2019 MacBook Air vs. MacBook Pro: Which is right for you?

The current line of Apple laptops is the simplest one that has been seen in a long time. It consists of the 13-inch MacBook Air and two sizes of MacBook Pro, which are almost identical, apart from the size.

If you want a 15-inch Apple laptop, the choice is easy. But if you want a 13-inch laptop, which one should you choose? That's what we'll see today, launching the 13-inch MacBook Air against the 13-inch MacBook Pro.

Apple's simplest laptop line in years

  The MacBook Pro touch bar.
The MacBook Pro touch bar.
Photo: Apple

In the July 2019 update, Apple completely abandoned the old 12-inch MacBook. The company also updated / removed the "MacBook Escape", also known as MacBook Pro without a touch bar.

As a result, the new line of Apple laptops is much less confusing. Here are brief descriptions of the Air and the Pro (all references here are for the 13-inch MacBook Pro unless otherwise indicated), followed by some comparisons, thoughts and buying tips.

MacBook Air

  The MacBook Air, good enough for most people.
The MacBook Air is good enough for most people.
Photo: Apple

The new MacBook Air looks amazing. It starts at $ 1,099 and has a beautiful True Tone Retina display. And, thanks to the widespread drop in SSD upgrade prices, you can now afford to increase your storage without being scammed. Like the MacBook Pro, the Air offers Touch ID and the T2 security chip, which makes the MacBook as safe as iOS devices. It is the lightest Mac laptop weighing 2.75 pounds (1.25 kilograms) versus 3.02 pounds (1.37 kilograms) of the Pro.

Like the basic MacBook Pro, the Air offers two USB-C / Thunderbolt ports. Both models also share a large Force Touch trackpad and the revamped Apple butterfly keyboard.

The Air offers a better battery life than the Pro, with 12 or 13 hours of use compared to "only" 10 for the Pro. The Air also runs on the less powerful Intel UHD Graphics 617.

MacBook Pro

  MacBook Pro adds a touch bar and a better screen.
The MacBook Pro adds a touch bar and a better screen.
Photo: Apple

The MacBook Pro is now only available with a touch bar, and therefore does not have a physical escape key. If you love hardware keys and want an Apple notebook, you'll have to choose the Air.

The Pro is also the only option if you want more than two USB-C / Thunderbolt ports, but you'll have to buy the $ 1,799 model to get them (it has four ports, like all 15-inch models).

The Pro also has Bluetooth 5.0, against the Bluetooth 4.2 of the Air.

The high-end model The screen offers a wider range of colors, which means more colors. Speaking of screens, the Pro also has better graphics chips: Intel Iris Plus Graphics 645 or Intel Iris Plus Graphics 655.

MacBook Air Vs. MacBook Pro

So, how do the two current lines of Apple laptops accumulate? [19659009] Main differences:

  • Touch bar
  • Processor
  • Weight
  • Battery
  • Graphics + screen
  • Ports

Same

  • Keyboard
  • Keyboard
  • Keyboard [19659028] Stock 8GB of memory
  • Model storage base (128GB)
  • Size, more or less
  • Support for external GPUs

How to choose the right MacBook

Some of The differences are easy to digest. If you love or hate the tactile bar, then your choice is made. If you want the cheapest option no matter what, then air is for you. But other differences are more subtle.

  All MacBooks come with the same shitty keyboard.
All MacBooks come with the same shitty keyboard now.
Photo: Apple

Both basic models come with 128GB of storage and 8GB of RAM. The RAM is sufficient for most uses, but 128 GB is quite scarce. Especially if you are using the Pro as a professional machine and need to store music / photos / video on the internal SSD. Fortunately, Apple reduced the prices of storage upgrades, and these updates cost the same for both models.

What about RAM? Both the Air and the Pro come with 8GB and can be upgraded to 16GB for $ 200 extra. Storage and RAM, then, both models are the same. And if all you need are more than two USB-C / Thunderbolt ports, a dock / hub will take care of that for much less than the additional $ 500 needed to have them integrated.

Processor and screen [19659042] Apart from the touch bar, then, everything is reduced to the processor and the screen. The MacBook Pro has superior (faster) graphics and a wider color gamut screen. The MacBook Pro is also the only one with faster processor options.

If you need a faster processor, then you already know it. If you are not sure, then no. The basic speed of the processor is more than fast enough for almost everyone these days. Then, in reality, everything comes down to the screen.

Our last tip (not surprising)

If you're buying a MacBook for photography or video, you should buy the Pro. The faster processor will help shred those boxes, and the best screen is essential.

For music production? RAM and storage are more important than processor speed for most projects, so a MacBook Air with additional storage is fine. But, on the other hand, it is very good to have the touch bar for Logic Pro: the application really takes advantage of it. And for music, the additional colors on the screen do not matter a bit.

Our advice, then, is that the MacBook Air is probably the best for most people, and the MacBook Pro is better if it needs its additional professional functions. . Both can be updated with additional storage and RAM if needed. The only confusion is the touch bar, and that comes down to your preference.

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