Getting Additional SATA Ports inside the Mac Pro?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Ryan P, Dec 5, 2010.

  1. Ryan P macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2010
    #1
    What is the best way to go about adding a couple additional SATA power ports inside the Mac Pro? My 3TB Western Digital Green, came with a very a nice 2 Port SATA III card that works in OSX, Win 7 and I am thinking I could find room for a couple SSD's internally but I don't know what type of an adapter would allow me to duplicate those optical bay power/data ports. I bought a generic one not realizing that they were a combined power/data cord, doh!

    For now I just snaked the SATA out the back and am powering the drives externally and they are working quite well.
     
  2. AlphaDogg macrumors 68040

    AlphaDogg

    Joined:
    May 20, 2010
    Location:
    Boulder, CO
    #2
    Go get a Mac Pro compatible RAID card. For you information, RAID stands for redundant array of independent disks.

    Edit: And, no you can't get a port multiplier. SATA does not work that way...
     
  3. Ryan P thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 6, 2010
    #3
    Huh? Yes I know what RAID stands for...I don't want a RAID card, I just want two extra power ports.

    The Highpoint card that ships with the 3TB Western Digital's is a RAID card but I have not tried setting up a RAID set with it. I really don't need RAID at this point so not high on my list.
     
  4. eawmp1, Dec 5, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2010

    eawmp1 macrumors 601

    eawmp1

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    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    FL
    #4
    AFAIK 2009/2010 Pros only have 1 spare on board SATA port, and that serves the second optical bay. You need more than 1 port, you're gonna need a card.
     
  5. Ryan P, Dec 5, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2010

    Ryan P thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 6, 2010
    #5
    I'm apparently not being clear enough...I *have a card*, a Highpoint RocketRaid that Western Digital bundles with all 3TB drives. I don't have *power* for any additional drives internally. How can I get more power inside of the chasis, as there is plenty of room to shove SSD's inside of the optical bay. There must be an adapter on the market to multiply out the Mac Pro power cables up there? Closest thing I can find is the DX4 http://www.transintl.com/store/category.cfm?Category=2799 that apparently comes with a custom power cable, but I was looking for something a little simpler i.e $1.99.
     
  6. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #6
    I use a SATA extension cable that splits the power and data into 2 cables from here (don't bother getting anything longer than the 0.5m option—which is already too long):
    http://www.cablesondemand.com/categ...s/Items/Library/InfoManage/CS-SATDRIVEX2.htm\

    Then I use this 3-way power splitter to power my 3 SSDs:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...re=sata_power_splitter-_-12-200-161-_-Product

    The design is a bit short, so if you have less drives to power, you could technically get this (which does work a bit better—I used this to split the power for the top bay cable, so the same power cable could power the optical drive and lower bay drive [since the power cable for the lower bay has been routed out to power my SSDs]):
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...re=sata_power_splitter-_-12-200-468-_-Product

    I hope that helps.
     
  7. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    Aug 1, 2008
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    Vancouver, BC
    #7
    There's two problems with this thread... (a) your title is misleading, and (b) clearly most people only read the title before replying! :D :p :rolleyes:
     
  8. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #8
    Assuming you don't need to use the DATA signal in the cable to the empty optical bay, alphaod's solution is both easy and cheap.

    If you do need to retain that data connection (it is or will be used for a drive), there's a way to do it. But it means making a custom cable (don't panic, it's not that hard).

    How To (retains the DATA signal on the optical bay cable):

    You'll need to cut off the male SATA end, and splice the power cables together (tie the wires you just cut to those on the Backplane Extension Cable; don't leave any power lines un-connected). Just follow the wire colors and locations, and connect using solder + heatshrink tubing, crimp connectors, or wire nuts (any of these will work; cleanest = solder + heatshrink tubing IMO). No matter the splicing method however, it gets power without sacrificing the DATA line on the original cable to the optical bay and won't void the warranty. :)
     
  9. sboerup macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2009
    #9
    Best way to do it would be to add an eSATA card that has 6G speeds. I just added an additional SSD, external in a SansDigital drive bay. Getting the same speeds as my internal Intel SSD too!
     
  10. Transporteur macrumors 68030

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    Nov 30, 2008
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    UK
    #10
    Check! :D :p
     
  11. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #11
    Clearly people generally don't bother reading other people's replies in the threads either or many people are post whores… not sure which one. :eek:
     
  12. Ryan P, Dec 7, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2010

    Ryan P thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 6, 2010
    #12
  13. Ryan P thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 6, 2010
    #13
    Yep I know the title wasn't the best, but I don't think there is a way of editing them after you create them! If there is someone let me in on the secret!
     
  14. Ryan P thread starter macrumors regular

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    Aug 6, 2010
    #14
    Slight panic!, but yes I do need to keep the data connections up there as my main goal right now is to hook up more drives, and get more space online without going to fancy and expensive external options right now.

    If I can relocate a SSD taking an actual HD bay into the optical bay, I can replace it with a 3TB HD and get quite a bit of space online.

    Thanks for the excellent advice!
     
  15. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #15
    Here's the How-To again from the previous post....

    How To (retains the DATA signal on the optical bay cable):

    You'll need to cut off the male SATA end, and splice the power cables together (tie the wires you just cut to those on the Backplane Extension Cable; don't leave any power lines un-connected). Just follow the wire colors and locations, and connect using solder + heatshrink tubing, crimp connectors, or wire nuts (any of these will work; cleanest = solder + heatshrink tubing IMO). No matter the splicing method however, it gets power without sacrificing the DATA line on the original cable to the optical bay and won't void the warranty. :)

    This really is not that difficult to do (no mods made to the MP at all, just tie some wires together between the 2x different cables linked).

    1. Warranty = still in tact. :D
    2. It's all internal, so no external cables or enclosures to buy at all.
     
  16. MAYBL8R, Dec 7, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2010

    MAYBL8R macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    #16
    http://eshop.macsales.com/owcpages/multimount/

    I have an OWC Multi-Mount in one optical drive space in my 2006 MacPro. using the 2 extra sata connections on the motherboard, I have 5 HDD's and 1 SSD for boot installed. The kit I bought includes all cables and hardware to install either 2 3.5" or one 2.5" and one 3.5" drive.
     
  17. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #17
    My first cable posted (the one by Amphenol) retains the data connector; it splits the integrated power connector Apple uses into data and power; all you need to do is buy two of them.

    1) Split the connector for the top bay, and buy power splitter for the power and connect those to the drives in the optical bay; connect the remaining data connector to the top optical bay drive.
    2) Split the Apple integrated connector for the bottom bay and connect the data cable into the drive (you already split the top bay power cable to power this drive).
    3) Now you have a power cable with no data cable which you can split into 2 or 3 more power connectors to power more drives.

    Very simple: go to the thread list (the page that shows all the threads in this section); double click the title of your thread and your thread title will appear to be in a text box. You can now edit it.
     

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