7 Replies Latest reply: Apr 21, 2012 10:48 AM by The hatter
svh7 Level 1 (0 points)

where can I buy and what type of solid state drive should I use to upgrade my early 2008 Mac Pro Desktop??

Mac Pro, Mac OS X (10.7.3), Solid state drives
  • The hatter Level 9 (60,925 points)

    Truth is while OWC has a good number of reviews on their drives, it isn't really any better or more Mac friendly than an Intel or other brand. A good controller with proper firmware and find the size and price you need.


    There are, under the hood, slightly different models but I doubt you are asking for that, and there are enterprise class NAND chips.


    All 128GB which is probably as small as you want to go


    Intel 330 $145 - very new and just out

    Corsair Force GT $169 (they have a cheaper Force 3, $10 less, want to skip on

    Corsair Performance Pro $199 - this one uses Marvell controller instead. Next on my wish list:

    http://pro-clockers.com/storage/2227-corsair-128-gb-performance-series-pro-solid -state-drive.html


    SandForce controller is mature and issues from 2011 seem to behind it (Intel adopted it) .


    http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/storage/display/corsair-kingston-ocz-patriot-ss d.html




  • Ricks ricks@macgurus.com Level 6 (11,515 points)

    What type of work do you do on your computer? How is the rest of your storage set up?  What are you going to put on the SSD and what gains do you expect to get in performance?


    Mostly buying an SSD for a boot drive proves we are all susceptible to the great marketing skills applied to our desire for better faster newer. I tend to warn against assuming an SSD is going to do much improvement of anything unless the buyer knows the type of data he is going to store on it will benefit from the faster access. Hate to see anyone spend that kind of money and just get a little teensy faster computer that boots quicker than it used to.



  • The hatter Level 9 (60,925 points)

    Ah, well, remember when 220MB/sec was the "magic number" for SCSI arrays back when?


    Now it is plug and play and $2,000 cheaper <g>


    If you want to see what addicted to speed looks like, look no further than....


    4 x 4TB @ $400 each + 2 x 480GB PCIe 4x SSD-Controller




    http://macperformanceguide.com/blog/2012/20120411_1-Hitachi-Deskstar-4TB-tested. html


    http://macperformanceguide.com/blog/2012/20120419_1-OWC-Mercury-Accelsior-CS6-di glloydHuge.html


    More  ways to burn through $2K at a clip!!

  • svh7 Level 1 (0 points)


    I am using my 2008 Mac Pro for Photography. Aperture over 35000 photos and Nikon Capture software. I have 12 gigs ram and 3 Sata drives. I see the system slowing down especially when aperture and other progams run. I was thinking the solid state would speed up the process if I use it for applications only??

    The Mecury Accelsior seems like a good option.


    Thanks to all for your input.

  • The hatter Level 9 (60,925 points)

    You are definitely right  on SSD and on the PCIe card, but I think you might, might, want more than 12GB. And I'm pretty sure if you are on 10.6.x or Lion to use 64-bit mode, too.


    My guess is to use 4 x 7.2k drives (or some 10K VRs, WD is coming with 250-500-1TB 10K models), plus boot drive in lower optical bay as 180-240GB SSD.


    SSD can make apps both launch and load but also switching between apps be fluid.


    SSD can be used for Aperture but how much... how large. I have two separate photo library folders of 30K each (one current, the other for older projects and files). Right now on a pair of 10K drives (stripe) but looking at SSD or the new VRs. I also doubled memory recently that helped too.


    You can throw money into drives (I do, from 15K SCSI days 12 yrs ago) and at least they last and go forward into any new system.


    RAM on your system: 8 DIMMs is ideal. 8 x 2GB, or go for 4 x 4GB + 4 x 2GB.

    Dlloyd is "into" 24GB RAM as 'sweet spot' and now encouraging large film users to go 48GB if possible.

    Loading and saving files to/from RAID or SSD is much nicer - no one wants to save 2GB files and watch the clock.

  • Ricks ricks@macgurus.com Level 6 (11,515 points)

    For the most part, an application itself only really benefits from being on the SSD when you launch the application. From then on that app is in RAM and no longer needs much access to its drive, so it can't benefit much from faster access.


    Where your slowdown occurs is in sifting through a large database and working on a large number of photos, or very large file size photos. Depending on the file sizes, how much history you carry, and the type of processes you perform, you will more benefit from more RAM and faster storage for the photo data than from speeding up OS and applications storage. Yes, an SSD for an OS/app drive gives you faster swap space as well. However increasing RAM will do more by limiting how much swap is needed and more likely give a better performance boost.


    Putting your database on faster storage, maybe even a RAID, will improve overall performance when handling photos, which is usually the only place a photographer really leans on his machines performance anyway. With your SATA drives getting larger and the drive fuller over time, access to the data is getting slower and slower. You and your computer are waiting on data to load.


    I am not as big a fan of choosing VelociRaptors for performance any longer. A VelociRaptor is a 10,000 RPM 2.5 inch drive that performs pretty spectacularly for its small size But current model Seagate 7200.14 3.5 inch drives are faster and a lot cheaper, especially when priced per GigaByte. In my opinion a more cost effective and performance enhancing choice.



  • The hatter Level 9 (60,925 points)



    When you get a chance.... DSLReports is off line: their SQL server decided to take its indexes and access to data. Power. Not enough of the right kind of UPS. Same happened to StorageReview's "Drive Reliability Database" about 8-9 yrs ago.


    dslreports.com is offline



    Fri Apr 20 09:05:55 EDT 2012



    SSD: Loading CS5 plus other little monsters might matter.

    Lots of small I/Os

    latency of 1/100th where nanoseconds replace those "long" milliseconds

    System: Small and fast.

    DLLoyd even goes for short-stroking drives to get and maintain highest I/O

    The new 10k VRs hit 200MB/sec - I still use them and still find them useful, long lasting, feel responsive with whatever I ask of them. I know they get criticized and "cost too much"

    Just bought a new WD Black and yes it is better than the 2008 model I was using.

    600GB 10K $200 vs $150-220 for WD Black. your choice

    I can destroy a 7.2k drive, I have brought ever 10K drive back after a simple WD Extended Test in Lifeguard.


    I don't really care about $$/GB or I wouldn't have just bought Intel 128GB $149


    Database: the pros put the index in memory and page fix (virtual volumes in memory; cache; hold disk drive index in memory). Caching storage has been around for almost 40 yrs.

    Today you can use SSDs as front end cache to hold DB indexes and frequent data for web servers and such adn use slower secondary storage.


    SSD + SAS + 4TB storage


    Separating the system from data: #1 must

    Having data on array: been what I use


    I put a large photo library on 2 x 10K VRs vs SSD and couldn't tell much difference (SSD is soundless of course) But my WD Blacks make as much noise and run 15*C hotter than those 10K (not what you expect?)


    While 10K and 7.2K are in the 140-180MB/sec range, they are in 3.0 to 12.0 ms seeks, not  0.01 ms.

    People wonnder why shrink a drive to 2.5" (or why not go down to 1.8".

    How long does it take to reposition a disk head? how often? the 10K VR travels on outer tracks at 70 MPH. Really trying to fly off into space.


    It uses one step to find the "zip code" and then another DSP to find the "house."

    True of any high density perpendicular recording mechanism.


    And of course while the Raptor-X tried to find a home with famers, Cheetah buyers, the WD 10K line has more of a home where servers and small form factor drives - and 100s of them - can fit in a rackmount server I imagine.


    Anyway.... if SR and DSLReports can drop out of site due to power and hardware failure and loss... we can learn some and hope to protect our own data and investments.