PCI express hard drive question

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by pertusis1, Jul 4, 2013.

  1. pertusis1 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2010
    Location:
    Texas
    #1
    I have a 5,1 12 core 2.4 GHz Mac Pro without any upgrades. I bought it to gradually upgrade over the next 4-5 years as my budget allows. It is a hobby more than anything else, and FCPX for 1080p video editing is the most advanced thing I use it for at the moment.

    As best I can tell, the hard drive is my current speed bottleneck for FCPX. I was looking at getting an OWC Accelsior E2 PCIe SSD (not sure which size yet) for my boot drive.

    Is anyone using this in a Mac Pro as the boot drive, and if so, how does it work?

    Also, any comments, suggestions, or just downright offensive attacks against my character and motives are welcome :rolleyes: This is, after all, the MacRumors forums :)

    P.S. - I did search the forums for 'accelsior', etc. and did not find that this has been discussed before
     
  2. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #2
    You'll find I'm not a big fan of the Accelsior for a few reasons... (1) it's got something throttling it's performance (x2 or SATA3-PCIe bridge?) (2) it uses non standard SSD blades (from the MacBook Air) (3) it uses Sandforce based SSDs which are notorious for premature failure (4) it's price per GB is excessive.

    If you really need Bootable SSD RAID0, the Sonnet Tempo Pro appears to be the best choice currently as it's the only Mac compatible PCIe card on the market that uses standard SSDs, a x4 bus interface, and is bootable.

    Another alternative is to boot off a single SSD for Apps/OS and then use a larger, faster SSD RAID0 array for media/project files. This is what I do. My solution is explained here... http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1504491


    Other threads of interest:
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1605110
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1605500
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1552592
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1389926
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1535514
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1280517
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1418445
     
  3. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2010
    #3
    Any SSD will benefit you greatly if you are currently on HDD. I don't think many people need SSD RAID0 as boot anything.
    You need to think about using other forms of storage for your scratch and project files. That alone will free up tons of I/O.
    I'd stay away from the Accelssior as previously noted. It is easily slower than a Samsung 840 on SATA2 as a boot drive (really low 4K random and Sandforce 'faker' compression). It also uses substandard NAND with faster fail rates AND in RAID0 adds another failure possibility.
     
  4. pertusis1 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2010
    Location:
    Texas
    #4
    Thanks for the suggestion. The Sonnet Tempo Pro looks like it could be a great solution since I could get it and use whatever SSD I want. It looks like the speed is comparable, if not better (in RAID 0) than the Accelsior card. At least initially, I'll probably use my two HDDs in RAID 0 or 1 for media file storage. Those I'll upgrade to a SSD raid array later - cash permitting. :cool:
     
  5. peterson12 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2012
    #5
    The recent SF drives really outperform any other other drive you name. It is just a wrong perception that many people still have & is sad that it is getting rumoured badly. If you are wondering as to why I am so much in favour of sandforce, I can quickly say I do not work for sandforce nor does get any profit out of this conversation. I just feel good by sharing my true experience so that newbeeies are not fooled. check this out - http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/SSD/OWC OWC Mercury 6G SSDs offer the best in terms of reliability and performance. I have this in my MBP and works like a charm!
     
  6. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #6
    SandForce based drives do perform well, no one is disputing that, although they rely on compression to achieve that performance which needs to be considered. Having said that, all current gen SSDs perform very similarly.

    The reason I and many others recommend against SF based SSDs is because we've witnessed plenty of issues. Even the Wikipedia article on SandForce lists numerous issues (we're not making this stuff up). Also, check this thread out for some more evidence...
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1003185
    (You won't find similar threads on Samsung or Marvell based drives).
     
  7. d-m-a-x macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    #7
    sort of related question - is there a pci adaptor you can connect a 2.5 drive of yoir choice to the mac pro?
     
  8. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #8
    Apricorn Velocity Solo x2
     
  9. derbothaus, Jul 8, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2013

    derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2010
    #9
    No they don't. Samsung 840. Just named one that outperforms. There are a bunch more if you want to test incompressible data like most jpeg, mp3, mp4 data. Not to mention Filevault performance. Why would newbies be fooled when there are tons of supported tests saying otherwise against your link to a sales pitch? Troll-tastic.
     
  10. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #10
    Do you have anything beyond lies and propaganda to back that up sir?
     
  11. gsloan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    #11
    Syba SD-PEX40068
    /thread

    Cheaper than the Apricorn, faster than the Accelsior when used with Samsung SSDs, no drivers needed (OS X Native install supported), boots Boot Camp just fine, doesn't delay bootup times like the Apricorn X2 and RocketRAID 640/2/4 does (I've owned/returned both), and has room for 2 SSDs and adds 2 internal 6G ports - I ran cables from these to my 5.25" bay. Marvell 88SE9230-based, so you can use Windows to set up a HW RAID-0 before reinstalling OS X. Windows boot doesn't take a minute to scan disks - More like ~5 seconds.

    Just started using one, and I'm very happy with it. Only downside is you lose an adjacent PCIe slot.
     

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  12. gerardomare1 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2013
    #12
    Hello
    I have an velocity x2. ¿ have you tested the ssd velocity in raid o under mac osx?
    Im looking to buy another pcie card
    Thanks a lot


     
  13. beaker7 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    #13
    We've got over 100 OWC Extreme Pro 6G's in various RAIDs since they came out a couple years ago and have never had one fail.
     
  14. gsloan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    #14
    I get my second Samsung 840 Pro in tomorrow - Going to use Windows to create a RAID-0 Virtual Disk, reinstall OS X onto that, then run some benchmarks. Since it's the same setup that OWC is using with the Accelsior, save I'm using Samsung 840 Pros instead of MacBook Air SandForce blades, I imagine the performance will be significantly better. We'll see if hardware RAID-0 performs better than/comparable to SW RAID-0 on the same setup.
     
  15. peterson12 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2012
    #15
    well, we are not here for any ugly conversations. My intention is to share my true experience to my friends so that they get their moneys worthy. As always, It is always best to experience the SSD on your own or listen to true experiences of people like me & also not to fully rely only on the benchmark results.
     
  16. sindresl macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2012
    #17
    Syba SD-PEX40068

    This looks really interesting! Do you know what speed it runs at (e.g. x2 or x4) and do you have any benchmarks of it? Would be really interesting to see how it compares to the tempo!

    Thanks!
     
  17. gsloan, Jul 9, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013

    gsloan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    #18
    7/10 - UPDATED WITH SAMSUNG PRO 840 RESULTS on Syba SD-PEX40068

    I only have a bench from my Sandisk Extreme (not II) 240GB 6G SATA SSD, which isn't known for being the fastest SSD in the world. For reference, I got 270MB or so read on the internal, and with an Apricorn X1, ~300MB or so read. This is a PCIe 2.0 x2 device, so figure a max theoretical speed of 1.25GB/second.

    My second Samsung 840 Pro is delayed until tomorrow...once I get it installed and RAID-0'd with the 840 Pro I have here, (either SW or HW), I'll post more benchmarks.

    -----
    Note: Added in Sandisk 840 Pro Single and SW RAID-0 /w 32k stripe tests. Was performing copy from SW RAID-0 to another HDD on the internal backplane at the same time these tests were run. Removed the Sandisk Extreme SSD test. Note: Was using 5GB file sizes and let it run for 3-4 minutes.
     

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  18. gsloan, Jul 10, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013

    gsloan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    #19
    HW RAID seems a bit slower than SW RAID...but still not terrible.
     

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  19. MacVidCards Suspended

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2008
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    #20
    Awesome looking device if it lives up to specs.

    And just $42.

    Imagine the TB version would be a touch more and involve a few cables and boxes strewn about.

    Oh, the price of progress.
     
  20. gsloan, Jul 10, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2013

    gsloan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    #21
    It's a great little card.

    Here's my quickbench scores using SW RAID-0, 16k stripe size. Compared to The Accelsior E2 480GB from OWC's own Blog. The Syba with the Samsung 840 Pros handily beats it in...everything. At least everything OWC was willing to boast about on their site. ;) And you can fit both SSDs onto this little device. I've also got my 240GB Sandisk SSD hanging off of it in the 5.25" bay, running my BootCamp/Win7 partition. So far, only issue is that I have to hold option when going from Boot Camp to OS X due to the SW RAID, but OS X can boot into Boot Camp just fine.

    It looks like I'm hitting the upper limits of the Marvell's PCIe 2.0 x2 interface - It's the same chip that the Accelsior is using. Sure, a Sonnet Tempo Pro will be faster, but for $40 bucks, this is pretty damned sweet.

    On with the bench shot:
     

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  21. sindresl macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2012
    #22
    Please excuse my ignorance and correct me if I'm wrong as I'm not very tech savvy, but I'll have a go here...

    - The OWC Mercury Accelsior is a x2 card running two proprietary ssd blades in a raid 0.
    - The Sonnet Tempo SSD Pro is a x4 card capable of running two ssd's either individually or in a raid 0.
    - The Syba SD-PEX40068 is x2 card capable of holding two ssd's as well as connecting additionally two more ssd's/hdd's, but not powering them.

    It seems to me that the numbers OWC are boasting (960 MB/s) is just short of the theoretical limit of PCI-e x2 and is the absolute maximum speed one could hope to see. The Syba card also at x2 should be limited to about the same total bandwidth. The sonnet card feature two sata 6Gbit/s connections, combining the two to around 1200 MB/s bandwidth - well short of the 2000 MB/s theoretical limit of its x4 interface. Although we might not quite be there yet where ssd's fully saturate the sata 6Gbit/s bandwidth, it would seem to me that as we get faster ssd's the Sonnet card would be the winner with around 200 MB/s higher bandwidth than the other two competitors. That's a 20% difference.

    Of course the Syba is clearly much cheaper than the other two alternatives, the price approximately 1/6th of that of the sonnet.

    gsloan: Could I trouble you by asking for a picture of how the card sits in your computer, as I understand it takes up quite a bit of room?
     
  22. gsloan macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    #23
    Correct, the Sonnet is faster, but to the best of my knowledge, it also requires drivers, while the Syba does not. Someone correct me if I'm wrong, please. The Sonnet is also significantly more expensive for that last 20% of performance.

    And as requested, the interior of my Mac Pro. It's not the neatest, but it gets the job done. :)
     

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  23. matthewtoney macrumors regular

    matthewtoney

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Location:
    Charlotte, NC
    #24
    Hey, so what do you mean by that exactly? I have a Velocity X2 currently with 2 SSD's off it using the OSX Software RAID0 and then another SSD off the internal controller that I use for Bootcamp. Like you I *hate* how much longer the boot process takes with the X2 card in there but I have my OSX RAID0 partitition set as the default and it'll boot into it every time without holding down option. (for me, I do that to go the other direction into Windows) Do you have your Bootcamp partition set as the boot default or something or are you saying there's something about this card where you have to choose manually from the option menu to boot the OSX partition on it?
     
  24. hfg macrumors 68040

    hfg

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Location:
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    #25
    No drivers are required for the Sonnet Tempo Pro. It is fully OS X bootable in RAID-0 or configured as standalone SSDs.

    Note: I and others here have been unable to boot Windows from this card.
     

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