Help with storage on MBPs

disasterdrone

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Aug 31, 2013
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Argh. I only just realized that Apple no longer sell at 15 inch laptop with a DVD drive. I'm about to replace my 15 inch MBP, and am weighing getting the last one (mid 2012?) with a DVD drive, or a new retina and trying to cobble something together. The issue is that I use a lot of media files in my work - I currently have a 250gb ssd in my main drive slot and a 1.5tb in the optical bay.
Short of duct taping an external drive to the back of a retina mbp (which seems to completely defeat the object) is there any more elegant solution? I'm thinking of some kind of base / dock that would be permanently connected?
Thanks!
 

simonsi

macrumors 601
Jan 3, 2014
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...is there any more elegant solution?...
Simply put a cheap Mac-mini on your network, use it as a media centre and share its optical drive for other devices on your network, I have a MBA and have removed the optical from my MBP in lieu of an SSD - sharing means for those few occasions it is a very elegant solution for most uses.
 

disasterdrone

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Aug 31, 2013
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Simply put a cheap Mac-mini on your network, use it as a media centre and share its optical drive for other devices on your network, I have a MBA and have removed the optical from my MBP in lieu of an SSD - sharing means for those few occasions it is a very elegant solution for most uses.
Thanks - that's ok if I'm in the office, but it basically turns my laptop into a desktop. I completely loose the ability to work where I want to. I'm looking for a mobile storage solution that doesn't involve taping an external drive to the case of my laptop... Thanks!
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
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Toronto, Canada
What's the source of the media? DVDs? Just rip them to an handful of Flash drives or SDXC cards. Else get a MacBook Pro with a bigger internal drive.
 

disasterdrone

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What's the source of the media? DVDs? Just rip them to an handful of Flash drives or SDXC cards. Else get a MacBook Pro with a bigger internal drive.
Perhaps I was not clear in the post - I don't want the optical drive, I want the bay to put a big spinning drive in. I currently use a 255gb ssd and a 1.5tb spinning drive in my 15 inch 2008 mbp, and am distressed that Apple no longer makes a machine that can take that much storage...
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
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Toronto, Canada
Perhaps I was not clear in the post - I don't want the optical drive, I want the bay to put a big spinning drive in. I currently use a 255gb ssd and a 1.5tb spinning drive in my 15 inch 2008 mbp, and am distressed that Apple no longer makes a machine that can take that much storage...
Apple has pretty much killed off optical drives and made DIY expandability difficult.
 

disasterdrone

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Aug 31, 2013
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Apple has pretty much killed off optical drives and made DIY expandability difficult.
Yes, that's the depressing reality I'm facing. I guess I'm looking for something that I can fix to the bottom of an MPB like the battery expansions that I saw a while back that includes the external stuff that we need to carry around now. It's not even that they've made diy expandability difficult - the largest storage they have now is 1tb, and that's incredibly expensive. I don't need that speed for data, and don't want to pay for it. I guess I'll have to stick with the last optical equipped MBP and then see whether they've fixed this in a few years. You never know, ssds might have come down radically in price by then.
 

disasterdrone

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A 2TB WD USB 3 drive is pretty small and somewhat cheap. Fits in a pocket.
Yeah, I realize that, it's just a really ugly solution. Instead of just being able to close my lid, pick up the computer and go, I've got to mess around with cables, find the drive in my bag, plug it in, hope I haven't lost or forgotten it, figure out how to get Time Machine to regularly back it up, make sure I plug it in overnight so it does get backed up, etc. It's so much uglier than just having it built in.
It just seems a huge step backwards from what I have now. I mean, I guess you could make a laptop without a battery, and sell an external one that you could plug in, but that would suck too.
 

simonsi

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Jan 3, 2014
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I'm looking for a mobile storage solution
DVD isn't a mobile storage solution any more - capacity is way lower than USB drives, in fact I think the smallest USB drive commonly available is 4GB - the same as a vanilla DVD.

So an optical is really only any use for loading optical media you can't get any other way....

I currently have a 250gb ssd in my main drive slot and a 1.5tb in the optical bay.
If, as you say, you already have no optical drive then you must already have a solution???
 

disasterdrone

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Aug 31, 2013
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That isn't what the post says. Either way short of some magic I think all solutions have been proposed and rejected...<shrug>
That's exactly what the post says. There isn't an 15" MBP for sale that can be upgraded or bought with the amount of storage I currently have in my old one. I was asking about any products that permanently 'dock' external storage to the computer, in a more elegant way than just duct taping the drive to the case.

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The future is cloud storage.
The cloud is still a little slow for media editing. I actually tried a cloud backup solution a while back, and it was going to take about 2 months to upload my data...
 

simonsi

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Jan 3, 2014
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Perhaps I was not clear in the post - I don't want the optical drive, I want the bay to put a big spinning drive in. I currently use a 255gb ssd and a 1.5tb spinning drive in my 15 inch 2008 mbp, and am distressed that Apple no longer makes a machine that can take that much storage...
Yep, we thought you wanted access to the HDD, SSD and optical....so the actual issue is you can't put the big HDD into a new machine yes? If so then apart from network/cloud storage there isn't any elegant solution AFAIK, an external drive as suggested is the only other option.

Network storage can be made accessible wherever you are, the only constraint would be bandwidth on the final leg to your machine (if say connected via 3G), that will likely be the same limitation for cloud storage so if bandwidth to the large files is an issue you will have only two options, go with an external drive or stay with your current machine.
 

noodle654

macrumors 68020
Jun 2, 2005
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That's exactly what the post says. There isn't an 15" MBP for sale that can be upgraded or bought with the amount of storage I currently have in my old one. I was asking about any products that permanently 'dock' external storage to the computer, in a more elegant way than just duct taping the drive to the case.

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The cloud is still a little slow for media editing. I actually tried a cloud backup solution a while back, and it was going to take about 2 months to upload my data...
Don't think there will be an 'elegant' solution for this. Your best bet is to buy the 2012 MBP with optical drive and replace it with something, or wait years for SSD prices to fall and capacities to rise to replace the internal of a rMBP. They are on the refurb store all the time.
 

simonsi

macrumors 601
Jan 3, 2014
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Auckland
That's exactly what the post says. There isn't an 15" MBP for sale that can be upgraded or bought with the amount of storage I currently have in my old one. I was asking about any products that permanently 'dock' external storage to the computer, in a more elegant way than just duct taping the drive to the case.

I think the misunderstanding was that you already have pulled the optical, but now it is clear you don't want the optical, you want the big HDD...but I think you already have the only two current options.
 

disasterdrone

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Aug 31, 2013
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Don't think there will be an 'elegant' solution for this. Your best bet is to buy the 2012 MBP with optical drive and replace it with something, or wait years for SSD prices to fall and capacities to rise to replace the internal of a rMBP. They are on the refurb store all the time.
Yeah, I guess that's the strategy I need to take, either Apple will address this and produce a version of the MBP with additional storage bays, or SSD prices will fall dramatically, or I'll migrate to non-Apple hardware.

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Yeah, I guess that's the strategy I need to take, either Apple will address this and produce a version of the MBP with additional storage bays, or SSD prices will fall dramatically, or I'll migrate to non-Apple hardware.
I did find this, which is not quite what I'm looking for, but is in the ball-park...
http://gizmodo.com/5922781/upgrade-your-macbook-air-ssd-reuse-the-old-one-as-a-sleek-external-drive
 

blueroom

macrumors 603
Feb 15, 2009
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Toronto, Canada
Which non Apple laptops have a user installable second drive bay? What sort of media do you need to take with you everywhere?

Another possibly more elegant option is a Corsair Voyager Air 1TB. Battery operated WiFi hotspot. No wires.
 

disasterdrone

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Aug 31, 2013
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Which non Apple laptops have a user installable second drive bay? What sort of media do you need to take with you everywhere?

Another possibly more elegant option is a Corsair Voyager Air 1TB. Battery operated WiFi hotspot. No wires.
A lot of non-Apple laptops have a 15inch screen and a second drive bay (usually ships with an optical drive, but easy to drop a second drive in it).

The Lenovo Ultrabay system is the best - you can swap out the expansion bay for more storage, interfaces, optical drive, graphics cards, whatever.

I have a lot of image, music, and movie files that, while I use only a tiny proportion of at any one time, don't want to keep moving on and off my laptop based on a prediction of what I will use. It's tremendously convenient for me to keep all my media assets in one place, auto back up to home and office from one source machine (not juggling lots of externals).
The corsair looks like a somewhat viable option, if still a bit of a mess and less storage than I have right now - thanks!
 
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simonsi

macrumors 601
Jan 3, 2014
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Auckland
The corsair looks like a somewhat viable option, if still a bit of a mess and less storage than I have right now - thanks!
Apple Airport Time Capsule comes in 2 & 3TB options but probably less portable than the Corsair...but we are well away from anything that could remotely stay permanently docked to an MBx
 

disasterdrone

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 31, 2013
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Apple Airport Time Capsule comes in 2 & 3TB options but probably less portable than the Corsair...but we are well away from anything that could remotely stay permanently docked to an MBx
Yeah - they are plug-in powered, right?

This is my other option I guess....

http://www.instructables.com/id/Piggyback-your-external-drive/

Or this...

http://www.instructables.com/id/One-more-way-to-piggyback-your-external-drive/

Or this one...

http://gizmodo.com/5058540/hanging-enclosure-concept-piggybacks-a-hard-drive-on-your-laptop-lid
 
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disasterdrone

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Original poster
Aug 31, 2013
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I'm guessing that velcroing something like the Seagate Wireless Plus 1 TB to the bottom back of the screen might work, it would be pretty discrete, and wireless, but I'm worried that the wifi connection would not be seamless, and I'd have to manage battery life, but slowish speeds.
I think ultimately that solution would work best with a wired connection, even though that makes it uglier.
 

disasterdrone

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Aug 31, 2013
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Nope, you are into power adapter world. Your 1.5TB in a USB-powered caddy sounds like the most discrete/portable/suitable sized option TBH...
It's a strange new world we live in where newer products are worse than older ones.