Health checkup/should I upgrade now?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by maclaw21, Jul 28, 2015.

  1. maclaw21 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    #1
    Searching through the forum I have seen a number of people say that they're holding out for Skylake, which hopefully will be introduced in a MBP upgrade later this year. I am one of those people currently holding out on upgrading my late 2008 Macbook (aluminum).

    But I'm starting to wonder if I can continue to hold out. My Macbook is over 6 years old (bought in May 2009), and slowly starting to show signs of end of life even though I replaced both the hard drive and RAM within the last year or so.

    So my question is this. Is there some sort of health checkup (or diagnostic) I can perform to tell how healthy my computer is? I don't want to wait until the computer doesn't work before having to upgrade. On the other hand, I don't want to upgrade too early (i.e. before Skylake) if I don't have to.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Rhinoevans macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2012
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    #2
    As long as it meets your needs, I would continue to use it until it dies. I bought a 2012 CMBP 15 thinking my i7 Sony was going to die, and that was 2.5 years ago. Sony still hanging in their. Sold the CMBP because I never used it. I now have a cMBP 13 and love it. Sure I want a new Skylake, but no matter how nice it is, my current MBP serves all my needs (not a gamer). And i'll probably upgrade when this on dies. Who knows, I might just own the last upgradable MBP!
     
  3. BrettApple macrumors 65816

    BrettApple

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Heart of the midwest
    #3
    You can run AHT if you want. But what exactly is making you think it's on it's way out?

    I've got a Late 2008 MacBook (purchased Oct 2008) that's running OS X Yosemite and El Capitan like a champ. But I installed an SSD in it back in 2011 and that gave it a huge speed boost. They are getting pretty cheap too, Best Buy has 128GB SanDisk ones for $49.99. And 256GB models run around $80-95. That is by far the best thing you can do for your Mac, old or new.

    I've also got a 2007 iMac I'm sitting in front of running Photoshop, Logic Pro X, Mainstage, and more with zero issues and it's 8 years old :)

    I refreshed both the iMac and MacBook in late 2013. Both got RAM upgrades (4GB for the iMac, 8GB for the MacBook) and both got newer SSDs. I also put a new Newer Tech battery in the MacBook since the original started to bulge. I then completely disassembled the MacBook, replaced the thermal paste with fresh AS5, cleaned the fan, tightened the hinge screws and throughly cleaned it. It was pretty much good as new. It's now living it's second life as the main computer for my brothers family of 7.

    If it can still meet your needs (the Core 2 Duo isn't that bad) then I'd just hang on to it for a while longer. I upgraded to a Late 2013 13" rMBP in July of last year but I found that it wasn't entirely necessary other than I like shiny new things.
     
  4. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #4
    OP, I have a 2003 17" PowerBook G4, a 2001 PowerMac G4 Quicksilver and a 2006 17" MBP (32-bit). My wife has a 12" PowerBook G4, my daughter has a 14" iBook G4 and my son has a 1Ghz Titanium DVI.

    None of our Macs show any signs of dying on us.

    Are all late Intel Mac owners this concerned about the sudden death of 1.5 to 7 year old Macs? If so it makes me wonder about Apple's product since 2006.
     
  5. MushroomMan macrumors member

    MushroomMan

    Joined:
    May 31, 2015
    Location:
    Australia
    #5
    I would try to:

    1. Remove unnecessary stuff from your HD
    2. Reformat the HD with a fresh OS (this could also include a ~240GB HD)
    3. Keep using it until you have major problems - how is your battery life for example?

    I would be surprised if a new MBP line up is not announced before the end of the year, but you never really know. I think that when the next (post rMBP) design comes out would be the time to upgrade.

    FWIW, I still have an early 2008 15" (pre-unibody) which had been working day and night for the last 7 years and has only just given up. The touchpad/button had been a bit dodgy for a while, but then the battery went and something to do with the 2nd RAM slot only allowing me to run with 2GB of RAM, and something else to do with the video card so I can no longer use an external monitor. This is unfortunate as it was connected to an external monitor. Anyway, my temporary upgrade solution was a 2011 15" - I was actually hoping to skip two generations of MBPs!
     
  6. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #6
    I would be surprised if one is announced this year myself and I think you are looking at early next year for rMBP with skylake.
     
  7. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #7
    Since you just replaced those items, what signs are you seeing that seem to indicate that the laptop is starting to fail?

    Apple Hardware Test, on boot up or bring it into an apple store for diagnostics (though they may charge you).
     
  8. maclaw21 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    #8
    Thanks to all for your thoughts. It seems like the prevailing wisdom is to stick with my current MB. I should mention that my battery life is poor, and I have a "service battery" alert. But I can live with that, I suppose. I do need a reliable computer for work, so I don' want to wait until it's too late to upgrade. But based on the feedback I'm getting it sounds like I should just stay the course--for now, anyway.
     
  9. Samuelsan2001, Jul 29, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2015

    Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #9
    Actually that wouldn't be my advice for you at all,

    If you need a new one for work buy it now, you may be waiting until Q1 next year for a skylake machine that'll give you an extra hour of battery and 10% performance increase (average accross the board, as compared to the current offerings) .

    In those 6-8 months you want to wait, the increase in productivity, usability and general all round less wasting of time, you would get with a new machine will be worth enough to you to buy another machine at the end of it if you so desire, the increase in performance is that much.
    Also if you buy one now it will perform just as well as a skylake one you will wait for, for most tasks for the next 3-4 years. In other words if you are using it for work and it is not up to scratch a new one now is worth far more to you than a theoretical (and probably un-noticable) spec increase with skylake in 6 months time.

    Lastly if your battery is warning you watch out for swelling it may well swell and/or burst destroying your current laptop.
     
  10. maclaw21 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    #10
    This is the message I
    This is the description of the error message I'm currently getting with my battery:

    • Service Battery: The battery isn’t functioning normally, and you may or may not notice a change in its behavior or the amount of charge it holds. Take your computer in for service. You can continue to use your battery before it’s checked without harming your computer.

    I am noticing a significant drop in the amount of charge it holds, but it generally doesn't affect me, as I'm almost always plugged into an outlet.
     
  11. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #11
    It's not a certainty it is just a warning from me about old batteries swelling and causing severe damage, Put battery swelling into macrumours and read all the threads of the damage it can cause. It is certainly something to keep an eye on.
     
  12. maclaw21 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2009
    #12
    Got it. Thanks.
     
  13. scaredpoet macrumors 604

    scaredpoet

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #13
    I'm going to agree somewhat with Samuelsan2001: The performance gains from Skylake aren't going to be revolutionary. Incrementally better yes, but not something that will obsolete the previous 2 generations overnight.

    The biggest difference you MIGHT see is the inclusion of USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports, and likely cosmetic changes (thinner?). Whether "legacy" ports - the current USB and Thunderbolt ports, possibly even MagSafe - will remain on the next gen MBP is an open question.

    So you'll need to ask yourself: how much do you use your current ports? Do you see yourself using USB-C right away? If you use your existing ports a lot, are you willing to pay extra for adapters?

    So these are things you'll need to weigh as well. It MIGHT make better sense to get the current gen models, if you're trying to hold off on expensing a lot in new cables and peripherals right away.



    While the rah-rah about these PowerPC relics puttering on is admirable, the longevity of these devices are very much outlier cases. I have a few iBook G4s laying around that work fine too. I could still use them if I wanted to. Do I want to make the sacrifices required use them? That's a different story.

    That said, I also have a greater number of older Intel Macs (3 2007 MacBook C2Ds, 2 2007 C2D MBPs, one 2008 Mac mini and a 2009 mac mini) that are working great too. Those are more tolerable to use, and the MBPs and '09 mini can even run Yosemite and El Capitan. But I recognize that they too, are outlier cases. Computers of all kinds, regardless of what logo is on the cover, what processor is inside, and no matter how well built, rarely last that long among average users. Though if babied and cared for, the Intel macs will last a long time, and warrant no case for better or worse longevity between mac generations based on CPU architecture.
     
  14. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #14
    My comment was not about PowerPC versus Intel although I used examples of PowerPC Macs simply because those are the kind of Macs I own.

    My comment was about longetivity. A lot of the threads I see in this particular subforum seem (to me) overly concerned about whether a year or two year old Mac is going to fail and God forbid you own anything older than three years because you're ancient then.

    If Apple has the modern user so concerned about the life of their Macs that are less than two years old it makes me wonder what it is that Apple is no longer getting right.
     
  15. scaredpoet macrumors 604

    scaredpoet

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #15
    We can argue this till our old laptops die, but I doubt highly the blame rests on Apple as much as it's merely users worried about having the latest and greatest, something which has been an anxiety for computer buyers for as long as Moore's Law has been in evidence. And frankly, whether or not that's a "wrong" way to think is purely a matter of opinion. If a user wants to upgrade every six months and has the means to do it, that's their decision to make. Same is true if an individual wants to hang onto a decade-old system. Whatever works.
     
  16. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #16
    I totally agree with that. But it's not what I was arguing.

    I'm speaking to those worried that a Mac will fail past a certain amount of years. What's happened recently that gives people cause to believe their Mac could fail if it's less than 'X' years old.
     
  17. scaredpoet macrumors 604

    scaredpoet

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2007
    #17
    I think you're trying to find something that's not there, or at least not moreso than in previous generations. People are always going to be concerned about the health of their Macs.
     
  18. eyoungren macrumors P6

    eyoungren

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2011
    Location:
    Phoenix • 85037
    #18
    Perhaps. I've only been on MacRumors since 2011 and it's the only Mac forum (other than Apple's forums) I've ever joined. During the entire PowerPC era I was nowhere near an Apple forum so you may be right.
     

Share This Page