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Old July 21st, 2011, 04:12 AM   #1
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Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

Hey everybody,

I want to upgrade my macbook pro which I bought 5 years ago with the specifics below. But I am twisting around the question whether to buy it with the SSD drives or stick with the 500 GB 7200 rpm drive.

I'll use it for editing AVC-Intra 100 HD files so I need a fast drive. Yes, I will use a lot of external hard drives, but I would like to edit from the internal hard drives for certain situations. Next to that I will be
off loading a lot of stuff on it. I need at least the 512 GB so I am looking at another 1100 euro's for it. Is it worth it?

If I buy it with the 500 GB 7200 rpm drive now, is it easy to upgrade the macbook pro with a SSD drive afterwards?

Thanks in advance

Cheers Niels

2,2-GHz quad-core Intel Core i7
8GB 1333MHz DDR3 SDRAM - 2x4GB
500 GB seriële ATA, 7200 rpm
SuperDrive 8x (DVD±R DL/DVD±RW/CD-RW)
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Old July 21st, 2011, 04:38 AM   #2
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

Just get the 500gb 7200rpm drive now, and later on, when you get your SSD, swap out your DVD drive (I don't ever use it) and get an optibay drive on ebay. Pop the SSD drive into the optibay, and install into where the DVD bay once via the SATA that is already there.

I currently run two hard drives on my 2008 MBP, the optibay 1tb hard drive (the one in the DVD slot) is my Aperture and FCP scratchdisk, it works SUPER well. I don't ever have to worry about an external hard drive when traveling, and don't have to worry about accidentally ejecting the hard drive while working on stuff due to the firewire/usb connection accidentally being nudged.

It is a very straight forward process, it isn't hard. And when you need to take it in for warranty, just put the DVD drive back in and make everything look "stock."

Search more about optibays for uni-body MBP.
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Old July 21st, 2011, 07:29 AM   #3
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

Thanks a lot Sam! Great info!
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Old July 21st, 2011, 08:03 AM   #4
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

Just let me know if you have more questions. For video editing, and photo editing, have a second internal hard drive is the most awesome thing ever, taking apart your computer is fun as well. You can find tutorials online, especially at ifixit.com. You can easily back up your footage/data to both drives in record time due to the sata connection, after I log and transfer my mxf clips to my optibay scratchdisk, I drag the folder onto my main drive for back up, quick and easy.

Unless you are dealing with mega mondo raging huge transcoded pro res files, I'd imagine you can buy a smaller ssd drive as a scratch drive in your optibay to save money. Store the majority of your footage on your main drive(get a 1tb 2.5" drive!) or external drive, and drag the necessary clips to the optibay ssd scratchdisk for editing.

There is a LONG thread over at Macrumor's MBP sub-forum, it talks in detail about optibaying MBP, especially the new uni-body MBPs, when I upgrade my MBP in a years time, I am getting another optibay from ebay asap, can't live without it!
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Old July 21st, 2011, 11:58 AM   #5
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

Hey Sam,

Do you want your video files on your main drive? I thought that was frowned upon. Or are you saying to just keep a copy there for back-up?

{Edit: Whoops, I was thinking of FCP7 not FCPX.)
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Old July 21st, 2011, 05:52 PM   #6
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

I meant keeping a backup of all video files on a main drive or external drive, and only moving those needed to be used in FCP/FCPX to the optibay scratchdisk for editing. So perhaps he can get away with a smaller SSD such as a 256gb, unless his project files will be bigger than 256gb after transcode. 1000 euros for a 500gb SSD is a huge chunk of cash!
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Old July 26th, 2011, 06:56 AM   #7
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

Thanks guys! I think I'll go for the 500 GB 7200 rpm drive and I'll buy a SSD drive myself. I'll put this one at the place of the DVD drive and use the DVD drive extern with usb.
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Old July 29th, 2011, 07:51 AM   #8
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

An SSD makes a hell of a difference to the performance & general snappiness & usability of a laptop. My early 2008 MBP that I upgraded with a Crucial M300 SSD feels much faster to use than a brand new 2011 2.3GHz i7 MBP. This is in terms of system startup time, application startup time, moving between applications etc. There are of course operations where the faster quad core CPU will fly in comparison but mostly the disk drive is the bottleneck.
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Old August 18th, 2011, 04:38 PM   #9
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

Anyone with a 17 inch Macbook Pro 2011 have experience with the OWC Mercury Extreme Pro 6G 240 GB SSD?
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Old September 3rd, 2011, 05:58 AM   #10
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Re: Macbook Pro to SSD or not to SSD?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Young View Post
I currently run two hard drives on my 2008 MBP, the optibay 1tb hard drive (the one in the DVD slot) is my Aperture and FCP scratchdisk, it works SUPER well.
That's also what I did -- ripped out the DVD drive and installed a 1 terabyte Western Digital hard drive in its place -- my MacBook Pro has now 1.5 TB. The DVD drive I put in an enclosure to use as an external drive if I need to play/burn DVDs. Although I've always liked SSD, currently their price/performance (and size) don't justify going down that road, yet.

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