I'm lost w/MacBook pro

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Applecraze, May 18, 2011.

  1. Applecraze macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 11, 2011
    #1
    Got a new MacBook pro with the below specs. I keep reading about ssd's, rams etc and I don't have a clue. I wanna upgrade so can someone tell me what I would simply need to upgrade. Thx

    Intel® Core i5
    4GB DDR3-1333 SDRAM
    320GB 5,400RPM Hard Drive
    13.3" LED-backlit Glossy Widescreen Display
    8x SuperDrive
    Intel HD Graphics 3000
    10/100/1000 Network
    802.11n Wireless
    Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
    Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard
    Silver
     
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2006
    Location:
    The Ivory Tower (I'm not coming down)
    #2
    Why do you want to upgrade? What causes you to want to upgrade? It makes no sense to upgrade something when an upgrade won't make any difference.
     
  3. getz76 macrumors 6502a

    getz76

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2009
    Location:
    Hell, AL
    #3
    If you don't know what you need, you likely don't need it.
     
  4. MacDawg macrumors Core

    MacDawg

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    "Between the Hedges"
    #4
    What do you want to upgrade?
    RAM or HD? or both?
     
  5. ormie macrumors regular

    ormie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    #6
    Well, you could buy more ram and fit that along with a larger hdd as you run out of space eventually,
    I upgraded to a 1Tb drive. If you want to splash money you could get a SSD drive instead of a normal platter hdd but you will have less space than before.
    If you have plenty of space on you hdd and you have 4Gb if RAM you really don't need to spend anything on the MacBook just now as it a good spec machine, spend the money on a large capacity external hdd instead and use it to make weekly, daily and hourly back ups via time machine. Get yourself a decent mouse, such as the Magic Mouse and maybe invest in some nice software too. Remember, Lion will be out soon!


    Cheers, Macjim.
     
  6. Applecraze thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 11, 2011
    #7
    I would like to upgrade Ram and HD
     
  7. Applecraze thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 11, 2011
    #8
    Yes I would def love an external drive for backups. Is there any you specifically recommend?
     
  8. dslrjunky, May 18, 2011
    Last edited: May 18, 2011

    dslrjunky macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2011
    #9
    without knowing what you'll use the machine for, I'm pretty sure you don't need it yet.. but the simple short/standard answer is :

    1. HD > SSD or bigger capacity drive
    2. Optibay drive (for the more adventurous bunch)
    3. RAM

    other than that i don't know what else you'll be able to "upgrade"
     
  9. MacDawg macrumors Core

    MacDawg

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2004
    Location:
    "Between the Hedges"
    #10
    Personally, I would just go to Other World Computing and find my model of MBP and check out the upgrade options for RAM and HD and buy from them.
    Easy and pretty much mistake free.
    Both are simple to replace and they even have video links on "how to".
     
  10. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #11
    Get a Synology NAS or an Apple Time Machine. I prefer the Synology myself.
     
  11. RockPortTech, May 18, 2011
    Last edited: May 18, 2011

    RockPortTech macrumors regular

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    Mar 10, 2011
    Location:
    South Texas
    #12
    +1 on this.

    But if you just want an external drive to use for Time Machine you might wish to try what I did, go grab a WD Passport Elite and use that for backups or whatever you wish to stick on it's several hundred Gb capacity. Pretty cheap at about $50-$75 depending on capacity.
     
  12. ormie macrumors regular

    ormie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    #13
    Well, go to http://www.crucial.com/uk/ and run the memory checker to see what memory you can upgrade too and get 8Gb's.
    I have a 1Tb western digital hard drive (external) but I would steer you to the G-Tech external hdd's as that us what I will buy next time around. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with WD just the G-Tech are much better built
     
  13. wineandcarbs macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 2, 2008
    #14
    I have that model as well (base model 13"). No need for me to upgrade anything right now. May maximize the RAM in the future.
     
  14. ormie macrumors regular

    ormie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    #15
    I think you meant time capsule. I wouldn't buy a time capsule as they're not very reliable plus your stuck with the hdd size built in. I would go for G-Tech hdd's as they're good solidly built machines and if you have Thunderbolt on your mac, I'd get one of the new G-Tech or Lacie thunderbolt external hdd's as that will let you daisy chain more drives as and when you need to add capacity.
     
  15. MH01 Suspended

    MH01

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2008
    #16
    SSD is the single biggest performance upgrade. Though they are expansive, especially if you want large storage. Ram is the easiest upgrade, and cheap.
     
  16. ormie macrumors regular

    ormie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    #17
    PS. Try and buy as large a external hard-drive as you can afford as you will use up smaller drives very quickly. I filled my 1Tb drive to near full capacity over two years so, I would recommend 2, 3 or 4Tb's if you can afford it. If you're carrying the MacBook around a lot then go for a portable drive (same rules above apply)


    Cheers, Macjim.
     
  17. palpatine macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #18
    Could you tell us what you are doing with your computer? That might help us to make more relevant recommendations. It doesn't seem to me that you need to upgrade anything.

    RAM
    I have the same computer as you have, but with 8GB RAM (a 4GB upgrade). RAM tends to help when you are running lots of tasks at once. It provides the memory that programs load into (as opposed to the memory where stuff is stored). You can think of it as your short-term memory (did I remember to lock the door?) as opposed to long-term memory (we didn't lock our doors when I was a kid). I usually have one or two programs in the background doing hard work (mainly Adobe Acrobat Pro), so it seemed like a good idea for my use. But, frankly, I don't know if I really needed it. I kind of doubt it will help much if you are (for example) web surfing.

    SSD
    You could upgrade and install a Solid State Drive. What that means is that instead of a hard drive with moving parts that search around (at amazing speeds) for information, you have no moving parts, and it accesses things at unbelievable speeds. You can try this out in a store with the MacBook Air. Ask the staff to shut it down and start it up for you in order to see what it looks like. This is great if you find yourself annoyed waiting for the computer to start up or programs to load. I kind of doubt it will help much if you are (for example) web surfing.

    EXTERNAL HARD DRIVE
    I recommend Western Digital (WD) or Seagate, but I don't really know of any brand that is "bad." By "TimeMachine" we mean a program in your computer that uses the external hard drive to back up your information. It keeps multiple copies of things extending back over time, so if you want to go back to a version of some file that you had a few days ago (for example), you can go find that. For most of us, that doesn't really matter. The point is that you have a backup for your data. That is always a good idea. I have 1 terabyte, but you can get something smaller for less money and be fine. I recommend getting one about 500 gigabytes so that it is larger than the drive in your computer that you are copying (you want everything to fit on there). Also, as someone else mentioned, portable ones are quite nice.
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0..._m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=12T16EZEAF27MJNR0JXP
     
  18. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #19
    If you don't know what SSDs and RAM are, maybe you should read up a bit on what they do.

    Since you also don't tell us what you actually do on the computer, we can't know what kind of upgrade you'd benefit from, if you benefit from upgrades at all. If all you do is browse the web and e-mail, you don't need to upgrade anything.
     
  19. Applecraze thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 11, 2011
    #20
    I basically browse email a little of microsoft office iTunes pictures etc. Nothing heavy
     
  20. Applecraze thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 11, 2011
    #21
    I should also mention I am coming from a windows and I also need to transfer some files pictures music etc into the mac.
     
  21. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #22
    Okay, if that's all you do, don't bother upgrading anything except the hard drive if you need more space, as you will not notice an improvement on performance since the tasks you do require very little computing power to begin with.

    With that settled, transfering stuff from your old PC to your macbook pro can be done many ways.

    1. You could get them both on the same home network using your router and ethernet cables to transfer files over.

    2. You could buy an external hard drive, plug it into the PC, transfer your stuff, then plug it into the mac and transfer your stuff again. The advantage to this is that the external hard drive can then be used to backup your mac, in case something goes wrong further down the road.
     
  22. palpatine macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #23
    If you find yourself with lots of beachballs (these appear when the system is working hard to process something), then you can always add RAM or the SSD later. RAM is the cheapest, but it doesn't seem like you would benefit as much from it as from SSD. However, unless you have a lot of money to burn, it doesn't sound like you need to upgrade with either. The MacBook Pro is pretty powerful. Given what you do, you may never even see a beachball :)

    Transferring files is very easy. Put them onto some kind of device (a flash drive or external HD if you buy it) and copy them to your Mac. Your Mac can read an external hard drive formatted for Windows (the labels on the box tell you which operating system it is made for), but because of format issues, cannot write anything on it. Once you have everything transfered, open up the application "TimeMachine" and it will format the disk (destroying everything on it in the process) for your backup. Then, you are all set! If go through this process, remember to buy the external hard drive that is formatted for Windows, because you need your Windows machine to be able to copy the files onto the drive for the transfer.

    Sometimes the transition from Windows to Mac can be difficult. Things are really frustrating, in fact. Double-clicking is a difficult habit to break! But, once you get used to where things are and how they work, you should be fine.

    Apple stores often provide assistance in this regard. I highly recommend you go check out the Genius Bar. A few minutes there can help you get the most out of your new computer.
    http://www.apple.com/retail/geniusbar/
     
  23. ormie macrumors regular

    ormie

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2009
    #24
  24. palpatine macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    #25
    That's a good link!
     

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