What does (and doesn’t) actually speed up your Mac

“A faster Mac is always a better Mac, and there are many things you can do to get the most performance from your computer,” James Galbraith reports for Macworld.

“But what really works?” Galbraith reports. “Here are some common myths about Macs and what does—and does not—affect performance.”

Galbraith covers:
• processing cores
• external monitors
• SSD capacities
• startup drive free space
• graphics cards

Read more in the full article here.


  1. Or just slow down! (BTW), just Love that Denny’s ad so rudely interrupting me! The entire internet, from MDN to YouTube, is beginning to look like a Windows box plastered with advertising and unsightly stickers. Who’s Not guilty of this? No one. Check any page- FUGLY!!! You can’t even buy a shirt that doesn’t have a logo or graphic posted across it, or look at a beautiful woman with her own self-advertising tasteless tats in your face. Michelangelo, Renoir, and da Vinci are turning over in their graves!

    1. “Or just slow down!”

      No shit. I’m using a six-year old iMac running Mavericks and I consider myself a typical computer user, who has crafted a productive workflow that saves time and even provides a buffer for picky clients.

      The speed gains are never fully realized because of the dumb-assed workflow so many computer users have failed to adopt, i.e., naming & filing conventions for files, archival and retrieval procedures, ad nauseam.

      Then again, dropping and picking up your pencil just negated that speed bump you just realized on your new Mac Pro!

      1. Wow, Ready, Set, Go, that brings back memories. Used it for years before switching to Quark. Great layout program in its day. To the point, OS X has its own memory management built in. It has been further enhanced with Mavericks. RAM Doubler was great back in the OS 9 days though.

    1. I don’t see the attraction of a Fusion drive. It strikes me as a poor man’s half-assed solution, and the overhead of managing two drives as one partition only decreases the performance compared to a single SSD.

      If you can afford a Mac, then just do yourself a favor and ante up the bucks for an internal SSD plus an external backup drive or two. More secure to have your backups in a completely separate location anyway. OWC will hook you up.

      1. I’ve actually converted several laptops and the older Mac Pro to Fusion Drive using the adapters and instructions from Other World Computing. I’ve had excellent results with this upgrade. It’s a lot less money than going pure SSD, and once it’s set up, there absolutely nothing to manage thanks to the core storage technology built into it. You can read more about it in my blog: http://www.macxperts.biz/MacXperts/Gregs_Blog/Entries/2013/5/22_Fusion_Drive%2C_what_is_it.html

        1. macxperts – Great write up!

          One thing that Mike forgot to consider is hard drive capacity. I personally prefer a Fusion Drive than just SSD’s for a desktop Mac. A Fusion Drive is the best of BOTH worlds.

  2. … keep at least 40 percent of my disk unused (and most importantly, as unfragmented as possible).
    Microsoft Word and E-mail, I would keep a minimum of 30 GB free unused space available

    You want a lot of space on your boot drive. At least 10% ideally 20%. The more space that you have on your hard drive generally the faster your computer is going to be, that’s pretty much kinda how it works. Bottom line. That’s what it is.

    keep at least 10% of your hard drive free at all times,…”

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