Max speed on new SSD in Mac Pro 2009?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by malthe, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. malthe macrumors newbie

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    Feb 23, 2013
    #1
    Okay so today I picked up a Mac Pro 2.66 ghz quad core, 2009, 16 gb ram and 3 tb worth of storage..

    Im looking to install a ssd harddrive to boot mac os 10.8 - and use for my programs around 64 or 90 gb - but I cant found what is a good buy..

    There are a lot of low end models running 250 mb/s and 300 mb/s - is that the mac speed I can have a Mac pro running the ssd?

    I was looking for OCZ Vertex 3 Series Solid State Disk 90 GB with a write speed of around 500/600 mb / s - but as far as I can see that will be a waste of money?

    Also If I install it in the lower optical drive - is there something I need to get? And where do I connect it? Is the connector the same as the one that is in spare for the additional dvd drive ?

    Regards Malthe
     
  2. Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

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    #2

    Choose a benchmark that's of interest to or understood by, you and have a look. For example I think perhaps thee most important mark of an SSD's speed is it's 4K Random Read result. So in that list I clicked on:

    to see what I'm adding to the electrical profile. But of course you can select any of the test results and even build a little comparison chart like so:
     
  3. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    #3
    The Mac Pro 2009 and later (and maybe earlier?) all come with SATA 2 connections for internal drives. This bus tops out at around 275MB/s. Now, all current SSDs come with SATA3 compatibility and max sequential read/write speeds that exceed the limits of your SATA2 connections on the Mac, but don't worry about that... please read this thread for a full discussion on why it probably won't make much difference:

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1553242

    As for a recommended SSD... I would NOT choose anything with a SandForce 22xx controllers such as the Vertex 3 or most OWC SSDs. They are known for not lasting long. For a general purpose OS/Apps/etc drive, the best choice for bang-for-buck these days is probably the Crucial M4. If you want something a bit faster and richer, then look at the Samsung 840 Pro.

    To mount it in the optical bay you could just tape it down to be honest, or you can find a 5.25" bay to 2.5" drive bracket on Newegg. Alternatively, if you have a 3.5" bay to spare get one of these.
     
  4. GP-SE macrumors 6502

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    #4
    I gotta agree, I have a 64gb Crucial M4, and never had an issue, but I might replace it with a larger Samsung 840 Pro very soon. I'm not a fan of Sandforce based drives, because I've heard they have issues.
     
  5. malthe thread starter macrumors newbie

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    Feb 23, 2013
    #5
    Thx for the help

    Thx for both the charts and the info - decided tp got for a samsung 840 - 120 gb sad in the optical bay drive - that should be a straight forward install .. And to make it easier - i drop it in my macbook pro and install 10.8.2 on it before - then i can just pop it in and have 10.8.2 instead of the 10.7 i have on a regular 1 tb hard drive in the bay 1 in the mac pro?

    Would that not be the best way to get it on there?

    Cheers :)
     
  6. righteye, Mar 10, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2013

    righteye macrumors 6502

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    #6
    For a mac Pro a good solution is an OWC Accelsior PCIe SSD very fast and by passes the SATA 2 limitaion.
     
  7. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    #7
    As you'll see in a couple other threads on this subject, the Sonnet Tempo appears to be the best solution for PCIe solid state storage, but as we've been discussing, the benefits for OS/Apps will not be noticeable over a single drive on the SATA2 backplane.
     
  8. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

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    #8
    OWC is inferior NAND RAID0 blades. But oh how we love those big sequential numbers. :D
     
  9. Badagri macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Intel uses them.... SandForce SF-2281, yet everyone says Intel for reliability Samsung for speed and reliability.
     
  10. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

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    #10
    They use custom year long tested firmware. Not so much for the rest of the bunch. Read a little between the lines. ;)
     
  11. Badagri macrumors 6502

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    #11
    Well, that persons description on SandForce was pretty vague. Controller... not firmware... firmware would be software bugged. Rather than poor performing or unreliable hardware.
     
  12. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

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    #12
    The controllers have been shown to be stable with corrected firmware. How's that? Intel only uses SF in a few products (520, 320) not the ones they got their reputation for. But their SF implementations are great. I run a 520 in my Mac Pro. I have killed 2 OWC SF drives and have countless other Vertex 3's go bad. Same "controllers".
     
  13. SvK macrumors 6502

    SvK

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    #13
    For 300 bucks buy the Sonnet Tempo SSD proPCI card . I doesn't have drives on it, but you can slap two 6gb drives on it and it will be faster than the OWC card.

    1000++ reads!!
    http://www.sonnettech.com/product/tempossdpro.html


    insane.

    best,
    SvK
     
  14. Tesselator, Mar 11, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2013

    Tesselator macrumors 601

    Tesselator

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    #14
    Yeah, not the best way. If fact that probably will not even work. Ya see the installer checks out your system to see whatcha got; what CPUs, NICs, and so on... then installs those components for that specific hardware. If you install with your laptop then I kinda doubt it would boot your MacPro.

    Just install the SSDs how you want (in your MacPro) pick the drive or RAID stripe you want the system on, go to the Apple Store and do it.

    Once it's installed you can move that drive around on the MacPro tho; connect it to USB, eSATA, a PCI-e interface you purchase later, whatever.


    If you want to use the same SSD to alternatively boot both your laptop AND your MacPro then partition it with recognizable names you can remember like MacPro_Boot and MBAir_Boot or whatever, and install OS X on each partition from the respective machines - using the Apple Store or whatever.
     
  15. Killerbob macrumors 6502a

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    #15
    I do not entirely agree! Depending on what test you are reading, and thus far I have only seen one who have had both solutions in hand, one may be slightly better than the other.

    The Sonnet Tempo Pro, with 2 x 512GB Samsung 840s, is probably a little faster than the Accelsior, and perhaps USD 150 cheaper, but there is just something about the Acclesior which makes it a very very nice solution.

    I have had mine for a few weeks now, and have previously has SSDs in Raid0, and it was a significant speed increase when I finally shelled out for the 960GB Accelsior card. It was just super easy to install, and it just works. Kind of like switching to Apple:)
     
  16. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

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    #16
    1x Samsung 840 is faster as a boot disk than an Accelsior. No need for 2. Not in sequential throughput but in random writes and iops and incompressible data and 4k reads and most other things that actually matter as a boot disk. Hitting 700MB/s is worthless as a boot drive over any of the other mentioned measurements.
    60% of the time the Samsung is about 2x as fast as the OWC PCI thing. Can you notice it? Not sure. But tests reveal it.
     
  17. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    #17
    The Accelsior has a number of drawbacks that make it undesirable. It's key advantage is its plug and play as you say, but its throttled by its x2 PCIe bus interface, has non upgradable drives, uses failure prone Sandforce controllers that also don't perform well with incompressible data, and it costs $1500 for 1TB vs $1000 for a Sonnet with dual M4s.

    At any rate, as we've been discussing, it's untapped performance for a boot/OS/Apps drive anyway. The only time that massive sequential read/write performance can be tapped is with large media files (which are usually incompressible data) so even then, the Accelsior is not able to live up to its promise.
     
  18. Badagri macrumors 6502

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    #18
    Intel only has 5xx and 3xx series? every Intel SSD I've seen in shops has SandForce. I see no other Intel SSD's.

    Ah, MLC. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820167053 Only Sata 2 though.

    Painful price. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820167140
     
  19. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

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    #19
  20. peterson12 macrumors member

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    #20
    I agree with righteye. OWC Accelsior PCIe SSD perform really well for MACs. Believe me, most of the benchmark numbers are all tweaked. If Intel is still contuining to use SF drives even after so much criticism it is clear that a certain community of people are aimed at destroying the reputation of a brand. I believe Intel would never risk compramising quality!
     
  21. Killerbob macrumors 6502a

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    #21
    As do I.

    I agree a lot of these socalled benchmarks are rigged in one direction or another, and we're talking really small differences. So it should come down to "feel like". Just like windchill factor...

    The Accelsior is not slower than ANY single SSD in boot, that is an outright lie! My Mac Pro boots in seconds, and was NEVER this fast with 2 Intel SSDs in Raid0. I know it was the interface which was/is the bottleneck, and I never tried it with a dedicated PCIe card, but even the benchmarks only show advantage to the Tempo card when matched with 2 lightningfast Samsung 840 Pros. And, that bundle sets you can around USD1300 (I can't take advantage of most of the superdeals in the US living in Greenland).
     
  22. VirtualRain, Mar 12, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2013

    VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    #22
    I don't dislike the Accelsior - it's a good product. Hat's off to OWC for combining what is effectively a $50 Marvell SATA3 PCIe card with a pair of on-board MacBook Air SSDs and charging an arm and a leg for it.

    However, anyone buying a PCIe based SSD solution today, should assess solutions based on their workload, data storage needs, budget, risk tolerance, desires for future proofing, etc. The Accelsior only fits a very specific buyer profile. Claiming it is the "best solution" ignores a variety of factors that go into making an intelligent decision. It may be the "best solution" for you and righteye, but it's certainly not the best solution for me and many others.
     
  23. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

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    #23
    Standard benchmarks are "rigged"? Why? Is the entire world out for OWC? C'mon. Results are results.
    Why is it an "outright lie"? Do you have or have tested all the SSD's on various links as discussed here? PCI booting anything has a time penalty overhead associated with it as with any PCI controller. It happens at post and is brief to fairly long depending on other associated host connections. If you used a stopwatch it would be there. That exists and is not imagined. After that you have a RAID0 Marvell controller that has been shown by every trusted test to be less than stellar compared to a single 3G drive in the most demanding areas a boot disk uses. You don't boot and because you can get 700MB/s second it is fast, sorry. That is not how computers work. Basically a SATA2 link (not even SATA3) on a single Samsung 840 will boot and run slightly faster than the OWC Accelsior. That is provable fact. Not the hope and conjecture you just penned to feel better about your purchase.
     
  24. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    #24
    True, here's a guy who tested the Vertex 3 (essentially the same drive used on the Accelsior) on both the Marvell controller (used on the Accelsior) vs Intel's SATA3 controller. If you don't want to bother to click through... the result is that the Marvell fares poorly compared to the Intel - being a major bottleneck to performance.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frLc3mjgQsM

    Again, for everyone that loves their Accelsior... I'm not anti-Accelsior, I just want everyone to be aware of what they are getting for top-dollar from OWC. Yes, it's simplified installation and setup... but it comes with a lot of compromises and at a relatively high cost.
     
  25. Killerbob macrumors 6502a

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    #25
    derbothaus, you are wrong!

    I had two fast Intel 330s in Raid0, using the built-in SATA connectors, and I started out with a Crucial C300 SSD. Both solutions (both especially the C300) were slower at booting than my current Accelsior. So do not lecture me on what was/is fastest! And, I did test it out with a stop watch:D

    Between chime and login, the Accelsior is notably faster. I don't know if my setup is unique, or if others experience otherwise, but that's what I experience.

    And when it comes to opening up my 70GB Aperture DB (about 30K referenced files on my NAS) for instance, again the Accelsior solution is definitely fastest.

    I generally trust real usage the most, and hence base my findings on that.
     

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