2010 MBP 15" - Dual OWC SSD RAID 0

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by mattb79, Aug 25, 2010.

  1. mattb79 macrumors member

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    Aug 25, 2010
    #1
    Hi guys.

    Loooooong time lurker, first time poster.

    I have a MBP 13" that I recently added a 240GB Mercury Extreme Pro SSD to and I used the speed boost to convince the wife to completely overhaul our 'main' computer by ditching the iMac and getting a MBP 15" with an external monitor etc.

    But, I decided to take the opportunity to put two 120GB Mercury Extreme Pro drives in (using a Data Doubler in the superdrive spot) and RAID 0 them.

    The results are ridiculously fast, but I forgot to specify a block size when building the RAID, so it went with the 32k default.

    Can you guys take a look at my Xbench results and see if I may have benefited from selecting a higher or smaller block size?

    I've attached a GIF of the results...
     

    Attached Files:

  2. mattb79 thread starter macrumors member

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    #2
    For comparison's sake; here's a look at Xbench results for both my MBP 13 with one 240GB SSD and the MBP 15 with two 120GB SSD's in RAID 0...

    [​IMG]
     
  3. dr. shdw macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    They look low, especially for seq read/writes. Then again, Xbench isn't very consistent.
     
  4. mattb79 thread starter macrumors member

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    #4
    What's more reliable to test with?
     
  5. dr. shdw macrumors 6502a

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  6. mattb79 thread starter macrumors member

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  7. mattb79 thread starter macrumors member

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    #7
    I also ran the QuickBench again for a 10 cycle test and the results were, on average, 3-5% higher than the ones above.
     
  8. dr. shdw macrumors 6502a

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  9. mattb79 thread starter macrumors member

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    #9
  10. dr. shdw macrumors 6502a

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    #10
    Haha sorry that's blocked for me too. I can see your first image, the one that is attached.

    Also Pual's a HS friend of mine.

    Also your speeds should be similar to his, but with both read speeds a bit higher and write speeds much higher. SSDs in RAID-0 scale pretty linearly until the controller maxes out so you should be looking at 500mb/s+ on reads and writes.
     
  11. mattb79 thread starter macrumors member

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    #11
    Yeah, that's pretty much the results. Reads maybe 5% or so higher, but writes way higher.

    Overall, I'm really happy with it, but if anyone thinks taking the time to change the block size may lead to a significant improvement, then I'm all ears...
     
  12. dr. shdw macrumors 6502a

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    #12
  13. MacModMachine macrumors 68020

    MacModMachine

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    #13
    the benchmark you ran shows the intel is almost the same in small random, which is what counts,

    your second benchmarks shows 10-20mb chunks, which the OWC is going to be better at in writing but in real world will not make much of a difference...if any.

    so i wonder how those drives handle a year of writes, garbage collection wise?
     
  14. Constantine1337 macrumors 6502

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    #14
    GC wise, OWC is really really good, as SSD itself takes care of the fragmentation. It is completely independent from the filesystem, therefore it is the best SSD on the market (for macs at least).
     
  15. MacModMachine macrumors 68020

    MacModMachine

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    #15
    right, as does the intel , vertex 2 , they all have independent garbage collection.
     
  16. mattb79 thread starter macrumors member

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    #16
    I originally had an 80Gb X-25M in my MBP 13, but after a month or so, it just started filling up for no reason. I'd have 20GB space left at night and then 14GB in the morning, even though there were no downloads or anything running.

    I traded up to the 240GB OWC, which is great -- but now feels kinda weak compared to the RAID 0 setup...
     
  17. cwsm macrumors member

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    Jun 10, 2009
    #17
    Hello there,
    Late '08 Unibody 15" MBP owner here. I've been wanting to do a SSD upgrade for some time now. Noticed that OWC has their 40GB on sale for $99, so I'm considering a dual SSD RAID 0 setup.

    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/internal_storage/Mercury_Extreme_SSD_Sandforce/Solid_State_Pro

    Just wondering the real difference between Extreme Pro (7% over provisioning) and Pro RE (28% over provisioning). On their websites, I get the impression that RE is better for RAID 0. But without any evidence supporting this, I wonder if I would be ok doing RAID with the much cheaper, non-RE model. This is my main machine. I use it for drafting, rendering, Photoshop. Any help? Also, how does the block size affect performance?

    I'm still sitting on the fence on this one. 80GB doesn't really sound like enough. I'm planning on getting a eSATA enclosure + flush eSATA ExpressCard/34 adapter to use with my stock 320GB. But the $99 price seems very good. And the reviews for this drive appear to be very good as well. (no maintenance, no performance drops) Should I wait for prices to drop/better drives to come on market (Intel G3)?
     
  18. mattb79 thread starter macrumors member

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    #18
    80GB isn't really enough unless you had an internal HDD for storing files. But if you're going to RAID 0 two 40GB, then there wouldn't be room for that third storage drive.

    We went with 2 x 120GB, because it lets us load all of our applications, our 50GB Dropbox account (personal/regularly used files) and still with room to breathe and grow. Then we have a 2TB external HDD for storing music, movies etc. that don't necessarily need to travel with us when we're disconnected from the home dock.

    I would recommend that setup or, at the very least, 2 x 80GB.

    We went with the non-RE drives because they were cheaper and had more storage. The OWC guy I chatted with said they'd be fine to RAID 0 for personal use.

    You can wait for better SSD's to come out, but I think increased speeds (for the average user) are going to be a little redundant. Going from Photoshop opening in 12 seconds on a HDD to 1 second on a RAID 0 SSD setup, that's amazing. But waiting for higher speeds so you can open Photoshop in 1/2 a second instead of 1 seems like nitpicking.

    Of course, I'd love to be able to have these speeds on a single SSD and keep the optical drive installed. So if/when they achieve this, I'll probably upgrade again at a reasonable price.

    But, for now; I can't imagine wanting or needing anything faster for daily use.
     
  19. Mohan961 macrumors newbie

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    #19
  20. spencers macrumors 68020

    spencers

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    #20
    Matt,

    Specs aside, what does this translate to in the real world? ie- What differences would I see (in normal everyday use) when comparing a single X25-M 160gb versus your dual 120gb OWC in raid0?

    Just curious..
     
  21. WardC macrumors 68030

    WardC

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    #21
    Very interesting thread. I might want to do this. What is the best solution for mounting a 2.5" SSD in the optical drive bay?

    Thanks.

    Edit: OK, I just found out that the "Data Doubler" is made by OWC, and they sell the SSDs too, I own one and use it in my Mac Pro. It's the 120GB Mercury Pro Extreme. I just watched the Installation Video for the OWC Data Doubler and it seems like a doable upgrade, although it might take some time, there are alot of screws, and you have to remember where each one goes.

    The performance results look very promising. You could do this upgrade with any MacBook or MacBook Pro that has an Optical drive bay, and RAID 0 them in Disk Utility. Super-fast, and you really don't need an optical drive if you have access to an external one, I just use mine for installing some Applications from DVD. All my video is digital and ripped from Handbrake, or downloaded. I never watch DVDs on my MBP.

    This looks really good. I have never considered that you could do this upgrade on a MacBook Pro, and I imagine the i7 model just flies with this upgrade. Thanks for sharing your results!

    All the best,
    Ward
     
  22. Mohan961 macrumors newbie

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    #22
  23. wakeborder556 macrumors regular

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    #23
    RAID 0 looks great on paper but doesn't translate to much greater real world performance..that said im sure it hauls.
     
  24. miata macrumors 6502

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    #24
    RAID 0 is not the best for reliability, so there better be a significant real world improvement. When would you really notice the difference?
     
  25. walshlink macrumors regular

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    Oct 21, 2007
    #25
    16k is suppose to be faster...

    http://macperformanceguide.com/VirtualMemory-MacBookPro-Kernel64.html

     

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