newb ?: sdxc card instead of 2nd drive?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by LucasLand, Jan 29, 2013.

  1. macrumors 6502a


    Mar 6, 2002
    New England
    i noticed a lot of people install a 2nd HD in the mini. they also deal with having to install it without screwing up and/or trying to decide if it should be a an HD,fusion or ssd.

    Whats wrong with just using the sdxc card slot? I believe i read these cards go up to 2 tb. it seems to me to be much easier to just use these cards since they come in different sizes and no need to open the mini.
  2. macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    Speed. These cards are slow compared to a mechanical drive and no where near an SSD. Fine for some basic data storage but I wouldn't use it long term.
  3. macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010

    you can get a fast one but the price is too high

    the one below reads and writes about 140MB/s but it is 300 dollars and is small 64gb

    if you want that route of doing external the lacie rugged t-bolt is 256gbssd 4x the size and 3x the speed for 349

    comes with cables
  4. paulrbeers, Jan 29, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2013

    macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    However, generally the SD card slot is "attached" to the computer via USB. I haven't looked at the 2012, but traditionally they are hooked to a USB 2.0 port which means they top out at about 32Mb/s regardless of the card speed. Not at home to check kind to see what the new ones are hooked to...

    Edit: At least for the Macbook Pro, the SD Card is attached via the PCIE bus so then it would be a matter of how fast the card is. Although as pointed out fast SD cards are rediculously expensive.
  5. macrumors newbie

    Nov 28, 2012
    Mac mini 2012,

    Built in SD Card Reader:

    Vendor ID: 0x14e4
    Device ID: 0x16bc
    Subsystem Vendor ID: 0x14e4
    Subsystem ID: 0x0000
    Revision: 0x0001
    Link Width: x1
    Link Speed: 2.5 GT/s

    I'm thinking this also indicates it's attached to PCIe in the Mac mini 2012.
  6. macrumors member

    Oct 2, 2006
    Found this from a quick google search:
    2.5 GT/s on PCI-Express = 250MB/s
    This is how that's worked out... note 'b' = bits, 'B' = bytes, 8b = 1B.
    2.5 GT/s = 2.5 Gb/s = 312.5 MB/s... then you've got 8b/10b overhead so 312.5 * 0.8 = 250 MB/s.
    Not too shabby! :D
  7. macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    Yep looks like it is attached to a single PCIE lane same as the Macbook Pro. Very interesting. I still wouldn't use it for long term/bulk storage as it is just too expensive for what "little" performance you get (comparing to a normal SSD that is).
  8. macrumors 68040


    It's SATA-II, and not really future-proof. The Akitio Neutrino Thunderbolt Edition on the other hand is (the only bus-powered single 2.5" with) SATA 6Gbit/s and the drive is easily accessible, so it runs a OCZ Vector, the Intel 330 that's included or one of those Asian SSDs full speed.

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