Upgrades for a non-unibody 15" Macbook Pro

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by hsj2011, May 13, 2011.

  1. hsj2011 macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    I am in the process of buying a non-unibody 15" Macbook Pro. I'm unsure of the year it was released but its got a 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo processor, 4GB Ram (upgraded by previous owner) and a glossy screen. I think it came with Leopard installed and has a Snow Leopard upgrade disc.

    Does anyone have any idea which model this could be? I'm guessing it's either Mid/Late 2007 or Early 2008.

    I am suspecting that the hard drive is the stock hard drive so probably 120GB (waiting for clarification from the seller) so I am looking into what my options are upgrade wise. Basically, I would like to max out the Macbook Pro as much as possible to get the most life possible out of it.

    I used to own an Aluminium G4 Powerbook and remember swapping the hard drive was a pain in the rear, and resulted in the palm rest and bottom chassis not being flush ever since. Can anyone recommend how I could change the hard drive without that happening? Is it worth paying the Apple store for them to do it?

    Hard drive wise, ideally, I'd like to get an SSD in there but what size do you think would be reasonable? I've got a NAS at home and am happy to get external storage, etc, but obviously still need enough room for apps, documents, and a bit of music.

    Memory wise, is 4GB likely to be the maximum it will take? I seem to remember there was one model where Apple said its maximum was 4GB but users found that 8GB worked fine. Other than trying it, is there a way to know?

    I'm sure I'll be back with more questions but any help would be much appreciated :)
  2. altecXP macrumors 65816

    Aug 3, 2009
    If it's 07/08 then 6GB is probably your max.
  3. jbrenn macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2008
    before you buy it check the pcie lanewidth if it is not x16 the video card is failing. The apple supported max is 4gb but there are reports of 6 and even 8 working. I fix it has a guide to replace the hard drive it is not difficult but it is time consuming.
  4. hsj2011 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Thanks. Even if it isn't the x16 model, don't Apple cover the GPU failure anyway? I did use the iFixit guide for my Powerbook but messed it up somehow :(
  5. hsj2011 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
  6. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    The maximum amount of RAM it will take is 6Gb.

    You're covered as far as the videocard goes. The 2.4Ghz is the last non-unibody.

    Standard hard drives were 250gb 5400rpm and 200gb 7200rpm.
  7. hsj2011 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Thanks, so that'll be 1x4GB and 1x2GB is that correct?

    Is that indefinate do you think? I noticed that page I linked to was updated in March, presumably to change from covered for 3 years to covered for 4 years. I just hope this MBP is an early 2008 rather than early 2007.

    Thanks. Either drive wouldn't be to bad then but will still want to stick an SSD in there.

    What size SSD would be a 'safe bet' for OSX Snow Leopard, Office 2011, CS5 Web Premium and enough room for documents and a bit of music?
  8. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    Yes 667Mhz ddr2 SO-DIMMs.
    If you have the 2.4, you have the early 2008, with multi-touch to boot. The GPU is covered 4 years from the date of purchase, though a friend of mine that works at an Apple Store told me that the internal policy is that it is waranteed as long as the parts still exist somewhere.
    Define "some" music.

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say 120Gb is most likely enough for those programs and an iTunes library a few thousand songs strong.

    Edit: I stand corrected, you do not necessarily have the early 2008. One way to find out would be the model identifier Macbook Pro4,1.
  9. ddehr026 macrumors 6502

    May 1, 2010
  10. hsj2011 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Doh, you got me excited then! Did the 2007 MBP not have multi touch? If not, did the 2008 one have a slightly larger touchpad? (Can't remember). I have asked the seller from a screenshot of the 'About this mac' details, including the Graphics/Video.

    When I say some music, I mean just enough to go on my 16GB iPhone. Probably 10 albums tops really as my main computer will be a new mini when they're updated.
  11. hsj2011, May 13, 2011
    Last edited: May 13, 2011

    hsj2011 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
  12. tamvly macrumors 6502a


    Nov 11, 2007
    GPU is important. I wouldn't rely on Apple to fix a GPU failure ($$$).
  13. hsj2011 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Well aren't they legally bound to? Besides, it's nVidia paying out for all the repairs, not Apple.

    Do you think constantly stressing the GPU could make it fail quicker?
  14. hsj2011 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Looking into hard drives as my MBP should arrive this week.

    Which of these drives would be better?

    500GB Western Digital Black @ £49.98
    500 Seagate Momentus XT @ £79.99

    I originally wanted an SSD but think I'm going to wait a while til I can afford a 160GB one
  15. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    I hear the momentus XT is a big battery drainer but that it is quite speedy. Will you be mobile a lot?
  16. hsj2011, May 14, 2011
    Last edited: May 14, 2011

    hsj2011 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Not really sure but probably not that much. Most I'd maybe use it on battery would be an hour at a time.

    Also just seen this on ebay: http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Bookendz-15-M...ng_Stations_Port_Replicat&hash=item3a5d9ba10b

    Even though it's for a different model, do you think it would work on the Macbook Pro 3,1? The ports look the same from what I can tell.

    EDIT: nevermind, looks like it hasn't got FW800 which I believe the laptop has

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