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Old Jan 28, 2013, 12:50 PM   #1
Toucansma
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Macbook Unibody White to Upgrade or Not

Hi,

I know there are 10 million threads in this forum (and yes I searched) but I wanted to post for some additional advice.

I have been using a MacBook 2009 Unibody with 5GB of Ram for last year and half. My old Unibody Alum died so I got this on eBay. Due to resources it was our primary computer. I just got a new Mac Mini finally which help shift usage away from the laptop.

I am wondering economically if it is worth upgrading the Macbook to a small SSD. Right now (it always seems), the battery goes to about 3 hours (max) on a full charge (I can never get the claimed 5 hours even with brightness). The work I do on the MacBook is mostly home and business apps, including Virtualbox, Skype, etc. I do the occasional rip of a DVD using Handbrake. I do not generally do video editing, gaming, or any audio apps. I however leave a lot of apps open as I switch between many. I am looking for something to work for about a year to another year and half. Only thing I like about the MacBook is its the carbonate one which is easier if my three old pickups by accident, kicks it, etc. (though thats not a major concern).

1. Upgrade current computer to SSD
2. Buy used Macbook or Air (wouldn't buy less than an i5 or no use I think in upgrading.
3. Buy a new Macbook or Air.

Any thoughts or advice is appreciated. Thanks!

Sam

Last edited by Toucansma; Jan 28, 2013 at 01:16 PM. Reason: I cannot spell
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 01:00 PM   #2
simsaladimbamba
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While there are only 1,444,135 threads as of now that I know of, one thread more will not hurt.

Anyway, your MacBook can take up to 8 GB of 204-pin DDR3 SO-DIMM RAM, which costs around 50 USD and less nowadays. A 128 GB SSD can be had for less than 100 USD, the Crucial M4 256 GB SSD can be had for less than 150 USD in some places.
If you can and want to invest 150 to 200 USD now, you get a pretty good machine for most of your stated usage, although the HandBrake encoding is still limited by the C2D CPU.
Upgrading RAM in MacBooks and MacBook Pros
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 03:12 PM   #3
Toucansma
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Originally Posted by simsaladimbamba View Post
While there are only 1,444,135 threads as of now that I know of, one thread more will not hurt.

Anyway, your MacBook can take up to 8 GB of 204-pin DDR3 SO-DIMM RAM, which costs around 50 USD and less nowadays. A 128 GB SSD can be had for less than 100 USD, the Crucial M4 256 GB SSD can be had for less than 150 USD in some places.
If you can and want to invest 150 to 200 USD now, you get a pretty good machine for most of your stated usage, although the HandBrake encoding is still limited by the C2D CPU.
Upgrading RAM in MacBooks and MacBook Pros
I am just worried about the battery. The 2011 i5s get good real world battery life right?
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 03:23 PM   #4
simsaladimbamba
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I am just worried about the battery. The 2011 i5s get good real world battery life right?
That I do not know, but depending on the usage, they probably will get the life Apple promises when similar conditions are applied.
HandBrake is CPU intensive and will eat the battery alive. Do you need to use it on battery that often?
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 06:44 PM   #5
Toucansma
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That I do not know, but depending on the usage, they probably will get the life Apple promises when similar conditions are applied.
HandBrake is CPU intensive and will eat the battery alive. Do you need to use it on battery that often?
On battery for that, no . I am just wondering if I am putting money into something is dying. It gets like a max of 3 hours with browsing (could be due to my brightness being so high). I am debating about buying a 2011 macbook pro.
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