Mac Air vs. Pro 13"?
April 20, 2014 4:51 PM Subscribe
I'm in the market for a new personal laptop and have decided to switch to OSX after a lifetime spent on Windows. Trying to pick between the Mac Air and Pro w/ Retina, both 13"?
posted by serelliya to Technology (26 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
These are my primary use cases:
1) Backend software development in vim and IntelliJ. I'll also have a work laptop, probably a MBP, and I can only run the IDE there if needed--for take-home coding, I'm more than happy to stick with vim.
2) The basics: word processing, internet browsing, occasional LaTeX. I also use Evernote's desktop client quite heavily with lots of rich text/image-heavy notes.
3) Be able to run Minecraft with nice graphics and decent fps, but no mods or anything fancy. I don't plan on any other gaming.
Right now I use a 13" Toshiba laptop that weighs 3.4 pounds, and I absolutely don't want anything heavier. The Mac Air is seducing me with the promise of nearly a half-pound reduction in weight--a not insignificant difference when being carried on one shoulder in a Longchamp tote--but maybe I really need the better specs in the Retina MBP.
I can save $100+ by purchasing from a third party vendor rather than Apple, so I'd prefer to choose between the following two standard models:
A) 13" Mac Air, 4GB memory, 256GB storage, 1.3GHz i5 processor, Intel HD Graphics 5000, 2.96 lbs.
B) 13" MacBook Pro with Retina, 8GB memory, 256GB storage, 2.4GHz i5 processor, Intel Iris Graphics, 3.46 lbs.
tl;dr: I want the lightest possible 13" Mac notebook that won't frustrate me when running ssh/occasional VM, Evernote, and Minecraft. But I don't really understand what kind of memory, processor, and/or graphics are necessary for those tasks. Do you?