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macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 10, 2009
So I've just installed my new Intel 520 SSD into my late 2008 Macbook. I've read that the 6Gbit SATA 3 speed of the SSD would be scaled down to SATA 2 speed because my Macbook doesn't support SATA 3. But my system currently operates at just SATA 1 speeds (only 1.5 Gbit are negotiated)

Does anybody have the same problem? Any solution to this?
Last edited:


macrumors newbie
Mar 17, 2012
I am with you on this battle

I recently purchased an intel 520 due to favorable review from just about

everyone, but especially anand from . I purchased a product

similar to the data doubler to get two hard drive bays in my macbook 5,1 late

2008 unibody. The thing is the when my Western Digital 320gb was in the

extra, just installed data doubler bay, it was at 3gigabit negotiated and the

original bay was 3gbit, where the 520 resided, but only negotiated at 1.5

gigabit. So my thinking was to switch them and have the intel ssd at the 3gbit

speed. No dice. The 1.5 gigabit stayed with the intel drive, not the bay. This

is very frustrating as the data doubler was no fun to install and I spent 199.99

on amazon only to have the thing go on sale the next day @ 179.99. There

recently has been an efi update to get the 1.5 to 3, but only for 2009 and up.

As time goes on, the likelihood that we get an update for an older 2008 model

decreases. So, do I return the ssd or buy a newer mac? I will try to attach my

numbers which are really bad. By the way it is worth mentioning that

thunderbolt, which is included in newer macs is suppossed to be 60% faster

than sata 3. I have seen an intel video where the raided Lacie put out over 1

GIGABYTE (for clarification) per second. Any ideas or can anyone add any

thoughts or correct my mistakes. Sorry for the long message, I am a little

frustrated this AM.


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macrumors regular
Jun 25, 2010
Same Macbook here. Will be getting an AData S510 120GB tomorrow. Apparently the SandForce controller in there is supposed to be OK to support Sata II with this laptop. I'll post my results. But I just discovered this issue and I'm not happy either of the possibility that this might all be for nothing. BTW I don't think this has anything to do with Intel SSDs. The laptop with a normal HDD will show "1.5GB negotiated".


macrumors regular
Jun 25, 2010
No luck there. I get 1.5Gbit negotiated. Although it's faster, it's not super fast...

It's not fair that the later model (Early 2009 Pro) got an EFI update (1.7) that fixed this issue and not the late 2008 Macbook that has the same hardware!

What now?


macrumors newbie
Mar 21, 2012
@vincentchan: the Cherryville 520 actually works for you? :confused: Its not even usable for me :(

My experience with it here:

I have strong reason to believe it is the SandForce controller. I installed an HDD with SATA III and it works fine. Link speed and negotiated link speed is both 3 gigabits.


macrumors regular
Feb 16, 2009
I just ran the test on mine: Write speeds avg about 130 MB/s and read speeds avg 230 MB/s
I've got a 5.1 with Intel SSD.
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