Macbook Pro (early 2011)

I was at an auction, and saw a boxed, new Macbook Pro (early 2011). The power cable was still wrapped in plastic, and all manuals were as well. So, I picked it up, and replaced my Macbook Air with it.

I’m actually kind of blown away by it, since this is the first time I’ve seen a laptop with CPU/Motherboard/RAM setup anywhere near the performance of a desktop. The only thing slowing it down is the 5,400 RPM hard drive. While completely useable, when doing virtualization with Parallels the hard drive hits high I/O which slows down the system. Then, I looked into what is available… I’m amazed. A simple replacement of the hard drive with a solid-state drive (SSD), and the systems I/O bottleneck disappears. While everyone reading this may say ‘Oh, but you can do that with any laptop’, it’s the only real bottleneck I’ve found. With a 2.7 GHz Intel core i7 cpu, the processing is not an issue unless you expect server-speed processing.

After researching RAM amounts, I found it possible to upgrade from 4GB to 16GB. With an upgrade to SSD, and 16GB RAM, my Macbook Pro would be faster than the iMac on my desk (which has an Intel core i3). Now if SSD was cheaper, I’d put it into my iMac, but that’s one place where 1TB is necessary…

Having used the Macbook Pro with my iMac’s second monitor (which is Thunderbolt), it seems like the laptop could be faster than my iMac even right now…


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