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Any firsthand reports on how Lion runs on a late 2006 MBP?

1452 Views 12 Replies Latest reply: Aug 17, 2011 2:34 PM by Eric Westby RSS
Eric Westby Level 4 Level 4 (1,795 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Jul 21, 2011 12:55 PM

I'm still rocking my five-year-old MacBook Pro (late 2006, 2.33gHz C2D, 3GB RAM, new HD, specs here: with no plans to buy a new Mac. I spend most of my time on my iPad nowadays anyway.


But I'm toying with the idea of upgrading the Mac to Lion, if only because there are hints that iOS 5 may require it for full compatibility this fall. I'm aware that it meets the minimum specs, but are there any firsthand reports of how Lion runs on this model? Does it feel more sluggish than Snow Leopard? I'd dearly love to add more RAM, but as owners of this model know, it maxes out at 3GB.


Thanks in advance!

MacBook Pro, 15, Mac OS X (10.6.7), 23" ACD, 1TB WD HDD
  • sig Level 8 Level 8 (35,770 points)
  • GeekBoy.from.Illinois Level 4 Level 4 (2,730 points)

    Well, I can't speak for your specific MacBook Pro, but I can tellyou that my MacBook Pro 3,1 (2007) C2D 2.4 works just fine wth Lion.  Everything I did under Snow Leopard still works wth Lion for me.  Yeah, some of the newer features which require newer hardware than I have don't work (like air drop), but everything I have works at least as well as it did before.


    I have kept my system fairly current, so I haven't had any leagacy hardware which hasn't worked.  I also have had a few free software tools which were not compatible, but since they were free and I hadn't run any of them in the last 6-9 months, I just removed them (and probably should have done that long ago).

  • Erian Calculating status...

    I am also interested to know how Lion works on the earlier models that can run it.  Mine is a 2006 Core 2 Duo with the same old school silver keyboard.  Not really too interested in upgrading the Laptop but Lion seems pretty cool.  Though I am not interested in running into the same issues that I ran into when I first upgraded to Snow Leopard (immediate dead battery). Thanks to anyone who replies with some experience!!

  • Isaac from Morgantown WV Calculating status...

    I'm in the same boat with a 17" (2.33gHz C2D, 3GB RAM, new HD) I primarily use my iPad 2, but would like things to be go easier with iOS 5. Considering that my iPad gets abou 90% of my time, buying a MBP is out of the question. And as odd as it sounds, my biggest qualm about upgrating to Lion is that I'm still using Office 2004. I there was a decent Excel(or alternative) that works under Lion, that could do everything Excel 2004 does but cheaper than Office 2011, I'd be very happy.

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,305 points)

    I'm working on it now, a MBP 3,1, but I'm doing a complete fresh install from a freshly installed and pristine 10.6.8 as I'm hearing just to darn many horror stories with a used 10.6.8.


    Many are reportng slow behaviors etc.


    So a complete fresh install and then I'll run some Xbench tests.

  • H William Pierson Iv Calculating status...

    Still putting mine throught the trials, so far I'm a happy camper and noticed a few perks.  Thanks for sharing!


  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,305 points)

    Lion is running fine here, I upgraded over a pristine 10.6.8 install and once I did that created boot DVD's following this method and they work and install just like previous boot OS X disks. (a bit different layout that's all)



    I can't run Xbench on Lion as it hasn't been updated yet, if and when it does people will obviously be submitting their scores with then one can determine if a Lion is really slower than a Snow Leopard.


    Also one can check out Barefeats, they are always doing perfomance tests.


  • shaumik Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I'm running Lion on my late 2006 Macbook.


    I've upgraded to 2.5Gb Ram and a 320Gb hard disk (of which 200Gb is in the Mac partition, rest for bootcamp).


    To be honest, it was quite slow to start with.  I've turned off the option to restore windows after quitting and it's a lot quicker and much more usable.  Nevertheless, for the first time, I'm feeling that my 5 year Macbook is getting on a bit.


    Works perfectly well though, and I love the full screen mode on the 13" screen.


    Airdrop doesn't work, but I didn't have it before.


    I think I'll hang on until the next iteration of the macbook pro before upgrading.


    Did you bite the bullet?


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