32GB SSD in MacBook Pro

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by kanpachi, Aug 7, 2008.

  1. kanpachi macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    #1
    I have a 17" SR MBP and was interested in replacing my current hard drive with a Samsung 32GB SSD. Specifically, this one:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820147053

    Is there anything that I should be aware of before committing to the purchase aside from the obviously steep price and smaller capacity vs. traditional HDs? I've heard that the write times for SSDs are quite bad, so I'm not sure if this will cause any problems. I use Photoshop and Illustrator a lot so not sure if performance will be much better or worse.
     
  2. kntgsp macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2004
    #2
  3. kntgsp macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2004
    #3
    I'm pretty sure the SSDs should fit in the 17" MBP just fine, but google just to make sure.

    The write times for the first generation SSDs were quite bad, but the new SATA II variants released a month or so ago are much better. Most problems have to do with certain intel controllers.

    Photoshop and Illustrator you would see an advantage because you use large files. SSDs really show their legs in large file read times. It's the small random files that they sometimes fall behind. But the perceptible difference with that is negligible. With the large file read/writes however it is very noticeable.

    If you're going to be storing the large Photoshop/Illustrator files on an external though, then the access time for that is largely dependent on the USB throughput and your external HD speed.

    However the programs will be a little zippier and your OS bootup times should be quite a bit quicker. You also have less power draw, slightly extending your battery life.
     
  4. kanpachi thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    #4
    Hey kntgsp, thanks so much for the reply and helpful info. Is there a reason why the Samsung 32GB is $399 and the OCZ 64GB is so much cheaper? It seems a bit too good to be true? The reviews are a bit disconcerting for the OCZ, but it looks like the sample size is really small anyways and one of the guys was installing it on a 64 bit version of Vista.

     
  5. kanpachi thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    #5
    Yeah, I really don't understand the price difference. And why are two OCZ SSDs with the capacity $500 different?

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227344
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227295

     
  6. NintendoFan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #6
  7. fstfrwrd macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    Location:
    Belgium
    #7
    So ... let me break this down ... (probably incorrect so please do correct me)

    SSD drives:
    - hell of a lot faster
    - less capacity

    traditional HD's:
    - higher capacity
    - cheaper


    right?

    so let's say I store all my music, movies, etc on my 1TB external drive, would it be wise to put a SSD drive in my macbook pro?

    why (not) ?
     
  8. NintendoFan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #8
    Sure if you have the money and want the speed. One thing of note and that some people forget is that the ACCESS time of SSD drives are much much lower than that of a normal hard drive. A normal hard drive (7200RPM) will give you about a 12ms access time whereas a SSD will give you between .10ms to .40ms depending if you go SLC or MLC. That access time makes using the OS a whole hell of a lot more fluid.
     
  9. Pixellated macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2008
  10. nep61 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 17, 2007
    #10

    1st, if the OP has the need to attempt to improve on near perfection by altering the 17" MBP, they have bigger problems than can be solved here on the Mac Rumor site. (I say that with :rolleyes:) Unless they are trying to beat Apple to the punch by creating the first 17" MBA

    2nd, if the OP has the the need for additional speed for the type of work they're doing...(Photoshop and Illustrator), and they spent that type of $$ on the 17" MBP... maybe they might have chosen a Mac Pro instead?

    3rd, with that limited storage capacity internally, and the need for external drives, as pointed out by poster kntgsp.... I don't see a MAJOR advantage to replacing the original HD... imho :)

    Just curious as to what OP kanpachi has in mind with regard to this modification of the 17" MBP. What does he/she feel the biggest benefit will be....

    I hope this post doesn't come off as sounding/being snarky... not my intention, just curious. :)
     
  11. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #11
    That is the complete opposite of what everyone else is saying. The advantage of SSDs is that they have no mechanical parts and therefore take zero time to start reading; this gives them a real performance advantage to a hard drive on small files. On large files that performance advantage is gone.

    To the original poster: Why exactly do you want to replace your hard drive with an SSD drive? I can't come with any good reason to do this.
     
  12. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #12
    "Hell of a lot faster": No way. They are faster in one special case: Reading lots of small files. That's it. But nobody does that. For most operations, hard drives win hands down. And 32 GB: I wouldn't call that "less capacity", I would call it "what the hell were they thinking making a computer with only 32 GB, that is totally unusable".
     
  13. NintendoFan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #13
    While that is true, consider that this is a laptop, where he will be using a 2.5" laptop drive. A 2.5" mechanical hard disk is not as fast as a 3.5" desktop drive. Whereas a 2.5" SDD is just as fast if not faster than a 3.5 desktop drive.
     
  14. gnasher729 macrumors P6

    gnasher729

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2005
    #14
    2.5" drives are up to 90 MB/sec read/write speed now. Writing speed is better than SSD drives. And once the first 32 GB are filled, the hard drive is infinitely faster than the SSD drive.

    And replacing the drive in a MacBook Pro, where this is a real challenge, in order to throw away most of your drive capacity for a dubious performance increase, that is really a very, very bad idea.
     
  15. NintendoFan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #15
    Huh? As the hard drive fills it gets slower, as the SSD fills its speed stays the same across the board.
     
  16. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2007
    #16
    HD drives are made with various speeds
    SSD drives are made with various speeds

    You have to consider Random read and Random Write. Some inexpensive SSD drives are pretty slow when it comes to that. (note the cheaper one didn't even list random read / write times. You need to find those numbers).
     
  17. NintendoFan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    #17
    You're absolutely correct. Chances are if you get a SSD with good random read/write speeds it's going to have good sequential read/write speeds.
     
  18. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #18
    Former is a MLC and the latter is SLC.

    SLC:
    Single Level Cell
    1 bit per cell
    More stable/Less EC needed
    100,000 cycles read/write
    Considered "Military-grade"

    MLC:
    Multi Level Cell
    2 bits per cell
    More variations per cell which means less reliable/More EC needed
    10,000 cycles read/write
    Considered "Consumer-grade"
     
  19. NintendoFan macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2006
    Location:
    Massachusetts
  20. kanpachi thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2005
    #20
    Hey, so to answer your main question, I just think the MBP could be much snappier than it is now. I already maxed out the RAM @ 4GB so the HD really becomes the bottleneck. I actually upgraded the stock Hitachi 5K160 to a Hitachi 7K200 and while it is much faster, I think it could be even faster. It wasn't purely an issue of speed though, but also the fact that SSDs operate silently (I find the clicking noise of the HD to be really annoying) and are more reliable. Basically, since I'm on my computer pretty much 24/7, it's worthwhile to have the best user experience possible.

    As for a Mac Pro, I didn't want one because it's not portable. I need to bring my laptop with me everywhere I go. Regarding storage space, I never seem to exceed more than 15 or so GB on my hard drive ever and I'm pretty OCD about keeping my hard drive clean, so having a 32GB vs. 160GB or 200GB makes no difference to me.

    Thanks for all the replies though - much appreciated. And for those who are curious, I ended up purchasing the 32GB FlashSSD from Samsung. Noticed that SLC vs. MLC was the reason for the price difference and figured what the hell might as well go big if I'm already going to.

     

Share This Page