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Old Jan 29, 2013, 11:03 AM   #1
ekinnyc
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throwing an SSD into a late2008 macbook

hey guys

i am thinking of adding an SSD to my macbook. currently i have a 500GB WD Black drive, and the superdrive, so i am thinking of replacing the superdrive with a bracket and moving the HD there, and adding an SSD to the existing HD slot.

the macbook is SATAII so unfortunately i cannot get the max utility of the new crucial M4 or Intel 5XX series SSDs, as those are SATAIII.

can someone recommend a good SATAII SSD? the Intel 320 SSDs seem to be getting great reviews on newegg. also, some technical questions
- is there a specific controller i should look for?
- how do the recent SSDs fare with r/w operations? i remember reading a while back that SSDs suffer a high failure rate due to multiple read/writes

thanks!!
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 11:12 AM   #2
ybz90
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Since its SATA2 anyway, I'd recommend putting the SSD in the bracket and leaving the HD where it is so you can take advantage of the sudden motion sensor in the event that the HD doesn't have one built-in.

I've never had a compatibility issue with any SSDs, or reliability issues either. Supposedly, last-gen Sandforces were sketchy, but they were damn fast. There's a thread here with SSD suggestions, but honestly, any should do you just fine.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 09:35 PM   #3
marc11
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I'm running an Intel 330 in my 2010 MBP, works great and I was able to get the 240 gb version for $150 a few months ago, great deal. The 335 is basically the same unit, MLC NAND only with a smaller die; the Samsung 840 is also a nice drive, the non pro is TLC so some argue a lower life of about 7 to 10 years of heavy use or you can go with the Pro which is MLC so longer life.

I do not expect either of these machines to be around for 7 more years so I am putting a Samsung 840 non-pro in my kids 2010 Macbook. I just purchased a 250 gig unit for $140.

With good back ups, if the drive fails, it fails, I have back ups so I am not worried and they come with 3 to 5 year warranties, which is more than enough to cover my expected life of these computers.

Me, if I were you, I would through a Samsung 840 non pro in there and enjoy the heck out of it.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 10:23 PM   #4
ekinnyc
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So i was chatting with a sales rep from owc about using sata3 drives in a late2008 macbook. Was told that any sata3 drive will be crippled to 1.5gb (ie sata1) either in the caddy or in the main HD spot, and that in order to get best performance i need to get a sata2 drive. Is that accurate? An intel 320 is $190 on newegg for 128gb, while a samsung 840pro is $140. Thats less money for better tech but i dont want to cripple it by incompatibility
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 10:27 PM   #5
marc11
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Originally Posted by ekinnyc View Post
So i was chatting with a sales rep from owc about using sata3 drives in a late2008 macbook. Was told that any sata3 drive will be crippled to 1.5gb (ie sata1) either in the caddy or in the main HD spot, and that in order to get best performance i need to get a sata2 drive. Is that accurate? An intel 320 is $190 on newegg for 128gb, while a samsung 840pro is $140. Thats less money for better tech but i dont want to cripple it by incompatibility
I have never heard that, but I guess it could be true; but I cannot see why, all SATA III are supposed backward compatible to SATA II. In my 2010 I get SATA II speeds in both the optibay and standard locations with my SSD, but maybe something is different with the 2008?

Why do you want the pro over the standard 840, there isn't much performance difference in synthetic bench marks, I doubt you will see any in the real world?

But if you are worried Amazon has the Intel 320, 120 GB for $149. Get it and no worries. It will be fast and reliable.
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Last edited by marc11; Jan 30, 2013 at 12:23 AM.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 10:51 PM   #6
ekinnyc
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this is what one newegg review says about the 840 pro (well i assume itll apply to any SATAIII drive, though surprising for a late 2011 mbp)

***Note, this SSD drive will NOT, i repeat NOT, work in the Opti-Bay with the additional kit. You must put the SSD in the Drive 0 slot and the HDD in the opti bay (for late 2011 MBP). The mac will read the drive, but not be able to format it due to the speed of the connector cable rating. Sata II vs Sata III.
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Old Jan 29, 2013, 11:05 PM   #7
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There are a number of reasons to put the SSD in the original hard drive spot, mostly because there are issues mounting or even seeing it when it is attached via an optical drive bay bracket (this is true, even in 2011 machines with two SATA3 hard drive interfaces), as well as issues with performing firmware updates, etc... All in, it's better to put the HDD on the ODD interface and the SSD in place of the original HDD.

A SATAIII drive in a MacBook Late 2008 will run at SATA2 speeds (3Gbps), not SATA (1.5Gbps), who ever told you this was wrong... I have done 50+ SSD installs in this EXACT model (very popular!!) and always in the last year have used SATA3 along with maxing out the RAM at 8GB. Great upgrade for this machine.
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Old Jan 30, 2013, 12:24 AM   #8
marc11
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Well IMHO, $150 for a 240 gb Samsung 840 SSD is a great deal at Amazon; I would jump on it and as said bump to 8 gigs of ram and be one happy camper for under $200. It will be like buying a brand new computer....oh and the silence is golden. I forget my computer is on more often then not until my Time Machine wakes up my external firewire drives.
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Old Jan 30, 2013, 02:17 PM   #9
Donia330i
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G-Mo View Post
There are a number of reasons to put the SSD in the original hard drive spot, mostly because there are issues mounting or even seeing it when it is attached via an optical drive bay bracket (this is true, even in 2011 machines with two SATA3 hard drive interfaces), as well as issues with performing firmware updates, etc... All in, it's better to put the HDD on the ODD interface and the SSD in place of the original HDD.

A SATAIII drive in a MacBook Late 2008 will run at SATA2 speeds (3Gbps), not SATA (1.5Gbps), who ever told you this was wrong... I have done 50+ SSD installs in this EXACT model (very popular!!) and always in the last year have used SATA3 along with maxing out the RAM at 8GB. Great upgrade for this machine.
Hi, since you seem to have a lot of experience and an expert at this could you please recommend an SSD for this machine. Looking for around 250 gb. What do most people have you install when you do this upgrade? Thank you!
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Old Jan 31, 2013, 11:06 AM   #10
ekinnyc
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if i add the SSD into the HDD slot, and the HDD into the ODD slot, do i need to worry about airflow and "venting" for the HDD in the ODD enclosure? i saw somewhere that the HDD casing has "breather" holes, and that the tight fit in the optical caddy will not allow for proper airflow.
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Old Jan 31, 2013, 01:10 PM   #11
G-Mo
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Originally Posted by Donia330i View Post
Hi, since you seem to have a lot of experience and an expert at this could you please recommend an SSD for this machine. Looking for around 250 gb. What do most people have you install when you do this upgrade? Thank you!
Currently I like the Crucial m4 or Samsung 840 Pro series.
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Old Jan 31, 2013, 01:14 PM   #12
ekinnyc
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Originally Posted by marc11 View Post
I have never heard that, but I guess it could be true; but I cannot see why, all SATA III are supposed backward compatible to SATA II. In my 2010 I get SATA II speeds in both the optibay and standard locations with my SSD, but maybe something is different with the 2008?

Why do you want the pro over the standard 840, there isn't much performance difference in synthetic bench marks, I doubt you will see any in the real world?

But if you are worried Amazon has the Intel 320, 120 GB for $149. Get it and no worries. It will be fast and reliable.
further reading reveals that not all controllers/SSDs play nice with the Nvidia MCP79 controller in the late 2008 macbooks. i think i will go with a samsung 830... not the newest kid on the block, but seems to be a very solid choice. its either that or a sandforce-based SSD (and even then, it has to be modified by mfg via firmware to cripple the drives to S2 speeds)
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Old Jan 31, 2013, 03:44 PM   #13
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The Crucial v4 might be what you want, a recently released drive, specifically targeted for older SATA-II systems.
Quote:
The right drive. If you bought a computer before 2011 and you’re looking to upgrade to an SSD, the Crucial v4 SSD might be just what you’re looking for. Designed to deliver substantial performance for mainstream computers, the Crucial v4 SSD was created to complement the abilities of your system. Since computers made before 2011 typically have slower data transfer capabilities than newer systems, they’re best-suited for the Crucial v4 SSD, which was built with these transfer speeds in mind.

Last edited by Giuly; Jan 31, 2013 at 03:55 PM.
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Old Jan 31, 2013, 07:24 PM   #14
marc11
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Originally Posted by ekinnyc View Post
if i add the SSD into the HDD slot, and the HDD into the ODD slot, do i need to worry about airflow and "venting" for the HDD in the ODD enclosure? i saw somewhere that the HDD casing has "breather" holes, and that the tight fit in the optical caddy will not allow for proper airflow.
Nope. I ran this set up for two years no issue. Just recently I upgraded my SSD to a larger one and decided to remove my HDD and put it in a Firewire enclosure. For what I was using the HDD for I didn't need it with me all the time and Firewire is fast enough for my needs.

I LOVE the dead silence of the machine now, it is freaking amazing how quiet it is....

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by ekinnyc View Post
further reading reveals that not all controllers/SSDs play nice with the Nvidia MCP79 controller in the late 2008 macbooks. i think i will go with a samsung 830... not the newest kid on the block, but seems to be a very solid choice. its either that or a sandforce-based SSD (and even then, it has to be modified by mfg via firmware to cripple the drives to S2 speeds)
Not a bad choice, nor is the Intel 320. Good luck!
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Old Feb 1, 2013, 11:11 AM   #15
Donia330i
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Originally Posted by G-Mo View Post
Currently I like the Crucial m4 or Samsung 840 Pro series.
in such an older machine would I even the difference between the Pro and non-pro?
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Old Feb 1, 2013, 11:22 AM   #16
ekinnyc
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Nope. I ran this set up for two years no issue. Just recently I upgraded my SSD to a larger one and decided to remove my HDD and put it in a Firewire enclosure. For what I was using the HDD for I didn't need it with me all the time and Firewire is fast enough for my needs.

I LOVE the dead silence of the machine now, it is freaking amazing how quiet it is....

----------



Not a bad choice, nor is the Intel 320. Good luck!
just pulled the trigger on the 830... looking forward to shaving time off my web browsing
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Old Feb 1, 2013, 11:28 AM   #17
paul-n
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There is not need to buy a SATA2 SSD for a SATA2 port. Better buy a current SSD, because the higher Random access speeds of these drives also get felt on SATA2, because nearly every transfer is slower then the maximum speed of SATA 3 Gb/s.
A normal HDD needs no airflow, you can mount the HDD to the optibay.
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Old Feb 1, 2013, 11:54 AM   #18
robvas
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The Crucial v4 might be what you want, a recently released drive, specifically targeted for older SATA-II systems.
The V4 is deathly slow. Stay away.
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Old Feb 1, 2013, 12:55 PM   #19
Giuly
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The V4 is deathly slow. Stay away.
But inexpensive. If you really want to spend the money only to be cut off at 250MB/s.

Your best bet would be something like the Samsung 840 Pro anyways, as you can take it with you to a new Mac, if the need arises.
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Old Feb 1, 2013, 01:10 PM   #20
robvas
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But inexpensive. If you really want to spend the money only to be cut off at 250MB/s.

Your best bet would be something like the Samsung 840 Pro anyways, as you can take it with you to a new Mac, if the need arises.
It won't even hit those numbers, it performs at 1/4 of the old Intell SSD's from 2009

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Old Feb 2, 2013, 12:12 AM   #21
G-Mo
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in such an older machine would I even the difference between the Pro and non-pro?
Future proofing...
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 07:30 AM   #22
peterson12
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hey guys

i am thinking of adding an SSD to my macbook. currently i have a 500GB WD Black drive, and the superdrive, so i am thinking of replacing the superdrive with a bracket and moving the HD there, and adding an SSD to the existing HD slot.

the macbook is SATAII so unfortunately i cannot get the max utility of the new crucial M4 or Intel 5XX series SSDs, as those are SATAIII.

can someone recommend a good SATAII SSD? the Intel 320 SSDs seem to be getting great reviews on newegg. also, some technical questions
- is there a specific controller i should look for?
- how do the recent SSDs fare with r/w operations? i remember reading a while back that SSDs suffer a high failure rate due to multiple read/writes

thanks!!
Congrats - Good choice ekinnyc! When it comes to performace according to me both 330/520 & 830 are at par. I personally use these & havent had any problems till date! You can bet Intel has tested their firmware and will quickly correct if there's a hint of an issue. There was a weird BSOD issue when they (the 2281) came out but it seemed to fade away with firmware upgrades.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 09:53 AM   #23
ekinnyc
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just waiting for all of the remaining pieces to arrive (optical caddy and optical enclosure, i do use the superdrive time to time) before i do brain surgery on my aluminum brick
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