Time for a bump in HDD speed?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by kepardue, May 5, 2009.

  1. kepardue macrumors 6502

    Oct 28, 2006
    I've got a 2.5 year old Macbook Pro with a 5400RPM drive in it. Since installing iLife '09, I can't help but notice that my programs seem to take a long, long time to start up. Even after having just reformatted the thing and reinstalling Leopard, iPhoto '09 takes forever to load in the initial set of Faces or Places, and iMovie has a lot of trouble capturing a full HD video at full speed (often times it'll capture at 1/8 speed) and has trouble playing the captured video back in preview. Note, though, that the iMovie captures are going on on an external 7200RPM Firewire 400 drive.

    All that said, I've been eyeing this Seagate Momentus 7200.4 500GB drive for a few days now, and I'm wondering if an upgrade to it (realizing that it will void the little bit of AppleCare I have left) would be worth the investment.

    In the Fall or early next year (whenever Apple releases i7 or i5-based Macs) I'm going to upgrade the system, but I haven't decided on whether to get an iMac or another Macbook Pro. This will help me determine if the hard drive is the weakest link in this equation. The hard drives in the new 15" models are user replaceable in warranty, aren't they?
  2. p.luik macrumors regular

    Jan 18, 2008
    Faribault, MN
    Your FW400 drive is probably slower than your internal 5400RPM. Make sure you need the 500GB instead of 320 before jumping to 7200RPM. At the moment, there is a big price difference.
  3. p.luik macrumors regular

    Jan 18, 2008
    Faribault, MN
    Are you sure it's not your memory or processor slowing down the process?
  4. spinnerlys Guest


    Sep 7, 2008
    forlod bygningen
  5. JRob65a6 macrumors regular


    May 5, 2009
    It shouldn't void AppleCare

    I bought the Seagate 7200.4 and I must say it was an absolute plus. I noticed a difference right off. I had a 320gb 5400RPM and it just wasn't fast enough or big enough for that matter. Restored it new by Time Machine. Great buy for $140.
    If that does matter on the AppleCare I really messed up but I dont really think so. A friend told me it doesn't but don't take that for sure.
  6. kepardue thread starter macrumors 6502

    Oct 28, 2006
    The processor speed should be acceptable enough, but the memory is kind of slow @ 667MHz. It's 2.2GHz with 4GB of DDR2 667MHz RAM.

    Newegg has the 500GB 7200.4 for $140, which is acceptable enough to me if it'll keep me from being so frustrated waiting for things to load. I suppose that won't help iMovie playback-while-editing any since I'll have to keep them on the external by virtue of the fact that I capture everything in Full HD. Won't be able to do that until we see 1TB+ notebook drives!

    BUT, if it'll help the read speed to be able to launch iPhoto more quickly, and navigate to Faces/Places better, it may well be worth it in my book. Especially if it'll boost the aftermarket price by as much when I eBay the Macbook Pro next year. Plus, the existing hard drive will be an upgrade for a friend that's getting a refurbed 13" Macbook.

    I've actually replaced the HDD in a MBP before, so it's not a big deal to me minus a few moments of holding-the-breath. But with just half a year on my AppleCare left I don't mind voiding my warranty *he says as a thunderbolt prepares to strike his MBP*

    That said, do you guys think the proc and/or RAM would be causing more of an issue?

    EDITED: to add... yeah, I'm barely fitting into the drive that I have and although iMovies are on the external I like to keep all my photos and music on the mobile with me. With a DSLR, you can imagine that space is eaten up quickly.
  7. Bill Gates macrumors 68020

    Bill Gates

    Jun 21, 2006
    Changing to a 7200RPM drive should make the system faster in all respects, but I personally would stay away from the Seagate drive. There have been complaints of failures and other issues on the forums with the new 500GB 7200RPM drive from Seagate, but even without these reports, with the issues that Seagate has had recently I don't place much faith in their ability to deliver a reliable product. I would personally look at other drives, perhaps 5400RPM 500GB models. Just from the increase in density, they tend to be much faster than lower-capacity drives. Search for reviews of any of the recent models, and you should see how they stack up against lower-capacity drives. I personally am waiting for a 500GB 2.5" drive from another vendor, such as Hitachi, before I begin to even consider a swap.
  8. Yodgee macrumors member

    Mar 5, 2009
    The seagate 7200rpm kicks the crap out of any of the other hard drives. Check toms hardware site for some testing comparisons. The seagate 7200.4's lead the group by a considerable amount
  9. edblor macrumors regular

    Jan 15, 2008
    I replaced my 5400RPM drive with a Toshiba 7200RPM and I immediately felt the difference. Everything was snappier, and overall responsiveness was improved.

    My Applecare was not effected, and I am quite happy:)

Share This Page