Last Mac with a CD/DVD drive officially obsolete

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I own this one, and it was upgraded to 16 gigs of ram, and the DVD drive was replaced with a 1tb ssd a number of years ago. The battery is gone, and I removed it. It was also subject to a cap replacement long ago which fixed all the issues with the discrete video card. A 10 cent part and somewhat challenging soldering solved an issue that Apple insisted needed a full logic board replacement.

It still works, and up until a few years ago was my main photoshop machine. I also played a number of steam games on it. Now I use it to rescue old drives and as a simple web browser.

In spite of the attempts of online tech companies to make it completely useless via safari not working with certs etc, most sites still work on it.

I assume it’s going to be a linux machine at some point, when chrome and Firefox and all the others stop working.


Also the 15 inch MBP sibling (2012 I think) is the last to feature audio line in. Keeping mine alive for a bit longer for audio reasons.


You don’t have to wait. It functions exquisitely with Ubuntu, with now just one proprietary driver. Oh. The trackpad thingie I haven’t figured out yet, moves cursor but the double click seems beyond me. It recognizes the RAM Apple insisted was too much, too. I replaced it when turbo-tax would spin and spin and. . .nothing. With the memory and an SSD, I was still limping along, about as fast as the version 5 years later, until no OS updates made every-damned-thing quit working.

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Many cd rom drives exceed the power that a single usb-a socket can provide. Some incarnations of usb-c aren’t quite so stingy.

the Apple version doesn’t like hubs.

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My last mac book air with a optical drive (2011 maybe) died some years ago, and I removed the drive. It still works as an external dvd drive through a usb adaptor for those rare moments when I still want an optical drive.

But I’m in no position to complain; I’ve been officially obsolete for some time


The not liking hubs issue is a bit annoying as my SuperDrive doesn’t work with a powered hub. I’m not sure what’s going on there.

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I was upset when I couldn’t get a 3.5" floppy drive, but I got over it. My new System 76 desktop didn’t come with a DVD drive, but those USB drives are cheap enough and work just as well.

That’s one reason to keep mine going, too.

I have a mid 2012 15" MBP which I installed a (larger) SSD in to replace the HD. It is still going strong as my main ‘desktop’ machine (I also own a smaller 2015 MBAir for portability) and I will stop using it when hell freezes over or the key services I use online stop working with whatever back-level browser versions I am eventually stuck on. Currently on High Sierra, but could go to Catalina if I didn’t want to (hadn’t got round to finding replacements for) some 32bit apps I still use, so I reckon that buys me a few more years. I did replace the battery last year as its capacity was finally down below about 80% and it needed charging far too often. (I never leave it plugged into mains permanently - in my experience batteries that are kept fully charged forever fail sooner.)

Mine has the matt / anti-glare screen which is vastly superior to the Retinas of the day in terms of never giving any issues re reflections on the screen. Shame Apple stopped offering such a screen years ago.

I still use the CD drive for ripping CDs (usually from local charity shops).

So, several reasons to love this machine and keep it going as long as I can.


Just in time for the glorious resurgence of physical media, eh? :thinking:
In whatever form the current Gen is feeling nostalgic for.

Macs never supported bluray-- the requirements levied by the Advanced Access Content System were far too onerous. I use an external superdrive mostly to rip CDs (losslessly). The drive is far too noisy to play discs directly.

At the moment the physical media movement exalts vinyl and 4k bluray, neither one of which were compatible with macs. I’m not a vinyl fan, but 4k bluray is so much more detailed than a stream.

Yeah, I have that machine running Ubuntu. I had the same video card problem, so I just didn’t install the Linux driver for it.

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