Yes again, I set on a journey to grab old and used laptops at a bargain. While the world is dumping their old MacBooks as Apple are no longer supporting these Macbook Pro from version 2015 and earlier. When a macbook is no longer supported, it generally means that you will soon won’t able to be able to install the latest Mac OS which indirectly means that you won’t be able to download or get apps updates as these apps updates will move on also to drop support to older version of Mac OS, which may render your Macbook almost useless without being able to install any apps. So why did I buy a MacBook Pro 2011?
Earliest Core I5 Processor
The MacBook Pro that I got my hands dirty on is the first MacBook Pro with Intel Core I5 processor, MacBook Pro 2011. MacBooks or Apple laptops on 2010 and before are equipped with Core 2 Duo or even slower. In the 21st century, with many resource intensive apps, I reckon at least a Core I5 processor would be required to support. Hence, I set out looking for a Macbok Pro 2011.
With the upgrade of hdd to ssd and to 8 GB ram, it will bring these old MacBook Pro 2011 to fresh new feel enhancing the performance from minutes down to seconds. It is more than sufficient to fulfil basic tasks from web browsing, watching you tube to checking emails, etc. Performance is smooth and quick with no lags. For more intensive task like photo and video editing, this is will not be able to complete without experiencing slight lags here and there. But for these work that more resource intensive, I would typically use the other main laptop of mine, I won’t even bother doing it here.
The price of these machines are next to nothing. I bought mine at $50 with some stain on the screen. Less than even 10% of it’s original price when it was first released. Usually when there are some issues with the machine, the price drops drastically. The stains on the screen does not block any parts of the screens, hence, I figured out I can still use it fine. No doubt, stained screen is not optimal for photo and video editing though. But this is not my main laptop, hence, I can forgive it. At home, I would project the screen to an external monitor to have a wider screen view, hence, this does not really affect me if i am at home with the setup readily available.
Yes, technically these machines are only supported up to High Sierra. But thanks to the genius developers who always have hecks and allow these old unsupported Mac to bypass the requirement checks and upgrade to the latest Mac OS. I have upgraded mine to Monterey via OpenCore Legacy Patcher. It’s easy and straight forward with all the drivers working fine. This is a huge plus with the fact that I can install all or majority of the apps available in the App Store, eliminate the issue entirely.
Going deeper into the apps, I appreciate the fact that there are quite a couple of really useful free apps from Apple, for that Keynote (a.k.a powerpoint), Pages (a.k.a words), Numbers (a.k.a excel) and iMovie (a.k.a window movie maker). They are amazing and runs well and most importantly, FREE! I really hate it that windows had to charge us for using Microsoft office. I know they profit big money from businesses. But damn, end consumer like us who need to use office for our personal use had to pay too. They forced us to move over to free platforms such as google online words and excel. I’m thankful they exist. Ok well, enough of deviating. This is a key benefit from using Mac OS over Windows OS.
One huge benefit of an old MacBook is the removable battery. Unlike the new MacBooks, it’s not stick onto the case. I use this for kids my kids to watch YouTube with the battery removed without damaging the battery’s lifespan. I have previously been using my iPad for this purpose and it has terribly degraded my iPad’s battery due to daily usage.
While the world are rushing to buy the newest and latest M2 apple Macbook at a hefty $1699, I have head in the opposite. I am not going to pretend that this MacBook Pro 2011 is able to complete with the M2 chips, of cuz it doesn’t. But for the 90% of my daily needs, I don’t need M2 chips. In addition, the big plus is the 13 inch screen is a huge benefit when one wants to compare it against a mobile phone.
If you need to do a lot of photo or video editing or gaming purpose that requires a lot of resource and speed, skip this and head over to the high end models. With that, I will end here.