Welcome to the MacNN Forums.

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > MacBook Air vs MacBook Pro i7, help me.

MacBook Air vs MacBook Pro i7, help me.
Thread Tools
solofx7
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 12:36 AM
 
I am thinking about moving from a 17inch MBP i7 to a MacBook Air 11.
I know there is a big difference between the 2 machines, but I just wanted to get some thoughts, ideas, possible negatives that I am missing.
I currently have a iMac 27 i7 D which is my main machine. I go to school once or twice a week and needed a laptop.
So I got the MBP 17 i7 with a HDD that is part SSD and part normal HD. The main reason I went with this machine is because I generally buy the best that I can so that it will last a bit longer.
I love the speed and the screen, but it is a monster and sort of on the tail end of what can be considered a "portable."
Though I do not have to go to school much, when I do, carrying this thing around is a tough call.
To make a long story short at this point, I was thinking about selling the MBP and getting an Air.
As it is just a second machine, I do not need tons of power and really feel that 64 or 128gb is more than enough.
Here is a breakdown of what I think are the negatives and positives.

Positives:
Weight, adequate speed, high portability, instant on, size.

Negatives:
No backlit keyboard, speed, high cost when adding more HDD and ram and battery life.
My local retail store only carries the 11 unit with all upgrades being ram, HDD and 1.6. The 1.6 is the only thing that I think that I could do without.
Any thoughts or help would be appreciated
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 06:02 AM
 
Mack truck or Miata?

Please help me.



You're not going to do much heavy lifting on the Air.
     
Waragainstsleep
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: UK
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 12:14 PM
 
I still maintain that buying the new Air without the 4GB upgrade is evidence of ignorance or madness. Or brain damage.

You forgot to mention longevity. The 17" will be useful for longer.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
P
Moderator
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 12:47 PM
 
The combo of 17" MBP and 27" iMac makes little sense to me, so I can understand why you'd like an MBA. If you can get a good price for the MBP, I'd say go for the MBA with the 4 gig RAM.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 12:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
Mack truck or Miata?

Please help me.



You're not going to do much heavy lifting on the Air.
hehe, that was super funny. I hate Miata's I cannot see the use of them
In any event.
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
amazing
Professional Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 12:52 PM
 
Another alternative is to put an SSD in the 17", while at the same time taking out the disk drive and putting a 1 TB HD in. You'll have speed and lots of storage.

Remiel: Making the leap to SSD on a MacBook

Won't solve the portability problem of the 17", but it'll remove the sports car speed envy.
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 12:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
I still maintain that buying the new Air without the 4GB upgrade is evidence of ignorance or madness. Or brain damage.

You forgot to mention longevity. The 17" will be useful for longer.
I think that the ram is needed too. I just don't like being forced into all of the upgrades because of one. The price gets up there fast
I think that the 17 will last longer, but it also feels like I am bringing a small child with me everywhere I go.
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 12:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by P View Post
The combo of 17" MBP and 27" iMac makes little sense to me, so I can understand why you'd like an MBA. If you can get a good price for the MBP, I'd say go for the MBA with the 4 gig RAM.
Thanks again P, you are everywhere
My thought process when I got the MBP is to get the best that I could at the time for a laptop, and thats what I did. Th Air was not out at the time. I think that I can get away with 65gb, but since it is not upgradable in the future, I would have to do it when I buy. I am just not sold on the 1.6
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 01:02 PM
 
Originally Posted by amazing View Post
Another alternative is to put an SSD in the 17", while at the same time taking out the disk drive and putting a 1 TB HD in. You'll have speed and lots of storage.

Remiel: Making the leap to SSD on a MacBook

Won't solve the portability problem of the 17", but it'll remove the sports car speed envy.
I am more concerned I guess with size, weight and portability. Speed is not the biggest concern. As I was in the store dropping off my iMac for service yesterday, I got to play with the Air for a little bit. Once you get over the sexy factor, you need to see if it is useable. I have lots of pics and lots of music, though I do not need to carry it with me all of the time. I was very impressed with how it ran iPhoto and such. I know that the pics and such are optimized to run in the store environment though. I think that the combo of the processor, ram and SSD provides a good overall experience. I feel that it provides a great experience. I know that the SSD provides a big speed increase, but I was not willing to spend the cash for that alone in the 17, thats why i did the combo drive.
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
SierraDragon
Mac Elite
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Truckee, CA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 02:44 PM
 
If the iMac is your Mack truck and you want a strong portable, want small and can tolerate glossy display get a 13" MBP. If power is irrelevant and you like sexy get the MBA but get max RAM.

And tell me how much you want for the 17" MBP if it has a matte display. My old 17" is on it's last legs; something to do with the hot chocolate spilled into the keyboard...

-Allen
     
amazing
Professional Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 03:25 PM
 
I agree with Allen: You'll get more longevity out of the 13" MBP--plus, coming from a 17" you'll see way more portability even if it isn't a light as the MBA.

The MBA is for people who travel or commute a whole bunch. If you're needing a laptop for those few times when you go in to school, it's overkill. Nice, but overkill.

If money's no object, go for the MBA.
     
Michael Jolly
Junior Member
Join Date: Dec 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 11, 2010, 08:23 PM
 
I did have the last gen macbook Air it was not very good to be honest i found it slow and sluggish, when i was taking in to uni to do work i could not stand using it in the end, so i got a new 13inch macbook pro, its not as light as the air but i find i more useful in uni, its bigger HDD, CDdrive just feel a bit more usable. So much so in fact i am considering geting a external display and using it all the time,

But if money is not a problem the new Air could be just right for you, but you may want to consider the 13inch Macbook

just my two cents mind
Macbook Pro 2.4GHZ 13inch, LED Cinema Display, Iphone 4G 32gb and Ipad 64gb Wifi

Apple addict Since 2004
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 03:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
If the iMac is your Mack truck and you want a strong portable, want small and can tolerate glossy display get a 13" MBP. If power is irrelevant and you like sexy get the MBA but get max RAM.

And tell me how much you want for the 17" MBP if it has a matte display. My old 17" is on it's last legs; something to do with the hot chocolate spilled into the keyboard...

-Allen
You are right, I got my iMac back today. They had to replace the glass. I love the glossy screen that most people hate.
Sorry, my MBP is glossy.
I really love the MBA, but I think that I may have just fallen in love with it because it is the new thing and the sexiness.
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 03:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by amazing View Post
I agree with Allen: You'll get more longevity out of the 13" MBP--plus, coming from a 17" you'll see way more portability even if it isn't a light as the MBA.

The MBA is for people who travel or commute a whole bunch. If you're needing a laptop for those few times when you go in to school, it's overkill. Nice, but overkill.

If money's no object, go for the MBA.
I agree, I feel that the MBA is a bit of over kill for my portability needs. I know that is going to be going from one extreme to another. I truly feel that the price is pretty good on the MBA, its the upgrades that are killing me
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 04:01 PM
 
Originally Posted by Michael Jolly View Post
I did have the last gen macbook Air it was not very good to be honest i found it slow and sluggish, when i was taking in to uni to do work i could not stand using it in the end, so i got a new 13inch macbook pro, its not as light as the air but i find i more useful in uni, its bigger HDD, CDdrive just feel a bit more usable. So much so in fact i am considering geting a external display and using it all the time,

But if money is not a problem the new Air could be just right for you, but you may want to consider the 13inch Macbook

just my two cents mind
I think that the SSD make this MBA a difference of night and day from the last gen. I cannot truly speak to performance though. If my MBP was my only computer then I would love to keep it and deal with the size. Fortunately it is not my only computer.
I am still weighing if going extremely small and losing the performance is worth it. I will be saving 700-800 if I am able to sell my MBP for the price that I want. Either way, I am fine with the performance as the laptop does not get that much use. It is for light multitasking while at school and for occasional video playback/presentation creation.
If the MBA was not so small and cool, there would not even be a decision to make.
I am very impressed with how it ran in the store. I also have an iPad, but it is not 100% what I need to edit presentations and such. I need to have office available because my classmates all have PC's.
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 04:05 PM
 
my class is also 4 hours, so i would like to make it through without having to plug in...
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
Michael Jolly
Junior Member
Join Date: Dec 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 04:07 PM
 
I would always go with the ability to upgrade, hence me buying a MBP instead of an air, but it is of course your choice,
Macbook Pro 2.4GHZ 13inch, LED Cinema Display, Iphone 4G 32gb and Ipad 64gb Wifi

Apple addict Since 2004
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 04:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by Michael Jolly View Post
I would always go with the ability to upgrade, hence me buying a MBP instead of an air, but it is of course your choice,
I generally agree with you on that. Actually, that is what I tell everyone when they ask me.
Personally, I buy a new computer about every 2 years, so I never actually make it to an upgrade. As you can tell with my current machines, I buy the best I can and sort of avoid upgrading.
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 04:46 PM
 
Originally Posted by solofx7 View Post
I love the glossy screen that most people hate.
I realize that's hyperbole, but it's repeated often enough to be worth noting:

That is a completely false assessment.

Most people that complain on the internet about the glossy screen hate it.

Apple has sold probably well over ten million glossy-screen iMacs, and considering that Apple's numbers are still growing (over 70 percent growth in the number of desktops shipped, year-over-year since the 21.5"/27" started shipping), the current generation are probably Apple's best-selling desktop computer *ever*.

I find it difficult to believe that "most people hate" them.
     
Michael Jolly
Junior Member
Join Date: Dec 2005
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 04:55 PM
 
I quite like the glossy screens to be fair,
Macbook Pro 2.4GHZ 13inch, LED Cinema Display, Iphone 4G 32gb and Ipad 64gb Wifi

Apple addict Since 2004
     
Waragainstsleep
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: UK
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 12, 2010, 06:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by solofx7 View Post
I generally agree with you on that. Actually, that is what I tell everyone when they ask me.
Personally, I buy a new computer about every 2 years, so I never actually make it to an upgrade. As you can tell with my current machines, I buy the best I can and sort of avoid upgrading.
Surely buying a new one every two years means you shouldn't need to buy the best available?

The reason you buy the best you can afford is to keep it current for as long as possible and to make it last as long as possible. Unless you actually need lots of power and memory which as has been discussed many times, most people do not.
I have plenty of more important things to do, if only I could bring myself to do them....
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 14, 2010, 02:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
I realize that's hyperbole, but it's repeated often enough to be worth noting:

That is a completely false assessment.

Most people that complain on the internet about the glossy screen hate it.

Apple has sold probably well over ten million glossy-screen iMacs, and considering that Apple's numbers are still growing (over 70 percent growth in the number of desktops shipped, year-over-year since the 21.5"/27" started shipping), the current generation are probably Apple's best-selling desktop computer *ever*.

I find it difficult to believe that "most people hate" them.
Sorry about that. I was going off an earlier post war with many people that were stating how much they disliked at the time that apple did not even give the option of matte finish. basically nearly all people stated how much they hated glossy because of the glare. I was on the other side of the fence. I love glossy...
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 14, 2010, 02:48 PM
 
Originally Posted by Waragainstsleep View Post
Surely buying a new one every two years means you shouldn't need to buy the best available?

The reason you buy the best you can afford is to keep it current for as long as possible and to make it last as long as possible. Unless you actually need lots of power and memory which as has been discussed many times, most people do not.
I agree. That fact that I upgrade regularly means that I do not need the best available.
In this particular scenario I just think that the ram is a good investment.
In my local Apple store, the ram drags you into other upgrades as you cannot custom configure.
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
SierraDragon
Mac Elite
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Truckee, CA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 15, 2010, 03:00 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
I realize that's hyperbole, but it's repeated often enough to be worth noting:

That is a completely false assessment.
The correct statement is that most graphics images professionals dislike glossy. Most consumer-level folks find the extra "pop" of glossy displays force-fed to them visually a good thing (at least in the short term), sort of like the way louder music "sounds better" so audio hardware sellers boost volume on the hardware they prefer you to buy.

As a novice photog I loved the added pop of chrome films, but as my brain/eye became more experienced I appreciated Portra more and seldom selected chrome. Similarly, today glossy displays gag me, including the iPad this is being typed on.

-Allen Wicks
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 15, 2010, 03:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
The correct statement is that most graphics images professionals dislike glossy. Most consumer-level folks find the extra "pop" of glossy displays force-fed to them visually a good thing (at least in the short term), sort of like the way louder music "sounds better" so audio hardware sellers boost volume on the hardware they prefer you to buy.

As a novice photog I loved the added pop of chrome films, but as my brain/eye became more experienced I appreciated Portra more and seldom selected chrome. Similarly, today glossy displays gag me, including the iPad this is being typed on.

-Allen Wicks
Even that is probably quite incorrect, and the comparison to chrome films *used to* be true (back when hardware calibration was unavailable for glossy screens), but today is completely misleading:

Chrome films add more "pop" to everything, EXAGGERATING reality. It's there as an effect you can use.

Glossy screens can be calibrated to display colors at least as accurately as matte screens - they're just capable of displaying rich and deep tones that matte screens simply cannot display at all.

It's probably true that most people dealing with PRINTED graphics prefer the matte screens. That's due in part to print not reaching the "pop" of glossy displays anyway, and in part to the fact that print graphics designers are probably among the most reactionary people currently inhabiting this planet, just short of Republicans and Taliban.

They are certainly the loudest - and pretty much only - group of people complaining on the internet. They are also, oddly, the group that seems to have the most TIME to waste on complaining.

It stands to reason that people dealing with other media than the printed kind might actually appreciate the benefits of creating them on environments similar to those they will be consumed on.
     
SierraDragon
Mac Elite
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Truckee, CA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 16, 2010, 01:25 AM
 
Excellent!
     
solofx7  (op)
Mac Elite
Join Date: Dec 2006
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 17, 2010, 09:56 AM
 
I am still in the process of deciding.
This is a tough one.
iMac 27inch 3.4 i7 16gb ram, MacBook Air 11 inch i5 128gb, iMac 27inch 2.8 i7 8gb ram, MacBook Pro 17 inch 2.66 i7, 4gb ram 500gb HDD Seagate XT,
iPhone 4 - Time Capsule 2tb, Apple TV - iPad 2 64gb
     
SierraDragon
Mac Elite
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Truckee, CA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 18, 2010, 04:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
Chrome films add more "pop" to everything, EXAGGERATING reality.
That is exactly what a glossy display does. Watch a car explosion live, then watch the video of that explosion on a glossy display. The live explosion will be more visceral and have more feeling but the video reproduction on a glossy display will visually "add more 'pop' to everything, EXAGGERATING reality."

It's probably true that most people dealing with PRINTED graphics prefer the matte screens.
We agree on this at least.

That's due in part to print not reaching the "pop" of glossy displays anyway, and in part to the fact that print graphics designers are probably among the most reactionary people currently inhabiting this planet, just short of Republicans and Taliban.
As to the reactionary part, all the many images-involved (it may be misleading to say print, because all of us start with digital capture of images both initially and finally viewed through eyes/brain interaction) folks that I know are on the opposite end of the political spectrum from reactionary/Republican/Taliban.

They are certainly the loudest - and pretty much only - group of people complaining on the internet. They are also, oddly, the group that seems to have the most TIME to waste on complaining.
Rather than time, perhaps just more awareness and hence more concern. Folks dealing all day every day with visual image nuances with clients and print professionals attempting to best reproduce the original imagery that our eyes/brain interaction "saw" may be more discerning than your average gee-look-how-bright-my-team's-uniforms-look-on-my-glossy-display consumer.

It stands to reason that people dealing with other media than the printed kind might actually appreciate the benefits of creating them on environments similar to those they will be consumed on.
That makes sense - -somewhat, very somewhat. If one's work will mostly be viewed on crap displays in crap ambient lighting environments, why not design on crap displays in crap ambient lighting environments? I agree that just like testing websites in different browsers, we do need to proof on glossy displays; however I do not need to do my work on one any more than I need to do my work in IE for web design.

Once captured, the image my eyes/brain interaction saw will never again be the same. However during processing personally I prefer to stay as close to the original as is financially feasible. Like converting from lossless TIFF to lossy JPEG, I prefer the characteristic consumer-display-pop to be an unavoidable last step in the viewing process, a decision made (usually unconsciously) by the viewer that adds pop.

When a client views an image in process on my MBP in the field I do not want her to think that the "pop" she would see on a glossy MBP display will always reproduce elsewhere like on a high-quality matte display or in a quality photo-lustre print. Of course she can always add pop just by viewing on a glossy display or by printing on (yech) highest-gloss paper.

Anyone can do his/her own simple test. Look out the window and take a naturally-lit RAW digital photo; convert in a quality RAW converter that suits your taste (Aperture, Nikon, C1, PS, etc.), adjusting only white balance to match the scene, and view on two otherwise identical displays (e.g. 17" MBP glossy and 17" MBP matte). Now look again at the original scene and you decide which display is closer to the original that your eyes/brain interaction "sees."

Of course all laptop displays are relatively corrupt anyway, and viewed under far from ideal ambient lighting conditions. We just are deciding which we prefer, and I concur that most consumers prefer glossy while most image pros prefer matte.

-Allen Wicks
( Last edited by SierraDragon; Dec 18, 2010 at 05:15 PM. )
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 18, 2010, 07:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
That is exactly what a glossy display does. Watch a car explosion live, then watch the video of that explosion on a glossy display. The live explosion will be more visceral and have more feeling but the video reproduction on a glossy display will visually "add more 'pop' to everything, EXAGGERATING reality."
So, um, please explain to me what calibrating does, if not "bringing the displayed image in line with reality".
     
SierraDragon
Mac Elite
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Truckee, CA
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 19, 2010, 12:14 AM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
So, um, please explain to me what calibrating does, if not "bringing the displayed image in line with reality".
Calibrating brings a display in approximate alignment with a defined limited color space (not with "reality") in a color managed workflow, with the goal of having print output more closely approximate display output. However, you can color-calibrate ad nauseam and the same image will look different on a calibrated glossy display versus the way it looks on a calibrated matte display.

This all easy enough to test yourself, and a matter of personal preference. Some folks prefer glossy and some folks prefer matte, while other less discerning folks see little or no difference between matte/glossy under good ambient lighting. And anyone can see the glare that results from glossy in the poor ambient lighting conditions that often exist with laptops in the field.

-Allen Wicks
( Last edited by SierraDragon; Dec 19, 2010 at 12:21 AM. )
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 20, 2010, 05:00 AM
 
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
That is exactly what a glossy display does. Watch a car explosion live, then watch the video of that explosion on a glossy display. The live explosion will be more visceral and have more feeling but the video reproduction on a glossy display will visually "add more 'pop' to everything, EXAGGERATING reality."
Actually glossy displays don't exaggerate anything. In the same way matte displays don't exaggerate anything. Our eyes are superior to any commercially available sensor or display as they can capture about 23 EV and they have the ability to rapidly switch `exposure' to get the most detail out of highlights and shadows. And even then, everything is subjective.

The choice between glossy and matte is a question about finish and not of the panel: If you want to give a monitor a matte finish, you put additional compensators foils in between your eyes and the panel. These additional layers decrease contrast and brightness and their only purpose is to diffuse incident light so that instead of a sharp reflection, you see a smeared out version. So even if you want to stick to your opinion (which is fine with me), it's more accurate to say that matte displays subtract pop and contrast than the other way around. The lack of additional foils is the reason blacks are deeper on glossy displays than those with matte finish. On the other hand, having deeper blacks is a big selling point of OLED displays, plasma TVs and such. If it weren't for the glare, there wouldn't be any argument.

The other factor, a (slightly) larger gamut is completely mitigated by the fact that there are matte displays with a very large gamut as well. On my external Eizo monitor, my images `pop' more than on my MacBook Pro's glassy display. The only thing that is noticeably better are blacks which are just deeper and darker, but that's it.
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
When a client views an image in process on my MBP in the field I do not want her to think that the "pop" she would see on a glossy MBP display will always reproduce elsewhere like on a high-quality matte display or in a quality photo-lustre print.
Photo prints have a much smaller gamut than modern high-quality monitors so unless you take that into account when you edit photos, the print will always look dull compared to what you see on the monitor. That's why you have color profiles. (I typically create a version on screen that I'm happy with and when I want to print it, I then try to match that in the color profile I need to use.)
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
Calibrating brings a display in approximate alignment with a defined limited color space (not with "reality") in a color managed workflow, with the goal of having print output more closely approximate display output. However, you can color-calibrate ad nauseam and the same image will look different on a calibrated glossy display versus the way it looks on a calibrated matte display.
Images on displays with different capabilities will look very different no matter if you've calibrated both of them or not! That doesn't depend on the finish of the monitor: just take two monitors, one with a large gamut and one with a small gamut. Calibrate both of them and view the same image on them. They will look differently. On the one with the small gamut (e. g. an older notebook screen), skin tones will appear muted and pale. But this doesn't depend on the finish, it is just due to the fact that glossy displays have slightly more contrast and a slightly larger gamut compared than a display using an identical panel, but a matte finish. That's why it's annoying not to have color profiles before you print (which is just what happened to me last week: I had something printed on canvas and I had to do some edits with the guy at the shop on the fly because I did not have the proper printer profile on my computer; I hope it comes out the way I want to).
Originally Posted by SierraDragon View Post
This all easy enough to test yourself, and a matter of personal preference. Some folks prefer glossy and some folks prefer matte, while other less discerning folks see little or no difference between matte/glossy under good ambient lighting.
It's a personal preference based on glare and not because of `pop.'
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
Moderator
Mac Elite
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: NYNY
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 24, 2010, 08:41 AM
 
I think as a 2nd machine the 17" MPB is overkill for you and you should go for the air. However, I think the 13" air would be plenty light without forcing you to sacrifice as much.
"Well done is better than well said." -BF
Commercial Range
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 24, 2010, 09:49 AM
 
Originally Posted by OreoCookie View Post
The other factor, a (slightly) larger gamut is completely mitigated by the fact that there are matte displays with a very large gamut as well. On my external Eizo monitor, my images `pop' more than on my MacBook Pro's glassy display. The only thing that is noticeably better are blacks which are just deeper and darker, but that's it.
You expound excellently on good points, but this bit isn't quite accurate.

The shortcomings of a laptop display aren't "mitigated" by the existence of vastly more expensive desktop monitors, which can be built to completely different space and power requirements.

Glossy vs. matte comparisons only make sense when weighing like against like - laptop panel against laptop panel, or desktop vs. desktop monitor.

All the more astounding, though, that the MacBook's internal display actually does something *better* than a calibrated Eizo that probably cost two-thirds of what the entire laptop cost.
     
OreoCookie
Moderator
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Hilbert space
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 24, 2010, 12:11 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spheric Harlot View Post
The shortcomings of a laptop display aren't "mitigated" by the existence of vastly more expensive desktop monitors, which can be built to completely different space and power requirements.
You're absolutely right, the comparison is not fair. (That's the reason why I've spent the money on a dedicated display.) From a practical standpoint, they do happen to sit side-by-side and it's hard not to compare them ;-)

Over the years, (Apple) notebook displays have gotten a lot, lot better: I don't even want to think about comparing my old iBook dual USB display to my current MacBook Pro's lcd. It's actually quite usable to do rough edits.
I don't suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.
     
imitchellg5
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Washington + Colorado
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2010, 09:39 PM
 
Originally Posted by solofx7 View Post
hehe, that was super funny. I hate Miata's I cannot see the use of them
In any event.
A Miata is light and fun to drive, but it's a pain when you have to do heavy lifting.

A MacBook Air is light and fun to use, but it's a pain when you have to do heavy lifting.

Soooo...
     
Jolt21
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: May 2004
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2010, 10:36 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
A MacBook Air is light and fun to use, but it's a pain when you have to do heavy lifting.
what do people classify as "heavy lifting"?

the max i'm doing:

running photoshop CS4 (or 5 in the future), with 4/5 pictures at once
imovie
3 browser windows open simultaneously to watch sports games
final cut
a few adobe reader windows open

i do all these, but independently of one another, not all at the same time. is that considered "heavy lifting"?

benchmark tests show that a maxed out MBA is as powerful (if not more) than my 2008 2.4ghz Core 2 Duo MBP w/ OSX 10.5 (4GB RAM)...and my MBP does everything I need it to do. does that mean I will be ok with a maxed out MBA?
blah
     
imitchellg5
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Washington + Colorado
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2010, 10:58 PM
 
1.6GHz is not going to cut it with Photoshop, iMovie, and Final Cut.
     
shifuimam
Addicted to MacNN
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Somewhere in the Pacific Northwest
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2010, 11:05 PM
 
Not to mention that the teeny tiny display on the 11" would SUCK for using palette-heavy applications like Photoshop. If you go with the MBA, the 13" is your best bet.

However, at that point, you're looking at $1600 for a pretty underpowered laptop. Aside from the mediocre screen res, a 13" MBP would be a better use of your money for a compact Mac laptop.
     
Jolt21
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: May 2004
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 25, 2010, 11:39 PM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
1.6GHz is not going to cut it with Photoshop, iMovie, and Final Cut.
if you were referring to me...a maxed out MBA is 2.13ghz w/ 4gb ram...that's what i would get

and yes, i was referring to a 13"...i am running a 15" now
blah
     
imitchellg5
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Washington + Colorado
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2010, 12:04 AM
 
Yes I was referring to you.

That's still not going to cut it. It'd be all right, but like shif says, you're dropping a lot of money for a laptop that won't be as powerful as a base 13" MacBook Pro at $1,199.
     
Jolt21
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: May 2004
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2010, 12:09 AM
 
Originally Posted by imitchellg5 View Post
Yes I was referring to you.

That's still not going to cut it. It'd be all right, but like shif says, you're dropping a lot of money for a laptop that won't be as powerful as a base 13" MacBook Pro at $1,199.
ok, i see your point. i'm a student, so the portability was really intriguing to me, but i'm hoping to get the iPad 2 when it comes out, so maybe that'll make up for the portability. i guess i need to get to an apple store and try these things out
blah
     
shifuimam
Addicted to MacNN
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Somewhere in the Pacific Northwest
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2010, 12:26 AM
 
As a student, I'd imagine you're on a tight budget. A 17" MBP AND an iPad? That's a whole load of cash. Maybe a 15" would better suit your needs, with a nice marriage of power and portability...

Also, keep in mind that an iPad is for CONSUMING content, not CREATING content. From what you've said so far, it sounds like you need something that's conducive to creating things - movies, digital images, etc. An iPad's going to be a colossal waste of money if that's your angle.

The 13" MBP is a little long in the tooth with the C2Duo. I understand the technological reasons why Apple hasn't upgraded to the i3/i5, but C2Duo is some nearly-obsolete technology at this point.

Just something to consider.
     
Jolt21
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: May 2004
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2010, 01:04 AM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
As a student, I'd imagine you're on a tight budget. A 17" MBP AND an iPad? That's a whole load of cash. Maybe a 15" would better suit your needs, with a nice marriage of power and portability...

Also, keep in mind that an iPad is for CONSUMING content, not CREATING content. From what you've said so far, it sounds like you need something that's conducive to creating things - movies, digital images, etc. An iPad's going to be a colossal waste of money if that's your angle.

The 13" MBP is a little long in the tooth with the C2Duo. I understand the technological reasons why Apple hasn't upgraded to the i3/i5, but C2Duo is some nearly-obsolete technology at this point.

Just something to consider.
thanks, shif.

i should've clarified that those things are for my free time. in my regular time, i am a medical student...so all i do is consume information. tons and tons of it (did you know avg. med students learns ~30,000 new words per year in the first 2 years? yea, me neither. dang).

what i normally do is read powerpoints, pdfs, watch lectures online, omnigraffle, surf the web for research, etc.. those multimedia things are for my free time.

and the $ comes from a $2500 computer loan i'm gonna get (even if we only use half of it, we can only use it once, so really trying to maximize the combo i get)
blah
     
Jolt21
Dedicated MacNNer
Join Date: May 2004
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2010, 01:06 AM
 
Originally Posted by shifuimam View Post
The 13" MBP is a little long in the tooth with the C2Duo. I understand the technological reasons why Apple hasn't upgraded to the i3/i5, but C2Duo is some nearly-obsolete technology at this point.

Just something to consider.
thats something i noticed when i was just looking at the MBP's. the technical difference b/w a MBP 13" and 15" looks pretty big. it doesn't look worth it at all to get the 13" MBP at this point...i would hope they make it just a smaller 15" sometime soon. (Macworld?)
blah
     
imitchellg5
Posting Junkie
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Washington + Colorado
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2010, 06:59 PM
 
Apple doesn't show up to Macworld any longer. Well if you can afford it then and you're a student, I'd get a 15" MBP. I'm also a student and lug it around for 12 hours a day sometimes, but it's the best compromise since I work with AfterEffects in my free time at school.

Edit: Unless at the next rev the 13" MacBook Pro gets a i3 or better power, at which point I'll go 13" for my next notebook.
     
shifuimam
Addicted to MacNN
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Somewhere in the Pacific Northwest
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 26, 2010, 09:56 PM
 
Apple isn't going to release an i-series 13" laptop yet because of the new licensing scheme Intel's using with their new CPUs. Intel has set the rules such that the only integrated GPU that can be used in conjunction with an i-series CPU is their own, which means no more nvidia. Unless Apple's willing to put a discrete GPU in their 13" laptops (which IS technologically feasible but unlikely from a business/marketing standpoint) or Intel changes their hardware license, we're stuck with Core2Duo.
     
Spheric Harlot
Clinically Insane
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: 888500128, C3, 2nd soft.
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 27, 2010, 01:59 AM
 
1) it's not really technologically feasible, as it would take about a square inch of board-space to add discrete GPU, and you still need the controller chipset.

2) I thought the licensing issue had been resolved with the upcoming Sandy Bridge architecture? (though how relevant that is considering nvidia has dropped out of chipmaking is questionable)

3) Sandy Bridge should have "acceptable" integrated graphics, making the i3 an option for the 13" Books early next year.
     
P
Moderator
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Gothenburg, Sweden
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 27, 2010, 07:06 AM
 
With the Core i family, the memory controller moved onto the CPU package (but not onto the die for the dualcores). Since the memory controller is where the graphics is integrated, so to speak, it is technically not possible to use nVidia integrated graphics with the newest Intel chips.

What you are able to do technically is to put a small (weak) discrete graphics chip - comparable to the 320M, say - together with the southbridge/PCH in one chip. You'd then use the PCIe x16 link (for discrete graphics) together with Intel's proprietary DMI bus (for the southbridge/PCH) for communication with the CPU. You would then have a small dedicated video RAM chip somewhere - either on package with the GPU like the A4, or on the motherboard - and use main memory as backing store. nVidia calls this TurboCache (AMD calls it HyperMemory) and they've used it with cheaper graphics chips since we moved to PCIe. It would be faster than the current setup because of the small dedicated video RAM and you'd be able to fit it in a 13" package as you're back down to a two chip solution if you put the video RAM on package. Intel has prevented this by refusing to license the DMI bus, and this is what might be solved now.

Sandy Bridge graphics are said to be comparable to the 320M, which should be fast enough given that the dualcore Sandy Bridge CPU is a huge boost over current dualcore Core i chips. Ivy Bridge (the threadshrink successor) has basically the same CPU as Sandy Bridge but twice the GPU. Say what you want about Intel, but they have listened.
The new Mac Pro has up to 30 MB of cache inside the processor itself. That's more than the HD in my first Mac. Somehow I'm still running out of space.
     
Jack-o-Bower
Fresh-Faced Recruit
Join Date: Nov 2010
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 27, 2010, 07:36 PM
 
If I were you I would wait and see how Apple will integrate Sandy Bridge into their product lines. Try to hold down your early adopter mindset for the MBA and save up your money. MBP i7 is a very good machine and powerful. just wait until the newer model MBA comes out.
     
dennisuello
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Reno, NV
Status: Offline
Reply With Quote
Dec 29, 2010, 04:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by solofx7 View Post
hehe, that was super funny. I hate Miata's I cannot see the use of them
Miatas are awesome for autocross.
     
   
Thread Tools
 
Forum Links
Forum Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts
BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Top
Privacy Policy
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:00 PM.
All contents of these forums © 1995-2017 MacNN. All rights reserved.
Branding + Design: www.gesamtbild.com
vBulletin v.3.8.8 © 2000-2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.,