How to setup Velocity X2 for Raid 0 in 2010 Mac Pro?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by GMunroe, Sep 8, 2014.

  1. GMunroe, Sep 8, 2014
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2014

    GMunroe macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2012
    #1
    Hi, I am looking to increase the SSD storage capacity of my current 2010 Mac Pro. At the moment I have a Velocity X2 installed powering a 256GB Crucial M4. This drive is configured as a Fusion drive with the stock 1TB drive. I prefer to have no Fusion, and purchase another crucial 256 drive to make 500GB in Raid0 for apps and OS/photos will be plenty for me.

    All I know going into this is that I need a "y" splitter or an extension cable (unknown as to which I need, or the length) going to some power source.. Likely the power from the disc drives.. (Currently both spots filled with SuperDrive on top and bluray below.). Then what to do in disk utility to make this all work.

    Anyone that can give me some pointers I would appreciate it. Read lots of threads on the velocity but none that had details of installation, mostly speed tests after the fact.

    Currently, the card is installed next to the 5870 graphics card.. If that makes a difference.

    Is this the way to go, or should I look for alternatives to the velocity x2?

    Thanks
     
  2. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #2
    In order to do this, you will have to run a SATA data cable from the back of the x2, through the corner cable access hole into the upper optical bay area. As you mentioned, you will have to use a Y-splitter SATA power cable to get the power for the SSD. This is made more difficult due to the fact that the SATA connector is a single integrated piece for both power and data, so you may have to either split the part, or provide a short data extension cable there as well. Plus you will have to somehow mount the SSD up there, although a bit of velcro would work fine for that, or just sit it in there hooked to the cables ... it isn't going anywhere. :)

    There are also some threads here with methods of grabbing power from a spare disk drive tray, but that seems a bit touchy to get a secure connection.

    Since the x2 has a single controller for both SATA channels, you won't realize the maximum speed possible in RAID-0 with your SSDs. That, coupled with the complexity of the cabling issues mentioned above, might cause you to look to the alternatives.

    If you have a spare PCIe slot, one option might be to add a second x2 card to hold the second SSD as several posters here have done. This is probably the cheapest alternative. Another is to get a dual-SSD PCIe card. One available is the Tempo Pro, but there is a thread here discussing a new Apricorn x2 Duo card which looks promising, but I don't know that it is available at this time. Either of these alternatives should allow your RAID-0 to run at maximum speed with your M4 drives.

    Creating the RAID-0 is easily done with Disk Utility. Your will have to have a backup of your SSD prior to creating the RAID-0 as you will have to restore it when you are done. As with any system, RAID or not, you need to keep a good backup strategy.

    I run a pair of 512GB M4 SSDs on the Tempo Pro and get DiskSpeedTest results of 525w/931r. This has been working well for over a year and a half for me. I now use my x2 for a Windows SSD in another slot.


    -howard
     
  3. GMunroe thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2012
    #3
    Thank you for the detailed explanation, I really appreciate it. As I run windows as well, I can repurpose the Apricorn for that and I'll look into the Tempo Pro for OSX. Those are great speeds, I get about half of that now.

    Up my Mac to 12GB of RAM and I should have a great running computer for a few more years. :)
     
  4. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #4
    You will want to purchase another "M4" SSD to match the one you have for best RAID-0 performance. If you want even better write speeds, get a pair of Samsung 840 Pro (or the new 850 Pro) matching parts, and use your existing Crucial M4 as the Windows drive. Depending on what you are doing you may not even notice the difference in write speeds (I don't), and I have found both brands to be reliable in my use.
     
  5. GMunroe thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2012
    #5
    I will likely get the best of those that are on sale at the time. If I can't find a matching M4, the decision will be more straightforward.

    Either way it'll be a nice improvement. The M4 has worked very well for me.
     

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