2 x SSD in lower optical bay 2008 Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Stephen23, Feb 10, 2011.

  1. Stephen23 macrumors member


    Jan 8, 2007
    Austin, TX
    Hey all,

    I'm getting ready to upgrade my 2008 MP for some serious video presentation work, and after doing some reading, I'm pretty sure that I have the plan that will make the best use of this machine for the money, but just want to confirm it. The plan is to install two OWC SSDs in the lower optical bay, which is currently unused. My understanding from my reading is that the 2008 MPs have two unused SATA ports on the logic board which can be utilized for this setup, and with that in mind, I am planning on purchasing this kit from OWC.

    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/MM352A52MP8/

    I had looked into a different setup which allows for use of 4 SSDs in that bay, but from what I can tell, I would then need a RAID card in order to make use of four drives. It seems that by using two, things are much simpler, and also cheaper.

    I should also mention that in addition to adding these additional drives in the lower optical bay, I will also be running 4 video cards in this machine as well. I don't believe that connecting the power for the additional cards as well as running the extra drives will cause a problem, but I wanted to confirm that before I start purchasing everything. The power issue is the main thing I'm wondering about... By using the power splitter included in this kit, do I lose one power supply from the logic board? If so, then I may only be able to run one card that requires external power, and would be forced to run less power intensive cards (2600s, which I already own, or perhaps GT 120s, which are a bit more capable) in the other PCI slots.

    FYI, the four standard HDDs bays are already in use, but if need be, I will remove two of those drives and replace them with two more SSDs for very intensive use. That would give me a total of 4 SSDs (one boot drive and 3 holding various videos for playback) and two HDDs that serve as primary storage and backup. The thinking is that by spreading the load between multiple (fast SSD) drives, I should eliminate any bottlenecks. As long as the processor can keep up, which typically isn't a problem, then I should be good.

  2. Transporteur macrumors 68030

    Nov 30, 2008
    You won't have any problem using 4 SSD's and 4 graphics cards.
    However, keep in mind that you've got only 2 PCIe power connectors available, which can power up to two graphics cards, depending on the model. The other cards would indeed have to be low end cards such as the 2600 or GT120.

    The Molex to SATA power splitter connects directly to the Molex cable in the ODD bay, it doesn't involve the logic board whatsoever, so don't worry about that. You can buy and configure it exactly as you said.

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