Just about any SSD will do as long it is a 2.5" SATA III. Also, what size of a SSD are you looking for?
I use a OCZ Vertex 4 512GB in my Macbook Pro. It took me less than 2 hours to complete everything including transferring the data.
The best ones for Macbook Pro for your model are OCZ, Intel, Samsung, and Crucial. Depending on your budget and size of SSD, any of these would work well. Be aware that TRIM is not enabled. Which ever SSD you purchase, make sure the firmware on the SSD is up to date.
If you still have Mountain Lion on your current Macbook, I would suggest you create a bootable flashdrive with Mountain Lion on it. That way you can install the OS from the flash drive instead of through recovery mode. It is much faster to install it from a flash drive than from the network.
Everyone here that has a SSD is going to sing the praises of what they have, generally. I've a 512GB Crucial m4 series and love it. But there's a really good site that explains and evaluates SSDs - Sean's SSD Buyer's Guide and Information Thread.
Take a look at it for information and, yes, a buying guide. He mainly focuses on SSDs for Windows machines, but the recommendations would 'fit' for Mac's, too.
You can - and I have - use your Time Machine backup to restore all of the info to your SSD. But I prefer a clone, first. Here's what to do:
When you buy your SSD, buy an inexpensive enclosure for your 'old' hard drive (OWC is a good place to buy the enclosure). Install the SSD but hold down the option key while booting and boot from your now external drive. Use Disk Utility to format the SSD ("Mac OS Extended (Journaled)") with a single GUID partition. Use Carbon Copy Cloner to clone your old drive to the SSD - it will allow you to create the Recovery partition as well.
Now select the SSD as your startup drive and reboot. Your SSD is now your boot drive and you can continue to use your Time Machine backup. No need to restore as you've already cloned.
That should do it...
Hi Laszlo, Clinton and JS,
Just to let you all know, I successfully cloned and installed my 512Gb SSD. I had no problems, following the advice. Didn't have the special 'bit' for the HDD side screws, but used a pair of pliers to do the job, to gently untighten, then finger loosened them. I was gentle with HDD.
Cloning took around 1hr 50, and that was for 160Gb.
I wasn't clear about the size of partition, so did 50/50. After the reboot, the space remaining was around 70Gb so I adjusted the size of the partition to around 75/25. Not sure how that effects things, except it did increase the speed of boot up.
I also downloaded TRIM Enabler, and that appears to be running smoothly.
The speeds before were: Boot up 58 secs and shut down 24 secs. Now boot up 15 secs and shut down 3 secs !!! Absolutely unbelievable.
I also added extra memory from 4Gb to 8Gb so its like having a 'new' Mac.
I would advise anybody to stump up the extra money and go to an SSD......its amazing.
Once again, thank you all for the advice and perfect guidance.