15" 2.93GHz w/ 256GB SSD. [Q&A]

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by adamjackson, Apr 1, 2009.

  1. adamjackson macrumors 65816

    Jul 9, 2008
    My new MacBook Pro just arrived.

    15" 2.93Ghz
    256GB Solid State Drive
    4Gbs of Ram
    Adobe CS4 Master Collection
    Office 2008
    iWork '09

    I'm going to get some benchmarks once Adobe CS4 is done installing. I have a fresh install (no time machine backup) so I'm going to run XBench. Any other benchmark tool I should use?

    Any questions you have?

    I was going to record video of it booting. Any other videos or photos you want to see?

    Here's the unboxing Video

    Here are some photos:

  2. Warranty Voider macrumors 6502

    Aug 27, 2008
    Maine, US
    Could you take a video, or time how long it takes to open up photoshop or some other adobe app?

    Also, if you don't mind, how much did the SSD cost, and where did you buy it?
    EDIT: Never mind. I watched the unboxing video. The SSD came with it.
  3. Guy Mancuso macrumors 6502a

    Mar 28, 2009
    Same box 15 inch 2.93 6gb of ram 2 SSD Intel 25 running Raid 0 takes 3 seconds to open PS CS4. That was the long count. LOL
  4. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    SSD performance and first impressions?
  5. adamjackson thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 9, 2008
    I'm going to record the videos and run XBench as soon as Adobe CS4 is done updating. (1.1 gigabytes of updates for CS4)

    1. Installing Leopard (clean install) took 25 minutes. That's absurd. I was expecting 10 minutes.
    2. Installing Adobe CS4 from an External LaCie Drive over FW800 took 1 hour
    3. The system locks up every minute or so. The mouse moves but menus, progress bars, bouncing dock icons all of it is just locks up. This issue was brought up on this and the apple discussion boards for people using SSDs. I'm not sure what to do right now :(
    4. When it's not locking up, the system is extremely fast. the SSD is incredible at multi-tasking like copying a file, opening photoshop and playing HD content from YouTube.

    Advice: Get the 2.93Ghz if you can afford it. The SSDs are getting cheaper but that CPU is soldered onto the board and is not upgradeable later.

    Honestly, I don't regret getting the SSD but at this time, it's fast on some things and the same speed as my 7200 RPM hard drive on other things. I was expecting AMAZING SPEEDS but I'm just not seeing it at this time.

    I'm upgrading from a 2.6Ghz (pre-gen) MBP w/ 7200RPM Hard Drive. CPU and GPU speed is noticeable. DDR3 memory is also yielding a big boost but the SSD just isn't doing it for me.

    Of course< I've just been installing software and transferring files all day so I'll need to give it some more time.

    From what I've researched, there is a difference in different SSD drives so get the best rated one you can. There's also a life expectancy of these drives where, over time, they get slower where they are equally as fast as HDDs in performance but it takes a few years to get there. For the price, I probably should have waited for 6 months.

    <coming soon>
    ScreenCasts with opening Photoshop, booting the computer and copying large files.

    Here's a photo of the temperature of my computer. This was while updating Adobe CS4 and copying my iPhoto library back to my computer from an external drive.

  6. rabidadvisor macrumors newbie

    Jan 11, 2009
  7. drew0020 macrumors 68000


    Nov 10, 2006
    I prefer the 2.66 and the SSD (get the intel 160GB X25-M). The SSD you are using is from Apple if I am not mistaken its not the best performer based on the benchmarks I have seen. You will notice the difference if you get the Intel SSD and if you want to upgrade when there are significant processor advancements you can bring the SSD with you.
  8. adamjackson thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 9, 2008
    I ran two XBench tests. I created a new user to ensure no other background processes interfered. Both of the results are on the XBench website.

    Test 1
    Test 2

    Once again, unimpressed with these results. I really thought that I would get better results.

    Also. Here's the Battery capacity. 107% is a little weird.

    I'm working on the videos now and will upload them once they're processed and put on YouTube.
  9. drew0020 macrumors 68000


    Nov 10, 2006
    Its the SSD. I get better overall and disk test results from my 2.4 Macbook let alone my Macbook Pro.
  10. adamjackson thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 9, 2008
    Seriously? Man, I'm a little bummed. I did get a good deal on this but SSD hasn't been worth it then.

    My boot speed is pretty good but the SSD is just kinda crap to be honest.

    The speeds were UNBELIEVABLE until it got to the disk tests and then it just crapped out. Let me do another XBench minus the disk tests.

    Here are the XBench results without Disk Tests

    It's better but not AWESOME!

    Coming from a 2.6Ghz last-gen MBP I'm not as impressed as I thought I would be.

  11. drew0020 macrumors 68000


    Nov 10, 2006
    The processor speed is really only about a 10% difference so that is negligible. The SSD is really not performing that well (better than a HD, but seems slow on the disk test). See if you can get an Intel or OCZ Vertex in your machine and let us know your thoughts then.
  12. adamjackson thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 9, 2008
    Well overall, I was thinking 2.93Ghz+DDR3+NewGPU+SSD = Badass computer compared to my old machine but I guess not.

    The SSD was configured from Apple so I actually paid extra money for it. I regret that now considering the ultra-crap stats that I'm getting.
  13. drew0020 macrumors 68000


    Nov 10, 2006
    The single biggest change I have noticed on my computer is the Intel SSD. I even put it in an older laptop and that even seemed fast although there was only 1GB RAM with a 1.6GHZ processor. Of course I was using mail, internet, word and excel only.
  14. daneoni macrumors G4


    Mar 24, 2006
    Could it be you got a defective drive?. I don't feel as big a need to upgrade now and will hold to my Classic a while longer
  15. MGLXP macrumors regular

    Sep 29, 2005
    The speed is perfectly normal for the Toshiba SSD that Apple put in there. It is nowhere near as fast as the Intel SSDs or even the OCZ vertex SSDs.
  16. Guy Mancuso macrumors 6502a

    Mar 28, 2009
    Adam just not sure what Apple is using for there SSD drives but it seems there read and write times are not very good . Just for a comparison maybe this will help get a better idea on the numbers. This is from a 15 2.93 box with 6gb of Ram running two Intel XM 25 80gb drives running in Raid0. Now the weakest link here is the write times on SSD these are listed at Sequential Access - Read: Up to 250MB/s Sequential Access - Write: Up to 70MB/s. Now I am doing a little better because of Raid O but if your going to replace the Apple drive and you really want the speed look for better write times. All of them are blazing fast on Read so apps and booting are like lightning but photoshop and programs like that will fly well but it is the write times that bring the overall numbers down. Now I may go ahead and sell mine and go for the Intel E class which the numbers are much better on write times and maybe the best we will see right now is something in this area Sequential Access - Read: up to 250 MB/s Sequential Access - Write: up to 170 MB/s That's the magic number for any power user is looking for . I'm a pro photographer that shoots very high res camera's Medium Format digital with very BIG files and processes them in a Raw converter.
    Now my numbers are pretty close in Photoshop compared to my old MacPro with 2.66 and 10k drives with 12gbs of Ram. My speed lose is in processing my files and it comes down to write times. I replaced the MacPro with this box because I need to be more mobile so I am searching for the holy grail also. SSD are great for there intended purpose but we need better write times for users like me. Anyway here are my numbers with the 15 inch 2.93 6gb of Ram and Intels running Raid 0. To be honest I would never buy Apples Hard drives or Ram. To costly for what you get and I suspect that 256 drives is really nothing special in the way of performance. Not meant as a dig to you or Apple but just reality. I think we are all expecting too much from these things but honestly Ram is the better choice i have seen numbers drop significantly( for the better) in all my testing when just going from 4 to 6gb of Ram

    Attached Files:

  17. fteoath64 macrumors regular


    Nov 16, 2008

    Your X25-M Raid0 read and write speeds are just wicked!. Almost the holygrail. If Intel would do a 320GB SSD with an internal sandwiched 160GB X25-m and , of course not charge us a small fortune. That would be the SSD to get!.

    Pity that Toshiba SSD is so poor in performance. Wonder whatever happened to that "legendary" Samsung 256GB SSD that did not seem to show up in the Apple parts list?.
  18. Guy Mancuso macrumors 6502a

    Mar 28, 2009
    Thanks it's almost there and yes they do look darn good I will admit . In PS my numbers are dead on to my old box and that does impress me. I want 8gb of Ram though which I know will benefit the big files and layers and such. So PS is pretty darn good with SSD . The issues that I see today are the Raw processing programs like Lightroom, ACR, Capture One or any program that writes which I use my times are slower and reason being it comes right down to write times. SSD and Reads are simple glorious as we have all seen in boot up and apps being launched but if you are doing heavy writing this is when they are slipping. As the E class SSD are really the ones to be looking at but they are so darn expensive right now and comparison to 7200 drives the 7200 drives beat them in the write times but the technology is at the newborn stage and as time passes SSD will be the norm. and prices will go down fast. But right now i agree my numbers look very good and I can get it done with speed for the work I have to do. We will see better as time marches on. I guess my point is folks need to understand what SSD can do and not do and don't get mislead by the fast boot times. Let's face it you may only boot once a day if that and big deal you can wait a extra 20 seconds. LOL What we really want is speed in when you are actually working on your box. I guess that was somewhat a warning sure looks cool opening stuff like lightning but at these costs it better make sense than just being cool. :)

    I know, I know . I like being a kid in a candy store too. LOL
  19. adamjackson thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 9, 2008
    I just got this from Apple after posting a message in the discussions forum.


    Thank you for your desire to help Apple make our products even better. We appreciate your comments and encourage you to share them with Apple on our feedback page:


    As part of submitting feedback, please read the Unsolicited Idea Submission Policy linked to the feedback page.

    Apple Discussions is designed as a user-to-user support platform to address technical questions. To keep this focus we have removed your post, "Unhappy with MacBook Pro Purchase (2.93Ghz + SSD)" which is copied below.

    Thank you for your understanding.

    Kind Regards,

    Apple Discussions staff


    A copy of your message for reference:

    My old computer (which is listed in my signature) was pretty good. It was good enough for most users and power users but I like to keep my machines current so I sold my year old machine on eBay for $2400 and used some savings to buy a new MacBook Pro. Here's what I got.

    4gbs of ram
    256GB Solid State Drive (SSD)

    All of this from Apple as Configure To Order (CTO)
    I did some tests using XBench here are the two tests.

    Everything is going along pretty good until you get to the hard disk tests. The SSD basically bombs the tests BADLY! I reformatted my MBP and did a clean install. The same results.

    On top of that, every minute my entire system (aside from the mouse) hangs. Progress pars, opening applications, the clock everything hangs for half a second (maybe more or less). This happened before and after the reinstall of Leopard.

    So I have a machine that isn't that much better than the one I had before and the SSD seems to be causing my system to hang every minute which ***** when you're typing or moving things around.

    Last but not least. With brightness up, Wi-Fi on and copying my iPhoto library from an external hard drive to the SSD i only got 1.25 hours of battery life. THATS IT!

    One hour and 15 minutes and that's after conditioning the battery properly. yep, I'm a little down about the situation

    Grand Total w/ Tax for this awesome experience?

    $4,268.32 (that includes applecare)

    Thanks everyone for your help. Talk about being dissatisfied and this computer is a CTO so I doubt they'd accept an exchange for a 320GB 7200 RPM in its place. I'd get $650 dollars back, wait 4 months and get a 256GB from Intel or OCZ.

    Not sure where to go from here. I guess just be happy and deal with it but wasting $650 sure as hell doesn't feel very good.
  20. drew0020 macrumors 68000


    Nov 10, 2006
    Call Apple. They usually take care of good customers. Next time research SSD's before you buy especially CTO. My rule of thumb is that RAM and HD upgrades are always better purchased after the fact and not directly through Apple.
  21. adamjackson thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 9, 2008

    I live one block from the apple store downtown San Francisco. I'm going to walk over there later and chat with them about it.
  22. Pagga macrumors 6502


    Feb 21, 2009
    Closer to the Artic circle than I like to be
    Hmmm ... I get 158 (best out of 3) with Xbench
    17" 2.93 with 7200 rpm 320 GB

    Is that bad?
  23. Guy Mancuso macrumors 6502a

    Mar 28, 2009
    Adam that is a great idea see if you can return the SSD get your money back . Go get a better SSD that has faster reads and writes than stick that 320 gb HD in a small external firewire 800 portable drive as backup and road warrior. I actually ordered my MPB with a smaller 250 7200 drive knowing i would stick it in a Lacie Ruggedize box for backup and travel but I also partitioned in to two drives with 50gb for a OS backup. So whenever I am away from home I am always carrying a OS backup with me just incase plus the other partition can hold my Raw files from a shoot.
  24. entatlrg macrumors 68040


    Mar 2, 2009
    Waterloo & Georgian Bay, Canada
    I'm curious to see where you ended up with Apple and your ssd drive issue?

    Sounds like you're pleased with the 2.9 over the 2.6 but are you still unhappy with the ssd performance?

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