Will upgrading my old SSD boost my laptop's performance?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Gatteau, May 25, 2016.

  1. Gatteau macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 23, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    #1
    I have a mid-2010 13" MBP with El Cap and 8 GB of ram (PC8500 DDR3 1066MHz SO-DIMM) installed.

    As for disks, I have a 1TB WD Scorpio Blue 5200RPM and an 115GB OWC Mercury Extreme Pro SSD which I bought 5 years ago.

    Now, I know the laptop is old but I want to hold off buying a new one for a little while longer, and I've been wondering if upgrading my SSD to a newer model (i.e. Samsung Evo) would help boost its performance a little bit, or would the upgrade be unnoticeable? Would it be worth it at all?

    Thanks.
     
  2. eyeseeyou macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2011
  3. keysofanxiety macrumors G3

    keysofanxiety

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #3
    Yes, although it really depends on your usage.

    Your HDD SATA interface is 3Gb/s, which means that the theoretical maximum supported read/write speeds for an SSD clocks to about 330MB/s. However the OWC Extreme that you have has read speeds of about 35MB/s and 80MB/s on a 3Gb/s interface, as SSD tech & performance was in its infancy when you bought it.

    The performance impact from fitting a Samsung EVO would be more noticable if you're doing things like video/audio editing, as plugins and content would load in much quicker. If you're just using it for browsing the Internet then the performance, although improved, would be less 'obvious', as SSDs open applications like that fairly quickly anyway, due to instant access time.

    Either way, it will make a positive impact, but it's up to you to consider if your usage would justify an upgrade.
     
  4. Gatteau thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 23, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    #4
    I use Photoshop and Illustrator a lot, though not entirely professionally. No video/audio editing at all. On a day to day basis, my usage is normally for work (text, emails, spreadsheets). I watch a lot of streams, movies, TV series, YouTube videos. No gaming whatsoever either.

    The reason why I thought of upgrading my SSD is that recently my laptop got slower when booting up, opening pictures, videos, apps, etc. I know it's redundant to say, but I want to future proof it for a little bit longer to see how'll the new MBPs be like.. maybe another year, as I don't really need the best of the best in terms of performance.
     
  5. keysofanxiety macrumors G3

    keysofanxiety

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #5
    Hi there Gatteau,

    In which case I'd definitely recommend upgrading to a Samsung 850 EVO; you will see a big performance boost. If you don't want to spend as much, Crucial will be absolutely fine as well. :)
     
  6. Gatteau thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 23, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    #6
    Hey :)

    Thanks, so it won't bottleneck my old HDD? I will then!
     
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G5

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #7
    The answer is YES.

    It made a great improvement on my own 2010 MacBook Pro.

    Important:
    Since the 2010 MBPro has only a SATA-2 bus inside, you don't have to spend extra to get a "top of the line performance" SSD.

    Just about ANY SSD will yield roughly the same level of performance.

    I would suggest that you get either a Crucial or Sandisk Plus.

    Go to ifixit.com for the installation guide -- the swap takes about 15 minutes and BE SURE to use the RIGHT TOOLS for the job (Phillips #00 and TORX T-6).

    I would also suggest you pick up a USB3 enclosure for your old drive.

    Another suggestion:
    "Prep and test" the new SSD in the external enclosure BEFORE you install it into the MBPro.
    This way, if you encounter any problems, your MBPro is still "intact and running".

    After you get the new drive initialized, and get your stuff installed on it, do a test boot from the external enclosure and take a good look around to be sure things are as you like them.

    THEN "do the swap".
     
  8. Gatteau thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 23, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    #8
    I already have an SSD installed so I'm not so sure what you mean by 'just about any SSD will yield the same performance' honestly. Do you mean newer ones? I mentioned a Samsung Evo because our local store has one for a pretty good price.

    I did this before and I already have all the tools, thanks though.

    Can I ask why the USB 3 enclosure? My model doesn't support USB 3. I have a normal SATA to USB enclosure.
     
  9. Fishrrman macrumors G5

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #9
    OP wrote:
    "Can I ask why the USB 3 enclosure? My model doesn't support USB 3. I have a normal SATA to USB enclosure."

    USB3 is backward compatible with the hardware you have now, BUT... at some point in the future you may move up to NEW hardware, and then the USB3 enclosure will run at significantly faster speeds...
     
  10. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #10
    I'm going to disagree with the others a bit... OWC says that drive is 280 MBs read and 112 MBs write speeds. So you are close to saturating the SATA bus with read speeds already. I'd say unless you are doing something that involved a LOT of sustained write activity you are very unlikely you be able to even tell the difference with a new SSD. Unless you just need a new SSD with more space, I would not spend the money for what is likely to be no perceivable difference in day to day usage.
     
  11. Gatteau thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 23, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    #11
    So what you're saying is that I should just keep mine?
     
  12. Mr. Retrofire macrumors 601

    Mr. Retrofire

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    www.emiliana.cl/en
    #12
    No, it reduces the performance. :rolleyes:
    --- Post Merged, May 26, 2016 ---
    The price difference between the Crucial offerings and the Samsung 850 EVO is nearly non-existent. :rolleyes:
    --- Post Merged, May 26, 2016 ---
    Probably. On the other side, 5 years is a lot for a SSD. I would replace it (with a 850 Pro, not EVO).
     
  13. Gatteau thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 23, 2009
    Location:
    Italy
    #13
    Well, sigh. Now I don't know what to do. :(
     
  14. keysofanxiety macrumors G3

    keysofanxiety

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #14
    Sarcastic, and terrible advice. Good job. Replace it with an 850 Pro? He's got a 3Gb/s SATA interface, for goodness' sake. Any modern Crucial or Samsung would have practically identical performance with the SATA/CPU bottleneck. It would be an absolute waste of money for the 850 Pro.

    OP, just go for any new Crucial or Samsung. It'll improve the performance.
     
  15. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #15
    Unless you need more space and want one for that reason.... otherwise for the reasons I explained, I would be very surprised if you could even tell the difference with a new one. If it were me, I would keep what you have.
     
  16. 2268473 Suspended

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2012
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #16
    I also have a mid-2010 Macbook Pro, expect 15". I doubled the RAM (to 8GB) and added a Samsung SSD from Amazon and the speed increase is amazing...

    Was thinking about buying a new Macbook Pro but I think this one will last a lot longer now! I use Photoshop and Parallels with no issues.
     
  17. hallux macrumors 68030

    hallux

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2012
    #18
    Nice anecdote, but I have a feeling your situation differs from the OP's in one significant measure - the OP already has an SSD and was asking about replacing it with a newer SSD.

    If the specs posted by @Weaselboy are accurate (a quick Google search is only turning up the 6G version), I'll agree with him that the difference won't be plainly obvious in day to day use.
     
  18. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #19
    I was going by the specs listed here.
     
  19. donlab macrumors 6502

    donlab

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2004
    Location:
    USA
    #20
    Weaselboy is offering sound advice and I agree. You won't feel the difference. You have already made the jump to SSD and you're used to its speed. Upgrade if you need more space. Otherwise if you have been using the system for the past 5 years. Have you done a clean install of the OS and applications at any point in between? If not, you may see improvement in system performance for a clean install of OS and apps. Backup all data of course. Preferably make two backups to separate drives.
     

Share This Page