Best sub-$250 SSD?

Nick A

macrumors regular
Original poster
May 10, 2009
There's probably other threads on this but they get dated quickly with new SSD's coming out all the time.

I have a 2010(11?) Macbook Pro, which I believe, correct me if I'm wrong, does not support SATA III.

What's currently the best SSD for <$150?



Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
Many here have used the Samsung 830 SSD and find it very reliable plus it seems to work well with OS X. You can find the 128GB version for under $100.


macrumors 68040
Jun 2, 2011
Salt Lake City, UT
Samung 830/840 or OCZ Vertex 4.

Two months ago I was able to obtain four different SSDs, all for free. :D So I decided to do a quick roundup or "shoot out" on the disk speeds and firmware updates. Once completed I RMA'd each drive to see how each companies customer service handled my RMA and the time they did it in.

I did 5 speed tests on each of the following drives with Trim Enabled via Trim Enabler on a 2012 13-inch MacBook Pro in the MAIN hard drive bay. A $10 Optibay Hard Drive Caddy as also used to test firmware updating via Bootcamp.

Over all, my best experience was with OCZ, they handled my RMA case the most timely, especially with their advance RMA. They did not interrogate me with questions about my "defective" product and did not request and receipt or proof of purchase. It was a let me help you, ok lets get an advance RMA setup and send you a working product customer service which I found the most friendly and timely.

My least pleasant experience was a toss up/tie between Samsung and Crucial because they did not offer an advance RMA which is huge because if the drive is still functional this reduces down time which can be costly to some people.

During my time with each SSD, they all function and performance flawlessly. I did not have any issues with any of the SSDs at all. I did notice the Samsung and OCZ were the fastest upon more intensive tasks, such as editing 300MB PSD files that were 25 megapixels and also large data transfer. For day to day web browsing task, its near impossible to notice which drive is the fastest. While the Crucial M4 read speeds were the fastest, I find it over shadowed by its underwhelming, slower write speeds barely passing the mid 200s, especially since it has a SATA III interface.

I know OCZ has a less than stellar reputation for reliability but I've own every generation of Vertex SSDs, Vertex, Vertex 2, Vertex 3 Max IOPS, Vertex 4 and also the very cheap and slow Vertex Plus and NONE of them have ever failed. My original Vertex 60GB SSDs are over 2 years old and still running strong in a PC.

To wrap it up, if I had to pick just one, I would pick the OCZ Vertex 4 for more than just its blatant fast speeds, but for the great customer service experience I had with them and the ease of updating firmware via OSX. My next choice would be the Samsung 830 for its reputation for reliability and its second fastest speeds.

Samsung release two firmware updates in one week to 830 SSDs.
Crucial release firmware update to M4 due to SSDs stop working after 5000hrs of use.
OCZ Vertex 4 v1.4 and v1.5 firmware tests
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