7200rpm HD Worth It?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by legaleye3000, Apr 26, 2009.

  1. legaleye3000 macrumors 65816

    Jul 31, 2007
    I have a early 08 MBP. Is the speed bump from 5400 to 7200 noticeable? Also, does it effect the battery significantly or only a little bit...

    Also, can you tell me the type of HD (size) to look for so I can go buy one if the questions above are answered positively...?

  2. legaleye3000 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 31, 2007
    The site doesn't mention the effect on the battery drain, whether its significant or not...
  3. michael.lauden macrumors 68020


    Dec 25, 2008
  4. legaleye3000 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 31, 2007
    I read that it might matter for video encoding, etc... Any idea on the effect on gaming?

    I'm not sure what they mean by short random read/writes vs. long read/writes.

  5. NRose8989 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 6, 2008
    Yes I'd say it's worth it.

    Battery life really isn't effected with the newer drives (atleast from my experience)

    I have a Hitachi 7k320 that I got for $80 off of newegg a while back and the overall system is faster (both boot up time and apps launching).

    The only draw back is that there is a bit more vibration compared to the stock 5400rpm drive in mine. It's not a lot though, I can only notice the difference when it's really quite around here (like at night and my MBP is the only thing running).
  6. shoulin333 macrumors 6502a

    Jun 26, 2007
    one word YES

    loading time in games will be reduced DRAMATICALLY, OSX and windows will boot up faster, programs will launch faster (1/2 the bounces or less)

    for under a $100 it is probably the one and only thing you can do to get more speed. Going from 2GB to 4GB ram u wont notice much difference, but 5400rpm to 7200rpm is a big difference.

    What you wont notice a difference in is the program usability, just faster when loading/booting, not faster once the program is loaded
  7. drewsof07 macrumors 68000


    Oct 30, 2006
    large file transfers are also cut by 1/3 the time. Example: Time Machine ;)
  8. legaleye3000 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 31, 2007
    Thanks for the responses- Shoulin was getting at what I was wondering most:

    Upgrade from 2gb to 4gb of RAM or get the 7200 HD...? I think the price is very similar (since I don't need a lot of HD space).

    Computer uses: Running lots of apps (but not intense apps) at the same time such as Word, text edit, safari, itunes, etc.; I do video encoding once in a while; I play one computer game (C&C TIberium Wars 3); I have Windows 7 in boot camp.

    Just wondering about which would be a better buy between the ram and hd.
  9. magamo macrumors 6502

    Apr 6, 2009
    Check your memory usage. You can monitor it by Activity Monitor. If you're using close to 2G or swapping files while doing normal tasks, you need ram. Upgrading HDD always makes your MBP faster, but more RAM may not if you don't need it.
  10. legaleye3000 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 31, 2007
    In activity monitor, I go to system memory, and then which one do I look at to see if I'm using 2gb? Just where it says "used" at the bottom left?

    Also, would the HD upgrade help game performance (not load times)?
  11. magamo macrumors 6502

    Apr 6, 2009
    Wired and Active are showing the amount of memory you're currently using. If these two combined (shown as "Used") are excessive, you need more ram. Inactive indicates the amount of cached memory for later use, e.g., recently closed apps, so you don't need to worry about that. But more ram means you can cache more, and hence more responsive laptop. So you might want to know how much you usually use as Inactive. If Swap is fairly large, you definitely need more ram.

    I don't game, sorry.
  12. legaleye3000 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jul 31, 2007
    Running all my programs that I normally run, right after clean boot though, activity monitor shows "used" at 1gb even. VM is 40gb. Swap shows 0. (I just rebooted before opening all my programs though).

    Anyway, back to the HD topic... If I buy a HD, what do I look for? Cache size, etc... I believe the correct size is 2.5 for the MBP. An example I'm looking at is: http://cgi.ebay.com/160GB-Internal-...ms=66:2|65:1|39:1|240:1318|301:1|293:1|294:50

  13. runebinder macrumors 6502a


    Apr 2, 2009
    Nottingham, UK
    No the hard drive won't effect the game while it's running, that part's the CPU, GPU and RAM. Only if the game has to load from the HDD in game would you notice it being smoother.

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