Davao Mac User

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OWC videos on how to upgrade your Mac’s RAM, HDD

Been looking into getting the new 13″ MacBook Pro soon and instead of paying Apple more to get a memory and hard drive upgrade, I’ll save a lot if I do it myself.

I’ve already done memory module upgrades on a Powerbook, an iBook, an Intel iMac, and a MacBook before, and fairly recently, replaced a MacBook’s dead hard drive for a new one. In all instances I used the web to find tutorials on how to do the job.

With the 13″ MacBook Pro purchase looking, I was glad to find Other World Computing’s large library of tutorials on how to upgrade a memory module or hard drives on a Mac. They also have tutorials on replacing optical drives on some Macs and replacing iPod batteries.

Other World Computing, by the way, is one of the best online resources for computer hardware accessories. Their e-commerce site, macsales.com, has one of the largest catalog for Mac, iPod and iPhone upgrades and expansion products.

OWC makes the 13″ MacBook Pro RAM and HDD upgrades look pretty straightforward. Each video begins with a skill level rating and the average time it should take for the upgrade to complete. The video also shows a list of necessary tools and also some reminders (like anti-static precaution and all that). There are three video qualities you can choose from, choice would probably depend on how fast your internet connection is.

Skill level rating for both RAM and HDD upgrade are “easy” and time required is only take 10 minutes. If the memory module and HDD upgrades are done in just one sitting, it probably just take 15 minutes.

Removing the memory module

HDD brace

Some notes on removing the bottom cover of the 13″ MacBook Pro:

  • A #00 Phillips screwdriver is required.
  • Ten screws need to be removed from the bottom of the 13″ MacBook Pro.
  • Three screws are longer than the res. These are located near the hinge.
  • The screws go in at angle and not straight down.

Screw at an angle

I’ve read complaints about how the RAM and HDD upgrades are not very user-friendly on the new MacBook Pros. However, based on these two videos I think they’re wrong. It would be interesting to see if someone with little or no experience when it comes to tinkering with computers can at least do the RAM upgrade just by watching OWC’s video.

Finally. A Mac-related post.

Filed under: iMac, Mac, Mac mini, MacBook, MacBook Pro, , , , ,

New white MacBook; free 8GB iPod touch* in Back-to-School promo [u]

First read about the updates to the white MacBooks over at TUAW, with readers tipping the staff  about the quiet upgrade.

The new internal specs are (previous specifications in parentheses):

  • 2.13 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (up from 2.0 GHz)
  • 2GB 800MHz DDR2 memory (up from 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM)
  • 160GB hard drive (up from 120GB)

AppleInsider notes that the new white MacBook still uses the same NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics card. The graphics card was updated January 21st along with the 1,066MHz front-side bus and doubling of the to RAM to 2GB.

The cheapest MacBook is still priced at $999, and according to AppleInsider the new white MacBook is eligible for Apple’s Back to School promo.

The just announced promo lets qualifying students, faculty or staff members get an *online rebate of $229 when they purchase a Mac and an 8GB iPod touch. Since the 8GB iPod touch costs $229, with the online rebate, it’s like getting the iPod touch for free.

The new white MacBook isn’t available in the Philippine Apple Online Store yet. Perhaps still waiting for stocks to arrive. Non-US TUAW readers have also commented that the upgrade isn’t available in their respective Apple Online Stores as well.

I’m hoping that we’ll have a back-to-school promo here as well.

Update: The Philippine Apple Online Store now has the white MacBook. It retails for ₱ 55,990.00 and estimated shipping is within 24 hours. No back-to-school promo though.

The internal specs between the polycarbonate and the low-end unibody MacBook is almost very similar (the unibody MacBook uses a faster DDR3 RAM). I’m expecting (more like hoping) for an update to the aluminum MacBooks real soon.

Filed under: iPod touch, MacBook, ,

Macworld review: White MacBook Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics

As far as system updates go, the changes to new white MacBook are welcome, if subtle. The new faster graphics will make casual gamers happy, and who doesn’t like additional RAM? Though the slightly slower processor didn’t help performance any, this new white MacBook is a solid entry-level product. And if you need a Mac portable with FireWire, it’s your most affordable choice, with the cheapest MacBook Pro costing twice as much as the white MacBook.

[source: Macworld]

Filed under: MacBook, , ,

13-inch White MacBook updated; better processor and graphics chip

Last week, Apple quietly updated their most affordable MacBook, the 13-inch white polycarbonate MacBook. It now sports the same processor and graphics chip with that of the $1,299 (Php71,990.00 at the Philippine Apple Online Store) 13-inch aluminium unibody MacBook. The white MacBook also had a RAM upgrade; default is now 2GB from what used to be 1GB.

The $999 (Php55,990.00) white MacBook is an excellent option for those who are looking to save $300.

Though the white MacBook now has the same 2.0 GHz Core 2 Duo and NVIDIA GeFroce 9400M chips with that of the unibody MacBook, it doesn’t mean the latter is not worth considering.

MacWorld’s Peter Cohen in his article cites the differences between the white and aluminium MacBooks:

The more expensive aluminum-clad MacBook features faster memory—1,066MHz DDR3 SDRAM, compared to 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM. It also has a hard disk drive that’s one-third larger than the drive on the $999 model—160GB, versus 120GB. You also have the option of getting a Solid State Disk (SSD) drive on the aluminum MacBook, something you can’t buy for the $999 model. And that Mini DisplayPort interface is compatible with Apple’s new 24-inch LED Cinema Display, which won’t work with the white MacBook.

But the white MacBook does have its advantages:

…especially for Mac users who have already made an investment in some camcorders and external storage devices: It’s the only MacBook in Apple’s lineup that still has a FireWire port. The white MacBook features a FireWire 400 connector, making it compatible with myriad standard-definition camcorders, hard drives and other devices that have shipped since the late 1990s. The white MacBook also features a mini-DVI jack, meaning that connecting it to a DVI or VGA-equipped display is markedly less expensive than having to buy the Mini DisplayPort adapter required for the aluminum MacBook. Apple sells the mini-DVI adapters for $19 each, while its Mini DisplayPort equivalents are priced at $29.

If you are planning to get a Mac portable, the white MacBook is worthy of consideration. With the money you can save by foregoing the unibody MacBook, you can buy an external drive or buy a 2.5-inch drive to make up for the 40GB difference. The other differences, the faster memory, SSD, and MiniDisplayPort, are in my opinion, of lesser importance. The new graphics chip, as shown in previous benchmarks, will perhaps be more than up to the task when it comes to photo editing and some movie making using the new iMovie ’09.

The updated $999 MacBook is a worthy buy.

[Source: Macworld]

Filed under: MacBook, ,

Apple updates white polycarbonate 13-inch MacBook

Without fanfare, Apple upgraded its most affordable Mac portable this week.

The $999 white MacBook has been given a processor and graphics chip upgrade which is now similar to its aluminium unibody sibling.

The entry-level MacBook is now equipped with 2.0 GHz Core 2 Duo processor and the NVIDIA GeForce 9400M graphics processor with 256MB of DDR2 SDRAM shared memory, just like the 13-inch unibody MacBook.

Another improvement comes as doubling of the RAM to 2 GBs as default. Bluetooth has also been upgraded to 2.1 from 2.0. The rest of the specifications remains the same.

[source: AppleInsider]

Filed under: MacBook,

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