HDD or SSD in Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by cjgonzales1900, May 24, 2011.

  1. cjgonzales1900 macrumors regular

    Jan 10, 2009
    Ok guys so I was looking to get a second HD in my Mac Pro 1,1 2x 2.66GHz 8GB 667Mhz Ram. I am looking into getting a SSD or HDD. I want to dual boot Windows 7 Ultimate and Mac OS 10.6.7. I came across some interesting drives. I am currently running a Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 Sata 3Gb/s 32MB Cache 7200RPM Link

    1st HD: $190
    Vertex 2 3.5" SSD Everyone knows SSD's are way faster than HDD but the cost is very High. I already have a OWC 115GB SSD in my MBP and I love it.

    2nd HD: $167
    Barracuda XT Sata 6Gb/s 64MB Cache 7,200RPM

    3rd HD: $60-90
    Barracuda Just like the drive I currently own.

    Ok so now my questions are.

    I dont need the very fast speed as a SSD in my Desktop. So is a SSD really worth the extra money?

    Does the 64MB cache and 32MB cache make a difference? And will it work in my Mac Pro 1,1?

    Which drive is better for the price above?

    Do they all work in the Mac Pro 1,1?

    Thank you guys for your help.
  2. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    Are you wanting to run the new disk for both OS's?

    If so, the fastest tech is an SSD (OS's rely on random access far more than sequential access, and mechanical just can't touch a fast SSD in this regard).

    As per whether or not it's the way to go for you, is up to your wallet (cost/GB is the worst for SSD's). But you could get away with 160GB IMO (split it to 80GB per OS). And keep your data on mechanical.

    As per the XT's and any other mechanical SATA disk, they'll work too.

    Please note, that the SATA ports in that machine are only 3.0Gb/s (same in all the MP's to date), so there's technically a step down in speed if you plug a 6.0Gb/s drive in it (6.0Gb/s drive steps down to 3.0Gb/s due to backwards compatability built into that SATA spec).

    Real world results of this however, may not mean much, if anything (sequential throughputs over ~275MB/s would throttle on 3.0Gb/s <real world throughput limit of 3.0Gb/s>, but random access won't, as it's not that fast).
  3. cjgonzales1900 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 10, 2009
    I was planning on putting Windows 7 on the current HD I have because I rarely use it, and Mac OS X on the new drive.

    Also do you know if the 64MB Cache makes a difference in the drive. I am planning on getting a HDD because my needs for the desktop Mac Pro are not that great. I only use it from time to time. If I end up using it more later then I will upgrade to a 160GB SSD most likely, or if the price falls which probably wont happen lol
  4. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    The cache does help with performance.

    That said, given the way you're describing your usage, mechanical will be fine. Since it's not a primary machine (from the impression you're giving me), there's no need to go crazy (I'd go for the cheapest solution).
  5. cjgonzales1900 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 10, 2009
    Exactly right. My main machine is my 2010 MBP 2.53GHz i5 115 OWC SSD 4gb ram. This machine is the one I use when I am home, if its not on and i need to look something up or do something really quick I use the MBP. but if Im browsing or going to be on long I use the MP.

    I think I'm going to stick with the same drive I have right now. seeing how its only $60 on Amazon and its fast enough. run 2x Seagate Barracuda 750GB 7200RPM 32MB Cache.

    I will most likely partition the old one 250GB Windows and 500GB Time Machine for my OS X.

    What are your thoughts on the WD Velociraptor? Is it worth the extra money for a 10,000RPM Drive? From the pictures I see it wont work with the Mac Pro because the sata connector is in the middle.
  6. Krevnik macrumors 68040


    Sep 8, 2003
    Velocirators need a special bracket to mount in the Mac Pro because they are really 2.5" drives that come with mounting brackets for 3.5" bays (which the Mac Pro doesn't have). They are available in a couple places.

    At this point in time, I'd rather take the SSD over a Velociraptor if I did want speed. Velociraptors have the same problems with random access that other mechanical drives do, and don't even keep up with the Sandforce-based SSDs on sequential access.
  7. philipma1957, May 25, 2011
    Last edited: May 25, 2011

    philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    raptors mount directly into macpros . well one kind does and one does not. I will find links
    full page from western digital


    all below come with the IcePack TM mounting frame


    all fit in a macpro sled.. I can't find the link for the naked type.

    newegg sells the IcePack type


    I have run a pair of these in raid0 as a big osx snow leopard . pretty fast as a raid0. not that great with random access. still pretty fast cost you 500 bucks as a raid0 with 1.2tb space.
  8. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010
    The raptors usually come with their own backplane (3.5") that fits perfectly inside Mac Pro. You have to look pretty hard to find the non mounted ones. Not an issue. They are by no means an ssd replacement. But they have about a 7ms access time vs. 14ms or more for 7200RPMs. I have a 600GB. Very fast but fairly noisy seek noise. I am moving mine over as Home directory only and got a OWC 240GB as boot. Should be insane fast. If I had to choose what to buy today I would get an OWC boot SSD and a 1TB or higher 7200RPM for data. Faster, quieter and more storage. The cost for the Raptor vs return is not so great anymore:(
  9. ZenAmateur macrumors newbie

    May 21, 2008
    Go for broke

    You have the same machine I use for my work, and which; upon the impending expiration of my AppleCare, I thought to sell and upgrade. My workstation is configured in almost the same way as yours, with the exception of the addition of a Kingston 120 Gb SSD as the boot drive. Without a doubt, the addition of FAST access to the applications (including VMWare) has made all the difference in the world, and I decided to keep this box till it dies. The $230 that I spent (now closer to $175 for the same thing) is the best use of funds for a computer upgrade ever.

    Do yourself a favor and get the SSD, and don't listen to anyone who doesn't have an SSD installed when it comes to advice on this matter, IMHO they just don't have the day to day experience to make a qualified judgement.
  10. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    Skip the Velociraptor. Either get a standard mechanical SATA for low cost, or an SSD if you've changed your mind on high performance. There' are cheap ones, and if you're only going to place one OS on it, 80GB would be big enough IMO (assumes you don't install every application that comes your way, whether you'll use it or not).
  11. cjgonzales1900 thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 10, 2009
    Thanks I am planning on getting a SSD in the future. But for now I am sticking with the Barracuda 7200PRM and basically doubling my space to 1.5TB total. I have a buddy who just pulled a new drive out of a computer who is selling it to me for $40. Very cheap.

    Thank you to everyone!!
  12. AlexMaximus macrumors 6502a


    Aug 15, 2006
    A400M Base
    notebook raid 0 system in Mac Pro

    There is actually another upgrade path that I would consider worth mentioning.

    Check out this one:


    If that one would be used with two Seagate Momentus XTs Hybrid drives, you would have a less expensive, yet high performance raid 0 system with a good speed.

    I consider this for my own Mac Pro system, what do you think ? Is anybody out there that has any experience with this setup ??
  13. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010

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