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Will the new MBA make the MBP 13s obsolete?

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
So since the new MBA will most likely have Sandy Bridge, better flash memory storage, thunderbolt, as well as the portability factor, won't it become a fierce competitor with the MBA 13 inch line. It seems like the only major thing the MBP 13s have over the MBAs is 4gigs of ram while the new MBA will most likely still have 2gigs. I was going to buy a MBP 13 over the current MBA because of the performance difference, but now I think its better to wait for the new MBAs to come out before deciding.
post #2 of 23
The 13" MacBook Pro offers a lot more CPU performance for the money than the 13" MacBook Air and will continue to do so.

Both are and will be available with 4GB of RAM.
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post #3 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post

The 13" MacBook Pro offers a lot more CPU performance for the money than the 13" MacBook Air and will continue to do so.

Both and are will be available with 4GB of RAM.

Yes, but with sandy bridge intel i5 on the new MBAs, the performance difference in CPU power seems like it will be minimal. The MBA 13s are priced at only $100 more than the MBP 13s.

When will they actually announce the specs on these things? Rumors all point to July 14-15 for a release date. Is it weird they havn't announced yet? Or is this all part of Apples marketing/business scheme?
post #4 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by randymarsh View Post

Yes, but with sandy bridge intel i5 on the new MBAs, the performance difference in CPU power seems like it will be minimal.

i3, i5, i7 is just marketing names. I don't know yet how much CPU performance difference there will be between the current 13" MacBook Pro and the forthcoming 13" MacBook Air. My guess is the difference will be noticeable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by randymarsh View Post

The MBA 13s are priced at only $100 more than the MBP 13s.

Start by equalizing RAM, clock speed, and storage, to the extent that it's possible, then compare prices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by randymarsh View Post

When will they actually announce the specs on these things? Rumors all point to July 14-15 for a release date.

Seems like probably this month.

Quote:
Originally Posted by randymarsh View Post

Is it weird they havn't announced yet? Or is this all part of Apples marketing/business scheme?

I don't see anything at all weird.
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post #5 of 23
Users of Macbook Pros are in great love with their machines, and it's understandable because Macs are nice machines, and because MBPs are not cheap.

In every upgrade of the MBA, I've noticed that most of the FUD against the MBA (ie: "it's just a netbook useless for real work") has been from MBP owners.

I'm very sure that the MBA is the future of the laptop industry. Jobs thinks the same, and Intel too.

Once you have an MBA on your hands, and you realize you can hold it on one hand (and work with the other hand) without feeling pain on your back, and use it very comfortably both in your office, or on a train, or everywhere, the only thing you can exclaim is: "This is what I always wanted from a notebook: I want this form factor, and I want to use it not for internet, but for real pro work".

However, it's still difficult (or impossible) to have all the power of a 17-inch MBP on a MBA. But that's not far away in the horizon, and will happen sooner than people think.

The MBP form factor will die, period. Apple has said it will introduce more and more things from the MBA in the MBP.

The market wants all the power of the MBP on the MBA, and it will happen.

The PC windows laptop industry also wishes to produce powerful laptops as light as the MBA.

The MBA has been one of the most impressive (and useful) advances in computers done by Apple.

A year ago I couldn't talk with another person holding my laptop bag on my hands, because my back suffered. Now, I can do it without any pain. Thanks Apple!!
post #6 of 23
The new MBA will replace the old white MacBook. The 13" MacBook Pro is safe.
post #7 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecs View Post

Users of Macbook Pros are in great love with their machines, and it's understandable because Macs are nice machines, and because MBPs are not cheap.

In every upgrade of the MBA, I've noticed that most of the FUD against the MBA (ie: "it's just a netbook useless for real work") has been from MBP owners.

I'm very sure that the MBA is the future of the laptop industry. Jobs thinks the same, and Intel too.

Once you have an MBA on your hands, and you realize you can hold it on one hand (and work with the other hand) without feeling pain on your back, and use it very comfortably both in your office, or on a train, or everywhere, the only thing you can exclaim is: "This is what I always wanted from a notebook: I want this form factor, and I want to use it not for internet, but for real pro work".

However, it's still difficult (or impossible) to have all the power of a 17-inch MBP on a MBA. But that's not far away in the horizon, and will happen sooner than people think.

I agree up to this point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ecs View Post

The MBP form factor will die, period. Apple has said it will introduce more and more things from the MBA in the MBP.

The market wants all the power of the MBP on the MBA, and it will happen.

Both the MacBook Air and the MacBook Pro will continue to become faster and both will continue to become lighter. Some day, the MacBook Pro will lose the internal optical brick (but not before the MacBook loses the internal optical brick). Except for losing the internal optical brick, I'm not expecting convergence of the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro. There will continue to be people who want the thinnest lightest laptop possible and are willing to compromise on performance and there will continue to be people who want the maximum performance possible and will compromise on thickness and weight.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

The new MBA will replace the old white MacBook.

I don't think so. The MacBook Air is both more expensive and slower than it would need to be if it were allowed to be as thick and heavy as the MacBook. In other words, Apple can make the MacBook faster and less expensive than the MacBook Air. There will continue to be demand for people who want low price and don't care about the last few millimeters of thickness and the last few 100 grams of weight. I think the MacBook is safe for at least as long as HDs are cheaper per GB than SSDs.
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post #8 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by randymarsh View Post

Yes, but with sandy bridge intel i5 on the new MBAs, the performance difference in CPU power seems like it will be minimal. The MBA 13s are priced at only $100 more than the MBP 13s.

LV and ULV chips in MBA will be noticeably slower than even a basic 13" MacBook Pro, despite being from the same family.
post #9 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by stratokaster View Post

LV and ULV chips in MBA will be noticeably slower than even a basic 13" MacBook Pro, despite being from the same family.

First everyone assumes that we will get Intel ULV Sandy Bridge processors. While that is a high likely hood don't bet the farm on them being in AIR. Frankly Apple has many options here, none of them would lead to a machine approaching MBP speeds.

Beyond that intel chips can be power hungry, Apple needs to extend AIRs battery life so sgueezing out maximum performance out of AIR is not a goal. It isn't AIRs place to be a high performance computer.

In any event less than five days to go. It will be very interesting to see what Apple does to the laptop line. Apples posture is far more aggressive than it ever has been in the past, so I'm expecting surprises.
post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by stratokaster View Post

LV and ULV chips in MBA will be noticeably slower than even a basic 13" MacBook Pro, despite being from the same family.

I had a 3-year old Acer with Core2 Duo at 2.66GHz. One of the tasks I used it for was finite element analysis, with matrices which often needed 4GB RAM to be solved. I also used it for OpenGL graphics.

When I considered moving to the MBA with 2.13GHz, everybody (even the Apple store guy!!) told me it wasn't the laptop for me, because it was going to be slower (the processor was ULV, and also 2.13 is less than 2.66, and the NVIDIA 320M was an integrated GPU.

I bought the MBA (the maxed-up 13'' 2.13GHz 4GB, 256GB) believing all these comments were wrong. And, yes, they were wrong. The finite element problems that I solved with the ACER took about the same time on the MBA (less than 5% slower, which means the 2.13 GHz Core2 Duo is faster than the 2.66 one in the Acer, despite being ULV). OpenGL performance is on the same level I'm used to (the only areas where I notice it slightly slower is when managing memory objects, because it does it on system RAM instead of dedicated RAM, but it's not much slower as on the ACER.

I also use it for high resolution photography. In this area I believe it beats my older laptop.

Btw, I recently tried a new iMac with i3. First, I was disappointed about how much OSX takes to boot on that machine. I thought the faster i3 processor would beat any advantage of solid state drives, but that's not the case: My MBA with Core2 Duo boots OSX much faster than this i3 iMac. Regarding the speed in CPU intensive tasks, yes, it's faster than Core2 Duo, but not impressively faster (ie: the 2.13GHz MBA has still a performance comparable -slower but not as much as most would think- to this i3 iMac.

What I mean is, yes, there will be an slight performance difference with the LV and ULV chips, but... take the "most demanding" task you do on your MBP and try to do it on a new MBA (preferably on the not-yet-released i3 ones, with the same RAM as your MBP), and try to see if you notice any difference. Only those who have 4 cores on their MBP and who *really* use the 4 cores for very CPU-intensive tasks will say that the MBP saves them a lot of time. The rest will say that they can do the same work with the MBA without losing time.
post #11 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecs View Post

I had a 3-year old Acer with Core2 Duo at 2.66GHz. One of the tasks I used it for was finite element analysis, with matrices which often needed 4GB RAM to be solved. I also used it for OpenGL graphics.

When I considered moving to the MBA with 2.13GHz, everybody (even the Apple store guy!!) told me it wasn't the laptop for me, because it was going to be slower (the processor was ULV, and also 2.13 is less than 2.66, and the NVIDIA 320M was an integrated GPU.

I bought the MBA (the maxed-up 13'' 2.13GHz 4GB, 256GB) believing all these comments were wrong. And, yes, they were wrong. The finite element problems that I solved with the ACER took about the same time on the MBA (less than 5% slower, which means the 2.13 GHz Core2 Duo is faster than the 2.66 one in the Acer, despite being ULV). OpenGL performance is on the same level I'm used to (the only areas where I notice it slightly slower is when managing memory objects, because it does it on system RAM instead of dedicated RAM, but it's not much slower as on the ACER.

I also use it for high resolution photography. In this area I believe it beats my older laptop.

Btw, I recently tried a new iMac with i3. First, I was disappointed about how much OSX takes to boot on that machine. I thought the faster i3 processor would beat any advantage of solid state drives, but that's not the case: My MBA with Core2 Duo boots OSX much faster than this i3 iMac. Regarding the speed in CPU intensive tasks, yes, it's faster than Core2 Duo, but not impressively faster (ie: the 2.13GHz MBA has still a performance comparable -slower but not as much as most would think- to this i3 iMac.

What I mean is, yes, there will be an slight performance difference with the LV and ULV chips, but... take the "most demanding" task you do on your MBP and try to do it on a new MBA (preferably on the not-yet-released i3 ones, with the same RAM as your MBP), and try to see if you notice any difference. Only those who have 4 cores on their MBP and who *really* use the 4 cores for very CPU-intensive tasks will say that the MBP saves them a lot of time. The rest will say that they can do the same work with the MBA without losing time.

I'm guessing that your Acer 2.66GHz Core 2 Duo has an 800MHz front side bus and memory. I think the 1066MHz front side bus and memory of your MacBook Air accounts for most of the performance improvement you're seeing during your finite element analysis. I hope and believe that the imminent MacBook Air models will include 1333MHz front side bus and memory. It would be interesting to know how that affects your calculation times.
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post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by randymarsh View Post

Yes, but with sandy bridge intel i5 on the new MBAs, the performance difference in CPU power seems like it will be minimal. The MBA 13s are priced at only $100 more than the MBP 13s.

When will they actually announce the specs on these things? Rumors all point to July 14-15 for a release date. Is it weird they havn't announced yet? Or is this all part of Apples marketing/business scheme?

This is part of Apple strategy planning to have the consumer become more anxious each day until the product comes out in the market. The MBP 13 inch is going no where that fast.It just came out at the end of Feb.
post #13 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post

I'm guessing that your Acer 2.66GHz Core 2 Duo has an 800MHz front side bus and memory. I think the 1066MHz front side bus and memory of your MacBook Air accounts for most of the performance improvement you're seeing during your finite element analysis. I hope and believe that the imminent MacBook Air models will include 1333MHz front side bus and memory. It would be interesting to know how that affects your calculation times.

It's more probably a P8800 C2D (4x266 FSB, 10x multiplier), with a 800 FSB you'd get a 2.60 cpu (4x200 FSB, 13x multiplier). The main difference between the P8xxx series and the SL9xxx series is 3MB of cache vs 6MB of cache, that can explain in part the very similar results in performance. FWIW there's no more FSB since Arrandale, but LV Sandy Bridge cpus can support 1066/1333 RAM.

The current MBA (2.13/4GB/SSD) is already faster overall than the mid-2010 MBP (2.40/4GB/HDD), there's no doubt that if Apple can use a LV 2.10/2.30 Core i7-26xxM in the future 13" MBA, it will have performances on par with the new 13" MBP (2.30/4GB/HDD), as the Core i7-26xxM cpus are better cpus than the Core i5-2410M used in the 13" MBP: more cache, better turbo-boost. Only the integrated graphics are clocked slightly lower (but that's how they can achieve a lower TDP). There's also an OEM model that could be interesting as it offers slightly better graphics performance, with slightly slower cpu speeds:

Core i7-2629M 2C/4T 2.1GHz (2.7/3.0 turbo) 4 MB cache HD 3000 5001100MHz 25W $311
Core i7-2655LE 2C/4T 2.2GHz (2.7/2.9 turbo) 4 MB cache HD 3000 6501000MHz 25W OEM (other customized models could be available)
Core i7-2649M 2C/4T 2.3GHz\t(2.9/3.2 turbo) 4 MB cache HD 3000 5001100MHz 25W $346

For comparaison the specs of the 13" MBP cpu:
Core i5-2410M 2C/4T 2.3GHz\t(2.6/2.9 turbo) 3 MB cache HD 3000 6501200MHz 35W OEM

Any of the 25W Core i7 cpus mentionned above will have overall performances on par with this 35W Core i5 cpu. That doesn't make the 13" MBP obsolete, performance is only one thing, as this computer has very different features/capabilities in terms of connectivity, RAM and storage. To each his own.

The latest ULV models are also very nice:
Core i5-2467M 2C/4T 1.6GHz\t(2.1/2.3 turbo) 3 MB cache HD 3000 3501150MHz 17W\tOEM = cheaper
Core i5-2557M 2C/4T 1.7GHz\t(2.4/2.7 turbo) 3 MB cache HD 3000 3501200MHz 17W $250
Core i7-2677M 2C/4T 1.8GHz\t(2.6/2.9 turbo) 4 MB cache HD 3000 3501200MHz 17W $317

Let's hope the "delay" on the new MBAs release allows Apple to use some of those new cpus, as the previous ones were so-so (slower clock, turbo-boost, graphics).

11" MBA 1.6 Core i5-2467M, 2GB RAM, 128GB SSD, starting at $999
BTO: 1.8 Core i7-2677M, 4GB RAM, 256GB SSD

13" MBA 2.0/2.1 Core i7-26xxM/LE, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD, starting at $1299
BTO: 2.2/2.3 Core i7-26xxM/LE, 256GB SSD, 512GB SSD

In terms of the MBA being more expensive, like mcarling said, you have to configure both devices as close as possible: a new SB 13" MBA (2.30/4GB/128GB SSD) may cost less than $1499 ($1299 + cpu/RAM upgrade), the current 13" MBP (2.30/4GB) with 128GB SSD costs $1449. If you move both models to 256GB SSD, the new 13" MBA may cost less than $1799 (above +$300 for 256GB) while the current 13" MBP (2.30/4GB) with 256GB SSD costs $1849. All in all, very similar prices for 2 equally powerful computers, still with very different features/capabilities. That would make the new MBA, more than ever, a viable alternative to the 13" MBP, without much compromise on performance. Again, to each his own.
post #14 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecs View Post

I had a 3-year old Acer with Core2 Duo at 2.66GHz. One of the tasks I used it for was finite element analysis, with matrices which often needed 4GB RAM to be solved. I also used it for OpenGL graphics.

You have to realize that when doing something like finite element analysis there are many things that factor into performance observations. For example difference between Windows and OS/X. Further libraries play a role here. On top of that Windows machines are often running virus checkers that impact performance.
Quote:
When I considered moving to the MBA with 2.13GHz, everybody (even the Apple store guy!!) told me it wasn't the laptop for me, because it was going to be slower (the processor was ULV, and also 2.13 is less than 2.66, and the NVIDIA 320M was an integrated GPU.

It still isn't the best platform for what you do. It isn't that the Apple store guy was wrong just that you aren't as demanding as a lot of customer that they have to deal with. If you walked up to me and asked which laptop would be ideal I would have sent you to a Pro myself.

As an aside though the NVIDIA 320M is a very good integrated GPU. It is yet to be seen how well the integrated Intel GPU will work in comparison.
Quote:

I bought the MBA (the maxed-up 13'' 2.13GHz 4GB, 256GB) believing all these comments were wrong. And, yes, they were wrong. The finite element problems that I solved with the ACER took about the same time on the MBA (less than 5% slower, which means the 2.13 GHz Core2 Duo is faster than the 2.66 one in the Acer, despite being ULV).

Again may factors come into play. However when you express happiness by replacing a two year old computer with a new one that runs at the same speed (more or less) I'd say you have very low standards. This perplexes me to no end, as every computer upgrade/replacement I've ever made was done to improve performance.
Quote:
OpenGL performance is on the same level I'm used to (the only areas where I notice it slightly slower is when managing memory objects, because it does it on system RAM instead of dedicated RAM, but it's not much slower as on the ACER.

Again the 320M is a very good GPU. The thing with the negativity with respect to integrated GPU's should have went away with this chip.
Quote:
I also use it for high resolution photography. In this area I believe it beats my older laptop.

Btw, I recently tried a new iMac with i3. First, I was disappointed about how much OSX takes to boot on that machine. I thought the faster i3 processor would beat any advantage of solid state drives, but that's not the case: My MBA with Core2 Duo boots OSX much faster than this i3 iMac. Regarding the speed in CPU intensive tasks, yes, it's faster than Core2 Duo, but not impressively faster (ie: the 2.13GHz MBA has still a performance comparable -slower but not as much as most would think- to this i3 iMac.

i3 isn't exactly a top of the line processor, in fact it isn't much better than Core 2 Duo.
Quote:
What I mean is, yes, there will be an slight performance difference with the LV and ULV chips, but... take the "most demanding" task you do on your MBP and try to do it on a new MBA (preferably on the not-yet-released i3 ones, with the same RAM as your MBP), and try to see if you notice any difference.

The problem with challenges like this is that the conclusions taken depend entirely upon what those "most demanding" tasks are. In some cases a MBP would totally blow the MBA away.
Quote:
Only those who have 4 cores on their MBP and who *really* use the 4 cores for very CPU-intensive tasks will say that the MBP saves them a lot of time. The rest will say that they can do the same work with the MBA without losing time.

That is over generalized. "the rest" is a pretty inclusive set of users. The reality is that users are the key and no one user fits into all possible use cases.
post #15 of 23
I suspect that these new AIRs will be one of the most studied laptops to come along in some time. by the end of next week we should know every little detail about the platforms performance, battery life and whatever else interests you.
post #16 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Again may factors come into play. However when you express happiness by replacing a two year old computer with a new one that runs at the same speed (more or less) I'd say you have very low standards. This perplexes me to no end, as every computer upgrade/replacement I've ever made was done to improve performance.
.....

Maybe he isn't cpu constrained.

You can pretend that the SSD doesn't make a difference in system performance but it really does. Ignore that man behind the curtain.
post #17 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by backtomac View Post

Maybe he isn't cpu constrained.

You can pretend that the SSD doesn't make a difference in system performance but it really does. Ignore that man behind the curtain.

I'm not pretending anything here, everybody understands that SSD help improve system performance when doing I/O to secondary store. My point is that AIRs can be very slow when compared PRO machines when CPU bound. To say this isn't the case is simply delusional.

In the specific case that was referenced here, the comparing of finite element behavior on two different machines, running two different OS's, has so many variables that it isn't all that useful. It would be far more interesting to see comparisons on a number of different Macs.
post #18 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

As an aside though the NVIDIA 320M is a very good integrated GPU. It is yet to be seen how well the integrated Intel GPU will work in comparison.

Anand Shimpi has already benchmarked Intel HD 3000 and found it to be roughly 1.3 times as fast as NVIDIA 320M: http://www.anandtech.com/show/4205/t...sandy-bridge/8
post #19 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

You have to realize that when doing something like finite element analysis there are many things that factor into performance observations. For example difference between Windows and OS/X. Further libraries play a role here. On top of that Windows machines are often running virus checkers that impact performance.

Nope. This finite element code doesn't run on Windows yet. It runs on UNIX and OSX. So, in the Acer it ran under Linux (64bit Linux to be more exact). And, believe me, this Linux distro was really optimized.

Also, this finite element software is custom: I compile it on each system I use, optimizing it the best I can.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Again may factors come into play. However when you express happiness by replacing a two year old computer with a new one that runs at the same speed (more or less) I'd say you have very low standards. This perplexes me to no end, as every computer upgrade/replacement I've ever made was done to improve performance.

Well, apart from doing work which *is* CPU intensive (ask out there what finite element problems require 4GB RAM to be solved), I also use my laptops as laptops (ie: I have to carry them with me the whole day). Most of the time I can place them on a desk, but I'm carrying them with me from place to place the whole day. Holding a bag with a heavy laptop whenever you find a colleague on the street and spend more than 10 minutes speaking to him, was beginning to hurt my back... what I was wearing wasn't a *real* laptop.

When I took a MBA on my hands, I said: "this is the first real laptop I see". Finally a machine I can hold comfortably wherever I go.

I'm confident that I bought the *Fastest* laptop available for CPU intensive tasks, because I no longer consider as laptops any machine heavier than the MBA.

I'm a professor, and I've done classes where I was holding the MBA on one hand, and writing with the chalk on the blackboard with the other hand. Now... that's a *real* laptop.

Anyway, it's nonsense to continue arguing about this... wait and time will tell who's right: Guess what form factor will be used in the future by users who do professional 3D graphics?

As I said, I bought the fastest *real* laptop available (the maxed-up 13.3'' MBA... I didn't order a 4-core MBA because it doesn't exist yet). When I upgrade in the future, I'll try to also get the fastest one available at the time.

Also, as I said, the work I do is quite CPU intensive, and, on my MBA, huge problems take no more than 20 minutes to be solved. I can affirm that most MBP users don't use their machines to do such CPU intensive work. Only a few of them really need 4 cores.

Well... no need to argue... the future will speak.
post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by stratokaster View Post

Anand Shimpi has already benchmarked Intel HD 3000 and found it to be roughly 1.3 times as fast as NVIDIA 320M: http://www.anandtech.com/show/4205/t...sandy-bridge/8

Frankly Anand has become an Intel mouth piece. There are a number of things he glosses over that impact the equations here. However if you read the referenced material completely the key points are that the Intel GPU is only really useful at the lowest settings for 3D and that the 320 does eclipse the Sandy Bridge GPU. The rest of the article is not all that positive either, some times the SB GPU does well other times it isn't any better than the 320m.

Then you have the issue of no OpenCL support which is a shame as OpenCL is a very powerful option to have. This for many users will be more significant than crummy 3D support.

However we do know that current implementations of the SB GPU aren't that bad for the majority of users. However we don't know anything about the what will be implemented in the new AIRs. That is we don't know the clock rate nor even the core count. Not to mention how fast the RAM is in the next AIRs I just think one is jumping ahead here predicting that the coming AIRs will actually be better machines GPU wise when all credible evidence points in the opposite direction.
post #21 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecs View Post

Nope. This finite element code doesn't run on Windows yet. It runs on UNIX and OSX. So, in the Acer it ran under Linux (64bit Linux to be more exact). And, believe me, this Linux distro was really optimized.

Thanks for clearing that up! It has been about 3 years since I moved from Linux to OS/X, it would be interesting to hear more about the how's and whys but that is another thread.

Still the point remains you have a different OS on the other platform.
Quote:

Also, this finite element software is custom: I compile it on each system I use, optimizing it the best I can.

Cool! Is it open source?
Quote:

Well, apart from doing work which *is* CPU intensive (ask out there what finite element problems require 4GB RAM to be solved), I also use my laptops as laptops (ie: I have to carry them with me the whole day). Most of the time I can place them on a desk, but I'm carrying them with me from place to place the whole day. Holding a bag with a heavy laptop whenever you find a colleague on the street and spend more than 10 minutes speaking to him, was beginning to hurt my back... what I was wearing wasn't a *real* laptop.

This is what I have problems with. You seem to want a laptop that can float in air. Also if you have to interact that much with colleagues, standing in the middle of nowhere, I'd suggest that maybe you need an iPad. Personally I kinda wish there was a faster take up of the iPad in the professional software industry, but again that is another thread.
Quote:
When I took a MBA on my hands, I said: "this is the first real laptop I see". Finally a machine I can hold comfortably wherever I go.

Well now you are just being silly. Apparently you missed the root word "lap" in the word laptop. Even the AIR isn't really a palm top.
Quote:
I'm confident that I bought the *Fastest* laptop available for CPU intensive tasks, because I no longer consider as laptops any machine heavier than the MBA.

That is like a guy that makes a living driving a Peterbuilt calling anything less than a Peterbuilt a non truck.
Quote:
I'm a professor, and I've done classes where I was holding the MBA on one hand, and writing with the chalk on the blackboard with the other hand. Now... that's a *real* laptop.

Actually it isn't in that case. You are really using it as a palm top
Quote:
Anyway, it's nonsense to continue arguing about this... wait and time will tell who's right: Guess what form factor will be used in the future by users who do professional 3D graphics?

There is no guessing here because it depends upon the user. You speak in absolute terms which is self serving in my opinion.
Quote:
As I said, I bought the fastest *real* laptop available (the maxed-up 13.3'' MBA... I didn't order a 4-core MBA because it doesn't exist yet). When I upgrade in the future, I'll try to also get the fastest one available at the time.

Nope you will just get another AIR and ignore faster laptops. Let's face it you have arbitrary parameters for what passes as a laptop.

In any event I'm not sure you get where I'm coming from. The reason I don't have an AIR right now has little to do with Mac performance and a lot to do with the lack of space on the SSD. I'm fairly sure that SB AIRs will be fast enough for most of my Mac needs though I wonder how running a VM might impact the machines.
Quote:
Also, as I said, the work I do is quite CPU intensive, and, on my MBA, huge problems take no more than 20 minutes to be solved. I can affirm that most MBP users don't use their machines to do such CPU intensive work. Only a few of them really need 4 cores.

Well... no need to argue... the future will speak.

Let's face it a lot of users don't even use their iPads to full capacity and like wise their MBPs. The only thing that bothers me in this whole thread is your claim of speed out of the AIR you own. I still believe that many users will get far better performance out of a MBP ordered with an SSD.

As an aside, I'm forced to use Windows machines at work often with a reboot. Interestingly it appears that 20 minutes elapses after such a reboot. Well close to it depending upon server loads and such. Twenty minutes is a very long time if you are sitting in front of an idle production line that is hundreds of feet long with everybody and their brother staring at you. So while you may be happy with that twenty minute wait for results, people in different situations may find it appalling.

Frankly I'd love to have an AIR at work, but the chances of getting a machine running anything but Windows is slim to none. Especially when most of the required software is Windows only. It isn't AIRs speed that attracts me so much as the fact that it would be more or less instantly available to me when needed. In any event the IT department is so out of touch with the computing needs of their customers that reasonable conversation with them is impossible.
post #22 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecs View Post

Users of Macbook Pros are in great love with their machines, and it's understandable because Macs are nice machines, and because MBPs are not cheap.

In every upgrade of the MBA, I've noticed that most of the FUD against the MBA (ie: "it's just a netbook useless for real work") has been from MBP owners.

I'm very sure that the MBA is the future of the laptop industry. Jobs thinks the same, and Intel too.

Once you have an MBA on your hands, and you realize you can hold it on one hand (and work with the other hand) without feeling pain on your back, and use it very comfortably both in your office, or on a train, or everywhere, the only thing you can exclaim is: "This is what I always wanted from a notebook: I want this form factor, and I want to use it not for internet, but for real pro work".

However, it's still difficult (or impossible) to have all the power of a 17-inch MBP on a MBA. But that's not far away in the horizon, and will happen sooner than people think.

The MBP form factor will die, period. Apple has said it will introduce more and more things from the MBA in the MBP.

The market wants all the power of the MBP on the MBA, and it will happen.

The PC windows laptop industry also wishes to produce powerful laptops as light as the MBA.

The MBA has been one of the most impressive (and useful) advances in computers done by Apple.

A year ago I couldn't talk with another person holding my laptop bag on my hands, because my back suffered. Now, I can do it without any pain. Thanks Apple!!

correct . it may take time but MBP 13 in its present weak from will die . MBA 13in will gat faster and stronger .

9
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beatles
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whats in a name ? 
beatles
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post #23 of 23
With the MBP's likely going ODD-less next revision, perhaps the MBP 13' will get a discreet GPU or quad core to differentiate it from the Air? They would have more room for the GPU, and more room for battery to sustain a quad core.
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