Previous 1 2 3 Next 71 Replies Latest reply: Sep 3, 2015 1:16 AM by stephnakagawa Branched to a new discussion.
Shacham Level 1 (0 points)


I own a MacBook Pro retina 2012/2013 with 256GB ssd,

I want to upgrade to the new 1TB PCIe-based Flash Storage.

I tried talking to apple support and was told they wont upgrade my macbook.

And that i should buy the SSD as a stand alone part and install it myself.

I have no problem installing it myself but I cant find it as a stand alone product.

The guy in support told me I can get it in the apple store. I went there and they dont sell it.

Anyone have the same problem?


MacBook Pro with Retina display, OS X Mavericks (10.9)
  • LowLuster Level 6 (12,065 points)

    Not possible to upgrade your Retina. Once you buy it you are stuck with whatever it came with, that you ordered with it.

  • clintonfrombirmingham Level 7 (30,000 points)

    The only thing that you can upgrade is your flash storage - see this flash storage device from OWC.


    There's no way to 'upgrade' your machine to a PCIe flash storage device at this time, however.


    Good luck,



  • Shacham Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for your replay.

    That's weird why would the support guy (after getting my serial number) said that I cloud upgrade to the PCIe?

  • clintonfrombirmingham Level 7 (30,000 points)

    Probably just didn't know - the PCIe flash storage units are pretty new...



  • Incredipete Level 1 (0 points)

    The help you're getting here simply isn't correct. I purchased a mid-2012 retina MBP with 512GB PCIe SSD. I recently purchased a 768GB PCIe SSD off Ebay and did the swap myself. The drive is literally just a PCI card that sticks in a slot. Took less than 10 minutes to swap it.


    The hardest part of upgrading drives on the retina MBP is finding a PCIe drive, but I recommend checking Ebay.


    Good luck!

  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 9 (56,701 points)

    anything that shipped with a 2.5" form factor SATA Hard Drive can be upgraded to an Apple or aftermarket 2.5" form factor SATA "SSD-in-a-can".


    the early SSD-only MacBook Air models shipped with a "stick" form factor SSD-ONLY in a special SATA socket. No room for a 2.5" form factor Hard drive. OWC and perhaps some others developed some aftermarket "drives" that are compatible. OWC "Aura Pro" series.


    I think it is only the 2013 models MacBook Air and MacBook Pro and Mac Pro (that do not have a 2.5" hard drive option) that made the leap to the "stick" form factor with a PCIe connection with a different special connector.


    These PCIe SSDs are really fast, possibly on the order of 800 MBytes/sec. Compare to a 7200RPM Hard drive's 125 M Bytes/sec burst.

  • proaudioguy Level 1 (0 points)

    Incredipete, I was considering buying my wife a 13" 1TB MBPr.  I have a 512GB 15" MBPr from last Jan.  My question is will the new 1TB drive fit in the older MBPr, and vice versa.  I'd like to simply swap these two drives.  I actually need the space but the 1TB was not available at that time and it was over $500 to upgrade from 512 to 768 so I have been carrying around an external 1TB every since.  I would love to move my 350GB itunes folder onto my internal drive.


    Anyone else know the answer?  Sorry to hijack the thread.


    Ps. I want my IOS6 back.

  • LowLuster Level 6 (12,065 points)

    Not sure if the actual connection system is the same but even if it is the new SSDs are PCIe based and the your older Mac is SATA. So I doubt the 2013 SSD would work in a 2012 model.

  • proaudioguy Level 1 (0 points)


  • Incredipete Level 1 (0 points)

    Hey, all of the retina MacBooks use the same form factor PCIe. You can swap them. I recently swapped a mid 2012 and a late 2013. It's a Piece of cake.

  • Grant Bennet-Alder Level 9 (56,701 points)



    You are correct that many of these "stick" SSD modules have the same SATA-like connector, and are interchangeable. OWC "Aura Pro" modules are sold as compatible with these.


    But the latest 2013 MacBook Air and MacBook Pro 11,1 use a direct-PCIe SSD that uses a different connector, and is not compatible with earlier models. At this writing, there are no third party devices available.

  • AxeBox360 Level 1 (15 points)

    I'm in the same boat with a 2013 Macbook Air. OWC announced SSD drives for the 2013 Macbooks last month, they are expected to go on sale Q3 of this year, Until then, space management is your friend. And high-capacity USB sticks.

  • PlotinusVeritas Level 6 (14,725 points)

    I want to upgrade to the new 1TB PCIe-based Flash Storage.



    Honestly, do you NEED 1tb SSD? 



    You need to change the premise of your SSD use.




    see here:

    Your Solid State Drive and having enough space inside your Macbook Air & Pro


    Solid State Drive usage premise, or the “more space / upgrade SSD” question

    There have been questions posed and positions taken by many people who are trying to use their Macbook Air or Pro’s solid state drive (SSD) as a mass media storage device, for either pictures, videos, massive music collections or all three combined; but this should not be the working premise of a ‘limited’ SSD and its use.

    In which, it’s the case of those users with either 128GB, 256GB, or even 512GB of internal SSD space, that have or are running “out of space”, that questions are raised. The immediate premise of some users can sometimes be “(how to / if) upgrading my SSD” when in fact in nearly all instances another approach is the logical and sensible one that needs to be looked into and exercised.

    Any Macbook containing a SSD should be idealized as a ‘working platform’ notebook containing all your applications, documents, and weekly or bi-weekly necessary files. All collections of media files such as pictures, music, and videos, unless directly needed should be kept off the notebook and on an external hard drive or likewise. While the ‘working platform’ premise is also the case with larger internal conventional hard drives of 1TB+, its implementation isn't as critical except in terms of data protection.

    Realistically, you should at most coordinate roughly 20 to 25% of your total SSD space to all audio-video personal use media (picture / music / video collections), leaving the remaining amount on an external HD.

    Nobody should consider any notebook a data storage device at any time under any circumstance, rather a data creation, sending, and manipulation device; and in the case of a SSD, this is more important for purposes of having sufficient working space on the SSD and reducing SSD ‘bloat’ in which cases someone is wrongly attempting to use the SSD space as a large media storage nexus.

    The rare exception to the collective usage and premise of SSD use in which a much larger SSD is truly needed are for those in video and photography professions that require both the extremely fast speeds of the SSD and the onboard storage for large and or many video and photography files. However this also falls under the premise of a ‘working platform’ for such peoples rather than the intent of many who are using the SSD as passive and static data storage for media files very infrequently needed or accessed.

    All on-notebook data collections should be logically approached as to necessity, and evaluated as to whether it is active or passive data that likely doesn’t need to be on the notebook, allocations of space-percentages to as-needed work and use, apportioning space for your entertainment media, and questioning whether it should it be on the notebook for more than short-term consumption.

    Considerations should be made in the mind of any user in differentiating the necessary system data (System hub) comprising the Mac OSX, applications, necessary documents that both must and should be on your internal SSD, and that of the users personal data (Data hub) comprising created files, pictures, music, videos, PDF files, data created or being created and otherwise, that likely unless being used soon or often should be parked on an external hard drive for consumption, or temporarily loading onto the internal SSD.

    You both can and should purchase whichever SSD size you need or see fit, but even in the case of the largest of SSD, unless use-considerations are made, and SSD spaces are allocated as should be the case indicated above, one can easily and immediately run into this quandary of “needing more internal SSD space”, in which instance a different approach in usage must then be implemented.


    However it is almost always the case, that such large media files are wanted to be stored internally rather than actually needed, in which case the external HD is both prudent as well as necessary. Additionally costs per MB are infinitely less on an external HD than an internal SSD in any consideration of data expansion needs.




    A Professional Example

    In the case of a Macbook Air or Macbook Pro Retina with ‘limited’ storage on the SSD, this distinction becomes more important in that in an ever rapidly increasing file-size world, you keep vital large media files, pics, video, PDF collections, music off your SSD and archived on external storage, for sake of the necessary room for your system to have free space to operate, store future applications and general workspace. 


    You should also never be put in the position of considering “deleting things” on your Macbook SSD in order to ‘make space’. This is especially what your external HD is for.

    Professionals who create and import very large amounts of data have almost no change in the available space on their notebooks internal SSD because they are constantly archiving data to arrays of external or networked HD.

    Or in the case of the consumer this means you keep folders for large imported or created data and you ritually offload and archive this data for safekeeping, not only to safeguard the data in case your Macbook has a SSD crash, or gets stolen, but importantly in keeping the ‘breathing room’ open for your notebook to operate, expand, create files, add applications, for your APPS to create temp files, and for general operation.



    Slim USB3 1TB external hard drive


    External Hard Drives

    External hard drives are both extremely cheap and regardless of the size of your internal SSD (or even internal hard drive if the case), you need an external hard drive with your SSD equipped Macbook for several reasons:


    1. Data backup and protection.

    2. Redundancy for important data.

    3. Necessitated ideal space for large media files for collections of pictures, videos, and music etc.

    While ever changing in price, typical portable 2.5” external hard drives in USB3 run roughly $65 for 1TB or $120 for 2TB small portable USB3 hard drives. Such drives range in thickness between 5mm and 15mm, with recent improvements in storage of 500GB drives in 5mm profiles.

    There is almost no premise in which a small 12mm thick 1 Terabyte USB hard drive cannot be taken along with any Macbook as an external large storage extension inside any Macbook carry case or pouch. Typically such external HD profiles are not much bigger than a deck of cards.

    External hard drives are a foregone necessity for purchase with any Macbook for at the very least Time Machine backups, data redundancies, and ideally for large media storage.

  • AxeBox360 Level 1 (15 points)

    There are as many needs as  there are people, trying to dismiss someone's needs as invalid is a juvenile proposition to say the least. External drives will work for some, and not for others. Like me, I carry my Macbook from meeting to meeting in one hand,and my coffee, notes, mouse, phone, whatever in the other hand. I literally just grab my computer and follow whoever wanted to meet to the conference room. I wouldn't want to deal with an having to waste time disconnecting an external Hard Drive , or worse, walking around with it swining in the air  from my macbook, lol. 

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