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New Old Mac

Everything new is old again if you try hard enough…

So I got a new MacBook Pro… sort of. My old 2012 MacBook Pro, which I acquired in 2014, served me well. I used it almost daily, and carried it with me almost daily. Yeah, on average 5 or 6 days a week for about five years I carried this laptop with me, to work, to school, to the makerspace, and plenty of places in-between. Sure, things broke along the way, I had to repair and replace the charger a few times, I swapped out the hard drive for an SSD when the prices on 1TB dropped enough, and I moved the drive to the optical bay after the second drive connector cable failure. I think I also replaced the battery… but besides all that, it was good.

Around September 2019 I started having issues with the keyboard. Keys from T to P on the top row of letters began to work intermittently. I came up with a few workarounds including using a wireless keyboard that fit directly on top of the built-in keyboard, and yes, I did try to clean the key, but after a lot of research determined the keyboard needed replacing. You can get a replacement keyboard for fairly cheap, and it comes with the tools you’ll need to remove the 50 screws after you disassemble nearly the entire computer…

So my plan was to do this, eventually, but I had a few work commitments that required I had a working computer, and I didn’t want to start the process unless I had time to complete it, and I was short on time so… I researched replacing it, and eventually decided to get an Apple MacBook Pro 13.3-inch Laptop, Dual-Core Intel Core i5 Processor 2.5Ghz, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD… which yes, is the same model I had, except for the RAM/SSD specs…

I got the new one, moved over my RAM and SSD, and was up and running nearly seamlessly. I miss the days when you could do this with Apple hardware. I think everyone who remembers those days misses those days. I invested in 12GB of RAM and a 1TB SSD and they worked FINE, so to just throw that away by getting a new computer that could not use them seemed stupid…

And yes, I know new computers are faster, and do more things, like… faster… but it wasn’t worth it to get a new Mac, and have to pay a premium for RAM/SSD which I have, and that work, and damn Apple, you’ve lost your way. Really. Oh, also, I’ve got USB ports, and a Mini DisplayPort, and a built-in SD card reader, and even… FireWire! This machine is fast enough for pretty much everything I do, and it was affordable, at less than one third the price of an entry level MacBook Pro with less RAM and a tiny SSD. (Upgrading to a 1TB SSD in a new Mac would up the prices $600 USD!)

But don’t worry… I’m not avoiding new Macs… in fact I’ll have a follow-up post about a new Mac!

I also discovered that the battery in the new Mac is pretty terrible, and needs replacing, which means I’ll pull the battery out of my old one and swap that as well. It’s like Ship of Theseus over here! Oh, I’m also contemplating just using the old one as a desktop, because without being portable, and using an external keyboard and mouse, it should be a decent machine.

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