Next little upgrade: SSD+OptiBay or 8GB RAM?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by WiLLGT09, May 10, 2010.

  1. WiLLGT09 macrumors regular

    WiLLGT09

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    #1
    Hi everyone,

    So what do you all think. I tend to run a lot of apps at once. multi-tab Safari, iChat, twitter client, and iTunes are pretty much running all the time. I'll also fire up Lightroom and Photoshop fairly often too...so having a nice big boost in RAM would be nice.

    However, the 128GB SSD I have is too small to have my iTunes library, RAW photo library, and other applications all installed or located on that one drive. Currently, my iTunes and all my photos reside on an portable external drive. I'd love to have my iTunes library and photos on a second hard drive in my MBP, leaving main stuff like applications on the main drive. So, the OptiBay (+another SSD preferably) would be nice in this case.

    So, if one were to choose only one for their next upgrade, which would it be?

    Thanks!
    William
     
  2. wisty macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2009
    #2
    Look at "Activity Monitor". Multi-tab Safari, iChat, twitter client, and iTunes should be able to run on about 1G, maybe 2G.

    If you already have 4G, that leave 2G for everything else, which should be a reasonable amount. Lots of apps are still stuck with a ~2G limit.

    The extra ram can be used by OSX to cache stuff, speeding up file access, but your SSD should be pretty fast anyway.

    8G might be faster, and will be more future proof, but I'd guess the SSD will be more useful in the short term.
     
  3. WiLLGT09 thread starter macrumors regular

    WiLLGT09

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    #3
    good points. I survived nicely with 4GB of RAM on my old black MacBook, and for day-to-day basic task using the apps I mentioned, 4GB is probably enough.

    Have you had experience with the OptiBay? I'm concerned about voiding my warranty. I've done RAM upgrades before, but nothing else. There is an Apple Authorized Service center that is also a MCE authorized service center, where I live that said they could install the OptiBay for me. Would that allow me to keep my AppleCare (1yr) warranty intact?

    thanks.
     
  4. ttran88 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    #4
    you are going to void your warranty so don't do it. Upgrade your SSD.
     
  5. WiLLGT09 thread starter macrumors regular

    WiLLGT09

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    #5
    interesting discussion here that I just found. Perhaps the warranty voiding is not that big of an issue. I kinda want to try getting written permission from Apple. :rolleyes:
     
  6. johnnymg macrumors 65816

    johnnymg

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2008
    #6
    Given your large data need: An optibay (or similar) with 500+GB 7200RPM HD would probably be your best upgrade. Overall cost of that upgrade is ~$150.
     
  7. WiLLGT09 thread starter macrumors regular

    WiLLGT09

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    #7
    Is there any significant power consumption different in a 5400 vs 7200 drive?
     
  8. Bibin macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    #8
  9. Bibin macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    #9

    I asked apple on the phone and the chap told me that the optical bay is considered a user servicable part and that replacing it with a storag device did NOT void my warranty.
     
  10. WiLLGT09 thread starter macrumors regular

    WiLLGT09

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    #10
    weird. I just called AppleCare and the guy just told me the OptiBay would void the entire computer warranty since "that is not a configuration that Apple supports." :(
     
  11. johnnymg macrumors 65816

    johnnymg

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2008
    #11
    As long as you don't screw up the HW you'll be fine. Make sure you have the correct screw driver and know which way to turn it. :eek:

    JMO, but I would stay simple: SSD (boot/apps) + HD (data) ===> fast and functional. Hitachi makes very low power 7200 RPM HDs.

    cheers
    JohnG
     
  12. Mirabella macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    #12
    I started a topic discussion a few days ago, addressing the subject of whether changing the drive in the optical bay really does void the entire warranty.

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=911134&highlight=

    I'll pursue a more definitive answer, soon.
     
  13. Thunder82 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    #13
    I've used an optibay for a few years now and have never had a single issue getting warranty work performed. Don't screw anything up while installing it, and make sure to remove the optibay (re-install the optical drive) before taking it in for service.

    No brainer imo.
     
  14. snowboarder macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2007
    #14
    I got both upgrades and SSD + HD would give you more boost.
    8GB is great if you work with huge PS files and apply some complicated
    filters like Topaz Denoise or Alien Skin Blow Up.
    It really helps. But SSD advantage is instant and felt all the time.
    Get the new OWC Mercury Extreme, there is simply no better
    and more reliable SSD on the market right now.
    Trust me, you will be dealing with tons of problems
    if you get Corsair, Crucial or OCZ.

    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/SSDMXRE200/

    Also try to get the the bay from maxupgrades, very well made and open.

    http://www.maxupgrades.com/istore/i...y&product_id=186&CFID=475025&CFTOKEN=78088093

    As far as the HD, I recommend WD Scorpio Blue, they have a 750GB
    9.5mm model, it fits nicely in the bay. WD is more reliable than
    anything right now.


    Andrew
     
  15. WiLLGT09 thread starter macrumors regular

    WiLLGT09

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    #15
    I just had a thought. Didn't Apple add a second WiFi antennae on (near?) the SuperDrive on the newest MacBook Pros? If I were to get an optibay, would this affect the wifi antennae in this location?
     
  16. Garrus macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2010
    #16
    I run with 2GB and i rarely completly fill my memory... so 8gb... :D
     
  17. WiLLGT09 thread starter macrumors regular

    WiLLGT09

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    #17
    Right now, I have Safari with 6 tabs, iTunes playing music, Echofon, TextEdit, Mail, and Transmission open, and I have 14MB of free RAM right now. I have 4GB.

    Is it odd to have Finder and WindowServer using 100+MB of RAM all the time?
     

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