MacBook Air or MacBook Pro with Retina display???


For architects, which of the two laptop is better???

May 18, 13 7:57 pm

now really, this is a stupid question.  most computers can barely handle autocad, revit, and various rendering programs... and you think a macbook air is a viable option?  if you want a macbook air because its cool, by all means buy one.  but as far as doing architectural work you can't be serious.  As a macbook pro owner myself:  windows machines are better for our line of work.  they just don't look pretty.

May 18, 13 8:20 pm

@backbay89: Aren't most of the architecture school ask students to work on a Mac?

May 18, 13 8:33 pm

yeah.  mine did.  and every time i wanted to do something productive in studio (aka not facebook) i had to switch over to the windows side, which always (at least to me) always crashed when i tried to do something.  autocad and revit for sure need windows, and then when you're using sketchup in tandem with autocad its a pain to go back and forth so you might as well just use sketchup on windows as well.

that being said, architects seem to like macs for the same reason they buy designer clothing.  i love macs.  i am typing this on a mac.  but for practicality's sake, whatever you spend on a mac could have been spent on an even better pc.

ps yes there's autocad for mac but the last time i used it (first release) it was so full of bugs it wasn't even worth it.  maybe that's changed, but someone else here could probably answer that.

May 19, 13 10:39 am

that being said, if your mind is made up go with the macbook pro

May 19, 13 10:39 am
Buy a top tier widows laptops and take the $1,200 you saved and go to Europe.

Mac user since 2005, love my MBP but my windows workstation laptop easily outperforms them.
May 19, 13 11:51 am

I will echo the previously made remarks, as an Apple user, though I encourage you to become a purist and only use Apple-native software: Rhino (Mac, for free), Adobe Suite (heavy use of Photoshop and Illustrator), AutoCAD for Mac, and SketchUp (if you have to, Rhino is much better). I've never tried ArchiCAD.

May 19, 13 1:09 pm

Note that apple desktops and laptops running windows outperform preloaded windows pcs just because they don't come with shit tons of bloatware...

May 19, 13 11:25 pm

You buy a MacBook air because it super fast due to The SSD harddrive. A SSD drive does wonders to your computer, but it has limited stroge. A macbook Pro is more flexible.

i have a MacBook Pro where I replaced the SuperDrive with a SSD HD and it's running like a charm. On the SSD only install the operating systems and the important software you need like osx, windows, autocad, adobe ie. and the other HD use it for files storage.

May 20, 13 10:18 am

Remember to laptop with a proper size screen or consider an extra monitor. You have sit I front of it for many many hours. I regret that I got a 13 ", so I went out and bought extra monitor.

May 20, 13 10:22 am

I really believe the new 15 inch macbook pro with retina display will perform great. I am not an architect but i do know many engineers, professionals and big corporations use this macbooks pro because they are reliable and robust. 

I wrote about it at THE NEW MACBOOK PRO RETINA

Aug 12, 13 9:14 pm


If you want to be an architect or do a lot of rendering works, none of the laptops is faster than the same price desktops.

However, if you just want a laptop to build models or light renderings, Macbook Pro can easily take it. But in the same price, you almost can buy the highest specification workstation such as Lenovo W530 or Dell Precision M4700

Aug 12, 13 10:56 pm

Neither, get a PC!

Aug 12, 13 11:16 pm

I had a Pro all thru undergrad, and it worked well for adobe suite, and autocad was management via bootcamp. However, in hindsight, I would highly suggest getting a Macbook Air, of the cheapest and lightest. Use it for standard & light work loads. Take the difference you would have spent on a pro, and build a 700-1200 Pc Tower and monitor. A 1000 tower, easily out performs all laptops. Depending on your studio, you could probably build a box to house the tower and literally connect it to your a desk and protect it.

Aug 15, 13 1:18 pm

@backbay @s=r*(theta) @LITS4FormZ hi guys I really value your opinion and taste...with that being said can you please please please suggest or tell me the specific laptop to buy? I have been searching for months! and school is about to start =(

Aug 15, 13 2:40 pm

(my personal opinion, no tech geek wonder here)

For an architecture student, yes maybe MBP is a better choice since you are going to be doing your own modeling, rendering, image editing, drafting etc… if you are a professional architect, depending the specific task you do in your office/studio, a MBAir might be enough...

Mar 15, 14 6:09 pm

Block this user

Are you sure you want to block this user and hide all related comments throughout the site?

  • ×Search in: