Macbook Pro 5,3 hard drive upgrade (2009)

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by vigeoh, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. vigeoh macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2009
    My girlfriends laptop is very slow, I've installed a extra 4gb of RAM so its now running at 8gig. She (like me) is a graphic design so speed is important.

    I want to install a new hard drive but I have a few questions:

    1. Is it worth installing a SSD? Would it make a big difference? Or will a 7200RPM suffice?
    2. Which would be the best OS X to upgrade to, will Mountain Lion run okay?
    3. What else can I do to get the laptop running like it use to?

    "All that happens is that dust and dirt builds up on the inside and prevent it from doing it's job properly."
    Is this true?

    Many Thanks,


    Info on her laptop:
    Macbook Pro 5,3
    8 gig ram
    OSX snow leopard
    Very slow start up and opening of programs.
  2. KUguardgrl13 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2013
    Kansas, USA
    Many will say SSD, but that will only improve speeds as fast as SATA II can support. You won't get the reported speeds since you don't have SATA III.

    If the only major issue is slowdowns, I would check that there isn't a bunch of startup bloat ware or extraneous software hanging around. This thread explains how to do that properly:

    Personally I'm done with my 13" mid-2009 MBP, but my issues go beyond just slowdowns. Good luck!
  3. jav6454 macrumors P6


    Nov 14, 2007
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    The SSD will make a difference in terms of random (real world) read/write performance. So yes, it will be a good addition.
  4. andy9l macrumors 68000

    Aug 31, 2009
    England, UK
    I put a SSD in my 2009 MBP and it went from a ~70-80 second boot down to 11 seconds (logged in). Photoshop CS6 opens in about 2 seconds flat. It was a massive speed boost, and it only cost me £65.

    For number crunching – or rather Photoshop/Illustrator/InDesign – you are still relying on the same processor/graphics card, so don't expect any performance boost with regards to that. Just boot and opening/saving of apps/large files.

    I'm using a Samsung 840, by the way.
  5. vigeoh, Oct 8, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2013

    vigeoh thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 22, 2009
    hmmmm, okay, thanks a lot, she said she would rather get a ssd so i'm gonna order it off crucial.

    thanks a lot everyone!

    okay apparently the crucial ssd's are ****, is the samsun 840 the best one to get then?
  6. davidlv macrumors 65816

    Apr 5, 2009
    Kyoto, Japan
    Crucial drives have a very good reputation, but there are many good SSDs on the market now, including the Plextor, San Disk Extreme II, and others. The Samsung drives are popular on this forum, but the company has a horrible reputation here in Japan. Just find the best price around for the drive size you choose, the performance will likely be much the same (limited by the old interface).
    Do a google search on "best ssd 2013", lots of reviews out there.

    Be careful not to damage the SATA cable when you swap out the HD, they can be fragile. Use a good quality #00 philips head screwdriver for the tiny screws on the backplate (must go back in the same order), and a #6 Torx driver for moving the lugs on the sides of the HD to the new SSD.
  7. andy9l macrumors 68000

    Aug 31, 2009
    England, UK
    Yeah I went with Samsung for the same reason. Crucial seemed to throw up a load of problems on Google. I couldn't be bothered reading the specifics, and found a vast number of good reviews for Samsung drives – hence my Samsung 840 purchase. Works great, has done for about 6 months now.

    Good point. The cable tends to 'suddenly' pop off as it requires a bit of force to get it off. Be forceful, but controlled! ;)

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