I would buy the 8GB MacBook Air vs the 4GB MacBook Air – finances allowing, of course.
And here’s why: Initially, the 8GB MacBook Air will cost you more money, but over time if you keep your MacBook Air or even sell it down the road you get more value out of a MacBook Air with more ram than you would by buying a MacBook Air with less memory, even though short-term you can save money with a cheaper MacBook Air.
A 8GB MacBook Air is a Better Deal
Let’s assume you only keep your MacBook Air for two years.
A 4GB MacBook Air costs $1199 for the 13inch MBA, yet the 8GB MacBook Air costs only $100 more bringing the total to $1299.00. That $100 difference is a small price to pay, especially when amortized over 2 years.
4GB MacBook Air – 1200/24 = 50.00 a month
8GB MacBook Air – 1300/24 = $54.17 a month.
For the price of one starbucks latte a month you can get into a MacBook Air with more RAM. Applications are only going to require more ram as browsers get more complicated, facebook starts to display larger photos, or if you’re into photo editing with Apple Aperture like I am you’ll definitely wish you bought the 8GB of RAM.
I would even skimp on hard drive space if I had a choice between buying more ram for my MacBook Air vs adding a bigger SSD storage. You can always add storage later externally. I find I need very little storage when it comes to using my portable computers as all my files are on external drives tethered to my Mac Mini.
Sell The 8GB MacBook Air for More Money
Resale value is another thing to consider when thinking about buying a brand new MacBook Air. Using my 2 year estimate (at least that’s the amount my wife lets me upgrade – you may be single, or have a larger budget for Apple computers than I do) you’re looking at getting more value from your MacBook Air with more ram than you would with a MacBook Air with just 4GB.
Unlike the Apple MacBook Pro models, where you can add ram later on, the MacBook Air models do not offer a chance to later upgrade the memory so you’d better get your MacBook Air purchase right the first time and buy the MacBook Air with more ram. 8GB of ram in 2012 for the MacBook Air is not a lot of RAM with 16GB starting to be the standard for MacBook notebooks as we enter into 2013.
For the cost of a cup of coffee, I would buy the 8GB MacBook Air over the 4GB MacBook Air as I would find the extra four dollars a month it would cost me to buy the MacBook Air with more RAM.