Macbook update advice

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by jekite, Jul 6, 2007.

  1. jekite macrumors newbie

    Jun 3, 2007
    So I want to get the middle of the line 2.16 macbook. I don't want to spend a ton of money but I do want to add some upgrades to it. My current thought is this, I could put about 4gig of ram in it (to truly increase speed/performance) since I want to take advantage of dual channel, and I could upgrade the hard drive from the base 120 to 160 through the apple store (since its like 60 bucks with an educational discount and therefore cheaper than doing it 3rd party) bringing the extra total spend to around 300. Or I could buy the WD Scorpio 250 gb hd for around 190 and buy 2 gigs of ram for around 100 and still be spending around 300. Those are the two choices I have narrowed my upgrade down to but I am having trouble deciding which I would benefit from the most. I don't do a ton of editing, but I do run a lot of programs at once, and storage is incredibly important to me as I have almost 80 gigs of music and growing. (for the record I have a 160 gig external currently, I just hate running a music library off an external (which is what I am currently doing)).
  2. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    The current MacBook's will only support 3GB of RAM. That's still more than plenty for the specifications of the MacBook.

    As for the hard drive, get the biggest that Apple offer at that time. If you do run out of space, there is alternatives. I use an Iomega 160GB portable drive (2.5 inches and runs off USB so doesn't have a power chord).
  3. klymr macrumors 65816

    May 16, 2007
    Are you talking the new 2.2 or the old 2.16? The older 2.16 can only handle 3gb of RAM. Also, either way you'd have to buy all the RAM (either 3gb or 4gb) as you can't just up the amount you have. Mine has 2gb of RAM in it, 2 1gb sticks. I'd have to buy 2 2gb sticks to get 4gb.

    I'm thinking of going for the WD My Book 500gb external drive with USB 2.0, firewire 400, and firewire 800. Newegg has it for $207.

    Just some thoughts for ya.
  4. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    There is no 2.2GHz MacBook.

    I just read the Apple website and it says it only supports up to 2GB.

  5. jekite thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 3, 2007
    I was talking a 2.16 which you're right handles 3, but I want to put four in, only receiving the benefits of 3.3gb under dual channel. Either way, 3 or 4, the question/dillema is ultimately the same, more ram and less hd, or more hd and 2gb of ram.
  6. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    How much would you be saving re: HD with the first option? How fast is the 250GB drive? 5400RPM?

    This is a bit of a tricky one, as both the HD and RAM are so easy to install yourself, but at least it means it’s easy to upgrade some more in the future.

    As you don’t like running externals and storage is very important to you, I would be inclined to get the 250GB. Even if you don’t like externals, they’re useful and you can use the one that comes with the machine as an enclosure.

    But what apps will you be running? If you’re running RAM hungry ones like PS all the time, then 4GB RAM would like rather attractive. But if not, the 2GB would be fine even if you’re running loads of apps at the same time, in all likelihood.

    BTW It’s best using an external drive as your scratch disk when editing video, but if you’re only doing the odd bit, you’ll be fine.
  7. Igantius macrumors 65816

    Apr 29, 2007
    Spot on!
  8. kolax macrumors G3

    Mar 20, 2007
    More hard drive space and 2GB of RAM.

    2GB is plenty. I run Ableton Live 6 (music production software), iTunes, MSN Messenger, Internet and a few other bits and bobs and I still have space in RAM.
  9. jekite thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 3, 2007
  10. Roguepirate macrumors member

    Jun 11, 2007
    If i remember correctly Anandtech did a test a while ago on dual channel performance vs non-dual channel and the results of the tests showed that dual channel performance was very slightly better, so you're not really gaining much from dual channel unless those milliseconds and 0.5 fps really matter to you.

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