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I am going to buy the high end MacBook Pro mid 2012. I want to get an SSD, but the BTO options given by Apple are too pricey in my opinion. Which third party SSD (512 GB) are recommended (for performances and prices)?

Edit: at a local shop they told me that changing the drive of an Apple product invalidates warranty. Do you know if it's true?

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Since performance, reliability are the major inverse conditions for price, by what mix of the above is a fitting compromise for you? –  bmike Jun 23 '12 at 15:44
    
I'm looking for a good compromise. I don't want to pay double price for having 5% better performances, but something they yields good results compatibly with a mid-range pricing. –  martjno Jun 23 '12 at 16:49
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6 Answers 6

Your warranty won't be invalidated although Apple can refuse to work on it until you reinstall the original drive (so put it away on a shelf). A local shop might be more flexible. Or not.

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I second this. When I purchased my MBP I planned to immediately replace the stock drive with a 7200 rpm WD drive. I called Apple to ask about warranty issues and the CSR told me that both memory and the hard drive are considered user-replaceable items and do not void the warranty if upgraded properly. However in the event service is needed, he recommended that I replace the third party drive with the original Apple drive to ensure that it wasn't the issue. He also mentioned any damage caused by user upgrades would not be covered by the warranty. –  manoftheson Nov 27 '12 at 1:12
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I recently abandoned mechanical drives after 2 mechanical drive failures that were too close for comfort. I went with the Crucial M4 series because:

  1. I have never had any trouble with Crucial products (can't say the same for others)
  2. Mac forum searches turned up many success stories where MBP owners installed a Crucial M4 SSD.

I'm completely satisfied with the drive after 1 month of use and highly recommend it. Watch the prices. They are currently on a downtrend in price. My drive is now 10% cheaper than when I purchased it.

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I also upgraded to a Crucial drive after the apple service point told me it wouldn't void the warranty wen installed properly. Not sure which one but if you look on the Crucial site they have a list of which onces are mac compatible. Using my drive for around 8 months never had any issue. –  FLY Nov 27 '12 at 12:02
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I bought and installed an OWC SSD in an older MBP a few years ago and it was fast, reliable, and never caused any problems.

http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/SSD/OWC/

They have a decent warranty and stand behind their products.

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What you've asked is very difficult to sufficiently answer without a specific price range and more specific performance expectations (what you use your computer for, etc) This is probably not what you want to hear, but you're going to have to do some research to find your own ideal price to performance ratio. Check out Storage Review as a good place to start and Tom's Hardware is another good resource to determine what to buy. Each site has reviews and benchmarks on specific SSD models.

Both Crucial and OWC are great recommendations for notebook SSDs, but there are also other great brands such as Samsung, Kingston, Corsair, Intel, and more. In my own research Samsung 830, 840, & 840 Pro series seem to be a top choice for notebooks due to their lower power demands while also providing good speeds, but they cost more. OCZ seems to have good performance, but also generally with higher power demands better suited to desktops. SanDisk Extreme SSDs also seem to be a good value, but you have to be careful as some models have had firmware issues. But that is just scratching the surface...there is no easy answer. However if price isn't an issue for a 512GB: check this out.

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MBP 13in mid 2012 has lots of room for upgrades making it a relevant machine for 5+ years. OWC computing has lots of information on SSD drives. I would recommend looking into the best solution for transferring over your current HD contents to what would be your new SSD, as that seems to be the most "complicated" part of the process.

Macbook Airs in general are non upgradeable. You are locked into the machine for 2-3 years until the new ones make yours obsolete and you will have to buy new again.

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With the Macbook Air 13" you get an SSD and a screen with an higher resolution for the same price.

the MBP has the same core features, only offers some more ports and a CD/DVD burner, if you don't need this features i higly suggest a MBA 13".

the downside for the MBA is due to the fact that it gets hot under heavy load and the MBP has more room for the air and the cooling system.

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that's not true at all... in short the macbook air is less in so many aspects besides that, it's not an answer to the question. Also note Op is asking for a High end MBP. –  FLY Nov 27 '12 at 12:09
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