Model A1286. Released February 2011 / 2.0, 2.2, or 2.3 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7 Processor

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Logic Board Swap Early 2011 -> Mid 2012

I have a 2.3Ghz Early 2011 MBP 15"

I am doing research as I would like to upgrade the logic Board mostly to take advantage of the mid 2012's Graphics card ( id like the 2.66Ghz card with the Nvidia GeForce GT 650M )

I've come across some articles but wanted to write a question with specifics as to the installation.

I believe the boards are identical in terms of size however I was wondering if there would be any hardware compatibility issues or installation issues.

It would be a nice upgrade as currently I use my MBP for Video Rendering with Adobe Suite as well as the occasional Gaming on dual boot Windows 10.

Any Feedback would be appreciated as dropping $4200.00 for a new MBP when I originally paid $2800.00 makes little sense

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Well I was thinking the same thing too, so did you do this, and where did you get the board? I just put a hi res on mine, and I like it better than retina, plus I can still work on the early 2011 15 where you can’t on retina....


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Well, you can do it but the LVDS cable's connector is slightly different between these series. Ideally, you'll want to replace the cable with the 2012 version. You can modify the older cable but it does take a bit of skill.

Given what you are doing video rendering with Adobe Suite as well as the occasional gaming you'll likely hit the dedicated GPU weakness in the 15" series they are not designed for big rendering jobs as the system can overheat. Even the first couple of Retina models has the same limits. People want desktop performance in a laptop, sadly, it really can't be done even within a MS Windows laptop.

I would strongly recommend you get TG Pro it will help you monitor your systems thermal sensors and run the fans harder when you need to.

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