128 SSD+External HD or 500GB 7200rpm

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by nowstime, Mar 13, 2011.

  1. nowstime, Mar 13, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2011

    nowstime macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2008
    I had several dilemas before settling for the MBP High-End 15. Thought of the 17 but decided to go with the 15 and get it from Apple. Was tempted to try MacMall who has my customization setting in stock and cheaper even with Apple's student discount but in case of any problems, thought it would be hard to exchange or return.

    My final spec is...(student discount)

    1. Highend 15
    2. Anti-glare (HS)

    But one thing I can't decide...I want some speed and I know SSD and traditional hard drives can't be compared speed-wise...

    Get 128SSD for extra $90 and get a decent 500GB or even bigger firewire external hard drive (thinking around $150 for the external drive) - I do have a 1TB Time Capsule but wireless is pretty slow.


    Get 500GB 7200rpm for size and speed. My only concern with this is noise level.

    What would you do?...Go with 128SSD and external HD and enjoy a fast laptop or go 500GB 7200rpm and have speed and storage. OR save the upgrade cost ($90 for SSD and $150 for external HD) and get a SSD later when it gets cheaper?

    What is a better investment?...I think when I sell it for an upgrade a couple of years or maybe next near 128GB won't be much of an advantage due to it's size. Different story for 256GB SSD.

    Either one I get, I don't plan to upgrade to 3rd party SSD (YET)...will just use it the way it is...Initial invest is already huge...(Around $2300).

    My normal operations will be interent, MS Office, SPSS, iMovies, Photo edits...

    Any input will be appreciated....
  2. sdneidich macrumors member

    Feb 5, 2011
    NC, USA
    Depends on what you plan to use it for. Do you need the extra space for music, photos etc, or do you need it for programs? If you need it for programs, go with the built in drive. It will save you a lot of hassle moving programs on and off.

    My 128 SSD has 15 GB of music, and the rest of the (currently 68 GB) used hard drive is applications, to give you an idea. I have MS Office, Starcraft II, and thats it.
  3. mulo macrumors 68020


    Aug 22, 2010
    Behind you
    how about both?
    replace the optical drive for a harddrive?
  4. AuroraProject macrumors 65816


    Feb 19, 2008
    Right there
    My plan is to order with the 128gb Apple ssd, then open it and add a 750gb 7200 rpm in the optibay. OS X and apps on the ssd, files on the spinner.
  5. nowstime thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2008
    Thought of the opti-bay thing but I would rather use it stock. I know I can externalize the super-drive but want to use it the way it was shipped to me (as of now).
  6. nowstime thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2008
    If I go 128SSd, plan to put current media stuff in the SSD (I guess around 20GB) and store the archived ones in the external drive and transferred them when I need them. My concern is pictures...I have quite a lot and would be useful to have them in one place with fast access but this job will be mostly done at home when I'm at the desk.

    School work is the only thing I need on the go (articles, word, SPSS, and interent resources).

    BTW, never used firewire hard drives...ARE THEY PRETTY FAST COMPARED TO USB 2.0?
  7. alust2013 macrumors 601


    Feb 6, 2010
    On the fence
    Firewire is faster, but if you're just storing files, etc on it, it won't make too much of a difference. External hard drives are just generally slow.
  8. azt33 macrumors member

    Sep 29, 2006
    Zurich, Switzerland
    When you say pictures, are you talking about RAW pictures that you edit? And with movies, are they large projects? I would opt for the 500GB 7200RPM HDD if the answer is yes for one of those questions, because 128GB is just too small in terms of size (for me at least, I do some photo-editing too). I think you should look at how much space you have right now and how much you will be needing to work on it comfortably. I prefer not to have important files only on an external, I tend to need them exactly that one time you don't have your external with you...
  9. mehanika Guest

    Mar 7, 2011
    Copenhagen, Denmark

    I have one thing to say: Seagate's Momentus XT

    Its a hybrid harddrive with a regular 7200 RPM harddrive, and a 4GB SSD buffer.
    And what is the result? 98% speed of a regular SSD, and pricetag ALOT closer to a regular harddive. I have seen this beat up a 10.000 RPM harddrive - its certainly no joke.

    Look it up, you will love it (i think) :)
  10. vincenz macrumors 601


    Oct 20, 2008
    7200 rpm shouldn't be loud if you get the one installed by Apple.

    Go for the 500gb. The SSD will not help your resale value much at all. When ssd prices drop in a couple years to more tolerable levels, get a higher capacity then.
  11. Erasmus macrumors 68030


    Jun 22, 2006
    Hiding from Omnius in Australia
    I ordered mine with the 500GB 7200RPM drive. I'm tempted to buy a 256GB ~500MB/s SSD when I can get one for about 300 bucks (hopefully in around a year) and maybe put the 500GB in an optibay / data doubler. Hopefully get more RAM too. Should be a nice upgrade.
  12. MrXiro macrumors 68040


    Nov 2, 2007
    Los Angeles
    I have one... It's ok... I don't like the constant vibrating and even though the newest update got rid of the pin wheeling and increased battery life by an hour I feel like an ssd would be better all around.
  13. ScottFitz macrumors 6502a

    Nov 3, 2007
    After coming from an 80gb MacBook Air, I was sick of not having enough space. I went with the 15 and the 7200x option. I prefer the glossy screen though.

    I also like to use the SuperDrive. By the time the SSD's get cheaper, I'll sell this i7 15 on eBay and buy a new MBP with an even faster CPU.
  14. nowstime thread starter macrumors regular

    Jul 2, 2008
    Thank you guys...planning to go the traditional hard drive route...500GB 7200rpm.

    BTW, I'm tempted to order from MacMall since it's around $2270 (next day shipping) compared to $2310 for free shipping from Apple.

    I know getting it from Apple is best but waiting will be such a pain although I have waited quite awhile since launch.

    Any bad experiences from MacMall?

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