1. Aniajulia's Avatar
    Hello, I am a college student looking to buy a new laptop. I used to have the older MacBook Pro, from 2010. It was fine but became excruciatingly slow by the end and I ran out of memory/storage. I'm not very tech-savvy so I could use help ASAP, thanks.

    I mostly type papers, use excel and MATLAB, have several apps running at the same time, stream videos from the internet, edit and store quite a lot of pictures (and some videos), store music, make PPT presentations, and run various programs/software.

    Here is what I'm looking at, two laptops not sold directly from Apple stores.

    $980 13.3-inch MacBook Air 1.3GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
    Originally released June 2013
    13.3-inch (diagonal) LED-backlit glossy widescreen display, 1440-by-900 resolution
    4GB of 1600MHz LPDDR3 SDRAM
    256GB flash storage
    720p FaceTime HD camera
    Intel HD Graphics 5000

    Vs

    $1230 13.3-inch MacBook Pro 2.6GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5 with Retina Display
    Originally released February 2013
    13.3-inch (diagonal) Retina display; 2560-by-1600 resolution at 227 pixels per inch

    8GB of 1600MHz DDR3L SDRAM
    
256GB Flash Storage
    
720p FaceTime HD Camera
    
Intel HD Graphics 4000

    My main concern is processing speeds (1.3GHz vs 2.6GHz -- because I usually run many programs at once and can't stand it when programs crash or run very slowly), weight (2.96 pounds vs 3.57 pounds), and storage, though these both have 265GB. Could someone tell me what the difference would be if I went with 1.3GHz over the 2.6GHz?

    Also could someone explain to me the parts I highlighted? Do they affect the speed at which apps and programs run?

    I need to buy a laptop ASAP so any help is much appreciated! Thank you so much!
    06-23-2014 03:56 PM
  2. Algus's Avatar
    MBAs are outfitted with low-voltage processors. These CPUs underclock themselves to be more power efficient, which is why they're rated at really low clock speeds. They have the ability to turboclock, which basically causes them to ramp up and act like a regular CPU...it just drains a lot more battery when they have to do that. They keep the laptop running cool and the battery lasting long when you're doing basic tasks like web browsing, casual office work, etc.

    Offset being that performance really isn't quite as good as comparable PC that is not low-voltage.

    The RAM in the MBA is also low voltage, which is kind of the same deal. It doesn't draw as much power unless it has to. Then it eats up your battery. Basically RAM is the amount of active memory that a computer has. It loads stuff from storage (your hard drive or solid state drive) and puts it in the RAM. The more you have of it, the more programs can be loaded and the more each program can do with that active memory. With the newer Macbook computers, RAM is soldered directly to the motherboard so that it can't be removed or replaced. Because of this, it is recommended that you buy as much RAM as your budget will allow as it is the easiest component to upgrade that will give your computer an overall performance boost.

    For your stated usage, you will get more use out of the rMBP. Not only does it have more RAM but the CPU will be much better for MATLAB.
    06-23-2014 04:07 PM
  3. UJ95x's Avatar
    Hello, I am a college student looking to buy a new laptop. I used to have the older MacBook Pro, from 2010. It was fine but became excruciatingly slow by the end and I ran out of memory/storage. I'm not very tech-savvy so I could use help ASAP, thanks.

    I mostly type papers, use excel and MATLAB, have several apps running at the same time, stream videos from the internet, edit and store quite a lot of pictures (and some videos), store music, make PPT presentations, and run various programs/software.

    Here is what I'm looking at, two laptops not sold directly from Apple stores.

    $980 13.3-inch MacBook Air 1.3GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
    Originally released June 2013
    13.3-inch (diagonal) LED-backlit glossy widescreen display, 1440-by-900 resolution
    4GB of 1600MHz LPDDR3 SDRAM
    256GB flash storage
    720p FaceTime HD camera
    Intel HD Graphics 5000

    Vs

    $1230 13.3-inch MacBook Pro 2.6GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5 with Retina Display
    Originally released February 2013
    13.3-inch (diagonal) Retina display; 2560-by-1600 resolution at 227 pixels per inch

    8GB of 1600MHz DDR3L SDRAM
    
256GB Flash Storage
    
720p FaceTime HD Camera
    
Intel HD Graphics 4000

    My main concern is processing speeds (1.3GHz vs 2.6GHz -- because I usually run many programs at once and can't stand it when programs crash or run very slowly), weight (2.96 pounds vs 3.57 pounds), and storage, though these both have 265GB. Could someone tell me what the difference would be if I went with 1.3GHz over the 2.6GHz?

    Also could someone explain to me the parts I highlighted? Do they affect the speed at which apps and programs run?

    I need to buy a laptop ASAP so any help is much appreciated! Thank you so much!
    Algus answered your question well. The Air will turbo boost when necessary, but stay at low clock speeds for everything else.

    Just thought that I'd mention that you shouldn't buy that rMBP. The newer version is lighter, thinner, and has a better integrated GPU in the Iris (Intel HD4000 is pretty bad).
    If you're in the US, you can get a $150 student discount at Best Buy. I think they also have a $75 sale on the 256GB SSD model, which would bring it down to $1,275.

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 running SlimKat 4.4.2
    06-24-2014 11:53 AM
  4. PatriciaAnderson's Avatar
    Youc an also get a student discount at the apple store by showing your student ID =)

    Algus answered your question well. The Air will turbo boost when necessary, but stay at low clock speeds for everything else.

    Just thought that I'd mention that you shouldn't buy that rMBP. The newer version is lighter, thinner, and has a better integrated GPU in the Iris (Intel HD4000 is pretty bad).
    If you're in the US, you can get a $150 student discount at Best Buy. I think they also have a $75 sale on the 256GB SSD model, which would bring it down to $1,275.

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 running SlimKat 4.4.2
    09-16-2014 03:39 PM
  5. UJ95x's Avatar
    Youc an also get a student discount at the apple store by showing your student ID =)
    I believe they also throw in a $100 App Store gift card
    09-17-2014 07:18 PM

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