Early '11 MBP with 16GB RAM

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Standard, Jul 1, 2014.

  1. Standard macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #1
    Just wondering if anyone out there has this machine with 16GB RAM? How is the performance increase? I currently have my stock 4GB RAM and after upgrading to OS X Maverick's using this computer is unbearable. It's hard enough using Safari let alone iTunes.

    If anyone has upgraded their machine to 16GB can you please specify your use? Do you play any games? Do you do any work on this machine? Etc.

    Trying to make a decision as to upgrading my RAM or purchasing a new machine.

    Regards,

    Standard
     
  2. D.T. macrumors 604

    D.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2011
    Location:
    Vilano Beach, FL
    #2
    I’ve got an early ’11 MBP 15” (the 2.3GHz, 6750M BTO model), purchased in late 2011. Came with 8GB, I upgraded about a year later to 16GB (Crucial).

    This machine is for personal and business use, and get’s a pretty good workout everyday. It’s on 99% of the time (my last uptime check was ~34 days), and almost always has a Mail, Safari, iTunes, Messages, TextWrangler, Soulver and a few terminal windows open - plus a number of system services like DropBox, ClipMenu, Flux, GFXcardStatus, Alfred, etc.

    In addition, if I’m developing on the OSX side, I’ll be running a bunch of web servers w/ Pow/Anvil, Postgres (SQL), Sublime Text, Visual JSON, XCode.

    If I’m also working on some docs, presentation content, etc., I’ll also be running MS Word and/or PowerPoint or Keynote.

    All this typically at the same time. Often times with my iTunes providing streaming to an AppleTV or iPad. I use my machine to manage backups, photos, encode video, photo edit, develop code, manage my businesses, collaborate with colleagues, etc.

    If I’m not running the OSX dev tools, then I’ll have a Parallels VM running Win7 where I’m running IIS, Oracle and/or MS SQL, EMS SQL and Visual Studio.

    Everything generally clips right along :) I don’t really even think about managing apps, I just fire up what’s needed, when I need it.

    I currently have the OEM 7.2K 500GB HDD, but I’m getting ready to move to an SSD, probably a ~500GB Crucial M550, may or may not move the HDD to the optical bay.

    Hope that helps :cool:
     
  3. capathy21 macrumors 65816

    capathy21

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    #3
    Safari and iTunes should not be giving you problems on a 2011 Macbook pro with 4gb of ram. My guess is your hard drive is giving you some problems. If you are looking to make an upgrade to your machine, you need to invest in an SSD. It will make worlds of difference in speed and stability.

    More ram won't hurt anything, but until you replace that older hard drive with a solid state, it will hold the overall performance of the machine back. I would first upgrade your hard drive to ssd and if you still have speed issues(which I doubt you will), you can always add ram at that point.

    If you need a large hard drive but don't want to pay for a large ssd, consider picking up a smaller ssd(128gb or so) to replace your current hard drive. You can then remove your optical drive and replace it with either your original hard drive, or a replacement one(if your current one is going bad). This would give you on board storage, plus the speed of solid state to allow your system to run much faster.
     
  4. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #4
    Thanks for the information guys. With the SDD, I have been looking at bundled deals on Amazon. I can get the 16GB RAM and a 240GB Crucial SSD for 300. With the SSD do I need any new mounting brackets or will it simply just plug and play?

    Regards,

    Standard
     
  5. niteflyr macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2011
    Location:
    Southern Cal
  6. happyfrappy macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Location:
    Location eh?
    #6
    HDD brackets are for desktop PCs.
    Keep in mind when you install the RAM, burn an ISO of MemTest to a CD and run it overnight to make sure the RAM is stable.
     
  7. capathy21 macrumors 65816

    capathy21

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2014
    Location:
    Houston, Texas
    #7
    That's a great deal! yes you can put it in the existing HD spot.
     
  8. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #8
    Ok. I think I am going to order this guys. How do I go about installing OS X once the SSD is in? I want to do a fresh install.

    Also does anyone have any experience with a machine similar to this running any games?

    Thanks.

    Standard
     
  9. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2013
    #9
    Download OS X Mavericks from the App Store. Ignore any warnings it gives you about having that version of the OS installed. Let it download and when the installer auto starts, quit it.

    Get yourself an 8 GB USB flash drive. Format it with Disk Utility to OS X extended journaled, keeping its default name Untitled. Then follow the directions here to create a bootable Mavericks installer.

    What size MacBook Pro do you have - 13-, 15-, or 17-inch?
     
  10. happyfrappy macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Location:
    Location eh?
    #10
    If you play games via Steam, you can set the default install drive when you restore purchases/install. Keep in mind some games will still need to create folders in your documents folder for settings/user data such as SimCity 4 & Civilization V.
     
  11. KJmoon117 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Location:
    NC
    #11
    I have one with 16GB and an SSD, it runs beautifully... till it died of Radeongate. haha

    I do heavy web browsing, gaming, coding, and virtualization of Windows. It was awesome seeing that it almost never ran out of RAM and when it did the SSD kicked in with the page in/outs.

    Also, I don't know if you are getting symptoms of Radeongate yet and hopefully you never do. But if you do get symptoms of Radeongate and the MBP outside of Applecare, then get it reballed. I had to go through two repairs (one paid for, one paid) and the problem seems to keep coming back.
     
  12. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #12
    I have the 15" MBP 2011. Wondering how this RAM and SSD upgrade will run Blizzard games such as, Diablo 3, WoW, Hearthstone, Bioshock Infinite, etc.

    Standard
     
  13. saturnotaku macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2013
    #13
    Neither SSD nor RAM will affect gaming performance in terms of frames per second. The SSD will improve load times, especially for games such as World of Warcraft. Bear in mind that 240 GB is not a lot of space when you consider that those games can occupy 15 GB and more.
     
  14. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #14
    I understand that the video card improves graphical performance but currently since I upgraded the Mavericks I run out of RAM. The games "used" to run fine before I upgraded to Mavericks.
     
  15. GhettoMrBob macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 21, 2014
    #15
    This isn't a solution per se but may help out. Try an application called Memory Clean (free in Mac App Store). I know I know, it sounds lame...BUT it lets you set a limit on RAM usage before it'll run a memory purge (same as running sudo purge in terminal) to free up some more space.

    I run VM's for most of the work day and it helps keep Mavericks from starting to use the swap (where I normally start to see a degradation in performance).


    Edit: check out Activity Monitor and see what your RAM compression levels are at as well as you're swap used. Generally speaking if the RAM compression is within the green range you're alright.
     
  16. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #16
    Hey Bob I have been using these Memory apps for ages now, it gets too the point where there is too much pressure on my memory that I can't even optimize it and it says that I need to increase the memory on my system.
     
  17. GhettoMrBob macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 21, 2014
    #17
    Fair enough. That bundle deal doesn't sound bad at all and the SSD alone will breathe some new life into that machine. That mechanical drive is the only thing holding the CPU back and the extra RAM from that bundle will help out too.
     
  18. Standard thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
    Location:
    Canada
    #18
    Alright thanks everyone. I think I feel comfortable with this decision. Seems like the RAM and SSD will by me some time before I need to purchase a new machine.
     

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