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

Looking to upgrade my macbook pro


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Farmer Pug

 
Member Since: Oct 06, 2010
Location: County Armagh Northern Ireland
Posts: 71
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Mac Specs: 2010 Macbook Pro 15 2.4 GHz i5, 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3, 320Gb. Upgraded to 8Gb ram and 1Tb hard drive

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I have had my macbook for a few years now, i think the applecare is nearly expired, but i want to improve its performance

I use iMovie for making some youtube videos and normally it runs ok, but for longer videos it can get a bit laggy and a bit of a pain to use.

The hard drive is 320Gb which when dealing with videos can quickly fill up.

The specs of my macbook are along the side, its running the latest version of OS X 10.8.3.
2010 Macbook Pro 15 2.4 GHz i5, 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3, 320Gb

I was thinking of putting extra RAM and a 1tb Hard drive in, is there any particular type of ram or hard drive i should look out for? Would this be an acceptable way to improve the performance? What is the maximum amount of RAM this computer can take?
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pigoo3

 
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Mac Specs: 13" MB 2.4ghz, 2gig ram, OS 10.7.5

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If you feel that your videos are getting a bit laggy...I don't really think that a ram or HD upgrade will speed things up. To speed things up...you really need a faster cpu or faster graphics hardware.

I will say that it is possible that more ram will help...but it really depends on how you use your computer currently. If you have too many apps open at once...then the ram will be spilt up amongst all those apps.

As a test...what I would do is...reboot the computer...ONLY launch the app that you use to watch videos on. Watch a video that you feel is normally laggy (and shouldn't be)...and see if it is still laggy under these conditions.

With 4gig of ram & just one app. open...if the video still seems laggy...then either the quality of the video is the problem (just a poor quality video)...or you need a newer computer with a faster cpu and/or video hardware.

Really...a 2010 MacBook Pro with an i5 cpu & dedicated graphics hardware shouldn't be that "wimpy" in terms of performance...so I'm thinking maybe the video you think is laggy is of bad quality (unless you're talking about a professional "Hollywood Quality" movie/video).

As far as ram. You could try upgrading the ram. It's a relatively low cost upgrade. Certainly MUCH cheaper than going out & buying a new computer. I believe that your computer can be upgraded to 8gig of ram.

HTH,

- Nick

p.s. As far as a ram or HD supplier. For ram we usually recommend:

- www.crucial.com
- www.macsales.com

I realize that these suppliers may or may not work for you (cost) since you are in Ireland. But you could check out their prices & see how it looks. As far as an HD upgrade. You just need a 2.5" SATA HD...just shop for the best price.

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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Farmer Pug

 
Member Since: Oct 06, 2010
Location: County Armagh Northern Ireland
Posts: 71
Farmer Pug is on a distinguished road
Mac Specs: 2010 Macbook Pro 15 2.4 GHz i5, 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3, 320Gb. Upgraded to 8Gb ram and 1Tb hard drive

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Thanks for your response

Its not when playing the videos that it lags, if im editing a video in imovie, (editing video from a digital camcorder or iphone video) sometimes if the video project is large the computer can lag a bit when doing something such as trying to scrub across the video timeline to get to a specific point, or add text it slows down a bit, if i then go to work on another shorter imovie project the performance is ok.

And i have a bad habbit of keeping a lot of apps open at once, although even when i close them down this performance issue is the same on larger videos.

As for watching and streaming videos the computer is fine, the only other time i could complain about speed is when browsing through my iphoto library scrolling up and down isnt perfectly smooth with a larger album open, although this is cured by closing other open applications.

Thanks for the link i see crucial has a good way of showing compatible products
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pigoo3

 
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Mac Specs: 13" MB 2.4ghz, 2gig ram, OS 10.7.5

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peugeot View Post
Its not when playing the videos that it lags, if im editing a video in imovie, (editing video from a digital camcorder or iphone video) sometimes if the video project is large the computer can lag a bit when doing something such as trying to scrub across the video timeline to get to a specific point, or add text it slows down a bit, if i then go to work on another shorter imovie project the performance is ok.
Ok...I see...that makes sense. Thanks for clarifying.

It sounds to me that maybe you're working on more complex or longer videos than you may have in the past...and the additional complexity or length is what is lagging or bogging down the computer (making it do more work then it used to).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peugeot View Post
And i have a bad habbit of keeping a lot of apps open at once, although even when i close them down this performance issue is the same on larger videos.
If you have already tried the test I mentioned above (rebooting the computer & only having your video editing program open...so that all ram is for this one application)...and the video still seems laggy...more ram may help. But I'm thinking that maybe:

- a faster cpu
- more cpu's (core 2 duo vs. quad core)
- or better graphics hardware

...may be what's needed for better (less laggy) video performance.

Of course...the cost of a new computer has to be weighed against the amount of inconvenience the laggy video...and maybe the ram upgrade will help. It's sounds like the computer is mostly fine for all other computing activities.

HTH,

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
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Farmer Pug

 
Member Since: Oct 06, 2010
Location: County Armagh Northern Ireland
Posts: 71
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Mac Specs: 2010 Macbook Pro 15 2.4 GHz i5, 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3, 320Gb. Upgraded to 8Gb ram and 1Tb hard drive

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imovie projects seem to slow down if there is a lot of splits, and transitions etc.

The graphics according to the computer is:
NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M 256 MB

Im thinking of upgrading to 8gb ram from crucial they do the 8gb for 60

As for the hard drive as long as i type in "1tb 2.5 sata hard drive" would any type suit, currently my hitachi 320gb hard drive is 5400rpm could i get a hard drive thats faster?
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peugeot View Post
As for the hard drive as long as i type in "1tb 2.5 sata hard drive" would any type suit, currently my hitachi 320gb hard drive is 5400rpm could i get a hard drive thats faster?
Three things:

1. If you are thinking of getting a 1 TB drive...double check it's height. There was a time when if the height/thickness of the drive was more than 9.5mm...it might be a tight fit. 750gig or less are usually not a problem.

2. There are 7200rpm drives...which may or may not make things seem significantly faster vs. a 5400rpm drive.

3. The really fast choice is to get an SSD. But they are super expensive.

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
QUOTE Thanks
Farmer Pug

 
Member Since: Oct 06, 2010
Location: County Armagh Northern Ireland
Posts: 71
Farmer Pug is on a distinguished road
Mac Specs: 2010 Macbook Pro 15 2.4 GHz i5, 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3, 320Gb. Upgraded to 8Gb ram and 1Tb hard drive

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Thanks pigoo your help has been greatly appreciated

I purchased an 8gb RAM kit from crucial who must have a UK warehouse, they offered free postage. For 60.

The 1Tb Hard drives are roughly 90 here, if the ram sorts out the speed that will do for the moment.
I can live with deleting stuff frequently to keep the hard drive empty, once i finish with a video and upload it to youtube, i normally delete all the raw footage anyhow and backup finished videos to a DVD before deleting them.

Thanks for your advice, ill let you know what sort of difference the RAM makes when it arrives.
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pigoo3

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peugeot View Post
I purchased an 8gb RAM kit from crucial who must have a UK warehouse, they offered free postage. For 60.
Awesome...thanks for that info. We have quite a few members from the UK...and I've always wondered how Crucial handled the shipping.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peugeot View Post
I can live with deleting stuff frequently to keep the hard drive empty...
Great plan! I wish more folks could manage to do this. It's surprising how many folks have issues maintaining their hard drives without letting them get full (or almost full)!

Please let us know if the 8gig ram upgrade helps (I'm curious).

- Nick

- Computer slow, too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
- Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some speedup tips: Speedup
- Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
- Apple Battery Info. Battery
QUOTE Thanks
Farmer Pug

 
Member Since: Oct 06, 2010
Location: County Armagh Northern Ireland
Posts: 71
Farmer Pug is on a distinguished road
Mac Specs: 2010 Macbook Pro 15 2.4 GHz i5, 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3, 320Gb. Upgraded to 8Gb ram and 1Tb hard drive

Farmer Pug is offline
Its been a few months and i have to say the computer seems to run better with the extra ram, i also upgraded the hard drive to a 1TB, with the old 320Gb it was usually nearly full which became a bit of a nuisance having to free up space. Now its working great.
Thanks for your help
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bobtomay

 
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Moving large files around / on and off the drive, iDefrag may help in your case. Download the trial and check your free space fragmentation from time to time.

I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.
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acas7i11o

 
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You can also do a couple of things to improve performance on your machine by disabling some services you might not be using.

-Make sure that on the languages tab, you only have one language (English I pressume)
-Disable spotlight (if you don't use it) by running this on the terminal:
sudo launchctl unload -w /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.metadata.mds.plist

-Reduce Safari's cache (or whatever browser) to a smaller size. If you have broadband I doubt you would even feel this change, while it might save you some disk space.

-Use a solid color for the background (saves some RAM)

-Go through your apps and delete anything you haven't used for months

-Store as much as you can on external hard drives, iCloud, USB drives.

-For video editing in particular, you can get a badass Firewire external drive and that should improve things quite a bit.

-Remember to always have tons of free space on your system drive since your scratch disk/swap is stored there, so the more you have, the more virtual RAM you can have, even if it is slow.
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