2011 Macbook Pro SSD

chriscrk

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Original poster
Nov 14, 2011
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Hi! I have an early 2011 MBP, and the fans have been making weird noises for months now, so I'm going to have them fixed/replaced. But I wanted to take advantage to replace my hard drive with an SSD at the same time, as my MBP is running rather slow lately. I was also thinking of updating the RAM if it's not too expensive (I only have 4GB ram atm)

I wanted some recommendations on SSD's to buy for my MBP model, because it seems a bit confusing. And same goes for the RAM (I guess 8GB would be good, but if it's not too expensive, 12 or 16 would also work as I used Photoshop and CAD). Any help would be greatly appreciated!

(Noted, I live in south america, so I wanted the model names so I can see if they are available in Chile to check prices, thanks!)
 

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jdsipod

macrumors member
Feb 25, 2011
79
8
Iowa City, IA
I have a Samsung Evo 840 series SSD in my old 2011. I think the latest and greatest is the 850 series now, but don't quote me on that. As for RAM I went with 16gb of RAM that I bought from Crucial's website, the brand name of the actual RAM escapes me.
 
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jdsipod

macrumors member
Feb 25, 2011
79
8
Iowa City, IA
If you are feeling really adventurous, I might suggest a kit from iFixit to remove your optical drive and make it into another hard drive bay. When I put my SSD in, I just moved the old hard drive from the original spot to the optical bay.

Kit
https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/Installing+MacBook+Pro+15-Inch+Unibody+Early+2011+Dual+Hard+Drive/8519

Installation Guides for SSD
https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/MacBook+Pro+15-Inch+Unibody+Early+2011+Hard+Drive+Replacement/5895

RAM installation guide
https://www.ifixit.com/Guide/MacBook+Pro+15-Inch+Unibody+Early+2011+RAM+Replacement/5905
 
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c8rlo

macrumors 6502
Sep 1, 2015
377
164
FL
Hi! I have an early 2011 MBP, and the fans have been making weird noises for months now, so I'm going to have them fixed/replaced. But I wanted to take advantage to replace my hard drive with an SSD at the same time, as my MBP is running rather slow lately. I was also thinking of updating the RAM if it's not too expensive (I only have 4GB ram atm)

I wanted some recommendations on SSD's to buy for my MBP model, because it seems a bit confusing. And same goes for the RAM (I guess 8GB would be good, but if it's not too expensive, 12 or 16 would also work as I used Photoshop and CAD). Any help would be greatly appreciated!

(Noted, I live in south america, so I wanted the model names so I can see if they are available in Chile to check prices, thanks!)
Samsung and Crucial are among the top SSD brands, Samsung has the better warranty. Crucial also has RAM, i recommend 8GB(2 4GB modules); they're pretty inexpensive nowadays.
 
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chriscrk

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Original poster
Nov 14, 2011
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Samsung and Crucial are among the top SSD brands, Samsung has the better warranty. Crucial also has RAM, i recommend 8GB(2 4GB modules); they're pretty inexpensive nowadays.
Yeah, the one's I have found online that seem to have the best rep are Samsung and Crucial.

Do you think 8GB is enough? At 4GB my computer freezes quite a lot, even just using Safari sometimes it freezes.

I'm also thinking of selling this one towards mid/end of next year when Skylake MBP's are released (hopefully adding an SSD and RAM to my current one will give it a better resell value, right?)
 
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c8rlo

macrumors 6502
Sep 1, 2015
377
164
FL
Do you think 8GB is enough? At 4GB my computer freezes quite a lot, even just using Safari sometimes it freezes.

I'm also thinking of selling this one towards mid/end of next year when Skylake MBP's are released (hopefully adding an SSD and RAM to my current one will give it a better resell value, right?)
8GB should be more than enough, i have an mid-2010 13" MBP C2D w/8GB Ram and a 256GB SSD and it flies!!! i use Chrome w/ multiple tabs open, streaming music(via Youtube or others), Microsoft Outlook and even with the media player open and it barely uses 4GB of Ram.

an notebook with more than 4GB Ram w/ 256GB(or more) SSD will have great resale value! i imagine the deal breaker would be the addition of an SSD to help it sell at a higher price.
 
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chriscrk

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Nov 14, 2011
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Thanks!

What do you mean by having an SSD could make it a deal breaker? Isn't it better than a regular hard drive?
 

Weaselboy

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Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,198
9,874
California
Do you think 8GB is enough? At 4GB my computer freezes quite a lot, even just using Safari sometimes it freezes.
Low RAM will not cause Safari to freeze. You have something else going on.

Depending on your usage, you may even be fine with 4GB. Reboot then use the computer like you normally do for a while. Then open Activity Monitor and look in the Memory tab. If the memory pressure section at the bottom is in the green, you are likely going to be wasting your money on more RAM.

I see you mentioned PShop... so if you are working with large files in PShop that can often benefit from more RAM

As far as the SSD, I'd say the Samsung 850 EVO and the Crucial MX200 are about the best bang for the buck.
 

chriscrk

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 14, 2011
521
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Planet Earth (?)
Low RAM will not cause Safari to freeze. You have something else going on.

Depending on your usage, you may even be fine with 4GB. Reboot then use the computer like you normally do for a while. Then open Activity Monitor and look in the Memory tab. If the memory pressure section at the bottom is in the green, you are likely going to be wasting your money on more RAM.

I see you mentioned PShop... so if you are working with large files in PShop that can often benefit from more RAM

As far as the SSD, I'd say the Samsung 850 EVO and the Crucial MX200 are about the best bang for the buck.
Hm... Maybe Safari and the computer freezing in general at times has to do with heat, because something may be wrong with the fans? I've also heard the latest OS X runs better on SSD's, but not sure if that's true.

But yeah regardless, I think I'd benefit on RAM because I often run Photoshop/CAD/iTunes/Safari at the same time, and may even try to partition and install windows to use Revit...
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,198
9,874
California
Hm... Maybe Safari and the computer freezing in general at times has to do with heat, because something may be wrong with the fans? I've also heard the latest OS X runs better on SSD's, but not sure if that's true.

But yeah regardless, I think I'd benefit on RAM because I often run Photoshop/CAD/iTunes/Safari at the same time, and may even try to partition and install windows to use Revit...
When the fans are ramped up, if you look at the CPU in Activity Monitor and sort by CPU%, do you see anything there chewing up a bunch up CPU cycles that would make it hot, hence the ramped up fans?

Any OS runs better on a SSD, but there is nothing about the newer OS versions that makes them any worse on a HDD.
 
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simonsi

macrumors 601
Jan 3, 2014
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But yeah regardless, I think I'd benefit on RAM because I often run Photoshop/CAD/iTunes/Safari at the same time,


All still not to worry about unless the RAM pressure is constantly yellow or going red in the Activity Monitor...but if you <want> more RAM then go ahead :)
 

jjvdn

macrumors newbie
Oct 26, 2015
9
2
Hi! I have an early 2011 MBP, and the fans have been making weird noises for months now, so I'm going to have them fixed/replaced. But I wanted to take advantage to replace my hard drive with an SSD at the same time, as my MBP is running rather slow lately. I was also thinking of updating the RAM if it's not too expensive (I only have 4GB ram atm)

I wanted some recommendations on SSD's to buy for my MBP model, because it seems a bit confusing. And same goes for the RAM (I guess 8GB would be good, but if it's not too expensive, 12 or 16 would also work as I used Photoshop and CAD). Any help would be greatly appreciated!

(Noted, I live in south america, so I wanted the model names so I can see if they are available in Chile to check prices, thanks!)
 

jjvdn

macrumors newbie
Oct 26, 2015
9
2
I would recommend buying the crucial Ram off amazon. They are always on sale! I have a the 2011 early MBP as well and just recently upgraded 4GB ram to 16GB which cost me about $120 CAN so in USD would be a lot cheaper. I would go with 8GB cause not really necessary to go with 12-16GB of RAM. I also upgraded my HD to a Samsung EVO 850 500GB SSD also purchased off amazon for $230 CAN(again in USD would be a lot cheaper). My computer rarely make that fan noise anymore while browsing or using the laptop. I also had weird noises before but it all seem to went away. The only problem I do have is when I go on my mbp to play like Dota 2 which cause laptop's fan to reach 6200 rpm. I read on another forum to really fix that problem is to actually take your computer apart and reapply the thermal paste. P.s If you want to save on money than go with a 850 EVO 250GB SSD which also works and if you need more storage you can always swap out your optical bay.
 
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chriscrk

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 14, 2011
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I would recommend buying the crucial Ram off amazon. They are always on sale! I have a the 2011 early MBP as well and just recently upgraded 4GB ram to 16GB which cost me about $120 CAN so in USD would be a lot cheaper. I would go with 8GB cause not really necessary to go with 12-16GB of RAM. I also upgraded my HD to a Samsung EVO 850 500GB SSD also purchased off amazon for $230 CAN(again in USD would be a lot cheaper). My computer rarely make that fan noise anymore while browsing or using the laptop. I also had weird noises before but it all seem to went away. The only problem I do have is when I go on my mbp to play like Dota 2 which cause laptop's fan to reach 6200 rpm. I read on another forum to really fix that problem is to actually take your computer apart and reapply the thermal paste. P.s If you want to save on money than go with a 850 EVO 250GB SSD which also works and if you need more storage you can always swap out your optical bay.
Thanks! What do you use your MBP for that makes you think that with 8GB you'd be fine?
 

jjvdn

macrumors newbie
Oct 26, 2015
9
2
Thanks! What do you use your MBP for that makes you think that with 8GB you'd be fine?
After monitoring for few weeks, the cache never reach like 16 Gb. Max mine ever went to is 11gb and that's for dota 2 or playing intensive game like counter-strike globe etc. Watching movie and browsing around 8gb is fine. I don't even recommend playing games on a mac. Our graphic card on the 2011 sucks.
 
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chriscrk

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Nov 14, 2011
521
1,055
Planet Earth (?)
After monitoring for few weeks, the cache never reach like 16 Gb. Max mine ever went to is 11gb and that's for dota 2 or playing intensive game like counter-strike globe etc. Watching movie and browsing around 8gb is fine. I don't even recommend playing games on a mac. Our graphic card on the 2011 sucks.
Oh okay! Thank you! :D

And yeah, I don't really play big games on my Mac anyway!
 
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