MacBook Air vs. Macbook Pro
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Default MacBook Air vs. Macbook Pro

    I need opinions and preferences on my debate between the MacBook air and the MacBook Pro both will be 13 inches with 8g of RAM a solid-state drive of 256 and a I7. I DJ with Traktor pro 2 with a s4, I'm looking for whichever computer is durable and preferable for live gigs. My other question is with the 256 ssd in the pro would it be a waste of the 500g ATA ram? I'm using this computer for purely DJing and nothin else.


  2. #2
    Tech Guru
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    FL, USA


    If they're both the same specs, then it wont make a difference. I'd get the Air just because it'll be lighter.

    SSD is never a waste of money.
    Bedroom DJ | Pioneer DJM-800 | Pioneer CDJ2000 and CDJ900-NXS | 2 x Mackie MR8MKII | Sennheiser Amperior

  3. #3
    Tech Mentor
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Mannheim / Germany


    sure the MB air comes with an I7 processor??? That cpu is sold in the more expensive macbook pros...
    The Air only has 1 USB port!
    SSD rules. This makes your machine really fast!

    MacBookPro 11,1 | i5 2,4GHz | 16 GB RAM | 256 GB SSD
    MacOSX 10.14.x | TraktorPro 3.x | VCI-100 SE FW 1.4

  4. #4
    Tech Mentor
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    NJ USA


    You can get an i7 on an air but it is not as powerful.
    Pro expandable to 16gb vs 8gb
    BOTH have two USB ports.
    Pro had a retina display (not that it matters with traktor now...actually some view it as a negative )

    SSD is a as big as you can afford.

    Bottom line... The air would be fine for traktor. Power and processor wise it's fine. Just max out the ram and upgrade to the i7 if you can. The Pro is good if you can afford to go to 16gb or ram and plan on possibly doing other things later on like graphics or higher processor intensive DAW stuff.

  5. #5
    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010


    Couple small things.

    1) You'll never notice the difference between an i7 and an i5 in a DJ app. I'd still probably buy it for the clock speed, though. And, uhh...I was going to say something about dual core, but they're all dual core.

    2) 16GB of aftermarket Ram costs about the same as the upgrade to 8GB in the Air. If I remember what I took out of my last one, it's also marginally faster.

    3) You can get a better aftermarket SSD for any of the laptops for the same price or less than paying for Apple's upgrade to questionable hardware, and for a few bucks more you can buy a case to turn the included one into a USB or Thunderbolt external.

    4) this prhase "the 500g ATA ram" means nothing. Like....all the words mean something, but I have no idea what you're asking. Still, I think the answer is that SSDs are the biggest upgrade (after adequate ram) that you can make to a modern computer. Spinning platters have no place in a laptop.

    If it were me buying today, I'd either get an 11" Macbook Air or a 13" rMBP. Why? I actually think 13" is too damn big for a laptop. 12" is about the right size for me, but Apple doesn't make one anymore. If I'm going to use an awkward, oversized brick with a 13" screen, it's going to have the best hardware you can buy.

  6. #6
    Tech Guru William Gibson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012


    Both machines are going to run traktor just fine. Everything else is going to be a matter of personal opinion. If your not producing then 8gb of ram is plenty. The HDD in the pro will do just fine compared to the SSD. I think thats all pretty factual.

    Now if you want to talk peronal opinion, I have been on SSD since 2009 and will never go back becauae of speed and reliability. I like the pro more because since its bigger there is more meat to the case and therfore SHOULD take more abuse. Since the air is milled out to be bare bones as small as it possibly can be. I prefer 15 inch over 13 inch. And last but not least im maxing out ram to 16gb and the processor because I use a lot of resources in Live.

    Fact is, any MacBook from the past 4 years will run traktor just fine. Anything extra is a matter of personal opinion.


  7. #7
    Tech Mentor frankle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013


    Were you considering the 13" Retina Pro or the Non-Retina Pro? There is a number of differences between them including processors, screen and price. Here's my breakdown (in AU$ 'cos that's where I am):

    MacBook Pro 13" Non-Retina - i7-2.9GHz, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD - AU$2069.00
    i7-3520M - 2913 single, 5957 total Geekbench score, 1280 x 800 native resolution

    MacBook Pro 13" Retina - i7-3.0GHz, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD - AU$2219.00
    i7-4578U - 3138 single, 6365 total Geekbench score, 1280 x 800 retina resolution, optional (but can be a bit blurry) 1440 x 900 or 1680 x 1050

    MacBook Air 13" - i7-1.7GHz, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD - AU$1699.00
    i7-4650U - 2866 single, 5482 total Geekbench score, 1440 x 900 native resolution

    The answer is simple, the 13" Air is cheaper and has a better screen than the non-retina Pro. Verses the Retina Pro, the slight benefits in processing power and retina resolution are not worth the extra $500, especially when it actually doesn't run Traktor as efficiently.

    On a side note, the Geekbench score generally gives you an idea of its audio processing capabilities and the single core score is what's important to Traktor as although it can use multiple cores, it runs 1 core for playback processing and another core for analysing tracks when needed. As you can see the Air isn't very far behind and is certainly a capable machine. In-fact my 11" Air from 2011 with i5 processor runs 4 decks without issues at my gigs every week.
    Main Gig Comp - MacBook Air 11" 1.3GHz i5, 4GB, 512GB, OS X 10.12.6
    Gig Gear - TSP 2.6.8 & 2.11.2, Kontrol X1mk2 (x2), D2 (x2), S5, Xone:92, Xone:PX5, CDJ-2000 (x2), DDJ-XP1 ... Rekordbox DJ 5 with a few packs ...
    Plenty of studio gear and not enough time ... and a few Nexo PA systems

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