Mac Pro 3.1 SSD upgrade

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by flyman, Feb 25, 2016.

  1. flyman macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    #1
    Hi Everyone,

    My poor old MP3.1 seems to be labouring especially now with El Capitan so I thought maybe I should start by upgrading to SSD's?

    Below is how my Mac Pro is at the moment with my installed HD's as follows:

    Bay 1
    Western Digital Black WD6401AALS 640GB (Running Windows 10 and all other software)

    Bay 2
    Western Digital Black WD6401AALS 640GB (Running El Capitan and all other software)

    Bay 3
    Western Digital Green WD10EZRX 1TB (Used for Windows 10 backups)

    Bay 4
    Western Digital Caviar 3200KS 320GB (Time Machine Backups)

    External USB
    Western Digital Elements 500GB (Time Machine Backups)

    The questions I have regarding this are:
    1. Should I purchase smaller capacity SSD's use them for just the operating system and store everything else ie photos, movies and music on existing HD's?
    2. Any additional software i.e. games etc should that be installed on the same disk as the operating system?
    3. Is it worth spending out in the latest top of the range SSD's?
    If anyone one has any suggestions I'd love to know and many thanks in advance!
     
  2. AidenShaw macrumors P6

    AidenShaw

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2003
    Location:
    The Peninsula
    #2
    First of all, the latest SSDs are surprisingly affordable even for performance near the top.


    • Samsung 850 EVO 2TB - $650
    • Samsung 850 EVO 1TB - $295
    • Samsung 850 EVO 500GB - $160


    You'll never regret buying an SSD that's "too large" ;)

    On the SSD I'd put:
    • OS & pagefile
    • all applications (possibly some huge apps on the spinners)
    • home directories
    • working project directories
    • Things that are annoying slow to load
    On the spinners I'd put:
    • media files
    • archived projects
    • big stuff
     
  3. flyman thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    #3
    Your suggestion does seem like a sensible approach but would I need a PCI card in order to gain the full speed from the cards you've suggested - Just thinking there could potentially be a bottleneck to slow things down?

    I really appreciate the feedback, thank you!
     
  4. r6mile macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2010
    Location:
    London, UK
    #4
    If you're looking for a PCIe SSD card, I can recommend the OWC Accelsior S. Very good value.
     
  5. flyman thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    #5
    Are they available in the UK do you know?
     
  6. r6mile macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2010
    Location:
    London, UK
    #6
  7. flyman thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    #7
    Thank you for that, I think the Apricorn Velocity could be the way to go.
    I think I've read somewhere that it in a Mac Pro 3.1 you will need to use Slot No. 2, the only PCIe 2 slot, the other slots are PCIe 1 and will limit the speed increase.
    That think presents a problem as I belive my graphics card (NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670) is sitting in slot 2..need to check!?
     
  8. r6mile macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2010
    Location:
    London, UK
    #8
    Yes - if you want to use the full PCIe speed it needs to be either in slot 1 or slot 2 which are PCIe x16. Slot 1 is dual-lane (for big fat graphics card), so you should put your GTX670 in there, and the Apricorn card in slot 2. I doubt your graphics card is in slot 2 because that would mean unnecessarily taking up slot 3. That's what I've done in mine - GTX680 in Slot 1, OWC Accelsior in Slot 2. The other slots are PCIe x4 so suitable for things like USB 3.0 cards.
     
  9. scott.n macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2010
    #9
    I think the setup described in this thread is much more interesting (and also cheaper) than an Apricorn card. (In fact, you could go without the cage and just stack the SSDs in the optibay.)
     
  10. pdafan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2011
    #10
    If you indeed have a free PCIe 2.0 slot avail, suggest you also look at PCIe x4 adapter (which is very cheap now e.g JZLL) for M.2 SSD (Samsung SM951 or XP941). Look Here. The total cost should be lower. And the read/write speed is beyond >1000MB/s.
     
  11. flyman thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    #11
    Hi Scott,

    I'm a bit confused so please bare with me on this as computer tinkering isnt exactly my strong point!

    Are you saying that I could place this in a cage?http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/...+to+2.5&qid=1445795307&ref_=sr_1_102&sr=8-102

    If so what cage and where? - Does it sit where the DVD drive is?
    --- Post Merged, Mar 2, 2016 ---
    Hi pdafan,

    I'm a bit confused with the setup youre recommending!
    As I want to have OS X and Windows 10 on separate drives will I still be able to do this without any bootup issues (keeping in mind my GTX670 isnt flashed so no EFI)
     
  12. scott.n macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2010
    #12
    That part is the "cage". It would be installed in your optical bay below your existing optical drive and connected to the PCIe card mentioned in the other thread that I linked to. But again, with SSDs you wouldn't really need the cage. Just stack them on top of the optical drive (after moving it to the lower position) or on something like this and use a power splitter.

    Honestly, between mounting the SSDs (cage or no) in the optical bay and the PCIe card and routing the SATA cables in between them, it's a little fiddly. If you're not comfortable tinkering and only want one or two SSDs, an Apricorn card might be the better option for you.
     
  13. flyman thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    #13
    Hi Guys,

    As its not for a work environment and just for some heavy duty gaming I dont want to have issues booting between OS X & Windows - I just want to keep things fairly simple and know works!

    For me I see that there are 3 or so possible options:

    1.

    Buy 2 of these:
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B005PZDV...UTF8&colid=IMJPJ0V9W96C&coliid=I3613KC2UF4M5Y
    and then add 2 of these:
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00P738M...olid=IMJPJ0V9W96C&coliid=I3TR08WFU2P5ZM&psc=1


    2.

    Buy 1 of these:
    http://www.megamac.com/products/apricorn-velocity-duo-x2-vel-duo?variant=3449148229
    and then add 2 of these:
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B00P738M...olid=IMJPJ0V9W96C&coliid=I3TR08WFU2P5ZM&psc=1

    3.

    Buy 2 of these:
    https://www.scan.co.uk/products/lyc...m)-to-pcie-x4-host-adapter-board-pc-mac-linux

    and 2 of these:
    https://www.overclockers.co.uk/sams...state-drive-mzhpu512hcgl-00000-hd-205-sa.html

    In terms of speed how would you rate these options?
     
  14. r6mile macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2010
    Location:
    London, UK
    #14
    I would suggest go for the Apricorn Velocity, and the two 850 EVOs. Double the speed compared to option 1 since you're using PCIe, and it only uses 1 slot compared to option 3.
     
  15. flyman thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2004
    #15
    Do you know if this option works ok with Bootcamp?
     

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