Ageing MBP: Upgrade or Replace?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by danielbriggs, Jul 10, 2009.

  1. danielbriggs macrumors 6502

    Jun 13, 2006
    Manchester, UK
    Hi All,
    My trusty MacBook Pro is getting on a bit now; I bought it when the C2D chips came out back in late October 2006 (It'll soon be 3 years old!)

    - 17" Matte Screen
    - 2.33GHz T7600 CPU
    - 2GB of 667MHz RAM
    - 160GB Stock Hitatchi HDD 5400RPM

    I've thought about replacing it, but don't want to just because a new one is out, if you know what I mean. So naturally upgrading is a wise alternative.

    Realistically I can only upgrade the RAM and HDD.
    Should I decide to upgrade I would do the following:
    - Add a 120GB OCZ Summit SSD HDD (I would really like more space, but could cope with the downsize as I have 1.5TB tethered to it via FW800 when on my desk)
    - Swap the 2GB RAM installed with 2x 2GB sticks of 667Mhz sticks. (Yes I know it will only see 3 and bit GB of RAM)

    The HDD really does seem to be making the laptop drag its heels recently. Hence wanting to put a drive with 200MB/s write speed in :D
    RAM: You can never have enough...

    What I use my MBP for:
    - General usage most of the time on OS X
    - Bootcamp for specialist software that needs Vista
    - CAD package (in Bootcamp)
    - Parallels from time to time

    So, would you run with the proposed upgrade plan? Or save the cash and put it to a replacement? I don't do video editing, but I don't want a slow machine :eek:, I also don't want to waste money on not needed upgrades. Are the new machines THAT much faster?

    And... if I were to go down the upgrade route, I'd heard rumblings the SSD's don't play well with Bootcamp i.e. the AHCI... Can anyone confirm either way; specifically on the OCZ Summit?

    I hope that explains everything; advice greatly welcomed, what would you do? :)

  2. MacMini2009 macrumors 68000


    May 22, 2009
    If your current Macbook Pro is giving you no problems what so ever, then just upgrade the RAM and to a SSD.
  3. DoNoHarm macrumors 65816


    Oct 8, 2008
    mac is unique in that there is a large community of people who are willing to buy second hand macs and upgrade them, etc. I would do a craigslist search in your area to see what the going rate is for your MBP. Then I'd add whatever these upgrades will cost you to that price. You then have the real difference between an upgraded MBP and a new one. Factor in the time it takes to do the upgrade and you may not be looking at that bad of a value proposition to go with a new one and sell the old.
  4. akbc macrumors 6502

    Jul 11, 2008
    I'd say upgrade.
    I don't know why you would only see 3GB of RAM though? It's not like you're on x86 Vista all the time, right? Leopard will utilize all 4GB's...

    Then upgrade the HDD to SSD or even 7200RPM drives won't be THAT bad either. With the spec like your MBP, I'm sure it cannot be slow. Maybe you just need to clean up a little bit here and there...

    Upgrading to the Unibody MBP with 9400m isn't such a bad idea either :)
  5. menphix macrumors newbie

    Jun 13, 2009
    I would go for upgrade, too. I personally prefer 320G or 500G 7200rpm HDD to SSD. Plus, upgrading to 4GB RAM will do significantly good to the performance.
  6. Shadow macrumors 68000


    Feb 17, 2006
    Keele, United Kingdom
    If you want an SSD but don't want to spend loads on getting one thats a decent size, you might want to look at an OptiBay. Replace your current 160GB HD with a smallish SSD for the OS and applications, and replace the optical drive with a bigger HD for all your files. Upgrading to 4GB RAM will also help. Honestly, your MBP is still a good machine and it could probably last for another 2 years if you stretch it.
  7. cluthz macrumors 68040


    Jun 15, 2004
    I'm a bit deciding myself.

    I have a 2.2Ghz 15-incher with 320 GB HD (scorpio Blue) and 4GB ram.

    It's really the battery life on the new ones that really would make a difference, and I also need a new iPod and I'm a student so i'll get a Touch for free with the back to school campaign. And ofc with new warranty (In Norway all laptops have 2 years warranty by default.)

    Decisions, Decisions...

    It's alot of money for a computer thats slightly faster.. (If buy i'll pick up the 2.66GHz with 9600GT)
  8. Shawny D macrumors member

    Shawny D

    May 13, 2009
  9. danielbriggs thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jun 13, 2006
    Manchester, UK
    Thanks for all your replies.
    I think I will upgrade my current MBP. If I were to buy a new machine and pay the difference, it would cost me over £800 :(
    So a new HDD and some more RAM it is! :D

  10. clyde2801 macrumors 601


    Mar 6, 2008
    In the land of no hills and red dirt.
    Did the same with my 15" 2.33 (added 4 gigs of ram and a 7200 rpm hard drive). Made a world of difference in how it handled. If you decided you still wanted a new one, the upgrades may make a difference in whether you could sell your machine for a good price or not.

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