Expresscard 3/4 USB 3.0 or eSATA for Macbook Pro 17" mid-2009?

Which Expresscard 3/4 adaptor for my Macbook Pro 17" mid-2009?


  • Total voters
    8

dpandri

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 7, 2017
7
0
Jakarta, Indonesia
Hi guys, I am thinking of adding higher speed external port for my old Macbook Pro 17" mid-2009 (MacbookPro 5,2).

Which one will you recommend the most, Expresscard 3/4 USB 3.0? Or Expresscard eSATA?

I knew that USB 3.0 is theoritically transferring data at a higher bit rate, but I am not too sure if the Expresscard 34 slot will be able to achieve USB 3.0's speed.

Please help me! Thanks alot!
 

baypharm

Contributor
Nov 15, 2007
1,600
480
I use the Expresscard 3/4 USB 3.0 on my machine (you and I have the same model). Mine works great and is very fast but I've never conducted read/write tests to see the numbers. I've never had any problems using it either.
 

dpandri

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 7, 2017
7
0
Jakarta, Indonesia
I use the Expresscard 3/4 USB 3.0 on my machine (you and I have the same model). Mine works great and is very fast but I've never conducted read/write tests to see the numbers. I've never had any problems using it either.
Thanks alot for your reply Baypharm, its really assuring to know that it works on our machine!

May I know the brand name of your expresscard? Did you need to install any driver at all? And which macOs version are you using it on?
 

ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
1,150
Is the primary intent to use this expansion upgrade for secondary storage? If so, will it involve external SSDs? (I ask because while I love the flexibility of USB, I've become a huge fan of eSATA for external SATA storage and strongly prefer it over USB, personally.)
 

dpandri

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 7, 2017
7
0
Jakarta, Indonesia
Is the primary intent to use this expansion upgrade for secondary storage? If so, will it involve external SSDs? (I ask because while I love the flexibility of USB, I've become a huge fan of eSATA for external SATA storage and strongly prefer it over USB, personally.)
Yes, it is intended for fast speed access of external storage read & write. I only had an external SSD that I barely use, and an externalHDD & external card reader both equipped with USB 3.0 that I am using daily for my multimedia work.

The built-in USB 2.0 of the Macbook Pro is seriously outdated and drag down my workflow by a whole lot. I've maxed out the RAM this Macbook can hold (8GB) and upgraded the primary drive from HDD to SSD. I am honestly in awe of the speed I can get from this old beast with all my works, everything are working fast except the access to external device and storages, hence my reason of wanting to add USB3.0 / eSATA ports through the expresscard slot.

Does choosing eSATA port through expresscard slot has a greater advantage over USB3.0 through expresscard? Would love to hear from your opinion, ZapNZs
 

bobesch

macrumors 65816
Oct 21, 2015
1,219
840
Kiel, Germany
I use the Expresscard 3/4 USB 3.0 on my machine (you and I have the same model). Mine works great and is very fast but I've never conducted read/write tests to see the numbers. I've never had any problems using it either.
Could you tell about which card you are using.
I currently went for a promising USB-card which finally didn't work on my MBP15" 2008/ElCap.
 

killawat

macrumors 65816
Sep 11, 2014
1,444
2,188
Could you tell about which card you are using.
I currently went for a promising USB-card which finally didn't work on my MBP15" 2008/ElCap.
Look for something with the fl1100 fresco logic chipset. I'd tell you which one I have but I know you won't be able to find it; pickings are slim these days for obvious reasons. Like the amazon links don't even work any more.
 

MTBnBeer

macrumors member
Dec 9, 2015
69
58
I'm using a $19.99 Sonnet Tempo edge SATA Pro 6GB ExpressCard/34 in my 17" Early 2008 MacBook Pro running Mojave 10.14.3 using DosDude1's macOS Mojave Patcher.
  • Simple Plug n' Play so this must use native macOS EspressCard/34 drivers... unlike the 2008 "vintage" merax eSATA Xpress dual port ExpressCard/34 which crashed as soon as it was inserted in Mojave
  • Apple System Information shows:
    • Negotiated Link Speed = 1.5 Gigabit... MUCH faster than FireWire 800 (800Mbps) or USB 2.0
    • PCI: ExpressCard: AHCI Controller Link Width = x1 and Link Speed = 2.5 GT/s
  • Works perfectly with 200GB 7,200 rpm Hitachi eSATA hard drive for Time Machine backups
Not sure if a USB 3.0 ExpressCard/34 would be faster in actual use since the hard drives are typically the slowest link, but this works for this "vintage" Early 2008 MacBook Pro.

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B0082FI4US
 

bobesch

macrumors 65816
Oct 21, 2015
1,219
840
Kiel, Germany
Found this USB 3.0 ExpressCard34 to work without any modifications on my c2duo early&late 2008 15" MacBookPros:

For native OSX-support for OS X 10.9 - 10.13/14 (10.7 Lion need additional drivers) - that is the version I do run:
https://www.ebay.de/itm/2-Port-USB-3-0-ExpressCard-34-Adapter-MacBook-Pro-15-17-OSX-Native-Supported/262393432287?hash=item3d17de08df:g:HaQAAOSwubRXFLH3

There's another cheaper version with native support for OS X 10.6 SL to 10.10 Yosemity (10.7 Lion again need additional drivers) which I don't use:
https://www.ebay.de/itm/2-Port-Super-Speed-USB-3-0-ExpressCard-34-Adapter-For-Apple-MacBook-Pro-5Gbps/264034444321?hash=item3d79ade421:g:ZBAAAOSwqCJcmJeL

(mods: not my auction!)