Just bought a late 2011 17 - need suggestions

Evan W

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 26, 2012
2
0
As the title says, I just bought a new (unopened) late 2011 base 17" macbook pro on ebay to replace my early 2008 15".

I am in need of a new laptop and was debating between the 2011 and the retina. In the end I chose the 17" because I want a bump up in screen space and I'm a young guy so an extra pound or two is negligible for my foreseeable future. I checked out the retina at the apple store and though everyone else seems to notice the difference in pixel density, it didn't seem to have a large impact on my experience. I'm also ideologically opposed to non-user upgradable hardware, which helped to influence my decision to stick with the non retina MBP.

I'm going to spend a few hundred upgrading RAM and storage to improve performance, but I wanted to seek advice here. My plan was to buy 8 gigs (2 x 4 GB) of Samsung RAM (1333 mhz @ 1.5 V) and a 256 GB Samsung 830 SSD from macsales to replace the stock HDD. Does this seem like a solid plan or do you have other advice? I don't use the optical drive too often, but I was going to leave it instead of replacing it because I just don't need more than 256 GB of storage.

My laptop use is split between casual use of web browsing/media and more intensive use in photo editing and gaming on Steam.

Thanks in advance for any advice!

----------

I just wanted to seek advice on one more issue.

I have yet to use Lion or ML but I am also ideologically opposed to closed software and default/forced integration between the OS and facebook/twitter/private companies. My new 17 shipped with lion, but I can easily clone SL onto the SSD from my 2008 MBP instead of cloning lion onto it.

Is there any reason to run lion or ML if no software that I use requires OS X 10.7?
 

Orlandoech

macrumors 68040
Jun 2, 2011
3,339
788
Salt Lake City, UT
The 2011 15" and 17" models can run 1600MHz RAM. I recommend 1600MHz 8GB single dimm so you can upgrade to 16GB in the future.

Here is a list of ram.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100007609 600213066 600000410&IsNodeId=1&name=DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)

The Samsung 830 is a great drive, so is the OCZ Vertex 4, Corsair and Crucial M4.

I would buy from Amazon.com to save some $ though.

Here is a speed test I did recently with a Samsung 830 and Vertex 4 on a 2012 13" MBP.
 

Attachments

Evan W

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 26, 2012
2
0
Thanks for the quick response and suggestions! I will likely stick to the Samsung 830 because I worry about reliability on the other drives and don't mind it being slightly slower, but I will definitely buy it from newegg where it is over 75 dollars cheaper! Newegg 830 - this will work fine in the MBP, right?

As for the RAM, is 1600 MHz just faster and does it produce more heat? I can afford to buy 16 GB (2 x 8GB) now, I just didn't know if that would influence performance a noticeable amount during most of the tasks that I am doing. The 8 GB RAM available also has a different CAS latency/timing compared to the Samsung RAM from OWC. Is this something to worry about?
 
Last edited:

Orlandoech

macrumors 68040
Jun 2, 2011
3,339
788
Salt Lake City, UT
Thanks for the quick response and suggestions! I will likely stick to the Samsung 830 because I worry about reliability on the other drives and don't mind it being slightly slower, but I will definitely buy it from newegg where it is over 75 dollars cheaper! Newegg 830 - this will work fine in the MBP, right?

As for the RAM, is 1600 MHz just faster and does it produce more heat? I can afford to buy 16 GB (2 x 8GB) now, I just didn't know if that would influence performance a noticeable amount during most of the tasks that I am doing. The 8 GB RAM available also has a different CAS latency/timing compared to the Samsung RAM from OWC. Is this something to worry about?
The lower the timings and CL the better for performance obviously, but going from CL 9 to 10 isn't going to be noticeable by any means

I highly recommend 1600MHz ram, just for more future longevity. While newegg.com is good, I recommend Amazon.com as their return policy is MUCH MUCH better than Newegg's. (http://www.amazon.com/SAMSUNG-2-5-Inch-Internal-MZ-7PC256B-WW/dp/B0077CR66A/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1346010145&sr=1-1&keywords=samsung+830)

Here is some 16GB kits I recommend. The Kingston has the lowest CL (9) the others have CL of 10 which is still good.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Productcompare.aspx?Submit=ENE&N=100007609 600213067 600000410&IsNodeId=1&bop=And&CompareItemList=381|20-233-265^20-233-265-TS,20-104-317^20-104-317-TS,20-231-582^20-231-582-TS

I actually used the Kingston HyperX kit in my 2011 15" when I had it, awesome memory but $40-$50 more expensive than the other two for a small CL difference. Not worth it imo for $50 more.