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What are the "pros and cons" of the "Mid-2012" MacBook Air models? Is one the right Apple notebook for my needs?
Like any other purchase, only you can make the decision whether or not a "Mid-2012" MacBook Air model is the right notebook for you, but you can evaluate the pros and cons of the series to see if your needs are met by one model or the other. EveryMac.com also provides a detailed comparison of the two models that may be of interest.
For those most interested in the highlights, this "run down" may be helpful in making a decision:
So, is one right for my needs?
Basically, if you are looking for a beautiful, lightweight notebook Mac and you do not care about future upgrades, then the MacBook Air might be the perfect system for you. Performance is solid for those who do not do demanding tasks while on the go (like high-end video editing and encoding) and with two USB 3.0 ports, connectivity also is unlikely to be an issue for most consumers.
In general, the 11-Inch display -- although high-resolution for its physical size -- still is rather limiting and most who do more than basic multitasking likely would prefer a 13-Inch model as the difference between the two in size and weight is unlikely to be enough to be critical for most. The 13-Inch model also is a bit faster (around 8%) and has better battery life and an SDXC Card slot.
However, for those who only do fairly simple tasks on the go -- word processing, e-mail, web browsing, listening to music, and basic photo editing, for example -- or who are looking for a lightweight "companion" notebook to complement a desktop Mac, the 11-Inch model could be perfect. If price is important, then the 11-Inch model is less expensive as well (although a used MacBook or MacBook Air would be cheaper, still).
If performance, connectivity and expansion are high priorities -- but size and weight are lower priorities -- a MacBook Pro would be a better choice. If price is a high priority, a used MacBook Air also could be a worthwhile option.