May 31st 2018
Which should you buy - the Early 2015 Macbook or the Early 2015 Macbook Air?
When you shop refurbished Mac laptops and desktops at GainSaver, you have a gigantic selection of different refurbished Mac systems to choose from. We have unbeatable prices on refurbished Mac laptops and desktops, including iMacs, Mac minis, Macbooks, Macbook Airs and Macbook Pros.
Selecting a Refurbished Mac laptop
Before looking at the key differences between the Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air, make sure you shopping for the best refurbished Mac laptop for your requirements.
Shopping for High Performance
If you are looking to save on a refurbished Mac laptop where speed and power are critical, you’ll want to shop for a refurbished Macbook Pro. The Macbook Pro is a laptop with desktop performance. Depending on the particular system, you can do anything on a Macbook Pro, from doing image manipulation and HD video editing to scientific modeling and big data analysis.
GainSaver has cheap discount Macbook Pros in stock with 13.3-inch, 15.4-inch and 17-inch screens. You can select from high resolution Retina Macbook Pros, or the earlier non-Retina Macbook Pros.
Shopping for the Lowest Price
When price is the most important consideration, we recommend the original 13.3-inch White Macbook. They are an amazing value. You can use the 13.3-inch Macbook for answering email, browsing the web, writing reports, doing homework assignments, watching videos and playing games. They are extremely versatile and very inexpensive. Best of all, the original Macbook is rugged enough to take anywhere.
Shopping for Portable and Practical Macbooks
The mid range Mac laptops near the center of the price/performance spectrum are the Macbook Airs and the next generation Early 2015 Macbooks. These Mac laptops are very thin and light, and have all the processing power you need for everyday activities. If you want to do image editing or video production, you can, but we recommend you move up to the iMac or Macbook Pro for serious professional use. For everything else, from carrying to class to managing your small business, the refurbished Macbook Air and discount next generation Early 2015 Macbook are ideal.
Comparing the Early 2015 Macbook Air and Early 2015 Macbook
GainSaver has refurbished Macbook Airs spanning every year from their introduction in 2008 up to Early 2015. For a fair comparison of the Macbook Air and the next generation Macbook, we’ll focus on the Early 2015 Macbook Air and the Early 2015 Macbook.
Note: The Macbook Air has changed over the years on the inside, but very little on the outside. The older Macbook Airs are generally slower, and have less memory and smaller hard drives (but they can be upgraded by GainSaver!). The more recently introduced Macbook Airs are faster, and they have more standard memory and larger hard drives (which GainSaver can also upgrade for you!) As you would expect, the older refurbished Macbook Airs generally cost less than the newer ones.
So while you read through the key differences between the Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air, remember that the older Macbook Airs are similar, but generally slower and cheaper. If you can’t decide and need more options, you can broaden your search to include the older Macbook Airs introduced before Early 2015. That will give you a lot of additional choices.
Comparing Screen Sizes
Let’s start this feature comparison by making it clear that there is only one screen size for the Early 2015 Macbook, and two screen sizes for the Early 2015 Macbook Air. The Early 2015 Macbook comes with a 12-inch screen. The Early 2015 Macbook Air comes in 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch screen sizes.
It turns out that the 12-inch Macbook screen falls right between the two Macbook Air screen sizes. You can get a slightly bigger or smaller screen with the refurbished Early 2015 Macbook Air.
Early 2015 Macbook Screen
The Early 2015 Macbook has a 12-inch screen. There is only one screen size. The Early 2015 Macbook screen has a black frame and looks similar to the Macbook Pro screen.
Early 2015 Macbook Air Screens
The refurbished discount Early 2015 Macbook Air comes in two sizes, 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch screen sizes.
This may – or may not – be a big deal for you. Both the refurbished Early 2015 Macbook Air and Early 2015 Macbook are available in a very nice, traditional Silver color. The Silver enclosures look a lot like the Macbook Pro Silver color.
The Early 2015 Macbook also comes in two more colors, Gold and Space Gray. If you want to be noticed (and who doesn’t), then you’ll want to consider this. The new colors are very attractive, and since you will be carrying your used discount Early 2015 Macbook around with you for a long time, it’s best to get a color you really like!
Early 2015 Silver Macbook Air
The Early 2015 Macbook Air comes in one color - silver.
Early 2015 Macbook Colors
The Early 2015 Macbook is available in Gold, Space Gray and Silver.
Comparing Size and weight
The used Early 2015 Macbook is thinner and lighter than either of the Early 2015 Macbook Airs. The Early 2015 refurbished Macbook is only two pounds! The case is tapered, and just half an inch thick at the wide end. The Early 2015 Macbook Airs are heavier, with the 13.3-inch Macbook Air weighing in at three pounds, or 50% heavier.
The width and depth of the different these Mac laptops are not that much different. Again, the Early 2015 Macbook falls roughly in the middle between the two Early 2015 Macbook Air laptops.
Early 2015 Macbook: Lightest
- Height: 0.14–0.52 inches
- Width: 11.04 inches
- Depth: 7.74 inches
- Weight: 2.03 pounds
Early 2015 11.6-inch Macbook Air
- Height: 0.11-0.68 inch
- Width: 11.8 inches
- Depth: 7.56 inches
- Weight: 2.38 pounds
Early 2015 13.3-inch Macbook Air: Heaviest
- Height: 0.11-0.68 inch
- Width: 12.8 inches
- Depth: 8.94 inches
- Weight: 2.96 pounds
Weight is probably a significant factor in choosing between the discount Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air. The point of having a refurbished Mac laptop is to take it with you. If you are on your feet for much of the day with a laptop in your hands, you’ll appreciate the feather-light refurbished Early 2015 Macbook.
Comparing Screen Resolution
The screen resolution is the most striking difference between the used Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air. The Early 2015 Macbook has a Retina display with 2304 x 1440 pixels of screen resolution. That’s over 3 million pixels packed into the 12-inch screen.
The 13.3-inch Early 2015 Macbook Air has a resolution of 1440 x 900. The Early 2015 Retina Macbook gives you about two and half times the image area of the 13.3-inch Macbook Air. So if you want, you can have your desktop over twice as big on a discount Early 2015 Macbook. This is extremely convenient for working with a multiple applications with a lot of open windows and folders. The extra resolution also gives you more detailed graphics. In addition, the Early 2015 Macbook display is brighter and has colors that are more vivid. Since you will be spending a lot of time looking at the screen, keep this in mind while you are making your purchasing decision.
Early 2015 Macbook: Highest Resolution
- 12-inch TFT LED-backlit active-matrix Retina display (2304 x 1440)
Early 2015 13.3-inch Macbook Air
- 13.3-inch LED-backlit glossy widescreen TFT display (1440 x 900)
Early 2015 11.6-inch Macbook Air: Lowest Resolution
- 11.6-inch LED-backlit glossy widescreen TFT display (1366x768)
Comparing Processor Speeds
Surprisingly, the Intel Core M processor in the refurbished Early 2015 Macbook is slightly slower than the Intel Dual Core i5 and Dual Core i7 processors found in the Early 2015 Macbook Air. The reason behind this is that the Core M processor is designed to run as efficiently as possible. This puts less of a drain on the battery and it also allows the Early 2015 Macbook to run cooler. In fact, the refurbished Early 2015 Macbook runs so cool it does not require a fan at all.
The tradeoff between power and efficiency in the used Early 2015 Macbook means that it’s a bit slower than the Early 2015 Macbook Air laptops. But it’s lighter, and runs silently since it does not incorporate a fan.
Note that the speed difference is not very much, with the Early 2015 Macbook being at most 10% slower than the Dual Core i7 processor in the 13.3-inch Early 2015 Macbook Air. In actual usage, you probably won’t notice the performance difference between the two.
Early 2015 Macbook Processor Speeds: Slower
- 1.1GHz Core M
- 1.2GHz Core M
- 1.3GHz Core M
- Intel HD Graphics 5300 graphics processor (all systems)
Early 2015 Macbook Air Processor Speeds: Faster
- 1.6GHZ Intel Dual Core i5 Processor (11.6-inch systems)
- 2.2GHZ Intel Dual Core i7 Processor (13.3-inch systems)
- Intel HD Graphics 6000 graphics processor (all systems)
NOTE: If top performance is a requirement for your applications, then you should take a look at the refurbished Macbook Pros at GainSaver. They are bigger and heavier, but much faster.
The Early 2015 Macbook Air has the standard Multi-Touch trackpad, while the Early 2015 Macbook uses the new Force Touch trackpad. The Force Touch trackpad is pretty cool. It gives you a new dimension for controlling your software programs. All the same gestures can be used that you already know from the Multi-Touch trackpad, and when you press down, you can do additional commands.
If you plan to do any drawing with your Mac laptop, you’ll be able to do pressure sensitive drawing on the refurbished discount Early 2015 Macbook’s Force Touch trackpad.
One more new feature of the Force Touch trackpad is that it provides feedback using vibrations you can feel with your fingertips. Depending on the app you are using, the vibrations can indicate various conditions or confirmation signals based on your gestures.
Early 2015 Macbook Force Touch Trackpad
- Supports pressure-sensing capabilities; enables Force clicks, accelerators, pressure-sensitive drawing, and Multi-Touch gestures
Early 2015 Macbook Air Multi-Touch Trackpad
- Supports inertial scrolling, pinch, rotate, swipe, three-finger swipe, four-finger swipe, tap, double-tap, and drag capabilities
The Macbook Air gives you all the familiar ports you are used to having on your Mac laptop, including two USB 3 ports, one Thunderbolt 2 port and a MagSafe 2 port for power. An advantage of the MagSafe 2 power port is that it is dedicated to powering up your Early 2015 Macbook Air. This means you can connect devices to the other ports while charging the battery.
The Macbook combines all the ports into just one port, the USB-C port. Having just one port helps make the Early 2015 Macbook thinner and lighter. And the USB-C port is universal. You can use the USB-C port to charge your Early 2015 Macbook, connect your peripherals and also connect to an external display. The USB-C port is also fast – the same speed as the USB 3 port.
The good news is that USB-C looks to be the next universal port standard, on both the Mac and PC systems. In the next few years, more and more peripherals will have a USB-C port. And your refurbished discount Early 2015 Macbook will be ready!
The only downside to the USB-C port is that you will probably need to purchase a separate adapter to connect to some of your existing peripherals and external monitor. And you’ll need to make sure you bring your adapters with your on the road.
If you don’t often connect external devices to your current Mac laptop, then the USB-C port may not be an important consideration at all. And if you ever need to, there are USB-C adapters available to cover every situation.
Early 2015 Macbook Port
- USB-C port
Early 2015 Macbook Air Ports
- Two USB 3 ports (up to 5 Gbps)
- Thunderbolt 2 port (up to 20 Gbps)
- MagSafe 2 power port
- SDXC card slot (only on the 13.3-inch Macbook Air)
Both the Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air have built-in cameras. The Early 2015 Macbook Air FaceTime camera has a higher resolution of 720p compared to the Early 2015 Macbook camera with its 480p FaceTime camera. If you are making a lot of FaceTime calls, or have occasion to use the internal camera for other reasons, the Macbook Air FaceTime camera is superior.
Early 2015 Macbook Camera
- 480p FaceTime camera
Early 2015 Macbook Air camera
- 720p FaceTime HD camera
Comparing Memory Configurations
The memory configurations for the Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air are similar. All of the Early 2015 Macbooks, the 1.1GHz, 1.2GHz and 1.3GHz systems are all configurable to a maximum of 8GB of memory.
For the Macbook Airs, the situation is mixed. The 13.3-inch Early 2015 Macbook Airs are configurable to 8GB, the same as the Early 2015 Macbooks. But the 11.6-inch Early 2015 Macbook Airs can be configured with a maximum of 4GB.
You’ll find that having 8GB of memory will help you run multiple applications faster. And if you plan to have GainSaver install Windows for you so you can have a dual operating system on your Mac laptop, then we recommend you select an Early 2015 Macbook or Early 2015 Macbook Air configured with 8GB of memory.
Early 2015 Macbook Memory
- Configurable to 8GB of memory
Early 2015 Macbook Air Memory
- Configurable to 4GB (11.6-inch systems)
- Configurable to 8GB (13.3-inch systems)
The maximum hard drive capacity is quite different for the Early 2015 Macbook and the Early 2015 Macbook Air. You can have GainSaver install a custom SSD flash drive in your Early 2015 Macbook Air with a capacity of up to 1TB. The maximum configuration on the Early 2015 Macbook is only 512GB. The 1.1GHz Early 2015 Macbooks are limited to 256GB maximum storage capacity.
Storage space is important for a Mac laptop. If you are using a desktop Mac, then you can always connect to additional storage with an external hard drive. With a Mac laptop, you’ll want to be able to have all your important images, videos, data files and apps on your internal flash drive. And with a refurbished Early 2015 Macbook Air configured to 1TB, you’ll have double the storage space.
Early 2015 Macbook Storage
- Configurable to 256GB flash drive (1.1GHz systems)
- Configurable to 512GB flash drive (1.2GHz and 1.3GHz systems)
Early 2015 Macbook Air Storage
- Configurable to 1TB flash drive (all speeds and sizes)
Both the Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air are available in a range of prices from slowest to fastest, and in the case of the Early 2015 Macbook Air, small and large screen size.
Prices change daily, but as of right now, the average Early 2015 Macbook price is a little higher than the average Early 2015 Macbook Air price. However, there is overlap. The cheapest Early 2015 Macbook currently costs less than the most expensive Early 2015 Macbook Air. Remember, prices change daily, so check current prices on the GainSaver website as you narrow your selection.
Price is only one factor out of many in choosing between a discount refurbished Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air. Because the price difference is rather small when buying refurbished from GainSaver, and because the Early 2015 Macbook and Early 2015 Macbook Air are actually quite different, we think that price is not an important consideration. We say get the one you want! The price difference at most is only a few hundred dollars. And when you consider the fact that you will be using your Mac laptop for many hours every day for years to come, the price difference is meaningless. So get the one you want!
When thinking about which Mac laptop is best for your needs, remember that this is a good decision. Apple manufactures the best small laptops you can buy, so you can’t make a bad choice. It’s a win-win.
Keep in mind that when you purchase from GainSaver, we include a free 30 Day Money Back Guarantee that covers everything. If you are not satisfied, you can return your Mac laptop for any reason. Really, any reason. If you decide you would rather have a different system than the one you bought, you can exchange it. You can’t go wrong when you buy from GainSaver!
These are the feature differences between the Early 2015 Macbook and the Early 2015 Macbook Air that we think are the most important, arranged in order of significance, starting with the most important.
- Display – Early 2015 Macbook has a high resolution Retina screen, Early 2015 Macbook Air does not.
- Weight – Early 2015 Macbook is lighter.
- Storage Capacity - GainSaver can upgrade the Early 2015 Macbook Air hard drive up to 1T, while 512GB is the max for the Early 2015 Macbook.
- USB-C Port – Early 2015 Macbook has one, the Early 2015 Macbook Air does not.
- Separate Charging Port – Early 2015 Macbook Air has one, meaning you can charge your Macbook Air while also having peripherals connected to other ports. You do this with the Early 2015 Macbook, but it requires a separate adapter.
- Force Touch trackpad – Only the Early 2015 Macbook has it.
- USB 3 ports and Thunderbolt port – Early 2015 Macbook Air has them, Macbook has only USB-C.
- Thunderbolt Port – Early 2015 Macbook Air has one, Early 2015 Macbook does not. (You may never use this port anyway!)
- Speed – Early 2015 Macbook Air is slightly faster.
- Price – Early 2015 Macbook Air is currently slightly less expensive, but it depends on which system you want.
Is the Early 2015 Macbook right for you?
Basically, the Early 2015 Macbook is the Mac laptop of the future. It has just about all of Apple’s latest technologies like Retina display, Force Touch trackpad and USB-C port. Future Apple laptops will probably be a lot like the Macbook. The good thing is that the Early 2015 Macbook is not a minor upgrade over the Macbook Air. It’s a huge leap, with many new features. It is not in incremental change. This means that if you are ready to embrace the future, now is the time! It’s hard to imagine what future Macbooks will have that the Early 2015 Macbook doesn’t already have!
Is the Early 2015 Macbook Air right for you?
The Early 2015 Macbook Air is the Mac laptop of the present. And that’s not a bad thing! The Early 2015 Macbook Air has all the familiar features you know and love. While the Early 2015 Macbook Air does not have a retina screen, it is a bit faster and can be configured with a bigger flash drive than the Early 2015 Macbook.
This much is certain – Apple will continue to support the Macbook Air for many, many years to come! They always do. So you can be sure that the Macbook Air will never be obsolete. New macOS operating systems will continue to support it far into the future.
The GainSaver website is designed for comparison shopping! GainSaver has the best prices anywhere, and they change all the time, so make sure to use the Compare feature on the GainSaver website for easy price and feature comparison.