2010-2103 MacBook/MacBook Pro efficiency ?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Reno Peterson, Dec 30, 2015.

  1. Reno Peterson macrumors newbie

    Reno Peterson

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    Dec 30, 2015
    #1
    I'm looking to pick up a first Mac device, most likely a MB/MBP. Looking at slightly older models, with the potential of dropping/adding memory and installing a SSD for a fresh install of an OS. It'll more or less be used as a typical computer, surfing, music, movies, a couple of games, etc...Nothing over taxing I'm sure.
    Is this a fairly rational approach? I don't want to get in over me head though either...
     
  2. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

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    Boston
    #2
    Starting in 2012, when Apple released the retina MBP, we lost the ability to upgrade the hard drive, it no longer was a user replaceable component. Keep that in mind wen searching for a used iMac. With that said, it looks like you're searching for a hard drive based Mac, to upgrade to a SSD, which of course the 2012 rMBPs already have.
     
  3. Reno Peterson thread starter macrumors newbie

    Reno Peterson

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    Dec 30, 2015
    #3
    So is that a "yes" answer to my "fairly rational approach" question? As a "Mac" newbie, I'm looking for some valuable feedback. Or, am I putting too much faith in what some might consider "legacy" or outdated technology in machines in the age frame that I'm looking at?
     
  4. treekram macrumors 6502a

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    Honolulu HI
    #4
    By "slightly older", I'll presume (since you didn't specify) nothing older that the 2012 models. Anything from 2012 and newer are fine if your needs as stated are typical. It won't do the most demanding games (I don't game so maybe has some better advice on that). You'd need a new model (mid-2014+) if you want to drive an external monitor 3840×2160 (officially supported). Videos up to 1920x1280 play fine, but if you're streaming, that will depend on your network connection.

    Memory cannot be upgraded in the Retina models. Only the 2012 non-Retina model supports a standard SSD as an upgrade (all Retina models have an SSD standard). Models up to early 2013 can support SSD's such as the one OWC sells at:
    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/SSD/OWC/Air-Retina/Apple-MacBook-Pro-Retina-2012-Drive-Internal-Flash

    So really, the 2012 non-Retina MBP is the one you want if cost is the biggest factor. I expect it to be suitable for the next 5 years, if your needs don't change substantially in the next 5 years. The 2012 non-Retina is still being made by Apple. I bought an Apple refurb recently for $829 for the base model.
     
  5. Reno Peterson thread starter macrumors newbie

    Reno Peterson

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    Dec 30, 2015
    #5
    I was considering possibly from 2010-2012 timeframe.
     
  6. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

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    Oregon
    #6
    I'd honestly suggest looking into one of the newer retina models. If you have to have the ability to upgrade, go with one of the 13" or 15" 2012 non retina models.
     
  7. treekram, Dec 30, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2015

    treekram macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    I'd stay away from 2010. It only supported SATA-2 vs. SATA-3 (1/2 as fast) (the HDD/SSD interface). The processor in the 2011 is one generation behind 2012 but on the 15" and 17", there is a discrete GPU (faster graphics) although there were issues with the GPU and there's currently a repair extension program going on. One generation behind isn't that much slower on the CPU, but whether it's going to matter in the long term is unknown - to you or us.

    EDIT: Forgot about the USB ports - in 2011, it's USB2 vs. USB3 for 2012. It makes a big difference if you use larger files - not so much playing video/audio, but transferring files to/from the MBP and to/from external drives.
     
  8. satinsilverem2 macrumors 6502

    satinsilverem2

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    Richmond, VA
    #8
    If I were you I would aim for the Mid 2012 models. They are the only non retina machines that came with USB 3 and support all of Yosemite/ El Cap features natively. Some of the 2010 and all of the Early and Late 2011 15/17 inch models had issues with graphics failing over time. the 13 Inch models didn't suffer from this as they had integrated graphics only.
     
  9. Reno Peterson thread starter macrumors newbie

    Reno Peterson

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    Dec 30, 2015
    #9
    Update...I picked up the mid-2012 MBP 13" 2.5 GHz Intel Core i5. Originally it came with 4gb of RAM, I've maxed it out at 16gb. My next move will be a SSD. Can someone give me some good results for their experience from a spindle/platter drive to a SSD in regards to overall performance? I'm looking at the likes of the BX series from Crucial, SanDisk, PNY...(The 480gb and 960gb, as they are a bit more economical than the "true" 500GB and 1TB sizes, by a fair margin).
     
  10. JTToft macrumors 68040

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    Apr 27, 2010
    Location:
    Aarhus, Denmark
    #10
    - The speed difference going to an SSD is unimaginable if you haven't tried it before. It's that huge.

    As for specific drive recommendations, both Samsung, SanDisk, and Crucial make good drives. My recommendation with no hesitation is Samsung 850 EVO.
    Unless you are a really light user who never does file transfers larger than 2-3 GB or indeed anything intensive at all, I'd recommend against the Crucial BX200. It's really slow for sequential writes above the first few GBs.
    The SanDisk Ultra II is decent as well and a little cheaper than 850 EVO.
     
  11. snaky69 macrumors 603

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    Mar 14, 2008
    #11
    Going from spinner to SSD is night and day.
     
  12. treekram macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    Using the Blackmagic Disk Speed Test, my best 5400 rpm HDD's do about 100MB/sec - this is the speed of the standard classic MBP 2012 HDD. In my 2012 MBP, the Evo 850 does about 500MB/sec read, the write is variable - from 300's to high 400's. In my 2012 Mini, the OCZ Vector 150 is consistent in write speed of just under 500MB/sec (this is just an example, the Vector 150 should not be used in laptops because it doesn't have the power-saving features that something like the 850 Evo does). If you look at the Anandtech reviews, they cover power consumption issues so whatever drive you buy, make sure it's efficient in power consumption.

    If you want precise information, download the Blackmagic Disk Speed Test or whatever benchmark - you can run it on your HDD and then compare it with SSD figures on the web. Benchmarks don't tell the entire story because speed will be dependent on the specific task you're doing and also can vary if multiple processes are contending for the same SSD - something I don't see benchmarked very often.
     
  13. T5BRICK macrumors 604

    T5BRICK

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    Oregon
    #13
    It's the single best upgrade you can perform on any computer without a SSD. Period. You'll notice a difference immediately.

    I'd stick with the Samsung 850 evo or the Crucial MX200. I've had good luck with both brands.
     
  14. MacInTO macrumors 6502a

    MacInTO

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    Apr 25, 2005
    Location:
    Canada, eh!
    #14
    Good choice! I have a 2012 13" MBP 2.5 as well. I have 16GB RAM and a 1 TB Samsung 850 PRO SSD installed.

    It requires about 11 seconds from the chime to the login screen. Read and write speed are also unbelievable - 500mb/s plus.

    If you get an average price SSD, it will take about 15 seconds from the chime to the login screen.

    Your spinning hard drive will likely take more than a minute for this to happen.

    ps. In my other machine, I have a 480GB Corsair Force LE and it's super fast. It's also well priced. I got mine for about $130.
     
  15. satinsilverem2 macrumors 6502

    satinsilverem2

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    Richmond, VA
    #15
    I would highly recommend the Samsung 850 EVO/PRO lines of drives. They are fantastic and the difference is night and day compared to a spinning hard drive.
     
  16. Reno Peterson thread starter macrumors newbie

    Reno Peterson

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    Dec 30, 2015
    #16
    Next update...I was able to pick up the OCZ Trion 150 Series 960gb SSD for a very reasonable price of 215.99 + local taxes. CCC worked like a dream, and the SSD is now inside the box. Benchmark'd the previous drive maxing out at transfer speeds of Mb/s 70's and 80's...The SSD is maxing out the meters at +500's. Probably not much news to users that already use this tech, but a huge eye opener for a newb!
     
  17. T Coma macrumors regular

    T Coma

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    Dec 3, 2015
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    People's Republic of Chicago
    #17
    How has the OCZ been working? I see it's available under $200 for the 960gb now, with a 3 year warranty, but I'm not familiar with the brand at all. I'm curious how the performance has been.
     
  18. Tarek macrumors 6502

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    Jun 25, 2009
    Location:
    Cairo, Egypt
    #18
    Don't do a lot of benchmark tests on SSD cards because they're not not too safe, according to several articles I've read. And yes, the difference between SSD and HDD is huge!
     
  19. Reno Peterson thread starter macrumors newbie

    Reno Peterson

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    Dec 30, 2015
    #19
    The one I bought isn't showing any signs of unreliability or fault. The performance is very good. I'd get another one if I had the chance, and needed it.
     

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