For those of you with M1 Macbooks, would I be wasting my time getting an 8GB model?

@kev Depends, will you be using Chrome ...? 🙃


Nah, I'll be using Firefox. Everything else feels alien to me. 🙂

@kev @gray unpopular opinion: I actually really like Safari 😂 just feels like the simplest browser in existence.

Also you are just going all in on proprietary OS this week aren't you!

@benjaminpaikjones @gray I’ve been thinking about it for a while. Only just started talking about it is all. 😊

@benjaminpaikjones I really like Safari too. It’s a great browser, and getting better. I even like the new version that nobody else seems to like.


@kev @gray @benjaminpaikjones same! I would only use ungoogled chromium for development. Safari is great in Monterey

@kev 16 gigs. Remember, you cannot upgrade it.

@kev What are you going to be doing on it?

8gb is usually pretty good for most tasks.

@ndegruchy @kev This. Unless you have multiple apps with tons of tabs/files open, 8 is fine (but I’d go for 16).

@ndegruchy Yeah. Pretty much writing code (Atom editor), browsing, email, maybe the odd light game (minecraft, among us etc.)

@kev So long as you're not trying to do all of those at once, yeah. You'll be fine with 8.

@ndegruchy Agreed. My desktop only has 8gb and it’s quite happy. My laptop has 16gb, but I never stretch it that far.

Don’t know how much the new architecture affects memory though. It would depend on price for me. I’d take it if the price difference is negligible.


@kev Without knowing anything about price and use cases, I'd go for 16GB. 8GB is the lower end nowadays, 16GB just seems more future proof. So it's the better choice if you want to use the thing for many years. If, however, you change laptops every 2 or so years, then first off shame on you, and second, I guess future-proofing wouldn't matter much so might as well go with 8GB.

@kev I mean this depends.
If you do light tasks like browsing the web, text editing and some multimedia here and there you should be fine. Also: If Apple provides a device with 8GB you know it'll work for most users (probably).
But 8GB might not be good enough in the future...

@kev get the 16GB or more if you can.. your investments will last longer.


Palma, E. (1988). Maximize your investments Buying an Apple Macbook Silicon (M1), learning by failing. HBS No. 491-009. Harvard Business School Publishing.

Now seriously, you will be better buying the best amount of memory you can get. Those machines has their memory solded and you will not able to upgrade later. Even with light use (just internet browsing) you will needed by other means like compiling things

@esparta that's what I'm battling with - what I need vs what's nice to have.

@kev as I mentioned, you'll probably be OK with 8 GB for the 'day to day' , doing 'light' browsing and maybe a local software... for the next... 2 years?

All browsers takes 4GB so quick and at some point will be already swapping memory, fixable by closing the browsers. Not a.huge deal.

But when things like updates and install things with brew will take lot of time. Granted that's not a daily task.

Do not dare to use Slack and pretend to do any other stuff with just 8GB.

@kev regardless of the specific computer or operating system I would say 16 gb simply because I almost always get above 8 gb loaded into ram under a standard workload. That may not apply to you though.

@kev what about a thinkpad?

Seriously, if the laptop has soldered RAM, it may be better to go above what you need now

@kev I don't have an M1 MacBook, but I wouldn't do 8GB unless your needs are very basic.

@kev definitely go for 16gigs, that’s what I picked up, the only downside is that’s considered to be a “custom configuration” and will probably ship from the factory (mine took about a week to ship). Other than that they are really solid, I work with a good bit of 4K video in final cut and it doesn’t even get warm, battery life on them is also insane

@kev have no Mac - actually hate Mac, but 16 GB is minimum, better 32 GB (me:linux, but all browser eat memory as Germans sausages and kraut)

@kev If you can wait until latest November I think Apple will release a 2021 model with enhancements people are looking for, like no more touchbar, a possible M2 chip, redesign chasis, etc.

@kev @Antacon maybe he just want‘s a MacBook Air. We don’t know 🤷‍♂️

@kev I have a 8go version and with figma + many tabs on firefox and chrome I feel some lags and a clear limit, but it depends on your usage

@kev I use a 16GB (non M1 variant) for work and currently sitting at 11.3 GB used with 2.4 GB swap. All I have open is 8 chrome tabs, IntelliJ, and Slack.

@kev as far as I can see, active apps are using 7GB, OS is using the rest.

@kev I have an 8gb intel mac. I run at least 10 chrome tabs at a time, spreadsheets (Libre Office) Outlook email, iMessages, Notes, MS Teams, Webex maybe itunes and up to a dozen terminals sessions with ssh for work and drive 3 usbc displays. M1 macs are supposed to out perform intel. I would say 8gb is good unless you are doing maybe heavy gaming, but for work, I can't imagine anyone needing more. I am currently looking for an excuse to upgrade, myself :D

@kev I should add that my day job is building high performance computing clusters for gene analysis, for comparison. I know because of my handle may people think I am just doing budget spreadsheets or something. My day job is slightly more complicated than that :D

@kev for any form of software dev or audio/video production, def. go with 16GB RAM. With an IDE, browser, and a few background apps open I’m normally sitting at > 8GB used. You could probably “get by” with 8GB, but you’ll have a far better experience with 16GB.

As far as waiting for an M2: I’d not at all be afraid of buying an M1 now. They’re enough advanced that you’ll be happy with it, in my xp. I’d def. go w/a Pro to get 2 thunderbolt ports though. And I personally like the Touch Bar :)

Always max out the RAM when it's non-expandable. Even if you hardly use it, it will improve the resale value down the line. And who's to say you won't install a massively heavy app in the future?

I went for the 16Gb/512Gb M1 Air and am very happy with it.

@fossil I don’t really understand the deference between the air and the pro except for the shape and the Touch Bar?

You can (I think) order the Pro with over 16Gb RAM, and yes it has the awful touchbar. That's about it. Oh, and it has a part-time fan, whereas the Air is passively cooled and will slow itself down a little if you really crank it to overheating point.

@kev well fosstodon has decided. Now its your decision

@kev 100% recommend 16GB. You will not regret it.

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