MacBook Air recommendation

My 24 yo daughter got rid of her college MacBook Air (early 2015). She doesn’t do too much with it since she also has an iPad. She does want a computer to manage photos, email and light duty “stuff”.

I’m thinking she should buy an Intel Mac either from the refurb store or from a Black Friday sale, rather than buy an M1 MacBook Air. I’m thinking she will get a better deal on an Intel and she doesn’t want the shiny new thing (like I do).

Am I thinking right on this?

Given how long she kept the last one, an M1 MacBook Air might have a longer support lifetime than an Intel one.


The $329 iPad can edit 4K video so they are definitely able to “manage photos, email and light duty “stuff”.”

If that is all she needs then any Macbook made in the last few years should do the job.

I’m doing all that on a 2015 MBA so any current model should suffice. I would have a hard time not going with the M1. Downside to most refurb models is the butterfly keyboard. I like the 2015 because it has a scissors keyboard and user replaceable battery and SSD.

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I think it depends massively on the price difference, and how much that difference means to you.

Other than that, the only downside to an M1 machine in this scenario looks like the fact that they are unproven and we don’t know if there will be reliability issues or moments of “oh, I didn’t realise that wouldn’t work”.


Thanks to everyone for your thoughts. I’m gonna recommend she at least look at the M1 from a cost perspective, but also keep options open on the Intel edition too.

True, at this point we know a Core score but not how the graphics processor is going to be under load. Granted, I expect it will do well, but unproven until units hit hands next week.

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