Mid 2009 MBP vs. Anything newer

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by rogotoko, Jul 22, 2012.

  1. rogotoko macrumors newbie

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    Jul 20, 2009
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    #1
    OK, I don't usually get too much into the speed game with anyone. I don't feel the need to rush out and get the newest fastest product every year either. My ex-gf still makes a lot of money from a 2006 Core Duo MBP as a Graphic Design Artist (a testament to the brand/product). I am, however, interested in knowing how my old Mid 2009 MBP fares against the newer computers. I kept it virtually stock for a long time, but then last year upgraded the HDD to a 320gb WD Scorpio 5400 RPM drive. I left the RAM untouched because prices were very high still. ...but this is 2012 now and I just picked up 8 gigs of RAM for $40 bucks on Tiger Direct. I put it in and it is noticably quicker. Again, I'm not looking to upgrade anytime soon. I have formed somewhat of an emotional attachment to my MBP as I did with my previous Black MB. I just want to know how an older computer compares with the RAM spec'd out to a newer MBP, even a 2011 or 2010 model that is just stock. Do the benchmarks overlap? Is it sometimes beneficial to just save the dough and catch up (per say)?
     
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #2
    Huh? A 3 year old computer will perform noticeably worse than a modern one. This has been true since computers started seeing widespread use.
     
  3. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #3
    The 2009 mbp was still using the Core 2 duo due to Intel's lawsuit against NVidia. After that they skipped any quad options in the 2010 in favor dual core options with better battery life. Because of this, 2010 and 2011 were both significant upgrades. What really matters though is if you're being slowed down by the technology. Is it lagging or taking time to calculate adjustments? If not you really shouldn't worry about it. I would plan on saving. Eventually that machine will be unsupported or something will break. If that happens, you can just step up to a new machine. The rMBP is the most notable item this year. Next year might be an even bigger bump. 2011 was an enormous boost in terms of cpu power. This generation was roughly 15% over the last in testing. In terms of real world results of lag or no lag, it's unlikely to make much of a difference.
     
  4. mark28 macrumors 68000

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    Jan 29, 2010
    #4
    If you are not maxing the CPU, then don't bother. You won't notice the difference.

    Only if you're hitting the limit of the your CPU like rendering Video, then you'll see a difference.
     
  5. rogotoko thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5
    No, I get that. What I am saying is that there is the blink of an eye and then there is three quarters of a blink of an eye. While a significant difference to some people, I don't seem to notice the difference. I don't want to get hung up on terms here. If 8 gigs of ram will improve my performance for what I do, by say 20%, and each year Mac makes a 15% faster unit than the year before (theoretically) then it would stand to reason that I wouldn't see any gains by upgrading every cycle of upgrades. I held on to my black Macbook when the unibodies first came out. I didn't like the feel in my hand, for one. Also, I wasn't convinced the the price was worth the few improvements, at the time. Then when the unibody pro hit the market, I upgraded, due to a hardware failure.

    Now, we obviously have a much improved model available. Three years newer is probably monumentally better, however, I pay the extra money for these puppies, in part, because they last longer. I take some pride in the fact that people still say, "is that new?" to me when out and about. Obviously, to the trained eye it's not. And then there is the fact that as long as my computer is working fine, I can window shop for a better iteration of the Pro once it's available. Maybe they'll come out with a touch screen, or an extra USB port in six months, who knows. I don't want to flock with the masses every time a new one comes out.

    All of that is why I asked. I simply am intrigued at the rush to sell a six month old machine each time an improvement comes out (for some). If I could see a performance gain of X% by modification then it seems a better choice, financially. I can certainly see the point of an upgrade when the performance gain is above 50% faster.
     
  6. Benbikeman macrumors 6502a

    Benbikeman

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    May 17, 2011
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    London, England
    #6
    I recently upgraded from a mid-2009 MBP 17 to a late-2011 i7, and the new machine flies compared to the old. It's most significant in photo-processing, but even web-browsing is dramatically faster (something that surprised me a great deal given it's on the same high-speed connection).

    It's definitely a big upgrade.
     
  7. rogotoko thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    I really want a new one now :-D
     
  8. steve-p macrumors 68000

    steve-p

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    Oct 14, 2008
    Location:
    Newbury, UK
    #8
    Went from 2.93 GHz mid 2009 to late 2011 quad core 2.5 i7, and the Geekbench score measuring CPU and RAM is over 2.5 times as good. However the processors are now so powerful you really do have to have an SSD, otherwise the hard disk is a bottleneck.
     
  9. robvas macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2009
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    USA
    #9
    C2D's are really getting old...but it's really up to you. You'll notice a difference from a new machine, I'm sure. But getting an SSD (they're very cheap these days) will help extend the life of your machine even more.
     
  10. sweetbrat macrumors 65816

    sweetbrat

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    Jun 17, 2009
    Location:
    Redford, MI
    #10
    I went from a 2008 to a 2011, and sure, there's a difference. Honestly, I could have comfortably kept using the 2008, but hubby wanted it so we could give his white MacBook to my mother. A lot of whether to upgrade or whether to save your money and wait depends on what you're using it for. Obviously if you're doing something CPU heavy like rendering you'll notice the difference a lot more than you will if you're mainly using it for the internet and stuff. People to whom time on their computer equals money are going to need to upgrade much faster than casual users. For many people, only upgrading every 4-5 years can be perfectly sufficient.

    Our plan is to put an SSD in the 2008 MBP, and hubby will continue to use it for a couple more years. If you plan on keeping your current machine, an upgrade to an SSD would be a very noticeable difference for you, with only a couple hundred dollars investment. As long as you're not maxing out the CPU regularly, putting in an SSD will make it feel like a new machine.
     

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