MacBook Pro M3 and MacBook Air M3: are there many differences?

SSD Design and Storage

Regarding the design, the MacBook Air is available in two sizes, 13 and 15 inches, while the Pro version has 14 and 16 inches. However, it is true that the 16-inch version starts at 3,000 euros, double that of the Air.

Another of its differences is located in the number of connectionssince we find a device with 2 Thunderbolt 4 ports, a connector Jack of 3.5, SD card reader and HDMI, in front of the two Thunderbolt ports MacBook Air and Jack of 3.5. This difference in performance is also observed in weight, with the 14-inch Pro being considerably heavier.

Regarding the keyboard, the Touch ID they are the same. The last difference lies in the color, since the Air has star and midnight white, and the Pro has space gray.

Screen

The screens also present a big difference: the Air has a Liquid Retina vs an XDR. This difference influences the brightness and peak brightness when we are analyzing content in HDR format. In addition, the Pro has Pro Motion technology, which makes it very fluid when navigating through the different windows. In short, the difference between panels is something in which they diverge greatly.

Of course, what they do not differ in is that we will be able to connect the MacBook Air and the Pro with two monitors and the equipment closed.

SSD

MacBook Air M2 Keyboard

In SSD storage we also find differences. It is important to remember that this comes sealed to the plate and cannot be changed, so it is essential to choose good storage at the time of purchase. The MacBook Air has 256GB of memory, while the MacBook Pro includes as standard 512 GB. Now, if we increase the storage to 512 GB, the prices are very similar. It is a very important aspect to take into account.

If we analyze the performance in writting and readingthe difference between the SSD of the Air and the Pro is very small and we are going to highlight it below.

  • MacBook Air M3:
    • Reading: 2704
    • Writing: 1673
  • MacBook Pro M3:
    • Reading: 2945
    • Writing: 2992.

Performance

MacBook Air midnight

This is one of the most differentiating sections between both models, since, although they have the same silicon, the performance is different. Why is this? Well, the MacBook Air does not have active ventilation, which means that it can reach high temperatures more quickly and a decrease in performance to avoid the terrible thermal throttling. On the other hand, the MacBook Pro does not have this problem due to the inclusion of the fan.

The absence of the fan makes the equipment very quiet and does not generate noisean aspect that is important to know, and a positive point in case you use it generically, since it is unlikely that this equipment will heat up.

The drop in performance is observed when we do stress tests, where the Air M3 obtains 6,932 points and the Pro M3 7,900 and 92% performance stability compared to 46%.

So which one is better?

MacBook Air late 2020

It is true that the price difference is quite important. However, when we match the SSD, the price is greatly reduced, so we believe that the most recommended option is the M3 Pro.

It has a better screen, more storage, a greater number of ports and active ventilation. When we buy a Mac we do not buy it for one year or two, but rather we look for a device that will last at least 6-7 years. We do not know if in the future we will need more power, and in that case we would have to make a larger investment again because the equipment does not meet our needs.