MacBook Pro 17-inch Early 2009 Explained

MacBook Pro 17-inch Unibody
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

IntroducedJanuary 6, 2009 – 15 years ago
DiscontinuedJune 8, 2009 – 14 years ago
Last Software UpdateOctober 18, 2016 – 7 years ago
Time on the Market153 days (5 months)
Time of Support93 months (7 years)
Model IdentifierMacBookPro5,1
Model NumberA1297
Order NumberMB604LL/A
Original Price$2,799
Weight6.6 Ibs.
2.993 KG
Dimensions0.98” 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


ProcessorIntel Core 2 Duo T9550 “Penryn” (2.66 GHz)
Intel Core 2 Duo T9800 “Penryn” (2.93 GHz)
Processor Speed2.66 GHz
2.93 GHz
Number of Cores2
System Bus1066 MHz
Cache6 MB on-chip shared L2 (2.66 GHz)
6 MB shared L2 (2.93 GHz)

Storage & Media

Storage320 GB (HDD)
128 GB (SSD)
256 GB (SSD)
Media1 – 8x DVD-R/CD-RW dual-layer “SuperDrive” slot-loading drive


Built-in Memory4 GB
Maximum Memory8 GB
Memory Slots2 – PC3-8500 DDR3 204-pin SO-DIMM 1066 MHz
Interleaving SupportYes


Built-in Display17″ LED-backlit TFT glossy Display (Optional antiglare Display)
Pixel Density133 ppi
Brightness300 cd/m²
Resolutions640 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 CardNVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT
NVIDIA GeForce 9400M
Graphics Memory512 MB GDDR3 (NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT)
256 MB DDR3 shared with main memory (NVIDIA GeForce 9400M)
Display Connection1 – Mini DisplayPort (VGA, DVI, or dual-link DVI with adapter)
Display ModesDual display extended and video mirroring
External ResolutionUp to 2560 by 1600 pixels


Expansion Slots1 – ExpressCard / 34
Hard Drive Interface3 Gbps Serial ATA (SATA)
Optical Drive Interface3 Gbps Serial ATA (SATA)


Wi-FiAirPort Extreme Card 802.11a/b/g/n
Ethernet10/100/1000BASE-T (RJ-45)
ModemApple USB Modem MA034Z/A (Optional)
BluetoothBluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Infrared1 – For Apple Remote Only
FireWire1 – 800 Mbps
USB3 – 480 Mbps
Audio In1 – 3.5-mm analog/optical input jack
1 – Built-in microphone
Audio Out1 – 3.5-mm analog/optical output jack
2 – Built-in speakers
Display1 – Mini DisplayPort (VGA, DVI, or dual-link DVI with adapter)
Security Slot1 – Kensington cable lock


Motion SensorSudden Motion Sensor (SMS)
Liquid SensorLiquid Contact Indicators (LCI)

Keyboard and trackpad

KeyboardFull-size backlit keyboard with 78 (U.S.) or 79 (ISO) keys
TrackpadMulti-Touch trackpad


Original OSMac OS X 10.5.6
Maximum OSOS X 10.11.6
FirmwareIntel Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI)
Bundled SoftwareMac OS X 10.5
iLife ’09 (includes iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD, iWeb, GarageBand)


System Battery95 W Lithium-Polymer
Backup BatteryNone
Battery LifeUp to 8 hours
Maximum Battery Cycles1000
Maximum Continuous PowerUnknown
Line Voltage100-240 V AC
Power Adapter85 W MagSafe Power Adapter (MA938LL/A)

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