Some professional graphic designers and others prefer the anti-glare screen because they feel the ambient light reflections on the glossy screen distort how they see subtle color variations. I am not a graphics designer and like you I prefer the glossy screen. My preference may also be at least partially due to the intentionally diffuse lighting in my work space. According to my sources, the anti-glare screen is the glossy screen that has been subjected to a very careful and precise sandblasting treatment.
As far as the difference between the i5 and i7 processors go these benchmarks
are on a PC but the relative differences should be about the same on a Mac. I would venture that unless you are a hard core gamer, or a professional graphics person doing lots of Photoshop work you would never notice the difference between the two in normal service.
In your shoes, I would look at how I would be using the MacBook and make the decision between the two based primarily on screen size.
- If you are a full time road warrior and constantly hauling you MacBook all over the country, I recommend looking very seriously at the 13 inch model. The smaller size and lighter weight quickly add up to a huge difference in portability. In fact I use a MacBook Air for that very reason and I am not a dedicated road warrior.
- If I had only one Mac and it spent most of its time on my desktop with only occasional forays on the road my choice would be the 17 inch screen simply because the extra space on the screen desktop is so nice to have.
- The 15 inch models seem to me a compromise between portability and screen size but they are not that much smaller or that much less expensive than the 17 inch model. In fact a 17inch with the 2.53GHz i5 is only $100 more than the 15 inch with a 2.66GHz i7. When the 17 inch is configured with the 2.66GHz i7 that difference increases to $300.
No matter which model I chose I would consider bumping the RAM up from the default 4GB to 8GB purchased from Other World Computing
, or Crucial
to save some money. In the 15 and 15 inch machines I would invest in the additional $50 to $150 for the 7200 RPM 500GB hard drive unless money were no object in which case I would go for th 512GB SSD. Either of those will make a noticeable difference in system performance and the SSD should do wonderful things for battery life as well as system performance.
One last suggestion. When I am using my MacBook Air at home I always use an Apple wireless keyboard and Magic Mouse. IMHO they just beat the hound out of the built-in keyboard and trackpad.