Anson Tam writes:
I am heading into university next year and I am going to purchase a new MacBook for school. I am having trouble deciding between the MacBook Pro models or the MacBook Air models. The MacBook Air is really light and transportable from class to class, but doesn’t perform as well as the MacBook Pro does. So I was wondering if you could give your personal opinion on a MacBook for university.
First, this may be influenced by what you are studying — if you are studying anything such as computer programming, audio engineering, or graphic design — and what type of power you’ll need from your MacBook. Personally, I enjoy the MacBook Pro over the MacBook Air simply due to what the Air lacks for the sole benefit of weighing a little less than the Pro.
The MacBook Air does without the following capabilities of a MacBook Pro: SDXC card slot supporting up to 64 GB cards (the Air has an SD card slot). The Pro also has a FireWire 800 slot and gigabit ethernet slot; the obvious final aesthetic plus is that it can play discs! One more addition to the power of the Pro when buying the 15 inch version are the audio line-in and audio line-out slots. As far as performance goes, the Pro boasts .5 greater GHz boost power over the Air. The Air’s storage space varies from a measly 64-128 GB, while the Pro proves that capacity is king with between 500-750 GB of storage space. The Pros both run either a 2.3, 2.5, 2.6, or 2.9 GHz powered processors; the 13 inch Pro is dual-core and the 15 inch Pro is quad-core. In opposition, the Airs are both dual-core and have processors with speeds well below the Pro. The two have similar graphics performance cards, and are both capable of operating with Thunderbolt. Also, if you use Skype a lot, well, it doesn’t make much of a difference here since they both have 720p HD cameras.
Moving on to what scores for the Air, both of its models supply you with seven hours of wireless Web battery life; only the 750 GB Pro can match that stat. However, remember: Apple is trying to woo you with the weight differential; the Air is 2.38 or 2.96 lbs, and the Pro is 4.5 or 5.6 lbs.
Now you tell me which one wins you over!