15-inch MacBook Air vs. 13-inch MacBook Air: Which one should you buy?

Apple has introduced a new model in its MacBook Air lineup, the 15-inch MacBook Air. With more screen real estate and improved battery life, the new 2023 MacBook Air has been deemed the best 15-inch consumer laptop by reviewers.

Having said that, the 15-inch MacBook Air features the same M2 chip as the 13-inch MacBook Air (2022) but costs $200 more, starting at $1,299.

If you are looking to purchase a MacBook Air but are confused about which model is worth the investment. Dont, worry. We have done a comprehensive comparison of the 15-inch MacBook Air (2023) and the 13-inch MacBook Air (2022) so you can pick the right machine for you.

Similarities between the 15-inch MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Air

Specs15-inch MacBook Air (2023)13-inch MacBook Air (2022)
ProcessorM2 chip
8-core CPU (4 performance cores and 4 efficiency cores)
Up to 10-core GPU
16-core Neural Engine
100GB/s memory bandwidth
M2 chip
8-core CPU (4 performance cores and 4 efficiency cores)
Up to 10-core GPU
16-core Neural Engine
100GB/s memory bandwidth
Available configurationsApple M2 chip with 8-core CPU and 10-core GPUM2 with 8-core CPU and 8-core GPU
M2 with 8-core CPU and 10-core GPU
PriceStarting $1,299Starting $1,099

Differences between the 15-inch MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Air

Although both models have the same chips, memory, and storage, they feature different displays, speaker systems, and more. Here are their differences.

Specs15-inch MacBook Air13-inch MacBook Air
DesignFanless with
1.51 kg weight,
1.15 cm height
34.04cm width
Fanless with
1.24 kg weight
1.13 cm height
30.41 cm width
Display15.3-inch (diagonal) Liquid Retina display with True Tone
2880 by 1864 pixels resolution
13.6-inch (diagonal) Liquid Retina display with True Tone
2560 by 1664 pixels resolution
SpeakersFour-speaker sound system with a three-mic arrayFour-speaker sound system with three-mic array
Battery66.5-watt-hour lithium-polymer battery52.6-watt-hour lithium-polymer battery
PriceStarting $1,299$1,099

15-inch MacBook Air vs. 13-inch MacBook Air: Performance test

When comparing the 2023 MacBook Air with the 2022 MacBook Air, the most important aspect is their performance. Luckily, YouTuber @ZoneofTech answered the question for us.

The YouTuber did benchmarks and real-world testing on the base models of both the machines with 8GB RAM and 256GB storage to see which performed better.

Here are the results:

Tests15-inch MacBook Air13-inch MacBook Air
AJA Disk speedRead: 1,384
Write: 1,458
Read: 1,401
Write: 1,324
Trasfer speed
(17.91GB files)
27 seconds30 seconds
Cinebench R23
7761 score (Run 1)
7226 score (Run 2)
7062 score (Run 3)
7761 score (Run 1)
7141 score (Run 2)
6978 score (Run 3)
Lightroom Import
228 images (RAW and JPEG)
38 seconds37 seconds
Lightroom Paste
effects and filters to 227 images
1 minute 15 seconds1 minute
Lightroom Export
227 images in full resolution
19 minutes and 11 seconds30 minutes and 36 seconds
Blender CPU13 minutes and 40 seconds14 minutes and 28 seconds
Blender GPU5 minutes and 14 seconds5 minutes and 55 seconds
Final Cut Pro export
(15 min video in 4K H.264)
43 minutes50 minutes 42 seconds
convert 4K H.264 to ProRES
1 minute 6 seconds1 minute 20 seconds
(max. playable tracks)
70 tracks70 tracks
Games performance15-inch MacBook Air13-inch MacBook Air
Shadow of the Tom Raider
(through Rosetta 2)
12 fps13 fps
World of the Warcraft
(native support)
36.5 fps30 fps

Conclusion: Choose the 2023 MacBook Air for a larger screen over the 2022 MacBook Air, not performance

The test results reveal that there is not much of a difference in the performance of the 2023 MacBook Air and the 2022 MacBook Air probably beacause they are powered by the same chip. However, the difference lies in their screen size.

A larger 15.3-inch screen offers spacious more room to display apps, content, and a more enjoyable video streaming experience. It is handy, especially for people who love to run apps in split screen like men.

So, if you have a few hundred dollars to spare and love a bigger screen, you should go for the new 15-inch MacBook Air.

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About the Author

Addicted to social media and in love with iPhone, started blogging as a hobby. And now it's my passion for every day is a new learning experience. Hopefully, manufacturers will continue to use innovative solutions and we will keep on letting you know about them.