Macbook Upgrade?

er15

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 7, 2012
47
0
Hey guys I am currently using my Mac from 2006. It was purchased in December 2006 and runs currently, on OSX Lion. However, the battery is inflated and there are cracks here and there. It sorta shows its age on youtube videos when the sounds goes all fizzy and requires me to either stop the video or insert a headphone jack to make the sound normal. And it tends to overheat quickly and shut down intermediately. Although i mainly use it for facebook, surfing the web, word processing and uni assignment. But other than that it runs atm and has lasted over 7 years. I am wondering whether I should upgrade or not? I only have a year and half of university left and hence should I upgrade?



 

Jambalaya

macrumors 6502a
Jun 21, 2013
686
98
UK
What do you mean by upgrade, add new components into your machine or replace it ?

I think it needs replacing and you'll get a student discount if you do that now. I appreciate finding the $'s is tough as a student though. Wait for MacBook Air refresh, get 8gb ram and ssd and add storage via external drive or buy a used machine ? Upgrading fixing components isn't really worth it on that machine.

My daughter (a college student) is using my old white 2006 MacBook with it's 2gb ram and old hdd but it's physically battered now due to poor care (Q key fell off, mouse pad glitchy etc) and whilst it still works it's time for it's retirement.
 

fig

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2012
916
70
Austin, TX
Any new machine is going to be a LOT faster than what you've currently got, to the point that you can probably justify a lot of the cost in increased productivity.

If you can find room in the budget I'd go for it.
 

Zotaccian

macrumors 6502a
Apr 25, 2012
637
2
I would atleast stop using that battery and reapply thermal paste / remove dust inside the machine.
 

tekameleon

macrumors newbie
Apr 5, 2014
8
0
Alberta, Canada
Like Zotaccian said - replacing that battery and doing some internal maintenance will go a long way.

Here are a couple of links that you should find helpful - it's a bit more involved that just replacing the battery, but absolutely worth the effort.

How to remove/replace the Heat Sink

How to reapply Thermal Paste

I recently 'upgraded' my mid-2007 MacBook with 4GB of RAM and a 240GB SSD drive - made a noticeable difference to performance, and put some life back in her!

Short answer, yes with some TLC your MacBook should easily get you through the rest of University.

Replace that battery. Soon. :)
 

wb123

macrumors newbie
Jun 7, 2013
23
0
Any new machine is going to be a LOT faster than what you've currently got, to the point that you can probably justify a lot of the cost in increased productivity.

If you can find room in the budget I'd go for it.
How much more productive for writing essays and reading papers is a faster computer going to be? Unless the OP is doing a course requiring more sophisticated computer work I can't imagine much of a productivity change.

I asked the same question of my late 2006 macbook about a year back and ended up replacing the battery and fitting an SSD. Replacing the battery made it possible to work on the sofa without shutting down then moving and plugging in which did improve productivity somewhat by letting me vary where I was working making it easier to work for longer, the SSD just made it open word in a sensible amount of time.

I'd vote for replace or just bin the battery and keep going till after you finish university.
 

fig

macrumors 6502a
Jun 13, 2012
916
70
Austin, TX
How much more productive for writing essays and reading papers is a faster computer going to be? Unless the OP is doing a course requiring more sophisticated computer work I can't imagine much of a productivity change.

I asked the same question of my late 2006 macbook about a year back and ended up replacing the battery and fitting an SSD. Replacing the battery made it possible to work on the sofa without shutting down then moving and plugging in which did improve productivity somewhat by letting me vary where I was working making it easier to work for longer, the SSD just made it open word in a sensible amount of time.

I'd vote for replace or just bin the battery and keep going till after you finish university.
My old MacBook gives me the spinning wheel a good bit when switching apps when I've got lots of tabs open, though that's been improved with an SSD. Office and related apps have also gotten more resource hungry in newer versions, not to mention a Mac that old also probably won't run Mavericks or some newer apps.

I also didn't say it would justify all the cost, I think most folks probably need to upgrade far less than they do. That being said, this is a 7 year old machine that's certainly been eclipsed in performance and it's not like the OP won't have a use for whatever Mac they have after they're done with school.

A new machine is going to be a lot snappier and worth the investment if it's in the budget. If it's not then a new SSD and the RAM bump will keep it usable for a bit longer.