Going From A SSD To A Fusion Drive ?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by jcr918, Jan 1, 2014.

  1. jcr918 macrumors regular

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    Nov 8, 2012
    #1
    I know what both drive do and I seen a few threads but nothing on going from a SSD to fusion

    I am getting ready to order my maxed out Imac 2013 27"


    I am stuck. I have a macbook pro retina with 512gig solid state drive. Its fast and snappy. I am debating on ordering a imac with a 3 tb fusion drive. Since I have been using a machine with a SSD am I going to notice a difference using a fusion drive.

    I never get any beach balls on the macbook pro retina and I don't want any on my new Imac. I don't game I just edit photos and surf the web and do very little light video editing.

    Thoughts on ordering this fusion drive for the imac ?
     
  2. super tomtendo macrumors 6502a

    super tomtendo

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    #2
    You're not gonna be getting beach balls on any new mac you get. Unless your gonna max out games on it or something intense. But for your use, you'll probably not notice a single difference.
     
  3. benjai macrumors member

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    Oct 1, 2009
    #3
    The SSD in my old 24" imac benchmarked at just over 200MBps read and I almost never saw beachballs. The 3TB fusion drive on my new iMac comes in at over 600MBps and I don't really notice much difference in loading/using regular apps.

    So I think you'll be fine with the fusion. =)
     
  4. PicnicTutorials macrumors 6502a

    PicnicTutorials

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    #4
    Lol stuck is a good word for it. Same word I used. I was frozen with indecision for a very long time. All the youtubes I saw showed the ssd much faster than the fusion drive. I chose 512 ssd. Most likely too big but better safe than sorry.
     
  5. joema2, Jan 2, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2014

    joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

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    #5
    I have maxed out 2013 iMac 27 with 3TB Fusion Drive I use for photo and video editing. It is very fast. It's nice to have plenty of space and not worry about placing specific files on SSD vs rotating storage.

    I also have a maxed out 2013 MacBook Air 13, with 512GB SSD. It's not equal to a MBP, but is pretty quick. The MBA SSD produces excellent BlackMagic benchmark numbers: 720+ MB/sec in both read and write. The 3TB FD does about 680 MB/sec read, 320 MB/sec write. Despite the SSD my iMac 27 with 3TB FD feels faster at pretty much everything.

    That said, a 512MB SSD on a maxed out iMac 27 is only $150 more than the same config with 3TB FD. That equates to an approx 4.6% difference in the overall price, which is pretty small. If you know you'll never need more internal storage, the SSD might feel somewhat faster -- for certain things. The 2013 iMac has a PCIe interface to the SSD (whether Fusion or pure SSD), and is really quick.

    I deal with lots of raw photo and video files. Even though I have an external Thunderbolt 8TB Pegasus R4 RAID array (about 670 MB/sec write, 516 MB/sec read), I like the extra internal storage of the 3TB FD.
     
  6. jcr918 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 8, 2012
    #6
    Thanks everyone. I think Ill get the 3TB fusion drive I currently have 200gigs left on my 512gig macbook pro ssd still some space left but it would be nice to have more space on a newer machine.


    I hope I don't regret this decision.
     
  7. jcr918 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 8, 2012
    #7
    I just did a disk speed test with my Macbook pro it appears this new fusion drive will be faster then my early 2013 SSD so if anything I should notice improved performance
     
  8. xsasha92x macrumors newbie

    xsasha92x

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    #8
    Good Luck!

    I just ordered a 27" iMac with the i7, 8gb RAM, 780m, and 3TB Fusion drive yesterday and I was debating the same thing. However, my reason for considering the SSD was the lack of the fusion ssd compatibility with bootcamp but then I realized that I can always get an external thunderbolt ssd for bootcamp and for files that I want faster access to.
     
  9. jcr918, Jan 2, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2014

    jcr918 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 8, 2012
    #9
    I don't think ill regrett it I am using a early 2013 ssd and it appears the Fusion will be faster read and just a tad slower write so I doubt ill notice anything. The only thing now I am scratching my head on is a early 2014 Imac release.


    It would suck to order this and have a new Imac release a month later
     
  10. Serban Suspended

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    Jan 8, 2013
    #10
    i dont think will be any new imac untill broadwell; so octomber november 2014.

    And yes no difference between my late 2013 imac with fusion drive and my macbook pro haswell 15"
     
  11. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #11
    I don't think you can boot Windows on a Mac from external media.

    I tried doing that on a Buffalo HD-PATU3S Thunderbolt SSD, and it failed big time.
     
  12. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604

    MacsRgr8

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    #12
    Is that with a well filled-up Fusion Drive?

    I'm wondering how the Fusion Drive performance will be when > 1 TB of data is nestled on the fusion, and you use many apps with lots of data (i.e. iPhoto and iMovie and X-Plane).

    Surely you'll get into the HDD-slow speed territory of the Fusion...?
     
  13. jmgregory1 macrumors 65816

    jmgregory1

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    #13
    FD seamlessly moves unused bits off the ssd so that it can place more often used bits on the ssd.

    The only way you "might" get slower performance is if you fill the 1 or 3TB drive AND the 128gb ssd. But at that point, you've got other issues you should be dealing with.

    I think a lot of people consider FD just two drives where it's putting files on the ssd until it's full. That's just not the case - it's more dynamic and fluid that simply dumping data on the ssd until it is full, then moving excess data to the hdd.
     
  14. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604

    MacsRgr8

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    #14
    I understand that.
    But the bits often being used can exceed the room of the SSD, can't they?

    That's why I was referring to apps that use lots of disc space. Using these apps a lot should result in the fact that lots of disc space is being used often, and could exceed the room on the SSD.
     
  15. jmgregory1 macrumors 65816

    jmgregory1

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    #15
    FD doesn't store full apps and files on the ssd, but rather manages parts of files that are used. Those things that are not used, like the thousands of languages built in to many apps don't get placed onto the ssd. Same thing with images - your photo library may be gigantic and you might be accessing certain images regularly, but FD doesn't keep all your images on the ssd because you're not accessing all the photos all the time.

    In the 11 months I've been using my FD iMac, I've never noticed anything but ssd speeds even though I've got more than 128gb of space filled on the drive. So it's clearly moving stuff over the hdd - which I've never heard spinning, for what it's worth.

    I'm about to pull the pin on getting another iMac 21" with FD for work. I thought about going full ssd (256gb for the same price) but when I can have 4 times the space and for all intents and purposes, the same speed, it's a no-brainer for me to choose FD over ssd. I'll get AppleCare either way, so if the hdd dies in the next 2 years, it will get replaced anyway and I back up everything to two different places anyway, so I'm not worried about the hdd failing.
     
  16. MacsRgr8 macrumors 604

    MacsRgr8

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    #16
    Tnx for the info!

    Sounds very good then. :)
     
  17. Serban Suspended

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    Jan 8, 2013
    #17
    I have almost 800gb used so.. The only time i feel a difference between SSD and FD is when im using an app for the first time after a long time. And the diff is not more than 2seconds
     
  18. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

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    Sep 3, 2013
    #18
    Although I was mildly arguing the benefits of a 3TB Fusion Drive, you can definitely devise benchmarks (and maybe real-world workloads) that the SSD does better at -- sometimes much better.

    MacWorld did this when testing the new Mac Pro vs several other Macs. In a FCP X import test, the 8-core 3.0 Ghz Mac Pro was only 30% faster than the 4-core 2.3 Ghz MacBook Pro. Both had SSDs. By contrast the nMP was 3x faster than a 2013 i7 3.5Ghz 4-core iMac -- with 3TB Fusion Drive.

    http://www.macworld.com/article/208...ter-weve-been-waiting-for-finally.html?page=0

    The top-spec iMac is definitely faster than the MBP at most things, yet it was way slower in this test. Their conclusion was "look how fast the new Mac Pro is". In fact the conclusion should have been "look how much difference SSD makes on this workload". It is very likely the iMac would have been faster than the new Mac Pro on this test had it been equipped with SSD.

    This was a single narrow test, and I still overall favor the 3TB FD -- if you need the space. The FD is very fast in general. But the above test shows you can sometimes encounter specific situations where a pure SSD drive is significantly faster.

    That assumes 100% of your I/O is on the SSD. Due to its smaller size, if you only use SSD for a boot drive and your data is on external storage, the difference between a SSD boot drive and FD boot drive is less clear.
     

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