Powering more drives in Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by pierrox, Jun 20, 2015.

  1. pierrox macrumors member

    pierrox

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2015
    Location:
    Paris, France
    #1
    Been reading this forum for years, finally registered as I now own a 2009 Mac Pro running as a 5,1 with 2 3.46Ghz chips, waiting for a MSI R9 280X card - until there is a new card that will let me drive a 4K screen @60hz in Retina mode without jumping through hoops.

    But that's not the point of this post. I also installed a CalDigit FASTA-6GU3 Pro to have eSata and USB3 yet save a PCI slot. I work as an editor, so storage is always welcome. Since the FASTA-6GU3 card has two Sata connector on its board, I'd like to add another SSD drive to boot from (have two optical bay burners). Now here's the newbie question: how would I power my extra SSD? Do I need an extra PSU just for those or are SSD light enough on power that I could "steal" power from another drive or on the original PSU? (And how if that's possible?)
     
  2. crjackson2134 macrumors 68020

    crjackson2134

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    Charlotte, NC
  3. VAGDesign macrumors 6502

    VAGDesign

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    Feb 1, 2014
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    Greece
    #4
    SSDs are probably the less wattage hungry devices inside a computer. I don't use PCIe SSD on my Mac Pro, but the Serial ATAIII I use (an ADATA SP900) consumes (0.9W Active; 0.5W Idle).
    So, your question would be answered if we knew the PCI card consumption, not from the SSD itself.

    I hope this helps,
    Cheers.
     
  4. pierrox thread starter macrumors member

    pierrox

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2015
    Location:
    Paris, France
    #5
    Re-reading myself, I realize that I wasn't exactly clear in what I'm looking for... that's the result of opening a thread during insomnia I guess...

    The Caldigit card has two USB3 and two eSata sockets on the rear plate, so that's perfect for plugging external hard-drives - and that's why I bought it. But it also provides two INTERNAL Sata ports (NOT eSata), which I was not expecting. So I might as well use them and add one or two more internal drives (the card allows bootable volumes too!), but I need to find power for this/those extra drive(s).

    I could probably draw some power from the Mac's PSU, no? Or 'steal' it from the optical bay? I would power SSD drives, so those are not power hungry.
     
  5. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    New York City, NY
    #6
    Yes, I'm sure the power supply is capable of powering an extra SSD.
     
  6. pierrox thread starter macrumors member

    pierrox

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    Jun 19, 2015
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    Paris, France
    #7
    I just need to find a Sata power splitter then, let me google it.

    It's a pretty fast card, and it offers Sata 6Gbps where the Mac's internal is limited to Sata II (correct me if my memory is bad).

    Found a FAQ on Caldigit site. No mention of the power consumption for the card, and not much more when it comes to adding internal drives:

    Can I connect extra storage to the two internal SATA ports on the back of the FASTA-6GU3 Pro?
    You will need to connect a SATA power cable to the internal drive from your power supply. If you are using a Mac Pro, you may not be able to use the FASTA-6GU3 Pro's internal SATA ports unless you have a method of providing power to the internal SATA drive you wish to connect.
     
  7. pierrox thread starter macrumors member

    pierrox

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    Jun 19, 2015
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    Paris, France
    #8
  8. IowaLynn macrumors 6502a

    IowaLynn

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    Feb 22, 2015
    #9
    For boot drive, or anything, SM951 256GB or larger. Yes it is $250 (plus $US9-25) for a small simple slot adapter but is double the speed of SATA III, up to 1500MB/sec.
     
  9. Synchro3 macrumors 65816

    Synchro3

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    Jan 12, 2014
    #10
    I would use Kingston SSD Drive Carrier to secure the y cable: http://forums.macrumors.com/threads/motherboard-to-pcie-sata-power.1712884/#post-18855446
     
  10. buster84, Jun 20, 2015
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2015

    buster84 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2013
    #11
    that card doesn't have power for you to use so the cord you linked to on Amazon won't work, but If you buy two of these you can run two additional Sata drives by linking into to your optical drive cords.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/261268289096?_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:IT

    Or if you don't plan to use all your hard drive bays (1-4) you can run cord from any bay to power two hard drives.
     
  11. pierrox thread starter macrumors member

    pierrox

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    Jun 19, 2015
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    #12
    Nope the card has no power, only has the data sata sockets:

    [​IMG]

    I thought the little Y cables would help bringing power though.
     
  12. freshbread macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    #13
    Kind of piggy backing here, but I can't find a clear answer....I want to put an extra ssd on a pci card with an internal sata data connection. I want to take out my optical drive and put another ssd in the optical bay ( I already have one in the lower bay). What cables do I need? Thanks!
     
  13. Synchro3 macrumors 65816

    Synchro3

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    Jan 12, 2014
    #14
    Why take the SSD in the optical bay?

    You just need an SATA Power Y Splitter Cable http://www.ebay.com/bhp/sata-y-splitter. And to fix the power cable I use a Kingston SSD Drive Carrier. Look at the link in my post #10.

    SSD 1.png SSD 2.png
     
  14. freshbread macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    #15
    Thanks. Yeah I saw your post before. But you are plugging into motherboard or into one of the sled sata connections. Also, I want to do what you are doing...the two ssd's stacked essentially . But I want to have one in each of the optical bays as well. Thank you.
     
  15. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

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    Sep 21, 2010
    #16
    The cables you need depend on which year/model Mac Pro you have.
     
  16. freshbread macrumors member

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    Nov 1, 2008
    #17
     
  17. DPUser macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 17, 2012
    #18
    I moved my optic drive to the lower bay. Upon it sit a bunch of SSDs… if the computer is stationary, they can just sit there, or you can use double-sided tape to hold 'em in place. Run SATA cables back to the PCIe card. Power is available for the second optical bay… get a splitter, connect to the SSDs and you will be good to go.
     
  18. pierrox thread starter macrumors member

    pierrox

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2015
    Location:
    Paris, France
    #19
    I ended up doing exactly that. I moved the DVD to the lower bay, found a flat thin sata cable which I routed from the PCI card to the optical bay via the hole where the power cables go. And for power, I got the y-splitter mentioned earlier in the thread to power the drive from the DVD burner. I had to shave the side of the Y-splitter in order to plug it and the sata cable, but it's been working fine since I installed it like that. The SSd is just sitting on top of the DVD since the Mac is just sitting in the office and I never move it.

    Using that sata card, my boot drive is well above 500mb/s, where it peaked at 200ish when plugged to the DVD sata cable.
     
  19. freshbread macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    #20

    Thanks. I think that the "shaving" of cable has been the issue for my attempts in the past and why I was asking for another pre-fab cable that would work. However, to clarify, I already have on ssd in optical bay. I want to put another one there AND another one on pci card with an internal port. I'd like to remove the optical drive altogether. Seems like there is two power/data ports for optical bay, but I would need one additional power source to split off to run back to pci card. Is there a limit to the power draw and splits I can do in that I want three extra drives rather than two. Thanks.
     
  20. freshbread macrumors member

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    Nov 1, 2008
    #21
    Oh. I see. Perhaps I misread. You have "a bunch" of ssds in there already?
     
  21. freshbread macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    #22
    okay. Update: mission complete with small caveat. I now have two ssd in bottom optical and have kept optical dvd drive in upper bay. All work fine...Data for one ssd is fed from velocity internal port....However I cannot figure out how to feed the 7 pin data from the pci card into the optical bay "properly". now I have seven drives total. Any one have more? How?
     
  22. DPUser macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2012
    #23
    i've got four SSDs sitting in optical bay on top of a disconnected DVD drive ( I use an external DVD on my desk; computer is in a remote machine closet). Two SSDs are attached to internal optical SATA ports and the other two feed a PCIe card. You can route cables if you are creative, but it definitely gets cramped.
     

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