SSD upgrade for a macbook pro 2009

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by rockwellsulcata, Oct 21, 2014.

  1. rockwellsulcata macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #1
    Hello,
    I have a macbook pro 15" from 2009 that is running OS X Yosemite. It has 4 GB of RAM. The hard drive has 500 GB.

    It is fairly slow and overheats too much. The battery runs out in about 4 hours.
    It only has about less than a gigabyte of RAM left.

    I use this for running adobe applications. I run Adobe flash pro, after effects, audition, photoshop, and illustrator CS6. I also surf the web, and use spotify.
    That's all I use it for.
    I will also be running a wacom cintiq 13HD on it soon too.

    My question is, should I upgrade my hard drive to an SSD? or put in more RAM? I would upgrade to 8 GB of RAM. (also, if I were to get an SSD, should I get 128GB or 256GB?)

    Thank you,
    Rockwell
     
  2. miguueeel macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2010
    Location:
    Chicago
    #2
    Since you seem to be running a lot of apps I would recommend do ram first and then ssd. or both if you can do it. Ive recently upgraded my ram from 4 to 8 and its been running so much better! I got it from OWC. The reason why I say ram is more essential for you its because an ssd upgrade will help improve opening time of apps, and ram will allow you to run them smoothly at the same time. Plus, if you're doing it your self and its your first time working with hardware, ram is easier to replace than the HD.
     
  3. yanki01 macrumors 68040

    yanki01

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    Texas
    #3
    i have the same MBP as you (assuming it's a mid 09 model, 2.53Ghz?) and i just upgraded from a 320GB HDD to a 250GB Samsung 840 EVO SSD on Friday. Just today i installed 8GB of RAM from Crucial. Going from the HDD to a SSD has been a night and day difference in speed and boot times. adding more RAM today has also been very nice getting all my applications to open with one bounce on the dock.

    I don't do as much work on it like you do but it's a nice facelift for our older machines that will be noticed right away.
     
  4. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #4
    Ok.

    I will have to say that the overheating and battery life don't affect me too much after the OS X Yosemite update.

    I think I will go with a memory upgrade. I can't afford to do both right now.
    I'm really still considering doing the SSD over a memory upgrade. Google chrome this morning took an hour (I am not kidding) this morning to open. That included shutting down my computer 3 times.
    Oh, I can't install photoshop and illustrator due to issues at the moment, so flash, after effects and audition are the only programs on my computer.

    I only have 61 GB of storage left too.

    I really am all for a performance boost right now. I need things to open apps up faster.

    oh I also have a 2.8GHZ processor.
    Thank you all for the help!
     
  5. miguueeel macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2010
    Location:
    Chicago
    #5
    Don't use chrome! Also yeah you should invest on a cheap external hard drive to clear some disk space and get ram. Uograde to ssd when you have resources to do so. Also ssd is becoming more and more comon now so it's probably going to drop I'm price over time.
     
  6. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #6
    Alright,

    So for around $90 I can upgrade to 8GB of RAM.

    I have a few external hard drives sitting around with 320GB on them. Their the lacie brand?

    How do I transfer literally everything into them? I mean, everything.
    Is there a main folder that has everything?

    Thank you all for the help!
     
  7. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #7
    Hi everyone,
    So, I am wondering, if I were to upgrade to an SSD (256GB) and 8GB of RAM, how much longer life do I have in my macbook? The total cost of the upgrade would be $240 on crucial.com instead of me buying an $800 new laptop. (maybe even more to be honest)

    I am hoping for another 3 years. Maybe 2 years.

    If it won't last that long, then I am better off buying a new laptop from sager.

    Thank you for all the help!
     
  8. yanki01 macrumors 68040

    yanki01

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    Texas
    #8
    it should extend the life but with electronics, there's no telling that the logic board or screen go to crap tomorrow? even brand new products (apple and non-apple) can go back the first few days of usage.

    there's really no way to tell how long your computer will last just by upgrading in performance. the good thing is if it does, you can re-use the same SSD on another MBP (depending on model).
     
  9. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #9
    From your thread you don't have the space.


    Well if you have more than 320 gb you can't put it all on one drive, If you can maybe move some media to one drive videos being the most likely space hog and get your total on the mac down to under 320 GB then you can just do a full back up with time machine, the built in back up software will copy everything OSX and all.

    As for RAM vs SSD, the ssd will make everything snappier and faster but the RAM will allow more open at the same time. Don't worry about the amount of free RAM if running mavericks thats not the important stat, it is the graph that goes with it if that stays green then your RAM is fine.

    Also buy a can of compressed air and when you have the case open to replace RAM or HDD blow out any dust concentrating on your fans and vents, this may well help with your noise and heat....


    Oh and don't use chrome it is rubbish on macs just about anything else would be better even internet explorer...
     
  10. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #10
    Someone said I should take this into the mac store for a checkup.
    I feel like they would rip me off.

    What do you think? How do I tell if the internal parts are messed up?

    I plan on doing both the SSD and RAM upgrade this weekend.
    Thanks!
     
  11. SkimMilk168 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2014
    Location:
    Singapore
    #11
    If you can't do both upgrades, I'd suggest getting SSD first.
    Reason: If the OS runs out of RAM, it starts using virtual memory (swap file). With a HDD, this is slow, but with a SSD, you basically have more "RAM" to play with. Get a casing for your current HDD and use it as an external storage. That way, you won't have to spend too much on storage.

    Just my 2 cents. :)
     
  12. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #12
    Ok,
    well, I can afford both upgrades now. It's $240 all together.

    But, Someone recommended me to bring my macbook pro into the apple store to get the internal parts checked up. I feel like it will be a waste of time though. Can I just check the internal parts myself and just see if anything is wrong? Will apple be a rip off if I go with them for upgrades?

    I just need it for another 2 years, then when I have more cash I can purchase a better laptop. Like a sager.

    I also will be connecting a Wacom cintiq 13HD to it soon. That's where all my cash is going for right now.

    Thanks for all the advice! Also, how do I transfer a OS to the SSD?
     
  13. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #13
    I have another question,

    when I get the SSD, I heard of "cloning"?

    I don't want anything from my old HDD. I just want a fresh start. But people say I have to transfer the OS to the SSD.

    How is that done? Can I just, download it when I start my computer?

    Thanks
     
  14. BigBuns macrumors newbie

    BigBuns

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2014
    Location:
    North America, eh
    #14
    1) You can create a bootable OS USB drive to install a fresh OS onto your SSD once it is in your MBP. Read this article to learn how to do that.
    http://www.macworld.com/article/236...otable-os-x-10-10-yosemite-install-drive.html

    ***But first, I'm pretty sure you need to format the SSD with disk utility and set it up as Mac OS Extended (Journaled). To do this, put the SSD into an external enlcosure, connect to your MBP and use disk utility. Watch the first 50 seconds of this video and it will show you how to do that.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uhNma0ZjrWs

    I'm not 100% that the drive needs to be formatted first, maybe someone can correct me?

    2) The other way would be to clone your old HDD to the SSD and then after installing the SSD into your MBP, you can use disk utility to re-install the OS by following this guide. This will give you a fresh start as well.
    http://support.apple.com/kb/PH14243
     
  15. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #15
    Ok I just ordered the SSD and RAM.

    I am wondering about the following.

    1. Can I keep everything on the HDD? I can't delete anything on it or transfer. Can I just put in the SSD and then use a USB with the OS X Yosemite on it?

    2. I can put OS X Yosemite on the USB, right?

    Thanks everyone. We'll see in the next few days on how the macbook pro performs.
     
  16. freeskier93 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    #16
    Put the Yosemite installer on a USB drive, swap the new SSD in, then boot up into the Yosemite installer on the USB drive. From the installer you can format the new SSD then install Yosemite. Put your old hard drive in a cheap enclosure and start moving what you want over.
     
  17. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #17
    Hello everyone!

    The mac is fixed! The hardware installation was easy, and then booting up was good.

    Its SOO fast now! Everything (except the adobe apps, they take about 10 sec to boot up, still amazing though compared to 2 min) takes one bounce or 3 bounces to boot up. The heat has gone way down, and its not making a single noise.

    Thanks for all the help!
    Rockwell
     
  18. BigBuns macrumors newbie

    BigBuns

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2014
    Location:
    North America, eh
    #18
    Glad everything worked out! :)

    It was night and day for me as well after upgrading to the SSD. Do you notice an improvement in battery life too? You did RAM also, right?
     
  19. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #19
    Hi,

    Yes, I upgraded the RAM. That helped a little bit too I think.

    It's not lightning fast since its still from 2009. But it is WAY faster than before. But all I need is another 2-3 years out of it so I can upgrade to the latest macbook pro in the next few years. (Maybe there will be big advancements in laptops in these next few years) :)

    The battery life did improve. It now will get me through 7 hours without dying instead of dying in 3 hours. So I guess there was a big improvement. It barely gets me through a day though. So I immediately need to charge it by the mid afternoon.

    I'm glad I saved money by upgrading my HDD and RAM instead of wasting $900 on a new laptop when I can now save my money for a wacom cintiq.

    Thanks for all the help!
     
  20. rockwellsulcata thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2014
    #20
    Hi,

    Just asking a question about iMac's. (not that I am buying one, just curious)

    I am wondering if 8Gb of ram is good for a iMac. Like is it good for running Adobe after effects, flash, photoshop and illustrator CS6?
    Is that enough RAM to run them really well?

    I guess if I put in an SSD, then the RAM wouldn't really matter as much?

    Thanks!
     

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