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Master Geek
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Topic # 179212 31-Aug-2015 14:24
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The Missus got gifted some money from a family member and has long been wanting an 11" Macbook Air.

We have a lot of Apple stuff in the house but neither of us have any experience with a Mac / Macbook etc

What have you found are the best bang for buck add ons?
eg 256Gb memory or 512?
upgrade to 8Gb RAM?
upgrade to i7?

I was more in favour of the 13" due to having an SD card reader but have since found you can get USB SD card readers so no problem.

The only other question I have is. Buy now or wait till Sep 9 to look at upgraded models?
I have not been watching the price of the current models to know if they have moved much.

Thanks in advance :)

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  Reply # 1377088 31-Aug-2015 14:31
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the biggest question is what are you using it for

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  Reply # 1377092 31-Aug-2015 14:40
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If you can hold out, wait a bit longer as the Skylake-U processors are announced and no doubt Apple will make use of it. Potentially a refresh in October or later. Sept 9 most probably is iPhone/iPad announcement, and October "usually" is Mac hardware updates.

However if you MUST get it now, I'd advise MBA13. Depending on what your wife want to do. the current 1.6ghz with 4GB and 128GB is pretty good, 13" (1440 by 900) NZ$1499 - http://www.apple.com/nz/macbook-air/specs.html 

I got my partner that configuration as well.


I personally is holding out for Skylake update, and probably do a CTO build - depending on how much...




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  Reply # 1377093 31-Aug-2015 14:40
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Chances are, with the NZD dropping, that when new models are released the prices will increase.
I wouldn't bother with the CPU upgrade but would get the RAM first (Yosemite likes 8GB) and then as much storage as you can afford after that.
They can't be upgraded once purchased so go as big as possible.







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Reply # 1377112 31-Aug-2015 14:55
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Jase2985: the biggest question is what are you using it for

It looks pretty, great battery life and it's small     tongue-out


Probably look into installing a partition with Win 10 on it?

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  Reply # 1377152 31-Aug-2015 15:08
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CYaBro: [snip]I wouldn't bother with the CPU upgrade but would get the RAM first (Yosemite likes 8GB) and then as much storage as you can afford after that.


This. Unless you are doing something very processor intensive, then the i7 is probably not worth it. SSD can be upgraded reasonably easily at a later date if you want, but RAM is soldered on, so you cannot upgrade later. Getting more RAM will make it more capable now, and extend it's usable life down the track.

It was only a few years ago that the MBA only had 2GB RAM, which really isn't enough to do much comfortably with Yosemite, even though it's officially supported.

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  Reply # 1377153 31-Aug-2015 15:09
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A good resource to check is http://www.macrumors.com/roundup/macbook-air/ - Macbook Air was last updated in March.





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  Reply # 1377155 31-Aug-2015 15:14
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Yeah, unlikely to see another MBA update this year.  Maybe mid-late next year.  



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  Reply # 1377169 31-Aug-2015 15:33
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I got my friends to go with the MBPr (retina) base model since it was recently updated, had 8gb ram and also had an awesome screen.

I would stick with the 128gb SSD. What I did for my own personal MBA (mid 2013) is to get an SD card space extension thing.

My use case for my MBA is mostly when I am traveling or going away from my main desktop. Using it on the go, need access to my music playlists, some videos to keep me entertained. But mostly, some storage for my photos and videos that I take while traveling. This was the most cost effective way for me to add storage without lugging around an external.

The sd card literally sticks out 2-3mm so essentially negligible. 

But I agree with most people comments - go with 13in MBA. The 11inch is a bit too small. Go with MBPr if your budget allows (Dick smith or JB have 10% off sales on Macs every month or so). If you cant find the budget to do this, then wait for the MBA refresh. There may be one this year, personally, I doubt it since the last was in March. 

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  Reply # 1377172 31-Aug-2015 15:40
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Keep an eye on the Apple referb store - http://www.apple.com/nz/shop/browse/home/specialdeals/mac

I
 got my MBP off there, the difference being the box isn't quite as nice if you get one retail. Has the same warranty, has a new shell/battery. Apart from the system board, I'm not sure there is a lot else that is actually not brand new. 

The 11" is IMO too small to use as a primary machine, the 13 is a good size. I recommend going into a retail store and playing with both before making a decision. 

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  Reply # 1377174 31-Aug-2015 15:40
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+1 for RAM upgrade followed up by SSD upgrade. There are other options you can look at for storage space (eg. Time capsule + USB HDD for backups/external storage accessible via. network/wifi), but depends on what you're using the laptop for. My partner has the 13" and it's probably one of the best balances between size, battery life and screen real estate.



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  Reply # 1377859 1-Sep-2015 18:24
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Thanks for the replies.
Ordered an 11" with 8Gb RAM and 128Gb SSD.
Did a comparison with US/AUD and NZD stores and the NZ store is placed pretty well in relation to our current exchange rate.
Ordered in anticipation of another immentent price increase next week.

Happy Wife / Happy Life  ;)

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  Reply # 1377865 1-Sep-2015 19:07
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Yogi02: Thanks for the replies.
Ordered an 11" with 8Gb RAM and 128Gb SSD.
Did a comparison with US/AUD and NZD stores and the NZ store is placed pretty well in relation to our current exchange rate.
Ordered in anticipation of another immentent price increase next week.

Happy Wife / Happy Life  ;)


Oh... not the 13"? SMH.




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