Macbook Air or Macbook Pro for 28 year old physician (not a student)?

I've been blessed with $1000 from the hospital I work for to put towards a new computer! My 2007 Macbook from uni is too slow to handle photo editing anymore (or to play Sims 3, not that I would do that), but bless her heart she's held strong in every other suit. I'm struggling between an Air or a Pro. I'm willing to invest an extra $600-800 on top of what work is giving me.

I will mostly use it for:
Photo storage/editing (especially as we have a baby on the way)
Some video editing
Surfing the net (yeah, I'm old enough to say that)
Accessing remote desktop to work on charting/EMR
Creating presentations
Documents/spreadsheets/basic word processing
Netflix/Amazon Prime videos
Very simple graphic design work (more of a hobby, designing wedding stationary, etc.)
OK, probably playing Sims 3

We do a fair amount of traveling, so I'm committed to a 13" monitor, but what is the advantage of the Pro over the air? Not having a CD drive makes me anxious (because I'm a dinosaur), but apparently neither have them anymore? Battery life is not much of a factor as this will be used as a home computer, but we may end up moving overseas for a year or two for my spouse's work, so I don't want to get tied down to a desktop computer yet.

2 Answers from the Community

  • Retina MacBook Pro, with 256 GB of storage. If you're doing photo storage/editing and some video editing, that gets rid of the Air. If you travel a lot, get rid of the MacBook Pro non retina. The most practical laptop for you is the MBPR

    • Answered by Ryan F from Larkspur
    • Apr 10, 2015
  • Hi there! I was looking through these forums for an answer to a different inquiry altogether but saw your question wasn't answered and wanted to give my two cents. Although you probably have already made a decision! If so let me know because I'm considering a change right now as well.
    So I know you specifically said not a student but it seems like pragmatically you have some of the same demands as a student. I'm in grad school for scientific research right now and I use my macbook 13-in (the white 2010 model) for very similar purposes as you listed. I additionally use MATLAB and another data analysis software package called SPSS often and it all runs fine on my simple macbook. The only people I know who use pros are people who edit film, audio, or images. It seems like when you start using things like final cut and photoshop your computer requires a bit more bang for the buck. But with that said I'm considering an air because all of my peers and even the PI of my lab use airs because of how much lighter they are and we all bring our laptops to and fro on the subway every day and in between buildings for presentations. Additionally some of the MDs in my family really like tablets because of how lightweight they are and apparently there are a lot of apps to assist you in your every day practice. Hope this helps!

    • Answered by Carrisa C from Mahwah
    • Jul 31, 2014