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Apple Notebooks Apple's notebook computers including MacBook Pro, MacBook, MacBook Air, PowerBook, and iBook.

Replacing HD with SSD vs Replacing OD with SSD

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Member Since: Mar 27, 2013
Posts: 1
Brennon is on a distinguished road

Brennon is offline
First of all, hello everyone. I just recently joined (as in a few minutes ago), and I joined specifically to obtain the advice of you fine ladies and gents. So thanks in advance for the advice, and I'm happy to be apart of your forum.

Now on to the reason I'm pestering you all.

I bought my macbook pro a while back (2009 I think), and it's beginning to lag behind some of my friend's PCs, speed-wise. I'm not really a big gamer or anything like that (I play some older games off and on, but nothing major), I mostly use my macbook for school and PDF viewing and editing (for D&D...yes I know, I'm a dork). So, I came to the conclusion that I was going to replace my HD with a SSD (specifically this one) and grab a few more gigs of RAM (these ones) and convert my old HD into an external drive with this.

However, I was in Barnes & Nobles, flipping through a mac-tip magazine, and saw that you could replace your optical drive instead, and keep the HD as a secondary storage thing (the main appeal in this option seems to be the ability to run windows via bootcamp, although that's not the biggest deal for me...although it would be nice). So now I'm up in the air about which to do. This will be the first time I've ever opened up my Macbook - or any computer for that matter - and I'm not super confident in my abilities when it comes to this kind of thing. So I want to be absolutely sure what I'm doing is best, so I don't risk messing up my computer only to regret what I did a few weeks later.

So, what I would like to know:

1 - Which is, in your opinion, the better option (pros and cons of each kind of thing)

2 - What are the main differences, day-to-day-use-wise, that I will notice between these two options

3 - How does the SSD access the original HD, GUI-wise. As in, can I use the old HD as essentially a live in external drive, throwing stuff on there (via finder) I don't want to use right now, so I can grab it later? Or do I have to boot from the drive itself to access it?

Here's my info

13" Macbook Pro mid-2009 model

Processor: 2.26 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
Memory: 4 GB 1067 MHz DDR3
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 9400M 256 MB
Software: Mac OS X Lion 10.7.5 (11G56)

My current HD is just the standard 160gb one it came with.
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chscag's Avatar
Member Since: Jan 23, 2008
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
Posts: 44,770
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Mac Specs: 27" iMac i5, 3.2 GHz, iPad 3, iPhone 5c, 3 iPods, Yosemite

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Mac Sales (Other World Computing) sells the Data Doubler kit that you're interested in buying. They also sell a fine line of SSD drives. Since they have a toll free 800 number, I suggest giving them a call and speak to one of their technicians and sales people. They're an authorized Mac reseller and highly recommended by myself and most other knowledgeable Mac owners.

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rabbitjetta's Avatar
Member Since: Nov 08, 2010
Location: Indiana
Posts: 965
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Mac Specs: Main-11" Air, iPhone 6+, iPad Mini 3, Hi-Fi Extras- Too many to count

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I also recommend OWC or iFixit to get parts from, OWC is authorized and iFixit is very well known.
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Stretch's Avatar
Member Since: Jan 13, 2007
Location: Central New York
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Mac Specs: 15in i7 MacBook Pro, 8GB RAM, 120GB SSD, 500GB HD

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I went with replacing the optical drive as I hardly used it. Now I have a fast SSD, and enough space for all my media.

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Currently running OS X 10.10
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wolfpuppies3's Avatar
Member Since: Oct 07, 2010
Location: Virginia, USA
Posts: 381
wolfpuppies3 is an unknown at this point
Mac Specs: 15" MB Pro, 2.66 i7 ; 11 MBA 1.8GZ i7; 13"MBA 2GZ i7 8 GB mem 512GB SSD, 2 iPad3s, 1 iPad Mini

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I kept my optical drive intact but swapped out the original 500 GB HDD in my 2010 MB Pro with a 512 GB SSD. Took all of five minutes or so after I had cloned my HDD to the SSD. OWC sold me what I needed and I completed the project for less than $350 and the exchange made my MB Pro three times faster. I kept the original HDD for external use in a case that OWC also sells.
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Member Since: Feb 27, 2012
Location: Long Beach, California
Posts: 6
Abdeh is on a distinguished road
Mac Specs: 13" MacBook Air I iPhone 5 I iPad mini I iPod Classic I iPod nano I Apple TV

Abdeh is offline
As chscag suggested, check out OWC, they've got tutorials and the tools... everything you'll need.
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