13 Replies Latest reply: Dec 6, 2013 11:17 AM by johnfinn68
dportis47 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

I am looking to remove my Optical Drive and replacing it with a SSD. My question is, once I replace it will I need to remove Lion from my HHD and install it on my SSD? And if so, how do I go about doing this? Also I would like high performance from CS6 so should I install it on the SSD as well? All the other non apple apps should be okay on the stock HHD or should I just buy a 250GB SSD and move everything over at once with a clone? Thank everybuddy


MacBook Pro, iOS 4.3.3
  • 1. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    StarLabs Level 1 Level 1 (30 points)

    ok , what you have in mind is great but slightly misplanned ..

     

    what is recommended is to install the SSD in the slot where your HDD is and them the HDD in the optical drive bay ..

     

    And then install the OS on the SSD (you can make a lion dvd just google that) and then move all the stuff that you don't acess all the time on the HDD ..

     

    This way your OS will benefit from the speed of the SSD (like app launches and what not) while you can use the HDD space for storage etc ..

     

    PS: I'm not sure if the optical drive and the HDD slot have the same bus speeds .. if so it won't matter where you install the SSD but this is not what I think is the case . . What really matters tho is that you install the OS on th SSD

     

    good luck

  • 2. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    eww Level 9 Level 9 (52,975 points)

    Some, perhaps all, MBPs have faster SATA buses serving their hard drive bays than their optical drive bays. Apple doesn't include these bus speeds in its specification sheets, so one must rely on spotty third-party information for guidance. But wherever I've seen comparative speeds reported, the hard drive bay is the faster one, making that the better place to install a fast SSD if maximum performance is wanted.

  • 3. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    dportis47 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Thanks for the follow up, great information. I only really only want Lion and CS6 on the SSD so should I get the 64GB or the 120GB? Or is that possible?

  • 4. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    johnfinn68 Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)

    My experience is that you need to look into YOUR OWN MBPs hardware list and see for yourself what your NEGOTIATED SPEED is on the links.  My MBP has SATA 3 on both channels, and both are running at 1.5 Gb.  Some people with the same MBP have a negotiated speed of 3Gb on the HDD side and 1.5 on the optical drive. 

     

    To determine this, go to the apple icon, about this mac, more info, select Serial ATA, then look at the (on mine) Nvidia AHCI and see the Link Speed and Negotiated Link speed.  The default one shown is the HDD, you need to click on the other AHCI channel to see the optical drive specs.  This will help you determine where to put the SSD.  I've had the SSD on both channels (since my negotiated link speed is the same on both) and had no problems.  I finally bought a larger SSD and put my optical drive back.

     

    Since you are asking somewhat basic questions, take our advice and put Lion and all your apps on the SSD.  You will quickly become spoiled at the lanch times of built in programs, and want everything just as quick.  Trust me on this (been there, done that, fixed it)  I kept all my programs on the SSD, and all my documents, music, pictures on an HDD, and the difference in response was dumbfounding. 

     

    My experience with any CS product is that they create enormous amounts of temp files that need to be placed on the SSD.  64GB should do the trick, but if you run out of room, your second scratch disk (the HDD) will slow the application down immediately. 

  • 5. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    dportis47 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Great information, thank you very much!

  • 6. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    dportis47 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Last question fells? Can this operation be done in a 13" MBP? Thanks

  • 8. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    StarLabs Level 1 Level 1 (30 points)

    Yes you can use that adapter for any unibody MBP..

    since you are primarily after performance , you can add 2 SSD's to your system (2x120GB for example)

    and use them in a raid setup which will effectively double the bandwidth of the sata bus ...

     

    an ssd is already quite an amazing upgrade from a HDD and when you raid two of them it goes really really fast..

  • 9. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    dportis47 Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Sweet, thank you.

  • 10. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    darrello Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    @johnfinn68 - thanks for the detail here. I am doing the upgrade on the weekend and discovered that my HD is much faster - the Link/Negotiated speeds are quite different. 6/3 Gigabit for the HD, 3/1.5 for the Optical.

  • 11. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    melsreturn Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I am curious to know how it turned out for you.  I too am looking to make my system faster.  I  have upgraded the RAM from 8 (2x4) to 16 (2x8).  I recently cleaned files off, and also ran a program to take off program files that may be stragglers.  I had WAY too many files in my trash can, had strong need to clear all history on internet browsers...  I have a Late 2011 MBP.  That really allowed my CS5 to open fast, open pictures fast, and close fast too...  was pleased with it.

     

    I am looking at a Samsung 840 Series SSD.  So I believe what I am reading is that I can place this new SSD into where the original Hard Drive is now...  move the original hard drive to where the optical drive is (which I do not use), and then I read of a product called Hardwrk (i got all the info from this link:  http://www.zdnet.com/blog/hardware/how-to-boost-your-macbook-pro-performance/203 96

     

    Hope its ok to place the link here.  I promise I am not promoting anything! but this is where i obtained the thought of changing out the SSD. this guy recommends 2 SSD's but I dont have that mcuh money right now!  Anyway, I can get a product that will house the optical drive so when I need/want to use a dvd... 

     

    Is all of this correct?  Do you know if the Samsung 840 is a good drive?  Please advise of what type you have so I can look into that as a possibility.

  • 12. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    ZlSmith Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I know this is an older post but I wanted to follow up with my results. I did this with my early 2011 Macbook pro about a year ago I have not had any problems. 

     

     

    I swapped out the optical drive for an SSD drive. I then loaded the OS and boot off the SSD.  I left the OS on the HDD so just in case something want wrong I could boot off the HDD. 

     

     

    I can tell you that it is a real boost in performance, and is  much more noticeable then adding 16GB of Ram.  I would recommend swapping out your HDD for an SDD. It will make your aging macbook pro feel new again.

     

     

    I found this thread today because I wanted to know if it would be worth switching the locations of the SSD drive(currently in the optical bay) and HDD drive. I did some research and I found the answer.

     

     

    The short answer is NO, not for me. I went cheap and got a SATA II(256GB Samsung ssd pb22-js3 - as SSD drives go this is the bottom of the barrel. ) drive and the optical bay can handle SATA II(3GB/s) and the HDD slot can handle SATA III (6GB/s).  So if you have a SATA III drive it would make more sense it switch the locations of the drives. I also looked around and if you have a SATA II drive it is not worth upgrading to a SATA III drive.

  • 13. Re: Adding a new SSD replacing the Optical Drive
    johnfinn68 Level 1 Level 1 (20 points)

    Yes, if there is a difference, the HDD bay is the faster of the two.  Don't be disappointed (especially with a MBP like mine, a 13" mid 2009) if the SSD runs at a negotiated link that this slower than the capabilities of the SSD or MBP.  My SSD has vasilated between 1.5 and 3.0 since day one no matter which bay I use.  Sometimes it has to do with the OS X build, sometimes it changes because I've installed the TRIM app.  Sometimes, it makes no sense.  But the real fact is that I can hardly notice the difference between 1.5 and 3.0 in typical daily use (documents, iTunes, web browsing, etc.).  The only time I notice the difference, is if I'm editing video or audio, and the time it takes to convert large files to another format.  But the switch from a HDD to an SSD is enough to make you question buying a new Mac.