Macbook C2D 64GB or 128GB SSD Worth investment?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by 20somethingmac, Feb 13, 2012.

  1. 20somethingmac, Feb 13, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012

    20somethingmac macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2010
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    California, CA
    #1
    Hello All,

    I would like advice from the community to see if buying a used 64GB or 128GB SSD, 2GB, 1.6 C2D either 2009 or 2010 macbook air model for $500 or $550 is worth the purchase?

    What do you think? The apple site is still selling this model for $699.

    Thanks!

    [edit]

    I'll mostly be using it for documents, illustrator cs5, and some matlab.
     
  2. DaLurker macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2006
    #2
    If you're storing mostly documents, the 64GB or 128GB will be fine. I highly recommend you get the newest form factor though (2010) as the SSD upgrade provides a noticeable performance increase from the 2009 model with the platter drive.

    For $500 to $550 you'll most like end up with a 64GB model.
     
  3. 20somethingmac thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #3
    I heard there are certain limitations with how many times you can write to the SSD?
     
  4. baller1308 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    #4
    It's true, but depends.

    "Each sector of a flash-based SSD can be written to only a limited number of times (typically 1-5 million) before it fails. Software controllers manage this limitation in such a way that it is believed that drives in normal use can last for many decades. SSDs based on DRAM do not have a limited number of writes."
     
  5. 20somethingmac thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5
    Great! I was thinking a much lower number than that. I'm glad I was proven wrong on the write issue.

    I responded to a guy selling a macbook air i5 125gb ssd mid 2011 for $600 and it has slight water damage. He says the only issue is the right usb is not working and the sensor/sticker was activated because of it. He took it into the apple store and want $500 to repair since the sensor was activated. The apple store genius saw no water damage at all, but just the sensor being activated.
     
  6. GekkePrutser, Feb 14, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2012

    GekkePrutser macrumors 6502a

    GekkePrutser

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    Ireland
    #6

    1-5 million is greatly overestimated for the type of NAND flash that is in the MacBook Airs. 5000 would be more like it (or even less for 22nm flash, not sure if it's 35 or 22 in these SSDs). Those figures were for server-style drives with SLC flash which on their own cost several times what a MacBook Air would cost. And I believe that's totally misquoted on wikipedia. Here's a quote from AnandTech's Kingston V+100 review which is basically the same as one of the possible SSD's (the Toshiba) that are used in the 2010/2011 air:

    Keep in mind that at the 3xnm node you no longer have 10,000 cycles, but closer to 5,000 before your NAND dies. On nearly all drives we've tested this isn't an issue, but I would be concerned about the V+100. Concerned enough to recommend running it with 20% free space at all times (at least). The more free space you have, the better job the controller can do wear leveling.

    However because this write count happens for each block, there is a wear-levelling algorithm at work that constantly moves everything around so you don't wear out the same flash cell by constantly writing to the same file. It shuffles everything around to make sure each cell gets roughly the same amount of writes. So essentially you can write the capacity of the drive several thousand times (the exact factor depends on the write amplification as well, basically how efficient the algorithm is and how much overhead it incurs). As AnandTech says above: the Toshiba drive actually is known for sacrificing some write cycles to increase performance, I'm not sure about the Samsung drive which is also present in a portion of the Airs. So it could be less there.

    So while it's not in the range of millions, under normal use it will still last a very long time. Most likely longer than the economical lifetime of the laptop, considering the 2010's are already getting old and the 2GB will probably exclude them from running the next version of Mac OS X.

    By the way, I just saw this post: Beware of water damage. Even if there is no visual damage there could be more damage caused by corrosion in the future, causing more problems. That's the reason that companies are so eager to void warranty after water damage.
     
  7. BENJMNS macrumors 6502

    BENJMNS

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    Dec 28, 2005
    #7
    i just bought a brand new 2010 11" ultimate for $850. i sold my 13" 2010 ultimate for it.

    no regrets. like it even more. don't even want more iX juice. will skip that gen.
     
  8. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #8
    I'm not sure that I would trust such an item. It could still fail later. The store geniuses are really hit and miss in terms of knowledge, and none of them can really guarantee that nothing is wrong with it. Also they don't typically disassemble laptops to check these things out at the genius counter. For any kind of a thorough check you would be sending it in.
     
  9. 20somethingmac thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #9
    Well I met with the guy and got the whole story. The reason why he was selling it so cheap is because he needed money fast by the afternoon. His roof started to finally cause issues that could no longer be ignored. (there was a roof contractor when I showed up to his house).

    When it came to the laptop he was right, it was rarely used and was in pristine condition.

    I wonder if I should get the applecare for it now? I mean even with the slight water damage to it.

    I wanted to say thanks to everyone for helping out. In addition, why did Apple remove 'remote install' from the Lion OSX
     
  10. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #10
    Applecare won't do much for it if it's considered water damaged. I feel sorry for the guy regarding his roof, and I would guess that relates to the macbook air water damage. Homeowner's insurance isn't exactly helpful on water damage either unless it's severe. Poor guy :(
     
  11. 20somethingmac thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #11
    I thought I would update about the macbook air. I mean the macbook air I bought from guy is still kicking, but like he said just needed to replace the battery.
     

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