Buying new 13" MBP. Must choose one: Upgrade to SSD or i7 processor?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Chodite, Mar 17, 2011.

  1. Chodite macrumors 6502a


    Sep 23, 2007
    Baltimore, MD
    Mostly casual use. Though importing, editing, exporting a fair amount of raw 1080p HD footage (mostly via iMovie) as well as iPhoto editing. Outside of that, mainly web browsing, Torrents, etc. Must choose just one upgrade for this new 13" MBP: SSD or i7?
  2. ddehr026 macrumors 6502

    May 1, 2010
    Hrm that's a tough call. The video editing and ripping would definitely be benefited by the i7, but overall experience would go to the ssd. I would probably vote for the ssd.
  3. iTouch1987 macrumors member

    Sep 10, 2008
    i7 easy. you can always put your own ssd in later.
  4. tcador macrumors regular

    Jan 16, 2008
  5. Chodite thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 23, 2007
    Baltimore, MD
    True. Though honestly, the last thing I want to do is install a new SSD into this thing, after reading other posts in here... partitioning issues and such. Would much rather have it factory installed!
  6. Nathe macrumors member

    Feb 25, 2011
    Staffordshire, UK
  7. acedickson macrumors 6502a


    Dec 6, 2004
    True, but not by much at all. Not enough or me to justify the extra $300. I say SSD.

    Handbrake encoding results
  8. articcine macrumors regular

    Dec 25, 2010
    Lillehammer, Norway
    SSD. The i7 won´t make such a difference really.
  9. Jason Beck macrumors 68000

    Jason Beck

    Oct 19, 2009
    Cedar City, Utah


    1)Buy SSD
    2)Pop cover off and take out Hard Drive (easy)
    3)Put SSD in.
    4)Cover back on and boot up with DVD in drive.

    I don't know what your talking about, partitioning issues and all that. Thats nonsense, putting an ssd in and booting from the OS dvd is flawless. Get an i7, and later pop an SSD in and see how your chip will make OSX its *&^%. Load most programs in a half sec, and 2 sec shut downs and 15 second or less startups. I'd call that worth the headache of an hour install.

    Youtube and Google are your friends.
  10. adrian1480 macrumors 6502

    Sep 2, 2010

    unless you're transcoding videos 10 hours/day, SSD is something you'll appreciate every second of every day you're at your computer.
  11. AlBDamned macrumors 68030


    Mar 14, 2005
    IMHO, upgrade now what you cannot upgrade later. I.e. Processor.
  12. Mik3F macrumors 6502

    Feb 3, 2011
  13. jpjandrade macrumors member

    Mar 17, 2010
    SS ****ing D. No ****ing contest. The difference from i7 is negligible compared to the speed increase from the SSD.
  14. ctbear macrumors 6502a

    Dec 6, 2010
    I'm kind of in the same boat as OP, here are some of my thoughts:

    (Assuming the SSD is from Apple BTO)
    - The difference in performance is much more noticeable with SSD than with i7
    - The SSD option has a much lower storage capacity
    - I can always get an SSD in the future, but I can't just buy an i7 CPU and replace the old one
    - That said, the Apple SSD should be more compatible with OS X than other brands

    Generally speaking ,the SSD option should give me more performance improvements. The i7 option is more suitable if I plan to do upgrades in the future, but since I will most likely get a new computer in ~2 years, this is not applicable.

    My conclusion is that i5 is enough for me (and possibly the OP). The remaining questions are:

    - Which SSD to get? (Apple or aftermarket)
    - Optibay for SSD or the OEM HDD?

    I'm leaning towards the setup of getting the stock MBP with 5400rpm drive, then purchase an SSD myself. I still can't find a straight answer to whether it's better to keep the HDD in its place and put the SSD in Optibay, or vice versa. Assuming I'm booting from the SSD, I have the following 2 scenarios:

    HDD in its place, SSD in Optibay:
    The HDD gets sudden motion sensor support, but the SSD might suffer from hibernation issues.

    HDD in Optibay, SSD in the original drive bracket:
    No hibernation issues, but HDD gets no sudden motion sensor support.

    Other concerns include where to put the Win7 bootcamp partition, and the home folder.
  15. Chodite thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Sep 23, 2007
    Baltimore, MD
    I'm now leaning more towards the processor (i7) upgrade and getting an SSD down the road. An SSD should be cheaper later this year. Much easier to later upgrade the HDD than to upgrade the processor. If I plan on keeping this MBP for at least 3-4 years, I'd like the fastest processor possible.
  16. darknite38 macrumors regular

    Nov 18, 2010
    There are way too many SSD heros here, they don't realize that you cannot upgrade your processor once you get it. If you get the i5, you are stuck with it. Get the i7 now, enjoy it very much, and then when you feel like you need an ssd when it becomes more cheaper, get it. It is a very simple concept.
  17. jAguero16 macrumors member

    Aug 15, 2010
    Yep, this pretty much /thread.

    The activities that you mentioned will benefit a lot from the upgraded processor, which doesn't really justify getting a SSD at this point of time.

    I would say... SSD is a want, and your processor upgrade is probably a need (i.e. the main purpose for the machine).
  18. skiltrip macrumors 68030

    May 6, 2010
    New York
    Get the i7. But an SSD in down the road yourself, and maybe when they become a little cheaper you'll get more capacity for your money too.
  19. hcho3 macrumors 68030

    May 13, 2010
    You can add SSD later, so I would say i7.

    But, you won't see that much of difference...

    I would personally go with SSD.

    Actually, I would upgrade both.
  20. darkeartg macrumors regular

    Jan 27, 2011
    what he said^^
  21. kobyh15 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 29, 2011
    i7 now and SSD later. Probably better to wait for SSD prices to drop a little anyway.
  22. spiritshao macrumors newbie

    Jan 28, 2011

    I am using it and it works perfect!!
    I am planning to add an ssd myself later this year .
  23. kushed macrumors regular

    Mar 13, 2011
    with what you told me you do. SSD WITHOUT A FACT. you most DEF do not need the i7.. hell you could use the core 2 duo with what you do and the ssd would blow away with speed still. do no think about the i7. GO SOLID MATEE!
  24. kushed macrumors regular

    Mar 13, 2011
    100% pointless post lmfao it was funny though
  25. akhbhaat macrumors regular

    Sep 30, 2010
    Buy the SSD. Absolutely no doubt about it. Or do neither and save that money for the next complete machine that will be faster than this one across the board in the not-so-distant future.

    "Future proofing" never works. I learned that lesson the hard way when I bought a bleeding edge first generation DDR motherboard (about ten years ago) on the assumption that I could just drop a new processor into it a few years later and stay near the cutting edge with minimal cost and effort. What actually happened? Well, we do know (obviously) that the industry at large did in fact adopt the DDR standard going forward. The problem was that by the time I actually needed/wanted that upgrade, the processors and RAM available were already considerably more advanced than what my motherboard could effectively support. I ended up scrapping the entire system core and starting from scratch once again.

    The difference between the i5 and the i7 will seem rather marginal relative to the equipment that will be available to us three years from now (actually, to me it already does, given the price spread). Ask yourself: does it really matter today whether you have, say, a 2.4 Ghz or 2.8 Ghz Core 2 Duo? Of course not. The base i5 in the 13" MBP will blow them both out of the water, to say nothing of the quad core parts in the 15" and 17" machines. Continuous improvements in processor architecture ensure that this cycle is likely to repeat many times henceforth.

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