Just spent the whole weekend retrofitting my Macs!

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Jonathan F/2, Aug 16, 2015.

  1. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    After deciding Windows PCs weren't for me and not finding a Mac to my liking in regards to price and specs, I decided instead to retrofit my current late model 2009 13" Macbook Pro and 2009 Mac Mini with Yosemite, max'ed RAM and brand new SSD drives! On top of that, my MBP was in bad shape with a broken trackpad, bad battery and cracked monitor clutch hinge. I yanked out the DVD drives from both computers, slapped SSDs in it's place and while the computer "hood" was open I swapped out all the parts needing replacement!

    www.ifixit.com is a godsend for these type of repairs!

    I also spent the time to clear out all the dust and dirt inside both computers. So now each Mac is running dual hard drives with an SSD to boot the OS/apps and a standard HD for file/photo storage.

    I rebuilt the directories for all the drives using a bootable flash drive running Diskwarrior 5, installed AppDelete to get rid of old and unwanted apps and using Little Snitch to monitor all outgoing transmissions. On the MBP I'm using SMC Fan Control to monitor temps and fan speed in order to keep the computer laptop as cool as possible.

    Anyways, all the upgrades and repairs cost less than buying a new computer and on top of that, I didn't have to pay an overpriced repair bill at the Apple Store! I tried explaining to my wife what I did, but I don't think she gets the extent of what I did to fix our computers! lol

    All that's left is installing all the latest apps, but so far both computers are humming smoothly as if they just got a major tune-up at the mechanic! :D
     
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  2. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Always nice to get a little extra mileage out of your purchases. Good work.
     
  3. usayit

    usayit Mu-43 Hall of Famer

  4. m43happy

    m43happy Mu-43 Veteran

    435
    Feb 18, 2012
    SSDs are the best. I don't think I can ever go back to running an OS off of a regular drive. 12second boot time! Did the superdrive swap as well with OWC's data doubler then just bought a cheap enclosure for the superdrive and use it as an external drive.
     
  5. Hendrik

    Hendrik Mu-43 Regular

    102
    Feb 27, 2015
    Wayland
    Congratulations. I've been happily running the same conversion on an early 2011 15" MBP for nearly a year now. Color me pleased.

    I only occasionally miss the optical drive and, when I do, it takes some looking to find it, usually under some 3-month pile.:shakehead:
     
  6. phigmov

    phigmov Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 4, 2010
    Nice one !

    I bought an old Macboook (not a Pro) and added an SSD - does a great job as an armchair browsing machine. Just waiting for the SSD price to drop to upgrade my Mini & iMac (although having to remove the screen is not something I'm looking forward to).
     
  7. tyrphoto

    tyrphoto Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2014
    Seoul | NYC
    ㅇtㅈyㅅr
    These days SSDs are the way to go if you're storage space needs are 1TB or lower, which for me means laptops as well desktop internal hard drives. Much faster, quieter, less heat build-up and more reliable.

    I'm tempted these days to get a new maxed out 13" MacBook Pro. I gave my GF my 13" MacBook Air since the screen is not really optimal to do post processing. I love my 27" iMacs but would like something to use while I'm traveling.
     
  8. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    You may want to look at the rMB for a travel device for light PP. I had one as a mobile device to go with my 5K iMac. My wife has it now ...........
     
  9. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    Okay guys, so I just noticed that my MBP is running a little hot. Fan tends to run often. Any ideas?
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2015
  10. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Is the CPU under load? Can you see what programs are using the CPU?
     
  11. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Northumberland
    Thanks that might come in handy swapping in a new I/O board.
     
  12. Hazza

    Hazza Just Clicking

    582
    Aug 10, 2013
    Huddersfield UK
    Harry
    I have a 17 inch MBP mid 2011 which used to get really hot even when browsing the web. Then I installed SMC fan control (which I see you already have) and set my fan to run a bit faster than normal, this seems to have worked pretty well but the fan runs all the time. It rarely gets above 55 degrees though now, whereas before it would get to around 80. I have been running it like this for a couple of months and am very happy with it, no more red hot thighs and I do a fair bit of PP on it.
     
  13. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    Photoshop CC tends to shoot it up to 80C, despite my Mac Mini with the same load stays below 60c.

    I'm running SMC Fan Control on high and I also have a laptop fan stand underneath my laptop and it's still running hot. I'm wondering if there might be some internal issue? I was thinking of going back under the hood and really clean out the dust and other junk and see if that might help.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2015
  14. m43happy

    m43happy Mu-43 Veteran

    435
    Feb 18, 2012
    What software are you using that causes this? I noticed on my laptop that the fan comes on more often in LR6 than LR5 before it. I chalk it up to the software using the graphics card in addition to the cpu to speed up LR6 processing. Working in a room that's a little warm doesn't help either (damn you LA heatwave).
     
  15. fredlong

    fredlong Just this guy...

    Apr 18, 2011
    Massachusetts USA
    Fred
    @Jonathan F/2@Jonathan F/2
    Go to the Utilities folder inside the Applications folder and Run Activity Monitor. Choose CPU activity and you'll see what's using the most cycles. If you see something you don't recognize using a lot of cpu, google it to find out what it is and if you can kill it.

    Fred
     
  16. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    Do I read your original post right, are you now running three drives?
     
  17. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    Andrew
    Just for the sake of completeness....depending on the age of the computer and if the heat sink/fan unit was moved at all or the board got slightly twisted in anyway while retrofitting things...it is completely possible that the thermal past that sits between the heat sink and CPU chip is either too dry or is no longer there.

    I'd definitely look at al the other suggestions first, but I have seen this happen quite a few times when upgrading computers (mainly in PC's but the concept should be the same regardless).
     
  18. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    If you are just monitoring temps, then they aren't really comparable between different systems. Different chips and platforms are designed around different thermal loads. Laptop have very limited cooling options vs even the mac mini due to the flatness of the case. You definitely should expect your fan to kick on when doing heavy editing work, and it is certain that an older processor will have to crank harder than a newer one to do the same work.

    Looking in Intel's ARK database - it looks like the Core 2 Duo P7800 that is standard in the 2009 MBP has a max thermal design of 105C. Running at 80C under heavy load sounds healthy.
     
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  19. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    Okay, I think my laptop is okay now. I think the warm LA summer we've been having has been warming up my laptop more than usual! I'll probably still get around to cleaning out some of the dust inside the computer just to get more airflow going!
     
  20. tyrphoto

    tyrphoto Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2014
    Seoul | NYC
    ㅇtㅈyㅅr
    What's an rMB?