop for web browsing, office productivity, light photography photo editing and e-mail. I would like to get into doing video editing on the video’s I have and will shoot on my kids. I want this Mac Book to last me and I want to get most bang for my buck. I will use this as my primary computer.

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    Posted: 10 July 2012 08:06 PM #1


    From what you have described your use case to be, you would be just as well-served with an Air, and still have a good chunk of change left over in your pocket.  The new MBPR is really not a “light-to-moderate” use machine and it is the first gen of what will ultimately be the future of Apple notebooks.  Get an Air, learn iMovie and maybe Final Cut pro X, then in a couple of years, when this new form factor has matured, go for the upgrade.


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  • Posted: 11 July 2012 01:01 PM #2


    Well I have a MacBook Air late 2011 top spec and it is a lovely little machine, very light, very useable but frankly I find the screen a little cramped and really only use it on the road, also, it only has 4Gb of memory which was the max on this release of Air.

    I was considering my options but having looked at the Retina, looked at the extra screen real estate you can get, for me it was a no brainer.

    I am selling my 27inch iMac and my 13inch MacBook Air and I am waiting (as patiently as I can) for a new 2.6Gz 16Gb Retina, which will easily replace both my powerhouse iMac and MBA.

    For flexibility and power I would go Retina in your case but that is just my opinion of course!!!

    Which ever machine you go for, they are gorgeous, enjoy.


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    Posted: 11 July 2012 01:17 PM #3

    While not exactly on topic, here’s my AU$0.02 cents worth.

    I’m currently running a Late ‘08 15” MacBook Pro 2.4Ghz.

    I’ve upgraded it to 8GB and added a 120GB SSD alongside the 500GB HDD I had previously installed not long after I got it.

    I’m running 10.7.4 quite happily. I’ve also installed gfxCardStatus by Cody Krieger which let’s me switch GPUs without having to log out and back in.

    It boots in just over 30 40 seconds now, before it took over a minute and a half.

    I know that for raw speed it doesn’t come close to the latest & greatest but if you’re running a slightly older machine a few simple upgrades can make a lot of difference.


    [ Edited: 11 July 2012 02:05 PM by furbies ]


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  • Posted: 11 July 2012 01:57 PM #4

    I bought the 15” MacBook Pro Retina model and think you would kick yourself if you got anything else - the display and performance are that brilliant smile.

    The only downside is that 256gb is way too little disk space for a primary computer.  Either upgrade to the 500gb option or get an external disk drive for your bulkier content (like photos and videos).

    256gb is enough space generally for you to work on single projects away from your main computer, and then copy them to your main computer or external drive when done.  It’s definitely not enough for long-term project storage.

    Of course if you work mainly on projects involving text and not images, you should be fine.  But images and video really need more disk space.

    Hope that helps.



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    Posted: 12 July 2012 10:20 AM #5

    This just arrived in my RSS feed.
    MacBook Pro with Retina Display Named Editors? Choice
    PC Magazine rates the new MacBook Pro with Retina display 4.5 out of 5 and makes it an Editors? Choice, noting that it ?outperforms, outclasses, and outlasts? competing notebooks. Reviewer Joel Santo Domingo writes that with its fast performance, super-thin profile, impressive battery life, and ?glorious? new display, the MacBook Pro with Retina display is ?the high-end choice for media professionals, enthusiasts, and general Mac fans alike.?
    Looks like case closed to me:  http://bit.ly/LLhaxD


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