MacBook Pro 17-inch Early 2009 Explained

Source: – MacBook Pro 17-inch Unibody

The Apple MacBook Pro 17-inch Early 2009 is a noteworthy notebook computer introduced, manufactured, and marketed by Apple in 2009, as part of the MacBook Pro lineup. Unveiled on January 6, 2009, this model boasted a starting price of $2,799.

Apple introduced the 17-inch MacBook Pro with a robust precision aluminum unibody enclosure, featuring a groundbreaking built-in battery designed to provide up to eight hours of usage and up to 1,000 recharges, significantly extending its lifespan compared to traditional notebook batteries. Notably, it showcased a high-resolution LED-backlit display and a large glass Multi-Touch trackpad, consistent with the design elements introduced in the new MacBook family in October of the previous year.

Additionally, the 17-inch MacBook Pro incorporated cutting-edge NVIDIA graphics and the latest generation Intel Core 2 Duo mobile processors. As part of Apple’s commitment to sustainability, this model was crafted using highly recyclable materials, meeting stringent energy efficiency standards and minimizing harmful toxins typically found in other computers.

Steve Jobs, then CEO of Apple, emphasized the innovation behind the new battery technology, highlighting its benefits for users and the environment. Leveraging advanced chemistry, intelligent system and battery monitoring, and Adaptive Charging technology, Apple achieved a battery lifespan capable of delivering up to eight hours of wireless productivity on a single charge and up to 1,000 recharges without compromising the MacBook Pro’s sleek design. This longevity translated to reduced battery depletion and waste, aligning with Apple’s environmental objectives.

The 17-inch MacBook Pro boasted an ultra-thin, widescreen glossy display with a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels, offering 78 percent more pixels than the 15-inch MacBook Pro and a 60 percent greater color gamut, ensuring desktop-quality color representation on a notebook. Its LED-backlit display provided instant-on performance, reduced energy consumption by up to 30 percent, and eliminated the use of mercury commonly found in traditional fluorescent tube backlights.

MacBook Pro Unibody
Source: – MacBook Pro Unibody

Measuring a mere 0.98 inches in thickness and weighing 6.6 pounds, the 17-inch MacBook Pro claimed the title of the world’s thinnest and lightest 17-inch notebook at the time. Powered by Intel Core 2 Duo processors clocked at speeds up to 2.93 GHz, with up to 8 GB DDR3 main memory, and a graphics architecture allowing seamless switching between the NVIDIA GeForce 9400M integrated graphics processor for enhanced battery life and the powerful NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT discrete graphics processor for optimal performance.

Storage options included a standard 320 GB 5400 rpm hard drive, with the choice of upgrading to a 320 GB 7200 rpm hard drive or 128 GB and 256 GB solid-state drives. Like other members of the MacBook family, the 17-inch MacBook Pro featured a next-generation Mini DisplayPort for connectivity with the Apple LED Cinema Display, boasting a 24-inch LED-backlit widescreen display with integrated iSight video camera, microphone, and speakers.

The environmental credentials of the new MacBook Pro were significant, with each model achieving EPEAT Gold status, reflecting Apple’s commitment to eco-friendly design. Constructed from highly recyclable aluminum and equipped with energy-efficient LED-backlit displays devoid of mercury and arsenic, the MacBook Pro lineup met stringent Energy Star 4.0 requirements, avoided the use of brominated flame retardants, and employed PVC-free internal components and cables. The extended lifespan of the MacBook Pro’s battery further contributed to environmental sustainability by reducing battery waste. Replacement batteries were available for $179, inclusive of installation and environmentally responsible disposal of the old battery.

Specifications of the MacBook Pro included a choice between a 2.66 GHz or 2.93 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor, a 17-inch LED-backlit TFT glossy display, a new aluminum unibody design, 4 GB of RAM, a 320 GB hard drive, a slot-loading 8x DVD-R/CD-RW dual-layer SuperDrive, built-in Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR, FireWire 800, an iSight camera, an ambient light sensor, an illuminated keyboard, and 512 MB NVIDIA GeForce 9400M GT graphics.

The MacBook Pro 17-inch Early 2009 model was discontinued on June 8, 2009. As of today, the MacBook Pro 17-inch Early 2009 celebrates its 15-year anniversary, marking a significant milestone in the evolution of Apple’s notebook computers.

MacBook Pro Unibody
Source: – MacBook Pro Unibody

MacBook Pro 17-inch Early 2009 Details

Introduced January 6, 2009 – 15 years ago
Discontinued June 8, 2009 – 14 years ago
Last Software Update October 18, 2016 – 7 years ago
Time on the Market 153 days (5 months)
Time of Support 93 months (7 years)
Model Identifier MacBookPro5,1
Model Number A1297
EMC 2272
Order Number MB604LL/A
Original Price $2,799
Colors Aluminum
Weight 6.6 Ibs.
2.993 KG
Dimensions 0.98” H x 15.47” W x 10.51” D
2.48 cm H x 39.29 cm W x 26.69 cm D

MacBook Pro 17-inch Tech Specs


Processor Intel Core 2 Duo T9550 “Penryn” (2.66 GHz)
Intel Core 2 Duo T9800 “Penryn” (2.93 GHz)
Processor Speed 2.66 GHz
2.93 GHz
Architecture 64-bit
Number of Cores 2
System Bus 1066 MHz
Cache 6 MB on-chip shared L2 (2.66 GHz)
6 MB shared L2 (2.93 GHz)

Storage & Media

Storage 320 GB (HDD)
128 GB (SSD)
256 GB (SSD)
Media 1 – 8x DVD-R/CD-RW dual-layer “SuperDrive” slot-loading drive


Built-in Memory 4 GB
Maximum Memory 8 GB
Memory Slots 2 – PC3-8500 DDR3 204-pin SO-DIMM 1066 MHz
Interleaving Support Yes


Built-in Display 17″ LED-backlit TFT glossy Display (Optional antiglare Display)
Pixel Density 133 ppi
Brightness 300 cd/m²
Resolutions 640 x 480
720 x 480
800 x 500
800 x 600
1024 x 640
1024 x 768
1152 x 720
1280 x 800
1280 x 1024
1600 x 1200
1680 x 1050
1920 x 1200 (native)


Graphics Card NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT
NVIDIA GeForce 9400M
Graphics Memory 512 MB GDDR3 (NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT)
256 MB DDR3 shared with main memory (NVIDIA GeForce 9400M)
Display Connection 1 – Mini DisplayPort (VGA, DVI, or dual-link DVI with adapter)
Display Modes Dual display extended and video mirroring
External Resolution Up to 2560 by 1600 pixels
Camera iSight


Expansion Slots 1 – ExpressCard / 34
Hard Drive Interface 3 Gbps Serial ATA (SATA)
Optical Drive Interface 3 Gbps Serial ATA (SATA)
Bays None


Wi-Fi AirPort Extreme Card 802.11a/b/g/n
Ethernet 10/100/1000BASE-T (RJ-45)
Modem Apple USB Modem MA034Z/A (Optional)
Bluetooth Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Infrared 1 – For Apple Remote Only
FireWire 1 – 800 Mbps
USB 3 – 480 Mbps
Audio In 1 – 3.5-mm analog/optical input jack
1 – Built-in microphone
Audio Out 1 – 3.5-mm analog/optical output jack
2 – Built-in speakers
Display 1 – Mini DisplayPort (VGA, DVI, or dual-link DVI with adapter)
Security Slot 1 – Kensington cable lock


Motion Sensor Sudden Motion Sensor (SMS)
Liquid Sensor Liquid Contact Indicators (LCI)

Keyboard and trackpad

Keyboard Full-size backlit keyboard with 78 (U.S.) or 79 (ISO) keys
Trackpad Multi-Touch trackpad


Original OS Mac OS X 10.5.6
Maximum OS OS X 10.11.6
Firmware Intel Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI)
AirDrop Supported
Bundled Software Mac OS X 10.5
iLife ’09 (includes iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD, iWeb, GarageBand)


System Battery 95 W Lithium-Polymer
Backup Battery None
Battery Life Up to 8 hours
Maximum Battery Cycles 1000
Maximum Continuous Power Unknown
Line Voltage 100-240 V AC
Power Adapter 85 W MagSafe Power Adapter (MA938LL/A)

Further Reading and References

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