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[OP]
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Aug 22, 2009
1728 posts
1239 upvotes

MacBook - How to Decide?

Air vs Pro?

From the research I have done I’d like the M1 chip.

I am having trouble figuring out why I’d want a Pro
Over an Air.

It would be for an everyday laptop. I don’t do video or photo editing at this time. I don’t play games either.

YouTube, stock trading, Email, etc.

We already have other Apple products and never owned an Apple computer.
23 replies
Jr. Member
Apr 18, 2018
109 posts
98 upvotes
Not a lot of difference as you've noticed. Looks like a big premium to pay from the base MBA for a touch bar (seems like a total gimmick) and extra GPU core.

I was going to say "more ports" but both the MBA and MBP have just 2... and they don't seem to have M1 in the 16" version yet.
Newbie
Jan 10, 2020
43 posts
74 upvotes
Easto wrote: I am having trouble figuring out why I’d want a Pro
Over an Air.
I went through the same thing. I got the Air and I'm extremely satisfied. The 8Gb model is all you need too, it's really fast. Just make sure you think about how much hard drive space you need, I'm OK with 256Gb but if you want to store a lot of photos/videos etc. then upgrade the hard drive.
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Oct 16, 2008
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OP, I was going to get the Air for my daughter but got XPS13 instead. For your needs, an Air is more than you need. I would suggest for 16gb and 512gb SSD, for future needs.
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Deal Fanatic
Nov 24, 2013
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The Pro has a fan built in, which will kick in to cool the SoC. Without the fan, the Air will taper performance to prevent overheating instead.

With what you’re using it for you’d never encounter the need for the fan anyway, most likely.
Deal Addict
Dec 22, 2007
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Mississauga
Easto wrote: Air vs Pro?

From the research I have done I’d like the M1 chip.

I am having trouble figuring out why I’d want a Pro
Over an Air.

It would be for an everyday laptop. I don’t do video or photo editing at this time. I don’t play games either.

YouTube, stock trading, Email, etc.

We already have other Apple products and never owned an Apple computer.
for that usage why not just get a refurb ? yes M1 is nice but I have the "current" intel MacBook Pro and its never been a bottleneck for anything I have done
Deal Addict
Jul 21, 2009
1489 posts
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Toronto
DeletedMemories wrote: for that usage why not just get a refurb ? yes M1 is nice but I have the "current" intel MacBook Pro and its never been a bottleneck for anything I have done
Unless the discount is significant the M1 chip has proven to be better in every way over Intel especially for basic tasks like OP is suggesting. No reason at all to go Intel unless you have specific x86 needs.
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Jul 30, 2003
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Mike15 wrote: The Pro has a fan built in, which will kick in to cool the SoC. Without the fan, the Air will taper performance to prevent overheating instead.

With what you’re using it for you’d never encounter the need for the fan anyway, most likely.
Look at extensive benchmark. Air barely taper performance compare to m1 pro! I do love the idea of fanless ...
DeletedMemories wrote: for that usage why not just get a refurb ? yes M1 is nice but I have the "current" intel MacBook Pro and its never been a bottleneck for anything I have done
If you can - wait. Next gen of macbook suppose to fix lot of issues. More ports!!! magsafe (magnetic) power connect. More Ports! Mini LED display (better, and battery saver). Should be coming in next couple of months.
teoconca wrote: OP, I was going to get the Air for my daughter but got XPS13 instead. For your needs, an Air is more than you need. I would suggest for 16gb and 512gb SSD, for future needs.
8gb Apple M1 is same as 16gb to normal computer. M1 uses VERY LITTLE ram.

There is no alternative to bigger SSD. You can have thunderbolt hdd connected, but such a hassle not having ports on mac.

I had m1 , sold it only because ports and adapter is nightmare for me. Now I have 15" and I appreciate the big screen. I use it for reading a lot more (even though I have two display connected)
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Apr 29, 2018
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Probably best to wait for the new M1X pro's. Not only will they have useful ports (HDMI, SDCard etc) but also should be faster than the current Intel MBPs
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[OP]
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Aug 22, 2009
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Thanks for all the replies.

I don’t have a computer at home. Between 2 adults and 2 kids we have 1 laptop and 2 chrome books.

My wife needs the laptop for work and the kids use the chromosome for school.

I’m Left using my iPhone.

Anything specific I should know for an external SSD?
Member
May 10, 2005
343 posts
41 upvotes
PrinceMS wrote: 8gb Apple M1 is same as 16gb to normal computer. M1 uses VERY LITTLE ram.
I'm always deciding the same path, like OP.

Can you explain why this is?

Coming from a Windows user.
Deal Fanatic
Jul 30, 2003
6208 posts
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staticburn wrote: I'm always deciding the same path, like OP.

Can you explain why this is?

Coming from a Windows user.


Something to do with RAM being soldered on in the chip + Mac OS is more efficient + M1 is ARM which is simpler instruction set (who basis it is faster and more power efficient) ... hence fundamentally require less RAM?
GTA Housing: Supply is the only Metrics that Matters
Active Listings has been the limiting factor for past 10 years.... and will be for next 10
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Deal Guru
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Feb 10, 2007
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the chip is optimized for the OS

think of it like ipads, ipads are efficient because they are built to do certain tasks
staticburn wrote: I'm always deciding the same path, like OP.

Can you explain why this is?

Coming from a Windows user.
[self promotion rule violation, removed twice already][self promotion rule violation, removed twice already]Trolling or Threadcrapping Trolling - woooooooo 3k on a laptop woooooooo 3k on a laptop woooooooo 3k on a laptop woooooooo 3k on a laptop
[OP]
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Aug 22, 2009
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Apparently there is a new version of the MacBook coming out in September?

Better to wait?
Deal Addict
Dec 22, 2007
1390 posts
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Mississauga
I know i'm beating a dead horse but it doesn't matter for normal usage. its like a Honda Fit vs Tesla. yes the Tesla is way quicker but with stop and go traffic it doesn't make too much of a difference. its the same with computers sure they aren't the newest generation etc but they are still usable for the normal person. In prior years they used to advertise the speed of the CPU when's the last time you saw that these days?

there will always be the new thing around the corner.

get what you want and be happy with it as either whatever is currently sold you will be fine with.
Deal Expert
Dec 4, 2010
19529 posts
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Quarantine Bubble
I’m in the same camp.

Was disappointed in the new iMac as the screen is too small for my aging eyes but I like multiple windows. Was thinking of getting the new Air and possibly hook it up to a 4K television. Or the other option would be a Mac mini but you lose out on the portability for a very negligible price difference.
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Sep 19, 2002
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Easto wrote: Apparently there is a new version of the MacBook coming out in September?

Better to wait?
That’s a MacBook Pro and the base price will be at least $2,200. You’ll get additional ports and a larger, better display.

A base model MacBook Air today with 16GB RAM and 256GB drive costs $1,400. If you use an Apple Store loophole, the system will cost less than $1,200 before taxes.
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Sep 19, 2002
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DeletedMemories wrote: I know i'm beating a dead horse but it doesn't matter for normal usage. its like a Honda Fit vs Tesla. yes the Tesla is way quicker but with stop and go traffic it doesn't make too much of a difference. its the same with computers sure they aren't the newest generation etc but they are still usable for the normal person. In prior years they used to advertise the speed of the CPU when's the last time you saw that these days?

there will always be the new thing around the corner.

get what you want and be happy with it as either whatever is currently sold you will be fine with.
The roads haven’t changed much in the past decade. But applications get increasingly complex every year.

A few years ago, a dual-core Windows PC with 8GB RAM would be plenty. Today, if you try running that same PC with Zoom and/or Teams during a large con call along with a few productivity apps, the audio or video will likely stutter.
[OP]
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Aug 22, 2009
1728 posts
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Spinner wrote: That’s a MacBook Pro and the base price will be at least $2,200. You’ll get additional ports and a larger, better display.

A base model MacBook Air today with 16GB RAM and 256GB drive costs $1,400. If you use an Apple Store loophole, the system will cost less than $1,200 before taxes.
Sorry, what’s the loop hole?

Does that have to do with free AirPods that you return?

And the new MacBooks will be the Pro version, not both Air and Pro

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