Hard drive is toast - replace or is it time for a new laptop?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by MacGeekAZ, Feb 25, 2013.

  1. MacGeekAZ macrumors member

    Mar 5, 2011
    My early 2008 MBP's hard drive bit the dust. It will cost $300 to replace it. If you were me, would you replace the hard drive or go ahead and get a newer laptop? I'd probably go for a refurbished one from Apple for about $1000.
  2. chrise2 macrumors 6502

    Sep 17, 2012
    You could also replace the hard drive yourself for less. Especially if you don't want a solid state drive.
  3. Muscle Master macrumors 6502a

    Muscle Master

    Oct 15, 2010
    08 huh.. I would buy like a 120GB SSD for it and sell it

    and pick up a 13 inch Retina if I were you
  4. xShane macrumors 6502a


    Nov 2, 2012
    United States
    Where does a HDD replacement cost $300? You can always manually replace it yourself for much cheaper.

    Also, if your budget is around $1,000, what are you intended uses/needs? We would be able to much better help you if we had this information.
  5. idunn macrumors 6502

    Jan 12, 2008
    Likely no

    Unless happy with the present performance of that 2008 (when working) and wishing no more, then no, it is time for a new laptop.

    Unless having someone else install it, a new hard drive should generally cost well less of $300. A 256GB SSD might be had in the range of $200.

    And, if refurbished, watch what you buy with that $1,000. Apple will presently well you a MacBook Pro 2.4GHz, i5, for $929. Which may seem more the deal than $1,019 for another at 2.5GHz, i5. But it is not the small difference in processor speed, but that for slightly over one thousand one receives the Intel HD Graphics 4000, versus the 3,000. Therein lies a big difference, and a good reason not to consider anything less. You could currently even spend more money, at $1,149, for 2.8GHz with i7—and still no good deal, as still with the Intel HD Graphics 3,000. If in doubt about the performance differences of these respective GPUs, do a little research on this forum.

    BTW, that MacBook Pro for $1,019 is a relatively good value, and all the more capable if later outfitted with a SSD and more RAM. Only it is not a retina, and if you care about that then a refurbished retina—when offered and available—can come in at roughly the same price as a cMBP outfitted with a SSD.
  6. robvas macrumors 68030

    Mar 29, 2009
    You can find a used 250GB HD for $25 or so on the used market.
  7. dblissmn macrumors 6502

    Apr 30, 2002
    Find the ifixit guide for your computer and see if you can do the replacement yourself. That will very quickly lower the cost of your problem. Now we're talking about $15 worth of tools and a good 1TB hard drive for less than $100 or a very good 256GB SSD for $200.

    Otherwise, determine what you need to do. I have a Sandy Bridge (2011) Macbook Pro quad-core, and an early 2008 model which I keep for backup. The early 2008 is great for presentations, internet, emailing and all but the toughest statistical software tasks, but the 2011 is a necessity for really complex statistical stuff and pretty much anything to do with RAW files in photography. The current models are only slightly faster than the 2011, but the 2011 is dramatically (as in two to three times) faster than the 2008 with RAW photography files (Aperture uses all four real cores and all four virtual ones with hyperthreading and does so with amazing efficiency) and a solid 50 percent faster on the stats (non multi-core but benefits from Turbo Boost in the newer processers). With iWork and Office, however, there's not much difference and iWork in particular seems to hammer the graphics chip as badly on the 2011 as it does on the 2008 while not showing much in return for it.


    Good advice in general to not consider anything with less than HD4000 graphics. Also remember that if you're all about RAW photography or other really demanding tasks, most of the benefit in something like a Macbook Air accrues from the SSD, not the processor. If it's processing power you need, there are very big differences among current computers from the basic Air, even with HD4000, to the top quad-core models, which put those extra two cores to very good use with something like Aperture for example.

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