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microcolt
Jun 10, 2010, 02:30 AM
I've been looking into getting a SSD for my late 2009 Mac Pro. I need something that's at least 256GB but what is the fastest and most reliable SSD for a Mac Pro? I don't want this thing failing on me in a month as I'm hoping to make this my primary drive.


Thanks in advance for your help!

Edit: Price is not a factor.



strausd
Jun 10, 2010, 02:39 AM
The two brands that comes to mind in that size is corsair and crucial. Of course, intel is really good but I think they only go up to 160 GB.

Techhie
Jun 10, 2010, 02:52 AM
If you want a drive of that size with speed and reliability, you are going to pay for it. Corsair has several drives in that category, although all vendors are going to be over $600. link (http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Technology-RealSSD-Solid-CTFDDAC256MAG-1G1/dp/B0039SM0B2/ref=pd_cp_e_1)

microcolt
Jun 10, 2010, 03:00 AM
If you want a drive of that size with speed and reliability, you are going to pay for it. Corsair has several drives in that category, although all vendors are going to be over $600. link (http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Technology-RealSSD-Solid-CTFDDAC256MAG-1G1/dp/B0039SM0B2/ref=pd_cp_e_1)

Thanks, I will take this one into consideration.

ValSalva
Jun 10, 2010, 04:59 AM
My Crucial M225 256GB SSD was installed in August 2009. No slowdowns at all. Very fast and reliable. One other brand to consider is OWC (http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/internal_storage/Mercury_Extreme_SSD_Sandforce). They have a nice line of their own branded SSDs.

flatfoot
Jun 10, 2010, 06:23 AM
You may want to look at SSDs that sport the SandForce SF-1200 (http://sandforce.com/index.php?id=19&parentId=2&top=1) or SF-1500 (http://sandforce.com/index.php?id=21&parentId=2&top=1) controllers.
These controllers have sort of a garbage collection algorithm integrated, which is really nice, especially since OS X doesn't support TRIM (yet). Brands using SandForce Controllers are, for example, OCZ, Mushkin and Corsair.

tomllama
Jun 10, 2010, 12:26 PM
My new MP 4,1 was delivered Monday (to replace a dying MP 1,1). I added an OCZ Agility 2 240GB as the boot drive (using the SATA connections in the OD bay). It makes an incredible difference in the time from login to having all the startup items loaded and ready to go.

{edit: Recent review/discussion about the Agility 2 can be found at Anandtech}

As my wife refuses to every clean up her user files, I've moved the user home folders to a mechanical disk (WD caviar black) and only the OS lives on the SSD. Later this week I'll redo the SSD to create a bootcamp partition and move the Windows OS from a mechanical to the SSD too.

The MP 4,1 with a 2.93 GHz quad core and 16 GB RAM is a very nice improvement on the MP 1,1 (which was 2.66 GHz and 7 GB).

VirtualRain
Jun 10, 2010, 12:30 PM
Edit: Price is not a factor.

Ahh... music to my ears! :D I would encourage you to consider running 2 Intel drives in RAID0 for the ultimate in performance and great capacity 2x160GB :D :eek: It will give you stunning random RW performance and amazing sequential speeds as well.

I'm not too familiar with the latest Sandforce controller based drives, but prior to that Intel owned the game for its robust controller that could maintain top performance even when the drive had been used extensively... something lesser drives grappled with.

The MP 4,1 with a 2.93 GHz quad core and 16 GB RAM is a very nice improvement on the MP 1,1 (which was 2.66 GHz and 7 GB).

No kidding! Esp. with an SSD. I'm curious BTW... what do you do that uses 16GB of RAM?

tomllama
Jun 10, 2010, 12:54 PM
I'm curious BTW... what do you do that uses 16GB of RAM?

All 16? Nothing that I know of yet. I use Parallels to run a number of Windows applications when I'm too lazy to reboot and don't care about a slight (not noticeable) performance penalty. I use a number of Windows based video applications to merge my race video with data and then take the file into Final Cut to edit, enhance and turn into a home movie. I'll be switching from standard to HD video by the end of this year. So, I like to be able to allocate a big chunk of RAM to Parallels for it's use to ensure good performance. At 7 GB I was using it up between the OSX side and Parallels.

Apple's 3 GB of RAM was not going to be enough and it was cheap enough to simply go to 16 instead of some intermediate and then the likely hassle of trying to add more later.

VirtualRain
Jun 10, 2010, 01:33 PM
All 16? Nothing that I know of yet. I use Parallels to run a number of Windows applications when I'm too lazy to reboot and don't care about a slight (not noticeable) performance penalty. I use a number of Windows based video applications to merge my race video with data and then take the file into Final Cut to edit, enhance and turn into a home movie. I'll be switching from standard to HD video by the end of this year. So, I like to be able to allocate a big chunk of RAM to Parallels for it's use to ensure good performance. At 7 GB I was using it up between the OSX side and Parallels.

Apple's 3 GB of RAM was not going to be enough and it was cheap enough to simply go to 16 instead of some intermediate and then the likely hassle of trying to add more later.

I see... did you consider 12GB?

skyline r34
Jun 10, 2010, 06:03 PM
I've been looking into getting a SSD for my late 2009 Mac Pro. I need something that's at least 256GB but what is the fastest and most reliable SSD for a Mac Pro? I don't want this thing failing on me in a month as I'm hoping to make this my primary drive.


Thanks in advance for your help!

Edit: Price is not a factor.

Intel SSD drive expensive

hyram
Jun 10, 2010, 06:51 PM
I would encourage you to consider running 2 Intel drives in RAID0 for the ultimate in performance and great capacity 2x160GB :D :eek: It will give you stunning random RW performance and amazing sequential speeds as well.

Not meaning to hijack the thread...

VR... Do you have such a setup? If so, which MP, and what are your boot times?

Techhie
Jun 10, 2010, 07:28 PM
Not meaning to hijack the thread...

VR... Do you have such a setup? If so, which MP, and what are your boot times?

I thought that the full throughput for those drives couldn't be achieved without a PCI RAID card :confused:

tomllama
Jun 10, 2010, 07:30 PM
I see... did you consider 12GB?

Yes, but the price differential was not great and I figured with the cost of the workstation that the extra money to max it out with 4 GB modules was trivial ($150). Apple wanted $1850 for 16 GB and I paid $610. For the Apple price, I could have bought 32 GB using 8 GB modules and I knew I didn't need that much but I wanted more than the 8 GB from using 2 GB modules. So, for me, 16 GB was a nice compromise at a reasonable price.

ncc1701d
Jun 10, 2010, 09:24 PM
I have the first SSD from OWC (200GB) and it's been flawless. Those bigger ones and the RE's look pretty nice!

VirtualRain
Jun 10, 2010, 11:21 PM
Not meaning to hijack the thread...

VR... Do you have such a setup? If so, which MP, and what are your boot times?

Yes, I have three G1 X25-M running in RAID0 and read's are hitting the ICH limit. ;)

Full details here... http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=841556

EDIT: Boot times are pretty nice, but I wouldn't say it's in an eye blink or anything. I mean you have to keep in mind that a lot of the boot process is not necessarily disk constrained when you start factoring in network DHCP and USB device initialization and crap like that. If I unplug everything except a monitor, it is insane! :D


Yes, but the price differential was not great and I figured with the cost of the workstation that the extra money to max it out with 4 GB modules was trivial ($150). Apple wanted $1850 for 16 GB and I paid $610.

Yeah, you can't be OWC for RAM upgrades. I've been considering bumping up to 12GB (3x4GB) to keep tri-channel operation. Anyway, 16GB should do you for awhile! :D

tomllama
Jun 10, 2010, 11:47 PM
One day when I get time I'll try and run some tests to see if 3 modules vs. 4 makes any real difference in speed during use. I really doubt it. I considered the issue and decided to ignore it in favor of quantity instead of maybe a little speed.

My boot speed is 30 seconds (chime to login screen) down from about 37 in the MP 1,1. The real benefit is the incredible decrease in time from login to being ready to run after all the startup items launch. It's incredibly fast (maybe 10x) and I'm only running a 'bare' SSD and not a RAID.

Whaditis
Jun 10, 2010, 11:54 PM
OCZ Collosus, say no more......that's whats working my OS on my Nehalem 2009 Mac Pro 2.26 x 2 dual processor 8-core.

Fast like hell.

hyram
Jun 11, 2010, 12:44 AM
Boot times are pretty nice, but I wouldn't say it's in an eye blink or anything. I mean you have to keep in mind that a lot of the boot process is not necessarily disk constrained when you start factoring in network DHCP and USB device initialization and crap like that. If I unplug everything except a monitor, it is insane! :D

Can you quote some numbers please? I'm just trying to understand if what I have is compariable to others as it didn't really "wow" me like I thought it would. I'm running 2 of the gen2's in RAID0 in a MP1,1 and am very satisfied with the performance, just not the boot times.

For comparison:

Single 750GB seagate (stock) ~70 sec.
2 1.5TB segates RAID 0 ~55 sec
2 80 gB X25-M gen2. ~48 sec.

This is from pushing the power button to login screen. It takes about 18 sec to get from the power button press to the gray Apple logo, which would be the point of handoff from the firmware to the OS.

VirtualRain
Jun 11, 2010, 01:38 AM
Can you quote some numbers please? I'm just trying to understand if what I have is compariable to others as it didn't really "wow" me like I thought it would. I'm running 2 of the gen2's in RAID0 in a MP1,1 and am very satisfied with the performance, just not the boot times.

For comparison:

Single 750GB seagate (stock) ~70 sec.
2 1.5TB segates RAID 0 ~55 sec
2 80 gB X25-M gen2. ~48 sec.

This is from pushing the power button to login screen. It takes about 18 sec to get from the power button press to the gray Apple logo, which would be the point of handoff from the firmware to the OS.


Here are my boot times... with 3xG1's in RAID0

Power button...
to Bong = 9 seconds
to Apple logo = 19 seconds
to Desktop = 42 seconds

I auto login.

I assume the first two are the same for everyone.

hyram
Jun 11, 2010, 02:34 AM
Power button...
to Bong = 9 seconds
to Apple logo = 19 seconds
to Desktop = 42 seconds


It looks like my times are in line with yours. 42 sec for 3 ssd's, 48 sec for 2.

Thanks much!

microcolt
Jun 11, 2010, 04:23 AM
Well thanks for all the feedback and comments, but I decided to go with: http://www.compusa.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=4622486&CatId=5300
Mainly because it was 574(with rebate) and I was able to buy it today(I'm an anxious bastard :D). My Mac Pro fly's now and I don't wait for anything anymore, the only bottle-neck on my computer is my internet speed ><.


Although I do have one question, my boot time seems to not have decreased but stayed the same about if not gotten longer but after I get the spinner under the Apple logo I'm in like lighting. So, whats the deal? Whats my Mac waiting on?

flatfoot
Jun 11, 2010, 04:54 AM
That's about where the SSD takes over from the motherboard.
Before that, the SSDs/HDDs aren't involved yet.

Whaditis
Jun 11, 2010, 11:24 AM
That's what is inside my Mac Pro 2009 8-core 2.26. I use the OCZ Collossus for my OS while I have conventional harddrives for the rest of the bays. 2 x 640 Western Digital black in raid 0 and another WD 1Tb black in bay 4.

With the SSD my boot time is 14 seconds.

Plus the original mac hitachi harddrive 640gb went into the extra optical bay for bootcamp with windows 7 ultimate.

Im loving it.

You will too.

VirtualRain
Jun 11, 2010, 11:25 AM
Although I do have one question, my boot time seems to not have decreased but stayed the same about if not gotten longer but after I get the spinner under the Apple logo I'm in like lighting. So, whats the deal? Whats my Mac waiting on?

The time before the spinner is all related to the firmware loading for various components in the system (main board and GPU, bootloader, etc.)

As I mentioned above, boot times also depend on a number of non-disk related activity as well such as networking, device initialization and loading drivers, etc.

Rest assured though, that any disk related activity is happening ALOT faster than before! :D

666sheep
Jun 11, 2010, 11:31 AM
The time before the spinner is all related to the firmware loading for various components in the system (main board and GPU, bootloader, etc.)

And it's different for various MP revs. My 2006 boots in about 25s. (from power btn to desktop with autologin) with single Intel G2 80 GB. I see in other threads, that this time vary between 1.1 and 4.1 rev.

Rad
Jun 11, 2010, 01:32 PM
Went from RAID 0 Raptors to a single OWC-brand SandForce controller SSD. Overall faster responsiveness, although my Raptor RAID was also very fast. No problems at all. Probably much more worthwhile if going from a regular single mechanical drive.

microcolt
Jun 11, 2010, 04:28 PM
The time before the spinner is all related to the firmware loading for various components in the system (main board and GPU, bootloader, etc.)

As I mentioned above, boot times also depend on a number of non-disk related activity as well such as networking, device initialization and loading drivers, etc.

Rest assured though, that any disk related activity is happening ALOT faster than before! :D

I understand that any disk related activity is WAY faster but it's my boot times that seem to have increased.

Power button...
to Bong = 2 seconds,
to Apple = 39 seconds,
to Desktop < 1 second.(auto login)

Could it be that my Mac is waiting for my Magic Mouse and Bluetooth Keyboard to connect?

VirtualRain
Jun 11, 2010, 05:29 PM
I understand that any disk related activity is WAY faster but it's my boot times that seem to have increased.

Power button...
to Bong = 2 seconds,
to Apple = 39 seconds,
to Desktop < 1 second.(auto login)

Could it be that my Mac is waiting for my Magic Mouse and Bluetooth Keyboard to connect?

That's a bizarre situation... It's taking over 40 seconds before you see the Apple logo? Yet only 1 second from there to the desktop? Very similar boot times overall, but totally different use of time at each stage. :confused:

microcolt
Jun 11, 2010, 10:35 PM
That's a bizarre situation... It's taking over 40 seconds before you see the Apple logo? Yet only 1 second from there to the desktop? Very similar boot times overall, but totally different use of time at each stage. :confused:

Yeah I admit it's strange, I just don't see why the startup time would take so much time. The only change I have made was switching from my Velociraptor to my SSD, and I copied the drive with Carbon Copy Cloner.

tomllama
Jun 12, 2010, 12:04 AM
I'm happy to see that the OCZ Colossus actually works in a mac. I bought one a few months back and had to return it as my MP 1,1 would not recognize it existed.

Whaditis
Jun 12, 2010, 12:16 AM
I'm happy to see that the OCZ Colossus actually works in a mac. I bought one a few months back and had to return it as my MP 1,1 would not recognize it existed.


at first my 2009 Mac Pro did not recognize it as well, but then I went into disk utilities and voila, it formatted it. I forget the term Mac Osx uses in disk utilities but it basically detects and formats it.

VirtualRain
Jun 12, 2010, 02:35 AM
Yeah I admit it's strange, I just don't see why the startup time would take so much time. The only change I have made was switching from my Velociraptor to my SSD, and I copied the drive with Carbon Copy Cloner.

The only thing I can suggest is disconnecting all peripherals (including all other drives) to see if they are somehow responsible. Is the firmware having trouble identifying the startup volume?

I know that my USB audio interfaces and other USB stuff on the ACD LED 24" can slow the boot process down. The graphics card(s) you have could also have an impact. Who knows. I wouldn't worry about it too much. If your drive benches fine with AJA, then you can rest assured it's some other component taking it's sweet time to initialize.

SmilesLots
Jun 12, 2010, 07:00 AM
I've been very happy with my two Intel G2 809GB SSD's connected asstriped raid to the extra sata ports in a 1.1 Mac Pro. I have not clocked it, but it definitely is faster. But my main startup drive is another raid 0 of two eagate 2TB drives = 4TB total. While not as fast as the SSD's, it does well.