Mid-2009 13” Macbook Pro Core 2 Duo 2.26GHz Upgrade
My June 2009 13” MacBook Pro Core 2 Duo Penryn P7550 2.26GHz has been long overdue for both a hardware and software upgrade. To date, the machine continues to run on Snow Leopard 10.6.8 and the only tweak thus far has been upgrading the factory-installed 2GB of DDR3-1066MHz SDRAM with a pair of Crucial 4GB sticks.
As Geekbench measures the performance of just the processor and memory, it is a convenient way to evaluate (and hopefully justify) the $45.99 spent. This machine hit 3,288 in 32-bit mode, a mere 3.43% increase over the Mac Benchmark Chart scores for this model and year: 3,179 in 32-bit mode and 3,504 in 64-bit mode. This isn’t surprising given that both the factory and upgrade sticks are limited by the same 1066MHz frequency of the PC3-8500 modules.
Novabench tests the system CPU, RAM, hard disks and graphics. This machine scored a composite 372 versus the 341 for Top Macs by NovaBench Score for a mid-2009 MacBookPro5,5. The 341 score is calculated out of a sample size of 3,983 in which the average installed RAM is 4GB. A 9.09% increase in performance is acceptable for the price.
The Disk Write Speed of 40MB/s is a stumbling block. This mid-2009 is still panting away on the stock 160GB SATA hard drive, running out of breath at 5,400RPM. I missed the window of opportunity for a 7,200RPM upgrade before the 2011 Thailand flood. With SSD prices continuously dropping with increasing read and write speeds, going solid state all the way sounds conclusive.