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Looking to upgrade HD space on my 2015 MBP 15" — considering purchasing the OWC Aura Pro 1TB drive, but am quite wary of the many negative reviews I've seen surrounding it (overheating, battery issues, trouble booting)..

Does anyone have any real positive experience with this drive upgrade, or any other recommendations?

I'm honestly feeling most confident about purchasing a Samsung external SSD and velcroing it to the front of my machine.

Any thoughts greatly appreciated :^)

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You can pick up secondhand Apple OEM cards on sites like eBay very reasonably. I bought a 512Gb Apple card for my 2014 MBP, which has doubled both the original capacity and speed, (as it's a newer 4x PCI lane model).

Alternatively, there are adaptors that allow more generic M2 cards to be used.

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To play it safe in terms of spec, buy a used Apple drive.

To save money and get more speed: It may depend a bit on the exact model of MacBook Pro. If it has a discrete GPU then heat will be more of an issue. If it's an Intel iGPU only, things are much more relaxed.

It's not so important to stick to the specific brand (which I would recommend otherwise most of the time).

Most issues with replacement SSDs for this model come to down to connection problems. With a drive from that manufacturer/vendor, I'd say exchanging a faulty drive or a simple reseating of perfectly fine module should solve these problems.

But the more flexible and cost effective way is going for an established seller and manufacturer of M2-adapters. There are quite some a bit too cheap offerings out there.

Then look for aa matching SSD chewing gum strip. That is a bit tough for dGPU MBPs. Some drives do drain quite a bit of power and do get hotter than others.

Looking for your personal sweet spot might require some serious spec digging. I used a Samsung 970evo in this configuration on a few machines, and it does drain too much power (tolerable) and it can get a bit too warm (again: tolerable), in an Intel iGPU only MBP 2015.

Comparing specs and sensor readings show significant differences between the stock drives and the replacements. In real life this was negligible in terms of fan speed or battery life. This would not be the case if you'd power another external drive, which would draw quite a bit more pwer from the battery.

If it's still under warranty/AppleCare, keep in mind that you need the original drive (re-installed in need) should you want from Apple to service such a unit.

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They are worth it when they work, just make sure you have an external backup in case it does fail.

Fail/success rate with OWC's Aura SSDs really depends on the manufacture date / batch. I have used them in Mac Pros, I had three of them fail completely within a few months, but the latest ones have been humming along for a few years now.

OWC is pretty good at replacing the failed SSDs, I really want to chalk it up to bad memory chips.

I always start with a USB3 enclosure and Samsung SSD for my clients whose internal HDDs or Fusion drives have started to fail. I eventually go in and internalize these SSDs in batches all at once, since there are typically at least three or four HDDs that have started to fail.

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