New MacMini Owner with SSD Questions

azsl1326

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 5, 2012
11
0
Hello All,

Just bought my first Mac(mini). A coworker was selling 2011 i5 with 4gb memory at a decent price so I picked it up. Anyway I want to install an SSD drive in it replacing the 500gb HDD. I just ordered some additional memory from Amazon. After doing some development work on it last night, it begin running really hot and really slow so it confirmed my "need" to install an SSD drive.

I am looking at getting one of two drives: 1)SAMSUNG 830 256gb or 2)OCZ 256GB Vertex 4 -256gb -comments on either or both are welcome :). I was going to use the current drive as an external backup drive. I don't plan on installing a ton of stuff on the SSD as MacMini is mainly going to be used for a development box. With that said, my biggest question is what is the best way to get OSX, either Lion - which is currently on the HDD, or upgrade to Mtn. Lion, on the new SSD?

  1. Should I pull the current HDD drive out and image it to the new SSD?
    OR
  2. I have read/seen people installing OSX image to the new drive via a jump drive? Better option? If so what's the best way to get the image on the jump drive?

Thanks, in advance for any and all replies.
 

imageWIS

macrumors 65816
Mar 17, 2009
1,241
781
NYC
I would go with option 2. Also, why don't you consider an Intel SSD? Insofar as I understand, they make the best SSD's.

Unless you are running a program that you NEED to use that is currently incompatible with ML, I would get ML. Be sure to reset you PRAM and SMC.
 

Ifti

macrumors 68020
Dec 14, 2010
2,356
484
UK
OCZ drives are known for their unreliability and poor support - although I've used a Vertex 2 for 2 years previously with no errors, the Vertex 4 has already had many firmware updates etc.

The Samsung 830 is an excellent drive with similar speeds (I've just tested one on my YouTube channel). It's one of the best drives for reliability and support is excellent, should you ever need it.

Furthermore, I can confirm TRIM in OSX also works successfully with it ;)
 

azsl1326

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 5, 2012
11
0
I would go with option 2. Also, why don't you consider an Intel SSD? Insofar as I understand, they make the best SSD's.

Unless you are running a program that you NEED to use that is currently incompatible with ML, I would get ML. Be sure to reset you PRAM and SMC.
Thanks for the assistance. I was only listing those two drives as I had seen them posted in other threads. I am open to any quality SSD. In fact, I am running an Intel SSD on my Win7 machine and haven't had any issues with it at all.

What's the purpose of resetting the PRAM and SMC?

Thanks!
 

imageWIS

macrumors 65816
Mar 17, 2009
1,241
781
NYC
Thanks for the assistance. I was only listing those two drives as I had seen them posted in other threads. I am open to any quality SSD. In fact, I am running an Intel SSD on my Win7 machine and haven't had any issues with it at all.

What's the purpose of resetting the PRAM and SMC?

Thanks!
ML might or might not screw around with certain settings (start up disk, clock, virtual memory, RAM disk, disk cache, etc...) which might make the computer super slow and / or not run properly.
 

azsl1326

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 5, 2012
11
0
OCZ drives are known for their unreliability and poor support - although I've used a Vertex 2 for 2 years previously with no errors, the Vertex 4 has already had many firmware updates etc.

The Samsung 830 is an excellent drive with similar speeds (I've just tested one on my YouTube channel). It's one of the best drives for reliability and support is excellent, should you ever need it.

Furthermore, I can confirm TRIM in OSX also works successfully with it ;)
Thanks for the information. I watched your video on youtube for the 830. Looks like a solid drive. Leaning towards it right now. You mentioned TRIM works with it. Do I have to do anything to enable TRIM?
 
Last edited:

Ifti

macrumors 68020
Dec 14, 2010
2,356
484
UK
Thanks for the information. I watched your video on youtube for the 830. Looks like a solid drive. Leaning towards it right now. You mentioned TRIM works with it. Do I have to do anything to enable TRIM?
Intel drives are also very good, but a tad pricier.
There is a piece of software called 'Trim Enabler', which you can use to enable Trim. It doesnt seem to work with all drives though. I enabled it on my Samsung and after a reboot its been working fine ever since and within the system information it is stated that Trim is enabled.
 

Mengele

macrumors member
Aug 6, 2012
66
0
After doing some development work on it last night, it begin running really hot and really slow so it confirmed my "need" to install an SSD drive.
Sorry, no, thats not how computers work. The i5 models naturally run hot at over 200*f CPU temp because of the more powerful GPU and GPU ram. The hard drive has nothing to do with it.
 

Chippy99

macrumors 6502a
Apr 28, 2012
973
27
In fact the Mini might run hotter with an SSD in it. All the time the CPU is waiting for a slow hard disk, it is idling and producing less heat. It will spend less time idling with a fast SSD and therefore might well run hotter. It certainly won't be cooler.
 

philipma1957

macrumors 603
Apr 13, 2010
6,271
191
Howell, New Jersey
Hello All,

Just bought my first Mac(mini). A coworker was selling 2011 i5 with 4gb memory at a decent price so I picked it up. Anyway I want to install an SSD drive in it replacing the 500gb HDD. I just ordered some additional memory from Amazon. After doing some development work on it last night, it begin running really hot and really slow so it confirmed my "need" to install an SSD drive.

I am looking at getting one of two drives: 1)SAMSUNG 830 256gb or 2)OCZ 256GB Vertex 4 -256gb -comments on either or both are welcome :). I was going to use the current drive as an external backup drive. I don't plan on installing a ton of stuff on the SSD as MacMini is mainly going to be used for a development box. With that said, my biggest question is what is the best way to get OSX, either Lion - which is currently on the HDD, or upgrade to Mtn. Lion, on the new SSD?

  1. Should I pull the current HDD drive out and image it to the new SSD?
    OR
  2. I have read/seen people installing OSX image to the new drive via a jump drive? Better option? If so what's the best way to get the image on the jump drive?

Thanks, in advance for any and all replies.
As a heads up there are 2 mac minis with an i5 cpu which one do you have?

The base 2.3 i5 model without a discrete gpu or the second tier 2.5 i5 model with a discrete gpu?


Here is the deal if you have the model with the discrete gpu it pulls more power and runs hotter and louder then the base model. You are welcome to put in an ssd as that will make the machine run faster but it will still run hot and loud under many conditions. Here is the easiest cooling solution I know

buy this item set it under you mini

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Ikea-Kitchen-Trivet-Pot-Stand-Stainless-Steel-7x7-New-/320767329826?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item4aaf390622#ht_1827wt_1165


then install a fan speed program set the base speed of your mini at 2000rpm. the 2000rpm is not so loud. these easy steps will lessen the minis heat a lot and reduce the max fan speed frequency. ie the machine will ramp up to 5500 rpm once in a while not all of the time.


as for the machine running slowly an ssd may help/ you only have 4gb ram if you run out of ram the machine pages out and swaps to the slow stock hdd. look at my screen shot of ram use.

I have had an issue with running firefox and my pageouts and swap is high. I would say phil get more ram but I know my issue is a firefox problem that will use all the ram I toss at it and slow my ssd. so I am waiting on a firefox patch. It can be your development has a ram leak like the current firefox does. But that is another post.

If you open the mini to add an ssd you can add ram or not 8gb works better then 4gb in most cases.
 

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Mengele

macrumors member
Aug 6, 2012
66
0
In fact the Mini might run hotter with an SSD in it. All the time the CPU is waiting for a slow hard disk, it is idling and producing less heat. It will spend less time idling with a fast SSD and therefore might well run hotter. It certainly won't be cooler.
This is true, the hard drive is a huge hindrance on the i5's performance.