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You are here: MacNN Forums > Hardware - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac Notebooks > 7200rpm performance boost

7200rpm performance boost
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Hunter5117
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Jan 21, 2010, 07:33 PM
 
I have just purchased a MBP 2.66ghz with the 320gb, 5400 rpm drive. I have a WD Scorpio Black 320 drive that I was going to use to upgrade a small external drive. Since this is the first generation unibody MBP it should be super easy for me to swap the drives. I was thinking of doing this immediately and then cloning the original drive to the new one before I started doing any software installs etc, then use the MBP drive to upgrade the external. Of course, then I have to keep the old drive available in case I ever need warranty work done.

Question, is the performance boost worth the bother? I intend to use the case from my out of warranty G-Tech mini which I don't think is an easy case to get in and out of should I need to swap back.
     
SierraDragon
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Jan 22, 2010, 01:39 AM
 
Sounds not worth the trouble to me. If you are going to change out the drive IMO you should get at least 500 GB.
     
Simon
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Jan 22, 2010, 04:56 AM
 
The WD Black will perform a bit better than the stock drive, but I doubt the difference will be as big as you're hoping for.

If you're really interested in maximizing HDD performance in your MBP you should probably just buy a really fast HDD. The Seagate Momentus 7200.4 is the fastest notebook HDD you can buy right now. Newegg has it right now for $105.

If that's not enough performance, you'll have to go SSD.
     
Hunter5117  (op)
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Jan 22, 2010, 10:02 AM
 
Thanks, that is kind of what I was thinking. I am not really looking to buy a drive, just use what I have the most effectively. That Seagate sure does look like a great drive at a good price point, I will definitely consider it if I do look for something else. I don't need the biggest and fastest, I do a little Final Cut on my laptop but not usually a lot and that is why I originally bought the external G-Tech Mini as it is or was very popular as an external video drive.

I will likely leave well-enough alone for now, I can always decide on this option down the road.
     
Chimpmaster
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Feb 16, 2010, 10:57 AM
 
Yes, you will notice a performance boost with a 7200rpm drive over a 5400rpm drive. I had a firewire 7200rpm drive which i used to boot off and it was noticeably faster than my internal drive.

BUT

You need to think about overheating your macbook. The 5400rpm drives in macbooks are in there for two reasons : firstly for energy efficiency and secondly for heat issues.
MacBook Alu, 13", 2.4Ghz, 4GB RAM, 256MB video
G5 Imac, 17", 1.9Ghz, 1.5GB RAM, 128MB video, built in isight, airport and bluetooth
Indigo iBook, 366mhz; 320MB RAM; CD; FW; Airport
     
Simon
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Feb 16, 2010, 12:14 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chimpmaster View Post
The 5400rpm drives in macbooks are in there for two reasons : firstly for energy efficiency and secondly for heat issues.
Apple offers 7200 rpm drives as BTO for the 15" and 17" MBP. So obviously those MBPs can handle the 7200 rpm drive's "heat" just fine.

Also, it's a myth that all 7200 rpm drives use more power and generate more heat than a 5400 rpm drive. You have to compare specific drives. I have seen 7200 rpm drives with lower power ratings than 5400 rpm drives. It really depends which drive you look at.
     
bishopazrael
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Feb 16, 2010, 12:41 PM
 
yeah I've got a 7200 rpm drive, the 500 gb. No heat issues at all.
Backups are like guns and condoms. It's better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.
     
tooki
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Feb 18, 2010, 03:02 PM
 
Originally Posted by Chimpmaster View Post
You need to think about overheating your macbook. The 5400rpm drives in macbooks are in there for two reasons : firstly for energy efficiency and secondly for heat issues.
Umm, they didn't put 7200 RPM into notebooks until they ran cool and low-power. There's absolutely no basis in fact in a claim that a notebook will overheat due to the drive. (On the other hand, putting some early 7200 RPM laptop drives into a USB external housing won't work, because some drives need more power to start up than USB can provide. The notebook's internal power has no such limitation.)
     
   
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