Part Ways with SSD?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by AppleGoat, Aug 17, 2011.


What Should I do?

  1. Keep the Crucial M4, future Firmware releases should iron out the issues

    1 vote(s)
  2. Exchange the M4 for a Samsung 470 128 GB at Newegg

    3 vote(s)
  3. Buy an OEM 256GB Samsung 470 for about $300 on eBay

    2 vote(s)
  4. Other

    8 vote(s)
  1. AppleGoat, Aug 17, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2011

    AppleGoat macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2010
    For those of you who may not know, I have a Crucial M4 128GB in my MBP '11 13-inch. The latest firmware patch, which has worked for most, has improved my system (although I barely tested the drive on the original firmware); yet, my system is still afflicted by the sporadic beach ball, freeze-ups on occasion. If I'm plugging away on something for several hours, I can expect a few annoying beach balls to punctuate long stretches of solid performance. Particularly annoying if it occurs in iTunes, the song just stops.

    Despite the speed, I can't endorse this computer to DJs or husbands who like to look at dirty websites while their wives are in the other room. Like on the display, the beach balls in your spouse's mind will be spinning if the drive fails you in one of those moments.

    For these reasons, I have considered the venerated Samsung 470. But, in spite of how solid a drive it is, I prefer to stick with a SATA III drive. And, the Crucial M4, seems to be the most reliable offering (for 6GB/s) at the moment. Even though benchmarks are only so meaningful, I prefer to take advantage of my computer's SATA III compatibility. What do you guys think I should do?
  2. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    I'd revert back to a tested and proven SATA II drive, in real world performance, I doubt you'd notice any difference at all. Benchmarks only tell part of the story, you know.

    You'd save money to boot.
  3. screensaver400 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 28, 2005
    I'm happy with my 256GB Samsung 470. About $400 online.
  4. akhbhaat macrumors regular

    Sep 30, 2010
    Are you running the TRIM hack? If so, that's most likely the source of your problems.

    If not, you may need to recondition the drive (i.e. reformat and secure erase with a 0-pass overwrite). Reportedly, the M4 doesn't have very effective internal garbage collection.
  5. gonzoguy24 macrumors member

    Oct 31, 2010
    I am getting a full refund on my SATA III Plextor M2S drive that was giving me constant beach balls with and without trim hack on. I think i may move to an OCZ Agility SATA II drive since it seems like the SATA II drives have less issues?
  6. dsio macrumors regular

    Jun 19, 2011
  7. kasakka macrumors 68020

    Oct 25, 2008
    Have you tried disabling hard drive sleep from Energy Saver? Also use something to check the SMART status. I had a failing hard drive in my work Mac Pro and it would beach ball or totally jam occasionally because of that. Turning off hard disk sleep helped.
  8. gonzoguy24 macrumors member

    Oct 31, 2010
    On my plextor 128 SATA ssd I did this and it did not help my situation at all.
  9. AppleGoat thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2010
    You think these beach balls are an indication my drive is failing? According to System Profiler, I have S.M.A.R.T. status "Verified." I've had the sleep settings off.
  10. AppleGoat thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2010
    My patience is starting to wear thin. I just installed the iLife programs, about 4 GB worth of stuff, and predictably the drive would hang if I did anything else while it was doing that (like browse the internet) so I left it to its own devices. Now, following the installation, constant beach balls -- oh, I'm sorry, I forgot the drive needs to idle for sometime, collect its thoughts, after a major installation. I may be sending this drive back. If I knew that future firmware patches would not resolve this problem, I would definitely send it back.
  11. phpmaven macrumors 68040


    Jun 12, 2009
    San Clemente, CA USA
    Me too. I had nothing must trouble trying to get a Crucial C300 to work in my 17" 2011 MaBook. The Vertex III has been solid as a rock.
  12. Fugue macrumors 6502

    Jan 14, 2011
    The problems you are having are definitely limited to you and a few select others. The Crucial m4, with firmware 2, appears to be very stable.

    That said, since you are having issues, I would probably either RMA the drive for a new one, or get another SSD altogether. You can find the OEM Samsung 470 (256 GB) for $300 on eBay. I have yet to find a person who experiences issues with it.

    I went with the Kingston SSDNow V+100 96 GB because it was on sale for under $1/GB, and it works flawlessly. I never had a beach ball as of yet, the battery life is noticeably improved, and the machine runs cooler. Benchmarks show that it is slower than the SATA III drives, but real-world performance is roughly the same. Everything opens pretty much instantly. I expect the Samsung 470 to yield the same performance.

    If you find a deal on the Intel 320, I would recommend to try it as well. With the 8mb bug fixed, it is a good bet.
  13. AppleGoat thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Oct 14, 2010
    I don't think it's really think the drive is defective; there are a fair share of people that experience problems following the firmware 0002 patch. I would need pretty convincing evidence that I had bad unit before swapping my M4 out for another. Ugh, don't know what to do. I really want to stick with SATA III, but I don't know what kind of tolerance I have for this drive's issues and the Sandforce drivers have such a bad rap.

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