RAID 0 using all 4 bays of a Mac Pro! (2009,2010 & 2012)

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by sngraphics, Jul 8, 2012.

  1. sngraphics macrumors member

    Aug 27, 2010
    Just was wondering if anyone has tried this on a Mac Pro (2009,2010 & 2012) and what type of speeds can be obtained.
    What is the max speed per bay?
    What would be the Max speed of all four bays together?
    Can it be done?!?!
    Is it worth it for approx $400 for HDDs & $700-800 for SSDs?
    Just asking because I was going to try this on our 2009 Mac Pro with 4 of the new Seagate drives (approx 200MB/s each) but then was thinking of 4 SSDs to try and max out the SATA bus.
    Speed is more of a priority than storage. System stuff & Photoshop Primarily.
    The other option is to get an OWC Accelsior PCIe SSD.
    Any advice, thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated seeing that we are a Non-Profit and have to watch how we spend our money.
    Thank You. God Bless.
  2. firestarter macrumors 603


    Dec 31, 2002
    Green and pleasant land
    Then don't waste it on 'hardware porn'.

    Most Photoshop users get by fine with just a regular disk setup. If you're having problems working with big files then go SSD and you'll have plenty of disk bandwidth. Buy RAM so that Photoshop isn't swapping stuff out.

    4 disk RAID 0 with regular drives won't give you the same low latency and high bandwidth that a simpler setup with a single SSD would. You'll also be exposing your business to very real data-lossage risks, unless your backup strategy is good.

    If you want to fill some of the the disk slots up, make one a time machine backup.
  3. Inconsequential macrumors 68000

    Sep 12, 2007
    Complete and utter waste of time as your limited to 660MB/sec whatever you do with the chipset. [From what I remember this is a chipset limitation and you can't improve this].

    1. 160GB or larger SSD for Boot + Apps + Scratch. (You are limited to SATA 2 speeds so don't go for the fastest there is, Intel 320 series I recommend).
    2. 1/2TB WD Black for Data
    3. 2TB WD Green for Backup.
    4. An external 2TB drive for TM backups.

    Money left over: Max out ram.
  4. Loa macrumors 68000


    May 5, 2003

    Gettig enough RAM is just about the only significant upgrade you can make for PS. I tried using a 4disk RAID0, and then using a SSD. I saw marginal improvements at best. If you're using CS6, many filters now utilise your graphic card's power.

    The SSD will give you a nice snappiness in Finder, but no real performance gains in most apps.

  5. pprior macrumors 65816

    Aug 1, 2007
    If you're a nonprofit and watching money and you're just doing photoshop type work then I see little reason to even be considering doing a 4 raid 0 stripe using SSDs, that's just silly.
  6. Schismz macrumors regular

    Sep 4, 2010
    I have 4 Hitachi 3TBs in a RAID0 stripe on Mac Pro Timeless (2009/2010/2012, it's the LATEST for... another decade!).

    I get 571 read, 565 write on that stripe.

    3 6G SSDS will more than saturate the total bandwidth of the ICH chip which throttles down @ 650mb/sec or so.

    I tend to agree with the comments here though, if you are on a limited budget, you need to ask yourself why do you want to do this, what for? What improves PS performance is higher GHz CPUs, RAM, and as of CS6 certain video cards.

    If you want to work with uncompressed video, then the correct answers tends to be something like an Areca card connected to an external RAID, which is going to wind up costing you quite a bit more, or stacking up something like the OWC Accelsior, SSDs direct connected to PCIe bus (skipping over SATA II or III altogether).
  7. pprior macrumors 65816

    Aug 1, 2007
    Exactly - unless you're doing high end video there is just no need for such speed unless you've got money to burn.
  8. sngraphics thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 27, 2010
    I wanted to thank everyone for taking the time to respond to this thread.
    Very helpful responses.

    Thank You Concorde rules because the 660MB/s piece of info is what I was looking for.
    Not worth wasting time with SATA except for Data & Backup which is what I have doing till now.
    Already have an OWC Mercury Electra 3G SSD 60GB for System & Apps but not boot.
    What I am really looking for is to speed up things in general.
    Other apps such as: InDesign, Safari, Bridge, Mail, My RIP software.
    It seems like the Mercury seems to be running slower than it should.
    So far looking at a PCIe SSD solution. eg. OWC Accelsior, Angelbird WINGS, Apricorn Velocity Solo
    or even OCZ Revodrive (if can get OSX to boot on it)

    Thank you LOA & firestarter about the RAM recommendations.
    I believe I have enough RAM at 32GB of OWC Ram.
    We do not do video mostly Photoshop work. Approx 1- 9 GB files.
    The page outs have been mostly under control.
    Just when I am doing heavier Photoshop stuff and have a bunch of apps
    open and trying to do multiple things at once the page outs will start.
    I don't believe I have to go to more RAM right???
    Also have a triple back up plan in place. Internal, External and 1 Drive Offsite.

    So far it looks like the quickest & simplest solution is a PCIe SSD for System & Apps & Boot.
    I Don't believe I have to make any changes anywhere else in the system and it looks like the cost can stay below $350.00.
    If anyone has any thoughts/comments about this please let me(us) know.

    Again Thank You and God Bless
  9. Inconsequential macrumors 68000

    Sep 12, 2007

    What I mean by 'boot' is that it contains the system, your apps, etc.

    Nothing will really speed up InDesign and Bridge more than more clock speed!

    Your not doing anything that would benefit *at all* from read/write speeds of more than 300MB/sec.

    Find yourself a 2009/2010/2012 Mac Pro and put:

    1. A W3680 (3.33Ghz 6-core) chip.
    2. 16GB of 1333Mhz ram.

    How much space have you got on the SSD remaining?
  10. sngraphics thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 27, 2010
    So what do speeds above 300MB/sec help with?
    Sorry for my ignorance, I'm trying to pick up as much info as possible before making a purchase or any changes.
    I thought $325.00 for a 120GB Accelsior would have been a nice solution for Boot, Apps & Scratch.

    I currently have a 2009 Quad 2.93Ghz Mac Pro.
    (The only way I could get a 3.33Ghz 6-core is sell my current setup!)

    Installed is 32GB of 1333Mhz ram. Of course it is only running at 1066Mhz.
    (Which brings me to another question that's really been nagging me.
    What's the real world speed difference between RAM running at 1333 & 1066Mhz? That's IF I ever move to Mac that can run RAM at 1333Mhz)

    My 60GB OWC Mercury Electra 3G SSD currently has about 25GB remaining.
  11. wonderspark macrumors 68040


    Feb 4, 2010
    Video editing and composites (Premiere and After Effects) will take advantage of faster disk speeds.
    My 2009 Mac Pro started off as a quad, and I installed a W3680 6-core CPU that I found for $585, then sold my W3580 for $300, making the total cost only $285. Your 2.93GHz CPU only runs RAM at 1066MHz, but if you swap in that 3.33GHz chip, it will then run at 1333MHz. The speed increase is very slight, but measurable. I'd consider it about zero to one on a scale of ten in real-world difference... about 5%.

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