MacBook Pro 2011 upgrading (16GB RAM, 128GB SSD)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Girasole, Jan 7, 2012.

  1. Girasole, Jan 7, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2012

    Girasole macrumors newbie

    Jul 18, 2011

    I would like to upgrade my MacBook Pro (early 2011) to get a significant performance increase by installing the following components:

    1) 16GB RAM
    -> CSX 2x 8GB = 16GB KIT DDR3 RAM 1333 Mhz PC3-10600 SO-DIMM
    2) 128GB SSD (in exchange for optical drive)
    -> SATA-Adapter-KIT for MacBook Pro
    -> Crucial CT128M4SSD2 128GB internal SSD (6,4cm (2,5 Zoll), SATA)
    3) 2TB HDD
    -> which one???

    Now I have some questions:

    1) Do these components have a significant (negative) impact on:
    -> Heat development?
    -> Power consumption?
    -> Warranty?
    2) Would you recommend alternative components?
    -> Compatability
    -> Cost-performance ratio
    3) Do I have to recken with complications at Installation of components? (Should I rather refrain from doing this excercise?)

    Thank you in advance!

  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    What do you do, that you would see a performance gain in 16gb of ram?

    Do you run a lot of demanding apps at the same time? What is your usage typically like.

    I have 8gb of ram and I'm not over extending the ram utilization when I have Lightroom, photoshop, bridge, and VMware up and running at the same time. Admittedly I'm not editing humongous files either, just 10mp and 12mp photos.
  3. Girasole thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 18, 2011
    Audio Recording and application of huge Samples Libraries...
  4. Dweez macrumors 65816


    Jun 13, 2011
    Down by the river
    I recently upgrade my early 2011 MBP to 16 gig of ram as I need to run a number of somewhat bloated VMs for demonstration purposes.

    I swapped the OEM HD for an SSD a few months ago and found my my battery life extended after installing the SSD. The performance is stellar.
  5. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Dec 21, 2011
    Which one "what"?

    The HD vs. the SSD? One of the 3 listed?
  6. Girasole thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 18, 2011
    Which 2TB HDD to buy for the MBP?
  7. ayeying macrumors 601


    Dec 5, 2007
    Yay Area, CA
    There's no 2TB internal, only external
  8. zeemeerman2 macrumors 6502

    Feb 21, 2010
    So, OP basically wants to upgrade his Mac by replacing:

    - Current RAM --> 16 GB RAM
    - Built-in HDD --> 2 TB HDD
    - Optical Drive --> 128 GB SSD (probably with OptiBay or an alternative)

    And OP wants to know, after the upgrade:

    - Does he need to worry about heat (are, for example, is the HDD+SSD combo hotter than the standard HDD+Optical Drive combo)?
    - Does it drain more battery?
    - In what way does this affect his guaranty on his MBP?

    Then, what alternative HDD/SSD/RAM do you have in mind which seems a better deal than what OP suggests?

    Lastly, will there be any issues during hardware/software installation of the new hardware? Will the Mac instantly recognise the new RAM, for example? Any required drivers needed to be downloaded? Etc...

    * OP = Original Poster.
  9. bdodds1985 macrumors 6502a


    Jul 18, 2011
    i bought 8 gb of OWC ram, and a intel 320 series 120 gb ssd, plus my apple 120gb ssd. battery life seems better somehow, no heat issues, never even updated the firmware, no problems. computer runs faster on ssd's obviously and they dont make 2tb internals. 16gb of ram is totally useless in my eyes. if you need that much ram buy a desktop. but its your money.

    my suggestion for you

    at leas 12gb of ram (because you think you need it)
    the ssd you want and take your normal hdd and put it in the optibay. or if you must get a hybrid drive at least 750gb.

    i use a seagate 1.5tb external. but i would love to upgrade to a 256gb ssd, and a 750gb hybrid 7200rpm hdd.
  10. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Dec 21, 2011
    Oh, I couldn't quite make out your cryptic nomenclature.

    Everything you have listed is a good option except the 2TB drive which has already pointed out doesn't exist. However...

    * yes, the 16gb RAM is probably overkill but really, it's getting so cheap these days and you are already opening up your MBP so I say go for it. Don't bog down on the brand - they're all the same. Base your decision on the warranty.

    * I'd use the SSD as a replacement for the internal HD. Put a 1TB in the optibay. Less conflicts this way. Again, don't worry so much about "which one" but Crucial seems to have finally gotten the bugs out of their SSD's these days. (Mine is fine with no TRIM support).
  11. Girasole thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 18, 2011
    Thank you very much for your replies so far! So basically my component proposals are ok...

    So there is no internal 2TB HDD on the market? That would explain why I could find any HDD in the internet! :cool:
    Can you maybe recommend a 1,5TB? I just need a lot of space for my Sample Libraries.
  12. trajan2448 macrumors member

    May 3, 2010
    Major bug in Crucial m4. BSOD after 5000 hours. Google it
  13. thefizzle657 macrumors regular

    Oct 21, 2011
    And Crucial is already working on a new firmware update to fix it. It doesn't seem to affect all M4s either. Besides, for someone buying an SSD today 5000 hours is quite a ways off. I'm not saying that it isn't a major bug, just that it isn't comparable to say the bugs that Sandforce-based drives seem to have.


    AFAIK no 1.5TB either, the largest they make is 1TB.

    And replacing the ODD with an HDD does technically void the warranty, but unless you break something during the process Apple would probably never know.
  14. thundersteele macrumors 68030

    Oct 19, 2011
    1) Do these components have a significant (negative) impact on:
    -> Heat development? No.
    -> Power consumption? Some impact. Not significant I would say
    -> Warranty? Yes. If you need service, you should put back the optical drive
    2) Would you recommend alternative components?
    -> Compatability I'm not familiar with CSX memory.
    -> Cost-performance ratio 16 GB RAM only worth it if you really need it right now
    3) Do I have to recken with complications at Installation of components? (Should I rather refrain from doing this excercise?) Buy screwdrivers of the right size, then it should be fine
  15. onions macrumors member

    Aug 17, 2011
    soooooo glad i went with samsung.
  16. cliffr39 macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2007
    Just an option for thought
  17. Jiten macrumors 6502a


    Jul 16, 2008
    I agree, the way 8GB sticks are dropping in prices, you will probably get 16 GB for as low as 50 USD in a few months time if you wait. If you really don't need more then 8GB, then I suggest putting your savings to buy a bigger SSD and buy the RAM later when it gets really cheap.
  18. Papanate macrumors 6502


    Jul 21, 2011
    North Carolina
    Get a Western Digital 2tb Studio external drive for your samples.
    The FireWire is fast enough for audio. I run Kontakt and Supierior Drummer samples off a WD FireWire without issue.

    The 16gb of ram will help out too with samples - in my case Kontakt has a switch that lets me use the ram for samples - basically a 'Ram Drive'.
  19. DeepIn2U macrumors 603


    May 30, 2002
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Nice job! Sorry to bump an old thread but I'm sure many others are looking to squeeze out every last bit of performance from their late 2011 MBP 13".

    I'll be doing the same going with 16GB 1333mhz RAM (not sure why the latency has increased over the years to 9-9-9; unless I'm mixed up), a 480/512GB SSD drive as the main one - and keeping the SuperDrive internal for the next few months since I have a 7200RPM LaCie 1TB ThunderBolt external as my media scratch drive (this was poor for TimeMachine backups).

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