In this article, we are going to give you an easy to follow step-by-step guide to upgrading your MacBook Pro SSDs (late 2012-mid 2015) 2015. We looked at how long Macs typically last, as well as the main signs that suggest that it is time to upgrade your MacBook or iMac. Whether you are taking stock of an older machine, or thinking about the value of a new purchase, you may wonder how long MacBooks and other models of Macs will last. If you are having issues with your machine, you may be wondering when you should get a new MacBook, or whether you should stick with your current one for a little while longer.
If you do not, then it is very likely that you are having issues related to aging hardware, and should think about upgrading your MacBook. Maybe you are ready to upgrade your Mac, but can tolerate any issues that come up and you do not have to purchase it immediately. Before upgrading, be sure to do what you can to make your old Mac feel brand-new. Once you are tired of those workarounds, it is time to upgrade to a new Mac with more storage.
Apple ships most MacBook Airs and all Retina MacBook Pros with solid-state storage, so upgrading those machines to gain more capacity and speed is usually a matter of choosing a new drive, and then using two dedicated screwdrivers in the installation process. MacBook Pro models from late 2013 through mid-2015 were typically configured with either 256GB or 512GB solid-state drive (SSD) storage by default. Today, lower-end MacBook Airs and Retina MacBook Pros come standard with a 128GB SSD; Apples 256GB SSD costs $200 extra, as opposed to $500 extra for 512GB, or $800 extra for the Pro-only 1TB SSD. Most users will typically bump up the SSD to a 1TB drive, but that companys own 2TB SSD should also do.
Storage upgrades Fusion Drives vs flash If RAM is meant for holding apps and data while you are using it, then the hard drives on your MacBook Pro are meant for holding it all forever. The kind of flash storage that Apple uses for Retina MacBook Pros is unique, and therefore cannot be upgraded using the regular SSDs that you might pick up at the store. We can upgrade the MacBook using a flash drive, and you will see huge differences in performance. Flash drives are cheaper than they have ever been, and they certainly make the best-value upgrade to performance on an MacBook Pro, but it is still a pricey upgrade, whether you want 512GB or 1TB of flash.
Many of the MacBook Air and Retina MacBook Pro SSDs ship with kits to help transfer your old drives contents onto your new drive, get the computer running, and leave your old SSD as an external drive if you like. You can use an all-in-one disk-cloning application to simply move the old drive over to your new one, or do a full backup using Time Machine on another external drive, and then restore your backup contents back onto your Retina MacBook Pro once it is reloaded using Time Machine. Transferring will allow you to immediately begin using the MacBook Air or Pro once you have switched drives, rather than waiting hours to do so using Time Machine. If you would like to save all your Macs data on the stock NVMe SSD, you should make a backup to Time Machine first.
If you would like to look at external storage solutions instead, see our guides on MacBook, Mac mini, and Mac Pro SSDs. If you are on an older machine, you can probably improve upon these issues, or mitigate them a bit, by adding more RAM to the MacBook, swapping the hard drive out for SSD, or replacing the battery. Upgrading the memory in certain models of MacBooks is a little trickier.
Of course, having the RAM soldered onto the logic board really means that you cannot upgrade, but if you are serious about getting better performance out of an existing Mac, we can help. If you do own a Mac you are capable of upgrading at Monterey, you can count on the software updates being available for three more years. Head over to Check compatibility to find out if your Mac is eligible for the OS update you are looking for. As mentioned, you will likely not need the macOS Installer Drive, but you should perform this step in case you run into any software issues while using recovery mode later.
Now, hold Option key and turn on Macs, and choose flash drive installer when the boot options pop up on the screen. The first thing you will want to do before you can get to the 2015 models internal SSD is to remove any screws on the bottom side of your MacBook. The 15-inch MacBook Pro Retina display Bottom panel The 15-inch Retina display MacBook Pro is held in place by ten screws, ranging in length, but once the underside of the laptop is removed, popping the original SSD is just a case of removing the battery and removing another screw. FYI If energy usage is a concern, you will want to buy Apples original SSD.
Since SSD compatibility was limited, third parties introduced the connector for SATA-based SSDs that will work with mid-2012 and early-2013 units, as well as PCIe 2.0-based flash SSDs that work with late-2013 versions as well as the other MacBook Pro models of that line. I would consider getting the MacBook Pro version with a 480GB or 1TB version of the SSD, as well as a MacBook Air model (mid 2013 to early 2015) with a blade SSD upgrade package. This upgrade guide works with MacBook Pros from late 2013 to mid-2015, MacBook Airs from mid-2013-2017, iMacs (with Fusion Drives or SSDs) from late 2013-2017 (and likely 2019, too), the 2013 Mac Pro, and the 2014 Mac mini. Retina MacBook Pros do require quite a few extra steps; Apple has greatly simplified the process of swapping out an SSD in later-generation 13 machines, making them comparable with the 15-models and MacBook Airs.
The 13-inch Macbook Pro received a refresh from the Intel Iris Graphics 5100 to Iris Graphics 6100, which includes a bump in execution units (48 vs. 40) but a drop in clock speeds, dropping from 1,200 MHz to 1,100 MHz. Previous MacBook Pros had Iris Graphics 5100, and Apple claims between 20% to 40% improvements in graphics performance. Apple is bragging about a mid-2015 system with flash storage up to 2.5 times faster compared with previous-generation 15-inch MacBook Pro models. Now, the price for solid-state drives has dropped dramatically, making it possible for users to upgrade the solid-state drives on MacBook Pros on their own for a far lower price.
The tradeoff could mean clearing out storage space in the MacBook when you can, or potentially adding additional storage space in the Mac via external hard drives or another method.
Is my 2015 MacBook Pro too old to update?
Every year, like clockwork, Apple released an update to its macOS desktop and laptop operating system adding new functions and enhancements. That’s great, but the most recent macOS release from Apple, Monterey, won’t work with MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, or iMac models that were introduced before late 2015.
Is a Mac from 2015 outdated?
Apple officially ended the MacBook series on July 9, 2019. Apple launched the mac operating system Monterey on June 7, 2021, which removed compatibility for the MacBook Late 2015 version. Apple removed the Late 2015 version MacBook from its list of “historic devices” on June 30, 2021, rendering it only partially qualified for product maintenance.