Help choosing hard drive for MacBook Pro mid 2009

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by martinirams, Nov 2, 2012.

  1. martinirams macrumors newbie

    Dec 29, 2011
    Hi people.
    I know there is properly a billion threads already like this but i really need a qualifyed opinion.

    I have a 15" macBook Pro from mid 2009. (model A1286)
    I want to upgrade the RAM (from 4gb to 8gb) and the hard drive (currently it has a 320gb)

    The RAM is straight forward, but i'm struggling to find the right HDD:confused:.
    SSD is not really a part of my considerations since it's too expensive. And i'm horrible at managing space.

    I have looked at the WD Blue WD10JPVT 1 TB. And at the Seagate Momentus XT 750 GB.

    Originally I was looking for a 5400rpm drive since i really don't want any more noise than I have now. (it's nice and quiet currently :) ).

    So what should I look for in a hard drive? Anything would be an upgrade since my current drive is almost full and very slow (27 MB/s write, 25 MB/s read).

    So do you have any good recommendations. On specific drives or what to look for.

    Anything is much appreciated.
    - Martin
  2. itegypt macrumors 6502a


    Aug 6, 2011
  3. davidlv macrumors 65816

    Apr 5, 2009
    Kyoto, Japan
    I had a 2009 MBP, and so I know that model has had issues with the firmware version 1.7, making the choice of HD a little sensitive. I had problems with a WD Blue 500GB drive, constant beachballs. I had good results with a Seagate 500GB and even better luck with a Hitachi 500GB. For that model I would suggest trying the Hitachi 750GB 7,200rpm drive.Costs about $140 at OWC|0&N=0&Ntt=Hitachi+travelstar+7200rpm+SATA
    and you may be able to find it cheaper if you look around.:cool:
  4. T5BRICK macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2006
    My mid 2009 13" MBP shipped with a Seagate 5400RPM HDD, I've run a 256GB Samsung 830 and a 256GB Crucial M4 without any issues. I've never tried a WD though.

    I've got the most recent boot rom, version 1.7, and it works fine. I've even had 3.0Gb/s link speed and good performance on both SSDs.
  5. martinirams thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 29, 2011
    Thanks for the replys.
    I wasn't looking for an SSD do to the price and the space constraints. :)

    I have read somewhere that a 7200rpm drive is noisier and less reliable than a 5400rpm. Is that the case still.

    So David, should any hitachi be good(or better than a WD)? I live in Denmark I we might not have that exact drive model.

    Again thanks for the help.
  6. davidlv macrumors 65816

    Apr 5, 2009
    Kyoto, Japan
    In general, modern drives are much better than they used to be, quiet and reliable regardless of the speed. I didn't notice any sound at all with either the Seagate or the Hitachi 500GB. As for better than a WD, in this case the SATA controller on the 2009 model and the economy "Blue" WD series were not working well together, something to do with the power saving features of that drive. The "Black" WD drives have a good reputation too, but I suspect they are a little louder than the HGST drives, being optimized for speed. In my case, the result with the blue WD was constant lags and spinning beachballs. I suspect any of the bigger HSGT or Seagate drives (HSGT used to be called Hitachi) would suit your needs, and yes the 7,200 rpm drives do feel a little faster than the 5,400 drives, but that is a small difference. Modern 1TB drives are not bad, even at 5,400 rpm. If you can't find an HSGT locally, OWC (see link above) will ship internationally, you will have to do the currency calculations to see if that is viable for you.
    I just updated my refurbished 2011 MBP with an Intel 335 SSD 240GB (new series just out) for about $212 and the speed difference is quite obvious compared with the standard 5,400 rpm drive :cool:. But as you say, they are expensive.
  7. martinirams thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 29, 2011
    Okay, thanks for the info. Super helpful!

    One more question. I did consider the Seagate Momentus XT (750gb).
    Would I be able to feel the speed difference of the hybrid drive on my relatively old macBook pro? I mean it is not that much more expensive but if there is no difference in speed on general tasks, I would rather save my money and get more space.

    So many choices :)
    - Martin
  8. MH01 Suspended


    Feb 11, 2008
    Id avoid the momentus.

    If you want to go non ssd, i would recommend getting a few opinios from people here and then review the models in question, as in google them. Once your happy with that google the drive your thinking and include with the search your macbook. In the past i have been set on getting a particular upgrade to then learn it did not play nice with my macbook, research saved me alot of wasted time.

    In regards to HDs, i tend to avoid seagate, WD are good though it all varies on the model in question.


    P.s. if you do not use your superdrive, ditch that and get a caddy for a 1tb HD and put cheap ssd for your os drive. Best of both worlds, the non retina mbps are awesome in regards to running 2 drives
  9. CASLondon macrumors 6502a

    Apr 18, 2011
    I hear you saying no SSD, but you can set up a dual drive that allows you both benefits. I just did it, and its one of the best upgrades you can do to that machine to keep it humming. The Samsung 830s are dropping in price to make them pretty compelling, if you have the case open anyway I'd say go for it.
  10. martinirams thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 29, 2011
    Yeah. But i want to keep my optical drive.
    But that was what I was thinking when i found the Seagate Momentus XT.
    It's still gives me a lot of storage but with better speeds than a regular hard drive, if my mac can take advantage of it.
    But i'm not sure if it's a good option.

    - Martin
  11. stickyfingers85 macrumors regular

    Aug 31, 2010
    I have the exact same laptop as you.

    Ip upgraded to the momentus XT750 and good god the speed increase was incredible.

    Obviously i can see people don't like it but mine has been running with the new HDD for about 10 months and no problems so far, and the boot speed for me was a 200% increase
  12. martinirams thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 29, 2011
    How is the noise with that drive, like the old one? Or? And what about battery have you noticed anything?
    Thanks for sharing ;)

    - Martin
  13. CASLondon macrumors 6502a

    Apr 18, 2011
    Sure. I can just report that sticking my optical in a thin external case has been painless, and I'm using the two drive combination far more than the disk drive. When I have used it, it works fine as a USB drive (though I might just buy an external blue ray anyway).

    The SSD as a boot drive is quiet and fassssst.
  14. martinirams thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 29, 2011
    Also quite expensive if i need to get both a SSD and a new harddrive.
  15. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    Did you even bother reading the first post? The OP specifically said he/she does not want an SSD.

    OP, use whatever hard drive you want from a reputable vendor and brand and you'll be good to go. It all depends on your budget, really. A platter hard drive is a platter hard drive.

    The momentus XT is slightly faster than most as it is a hybrid drive, a bit of SSD space and the rest is a regular hard drive. It decides by itself what goes where and it's been known to speed up systems quite a bit, though not as much as a true SSD does.
  16. T5BRICK macrumors G3


    Aug 3, 2006
    Frys has a Hitachi 1TB 7200RPM 2.5" drive on sale today for $89. From the specs I can find, it's a 9.5mm drive.
  17. CASLondon macrumors 6502a

    Apr 18, 2011
    You can do a boot SSD at 128 gigs for the same price as a HD (93 bucks), then move your old one over to the Optical slot, and if you want more capacity then change that one down the road.

    I'm not saying you have to, just that if you are complaining about slow access you can really change things by doing this. Spend a bit more and get a 256, same effect but even better
  18. pletsch macrumors newbie

    Nov 7, 2012
    need help deciding on a new hard drive


    these are the specs of my computer. I am going to be upgrading my RAM to 4gb, but need help deciding what Hard drive to upgrade to.

    Hardware Overview:

    Model Name: MacBook
    Model Identifier: MacBook5,2
    Processor Name: Intel Core 2 Duo
    Processor Speed: 2.13 GHz
    Number Of Processors: 1
    Total Number Of Cores: 2
    L2 Cache: 3 MB
    Memory: 2 GB
    Bus Speed: 1.07 GHz
    Boot ROM Version: MB52.0088.B06
    SMC Version (system): 1.38f5
    Serial Number (system): W8925EX59GU
    Hardware UUID: 4ADEE7CE-40A0-5307-B9F5-8DE8AA946F86
    Sudden Motion Sensor:
    State: Enabled

    I've done research and know that I need 2.5" hard drive SATA. What I am confused about is whether my computer will be compatible with a hard drive that has 6gb/s or needs to have 3gb/s to properly utilize the speed. I am looking for a hard drive that is 500gb.

    This is the one I've had my eye on, just want to make sure the motherboard is capable of utilizing the 6gb/s or if I should downgrade to a 3gb/s hard drive.

    I appreciate any help i can get. If you have other HDs in mind that would be better, just post the link.

    Side note, will new hard drives come with data transfer or could I just plug in my external hard drive that has my back ups on it?

    Thank you
  19. robvas macrumors 68030

    Mar 29, 2009
    3Gb/s or 6Gb/s doesn't matter - a platter hard drive is only going to be pushing 130MB/s at it's peak. That's only 1.3Gb/s

    That 500GB Seagate XT is a few generations old as far as the platter drive is concerned, and the hybrid portion is buggy. I'd skip it. You can get a 512GB SSD for $299 these days on sale, or just get a regular 1TB/750GB HD
  20. NewishMacGuy macrumors 6502a


    Aug 2, 2007
    Well, I put the Momentus XT 2 (which is 750GB) into my wife's 2011 cMBP-13 and it positively flies, she gets 12-15 second boots. Plus the bugs got worked out with efi updates. Can't be beat if you want a simple install and need lots of space. $150 from Best Buy and $130 from Amazon.
  21. martinirams thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 29, 2011
    Hi. Just wanted to give an update.

    I went with the XT 750gb. I also maxed out my ram to 8gb.
    And everything is nice and fast. The computer boots in 40 sec, compared to around 3 minutes before.

    The XT 750 makes a little more noise that my stock (5400 rpm) drive. But it's not bad at all. If your room is not completely silent you wont event notice.

    Thanks for all the advice guys!

Share This Page