MBP 500GB 7200rpm HD problematic?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by yanks10, Oct 14, 2009.

  1. yanks10 macrumors newbie

    Oct 13, 2009
    I am ordering a 15 inch MBP today and had asked if it was a good idea to go with the 320GB 7200rpm HD, swap it out down the road and save the $50. I was just about to just do the 500GB 7200rpm but decided to do some research first and see quite a few posts regarding ticking / beeping sounds and vibration coming from those who specifically chose the 500/7200rpm upgrade. Does anyone know if these problems have been rectified?
  2. N-Y macrumors regular

    Sep 23, 2009
    no issues here, and it will be 2 weeks tomorrow ive had this beautiful machine
  3. N-Y macrumors regular

    Sep 23, 2009
    i would also strongly suggest not to get the glossy screen, the matte is amazing
  4. barkomatic macrumors 68040

    Aug 8, 2008
    I had that Seagate 7200rpm drive installed in my 2006 MBP. No clicking and no vibrations. It's been over 3 months now.
  5. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    Got mine in August. It shipped with the drive firmware that was released to fix those problems. I have not had any issues I can attribute to the drive. I also have the anti-glare screen. It is very nice, although I mostly use mine clamshelled with an ext monitor.
  6. madog macrumors 65816


    Nov 25, 2004
    Korova Milkbar
    The reviews at Newegg don't sound too promising. While Apple uses the model with the g-shock protection newegg only sells the regular model.

    Personally, I've been dying to buy a 500gb 7200 drive, but am going to wait until someone else releases one. I'm still shocked that no one else offers one to the public (Hitachi recently made one, but is only available to OEM's right now). With all the hard drive "racing" going on, it's a shame WD hasn't stepped up to the plate yet for this drive.
  7. KF1 macrumors newbie

    Oct 18, 2009
    annoying vibrations w/ latest unibody MBP15

    I also want to buy a CTO MBP15 7200RPM 500GB, but all the different stories/problems and what a friend recently experienced made me hesitating in how to proceed w/ my order.

    1. problem HDD freezes:
    having crawled through different forums/websites, there seems a problem in case the MBP comes w/ the Seagate Momentus model having its own sudden motion sensor, which interferes w/ Apple's builtin sensor. Videos on Youtube show sporadical and very noticeable shorttime freezes while playing ego shooters for example. This problem might be solved if Apple is not using anymore the HDDs w/ own motion sensor (Seagate provides several models if I am right). Anybody has an update on this issue?

    2. click sounds:
    some people reported about clicking noises/sounds HDD are doing. This has been (successfully?) tackled by Apple in releasing a/some patches?! Not sure which HDD models are affected by this issue, but I have noticed that kind of problem was reported while googling around.

    3. vibrations:
    While the other 2 points might have solved (other HDD models, software patch - can someone confirm these?), this point is the most annoying one.
    I was quite confused reading different comments, so some do not notice vibrations, other do but not annoyingly, and again other do notice it and say it's very annoying.
    From what I understand so far, the vibrations are extremely annoying if you have the latest unibody MBP15 (the one since summer 09, w/ cardreader slot) and have it configured to 500GB 7200RPM drive via Apple.

    The following story is almost assuming that the latest unibody design seem to do a very bad job on absorbing vibrations to a reasonable extent, revealed especially w/ 7200RPM drives.

    So taking into account that people have reported different experiences with vibrations, in particular the latest unibody MBP15 as CTO w/ 500GB 7200RPM is subject to annyoing vibration issues.

    As I have seen last week exactly such a CTO model a friend has ordered and received last week from Apple (CTO assembled/delivered from the Netherlands, where almost all European orders are handled), I can confirm at least this experience from my side.
    The vibration is not slightly noticable, it is - as described from the other guy in the article (see link above) - really terrible. Absolutely not usable, if you are going to use the builtin keyboard and therefore need to put your hand on the MBP. I know it's hard to explain how it vibrates in words, trying to find something comparable you might can better follow:
    take an old class model of an electrical shaver w/o any kind of cushioning in order to reduce the vibrations to the holding part, and imagine the vibrations there. This regards only to the vibrations, not the noise of course.
    It is something like that. As the guy on the other article (link) described, like a small massage.

    He had a phone call w/ Apple, but they decline to exchange the HDD. The brief answer was, that it is "normal", that 7200RPM drives vibrate. While this fact is generally ok compared w/ 5400er drives, it looks like that vibrations do appear on a very different "annoying"-scale resp. do appear more heavily in some cases. He's now going to get another drive from a non-Apple IT store. We'll see how his experiences w/ 7200 drives in the latest unibody MBP15 wil continue. Did I mentioned that he also got (and paid) the 3Y Apple Care... well, nothing really worth as it looks like, if Apple is not willing to do anything for a 3day old MBP, which just got delivered.
    btw: my friend took out the HDD and in his opinion something might be slightly wrong with the HDD, while "bending" (not really bending, but sort of, touching/etc, you get the idea) it, the noise/vibrations (he was not so clear on this) where different (in terms of "better") than as if it is running just like w/o putting hands on. So he thinks the "case" or whatever term is applicable of the HDD itself is not quite straightly produced. So this leads to an idea of faulty produced HDD, which maybe affects a complete production series and/or appears in slightly different "production failures", which could explain the different experiences people made so far.
    Personally I hope this is the cause, rather than the conceptional issue of the new unibody and being not capable of absorbing vibrations to that extent the older models can do.

    But after all, this is just guessing. And it's annoying not to get an official statement by Apple, since they are the only ones who could enlight us. Due to sales, they barely would do it of course.

    So what do I do now w/ my intention of a CTO MBP15 7200RPM 500GB?
    Just order it, and if I unfortunately catch one of the "faulty" versions, try to get at least the HDD exchanged to a 5400er again at an Apple store and then buy on my own a 7200RPM 500GB-non-Seagate-drive elsewhere?
  8. KF1 macrumors newbie

    Oct 18, 2009
    continued - annoying vibrations w/ latest unibody MBP15

    Got news from my colleague and here's an update to my previous post:

    - the vibrations of his recently delivered MBP15 500GB 7200RPM, I could experienced last week, was already the vibrations, where he put some stuff to balance the described imbalance of the Seagate Momentus 7200.4 drive.
    - this means in fact: w/o that stuff in between, the vibrations were even more annoying

    - today he got his replacement HDD, same Seagate model (even Apple logo included next to the drive description, so it is even not just any Seagate, it's in particular a Seagate from a lot for Apple in particular). Well, it produces comparable vibrations as he had w/ the initial HDD PLUS the handmade extra stuff for balancing the improperly built case.
    - conclusion: the 1st drive has a failure in terms of its case. This created even more vibrations. This is proven since the 2nd drive - exactly same model and as mentioned determined for Apple - is doing less vibrations. But the "less vibrations" are now comparable to the 1st drive w/ this balancer-stuff. So what I experienced last week would be the standard vibrations in case the drive's case is ok as it should be. And yes, this amount of vibrations makes the MBP not usable. The assumption of the other guy, that the latest unibody has a noticable weaker absorption rate in conjunction with a 7200RPM drive, seems to be therefore possible.

    So end of - at least his story - he removed the new Seagate drive (meaning the 2nd drive, which got exchanged for the 1st Seagate) and bought a WD Scorpio Blue 5400RPM 500GB. No experienced vibrations.

    It would be great if other people w/ "cardreader"-unibody MBP15 7200RPM 500GB CTO - can confirm it or tell their story in case it is different.
  9. Ashwana macrumors newbie

    Nov 21, 2009
    Oscilating Humming Noises from CTO Unibody 15" w/Seageate Momentus 7200.4 500gig HD

    More on the Seageate Momentus 7200.4 noise issues:

    Just got a MacBookPro 15.4 CTO with the 500gig 7200 rpm Seageate Momentus 7200.4 ST9500420ASG hd. The MacBookPro makes a loud resonating/oscillating humming sound that varies in pitch (up down up down; Hummm pause Hummm pause Hummm...) - it is very noticeable and very very very irritating. If I place the laptop on a wood or metal table it gets even louder, as if the table is amplifying the sounds. If I have the laptop in a room with other Mac desktops with external hard drive enclosures (which make a mild constant background hum - w/out any resonation/oscillation), the laptops resonating/oscillating humming gets much much louder. Very odd.

    It is very hard to work on the new laptop. It wouldn't be so bad if the sound a remained constant hum. The irritating resonating/oscillating humming gives me a headache after 10-15 minutes.

    The noise seems to be coming from the area where the hard drive is located (bottom right corner). If I gently apply pressure on the top of the case or squeeze of the case is this area, the resonating humming stops and becomes a much more pleasant constant humming (and livable). It appears the aluminum case is acting a giant flat speaker cone. It appears Apple did not account for this odd acoustic condition occurring with the hd creating certain resonant vibrations.

    There is also noticeable vibration in the case. I'm not bothered by the vibration, and can live with it.

    I have access to an earlier year 15" MacBookPro with removable battery and the Seagate 320gig 7200rpm hd - this drive is noticeable quieter, has much less vibration in the case, and does not produce any odd resonating/oscillating humming sounds. I did a side by side copy on the two laptops of the same large file. The Seagate 500 gig is noticeable faster than the 320 gig hd.

    I took the laptop to the local Apple Genius Bar - they never heard of the problem, and of course could not hear it in a noisy store. They asked me to call AppleCare and run the problem by them.

    The new MacBook also arrived from the factory with a number of small scratches in the metal finish near the track pad - it appears someone at the factory was not very careful. I switched from a PC to and Apple and am surprised by the problems I had already! I'm used to problems in the PC world, but was not expecting them in the Apple world.

    I'll be calling AppleCare about both of these problems. However based on what I've read, seems the hard drive noise/vibration issues is considered normal by Apple for the higher performance Seagate 7200.4 hd. Hopefully Apple will take care of the scratch issue.

    Q: Does anyone have more info/suggestions on adding noise dampening materials between the hd and the case?

  10. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604


    Dec 29, 2006
    dallas, texas
    Everyone is different, mines been fine for months.
  11. neilhart macrumors 6502


    Oct 11, 2007
    SF Bay Area - Fremont
    My Seagate is Okay and fast.

    I purchased the Seagate 500 GB 7200.4 ..AS version in March of '09 and swapped it into my late 2008 15" uMBP, then swapped it into my mid-year 2009 17" uMBP. The Seagate is quite and significantly faster then the Hitachi 500 GB that came in the 17" uMBP.

    My laptops are used 5 days a week 10+ hours a day at work and carried home each day and frequently used in the evenings and weekends.

    I fully expect hard drives to fail and make frequent backup clones. However I have not had a laptop hard drive fail on me in years.

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