Raid vs SSD

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Olegphoto, Dec 28, 2010.

  1. Olegphoto macrumors member

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    #1
    Hi
    I think SSD drive with raid card is incompatible.
    I basically only use photoshop with very big files ( up to 800 mg with layers sometimes). and Capture One ( 34 mg RAW files )
    So here is my question

    1/ I was thinking in getting a SSd drive ( vertex 2 series 120) and get another one as a scratch disk ( entirely for PS use) will 120 as a scratch disc will be enough?

    2/ If I just get a RAID card with my 3- 2 TB 7200 mp HD will that bit in speed the SSD workstation as I first mentioned?

    Thanks
     
  2. zhenya macrumors 603

    zhenya

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    Jan 6, 2005
    #2
    You can use SSD's in a RAID array, you will just lose TRIM if your OS supports it. Since OSX doesn't, no big deal.

    In my experience, a good SSD on its own is considerably faster than even a 3 or 4 drive RAID array.
     
  3. Olegphoto, Dec 28, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2010

    Olegphoto thread starter macrumors member

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    #3
    if somebody can tell me what would be the best setup workstation for a Mac Pro 2.8 Ghz (2010) with 16 Go ram. How can I increase speed on PS CS5.
    Any ideas?
    I was thinking:

    120 SSD Vertex 2 series as a Boot drive ( on the optical bay)
    120 SSD as a scratch disk ( entirely to PS) ( bay 1)
    3x 2 TB 7.200 Mp on the rest of the bays.
     
  4. NoManIsland macrumors regular

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    Feb 17, 2010
    #4
    This is slightly tangential, but you can put both SSDs in the lower optical bay if you route a cable from the ODD SATA port on the motherboard, and use a splitter on the power feed for that bay. That way you can have all four 3.5" drive bays free, and 4 is a much better number than 3 for RAID (can do RAID 10 etc.).
     
  5. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    May 6, 2008
    #5
    Your basic setup is fine.

    • Empty Optical Bay = Boot SSD
    • HDD bay 1 = Scratch SSD (use an Icy Dock adapter)
    • HDD bay 2 - 4 = mechanical disks

    No power cabling to worry about either. ;)
    The SATA port for the open HDD bay would still be used though, so the empty HDD bay would be useless for future expansion.

    An internal SATA card would be needed, and the only ones currently available are 3.0Gb/s (you'd want 6.0Gb/s for SSD). This can still work though, especially if one of the HDD's is attached to it (no chance of it throttling).

    It's even possible to use a 6.0Gb/s eSATA card, but the cable would have to be routed back through an open PCI bracket to attach it to the second SSD (not likely it will be able to boot, as there's only one card that can currently).
     
  6. NoManIsland macrumors regular

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    #6
    Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't there an extra ODD SATA port on the motherboard of the 2010, just as there was on the 2009? The 2008 had two. It was to this port that I was referring, as it would not use one of the bays.
     
  7. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #7
    The 2009/10 systems have a total of 6x SATA ports (1x per bay). The HDD bays connect the drives directly to the connectors on the backplane board (one with PCIe slots on it), and there's a backplane cable for each of the optical bays.

    The earlier systems ('06 - '08) used IDE/PATA for the optical disks, as well as 6x SATA ports (4x used for the HDD bays, 2x unused and labled ODD_SATA on the logic board). Those unused ports can be handy (exactly what depends on the model, as the 2008 models could not boot Windows off of them).

    Hope this clears things up. :)
     
  8. NoManIsland macrumors regular

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    Feb 17, 2010
    #8
    Thanks, I wasn't aware :eek: I have a 2008, so I suppose I just assumed the newer machines were constructed in the same way - I'm happily using the ODD ports (or will be if my computer isn't a write off).
     
  9. Olegphoto thread starter macrumors member

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    #9
    Would the second ssd disc dedicated to ps cs5 would be enough with 120 gb?
    I know that 240 gb would be better, but is it really necessary to spend that extra money? (considering that my files can weight 800 mg with layers)
    I only use 40 gb on my ssd 12 gb boot disk

    If I use it as a sratch for ps does that mean I need to use it completely empty or I can add my ps tif files that I'm working on and when finished just transfer them to the mechanical HD and empty the ssd disc.
    Thanks
    :confused:
     
  10. barmann macrumors 6502

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    Oct 25, 2010
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    Germany
    #10
    I'm using a dedicated 60GB SSD for scratch and current project files; the system/app drive I'd not use for that to avoid possible degradation.

    My PS files are similar to yours, up to 2GB with layers, but I usually have still 50-70% empty of the 60GB , which leaves plenty of space for scratch files in my case .
    It's putting some stress on the SSD I assume, but that's what I have it for, and the system drive is not being affected with this setup.
     
  11. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    May 6, 2008
    #11
    2008 systems are very good machines and are quite usable yet, so it's by no means a write off (should be able to get a good 2 - 3 years out of it, and that's assuming you're software is primarily n core multi-threaded; longer otherwise, as it is EFI64 firmware). :D

    You don't even need that much capacity for a dedicated scratch disk. The 40GB from OWC is fine, and at the $99USD mark, is cheap too (here). :) It will wear out, but at that price, it's not a major financial imposition to replace it when it does. ;)

    RAM is more important, so check your memory efficiency under Photoshop to see if you have enough. Ideally, you want 100% efficiency, which means there's no need to go to scratch at all. This may not be possible or feasible in some cases, such as all the DIMM slots are filled (means replacing all of it with larger DIMM's), which wouldn't be finanically possible. Such an instance is when scratch will be used more often, and the less memory (lower efficiency), the more this will happen.
     
  12. NoManIsland macrumors regular

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    Feb 17, 2010
    #12
    Oh, you misunderstand, I love my 2008 and won't be surrendering it anytime soon :) It's just in the shop right now (see "Screwed Up: Screw dropped in processor area" thread), and I have about zero funds to fix it up, so I'm praying it's something inexpensive to fix. Originally I thought I had shorted something with a loose screw, but now it seems more likely I damaged the fan assembly when removing it and reinstalling it - I pray that is the case :( Do you know whether the front fan assembly has the temperature sensors on it, or are they on the logic board etc?
     
  13. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    May 6, 2008
    #13
    No, the fans do not have the temp sensors.

    The CPU's have their own sensors built-in (thermal diode). But I seem to recall that Apple uses a separate sensor in the heatsink in that model (K-type thermocouple; would look like a single wire to nowhere that stuffs into a hole in the base of the heatsink).
     
  14. NoManIsland macrumors regular

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    Feb 17, 2010
    #14
    Nano, looking at the symptoms on the other thread, would you agree with the others that it sounds like a thermal problem rather than a short? If so, would it make sense that the connector for the fan assembly is damaged or not seated properly, and that could cause this problem? (Sorry Olegphoto to hijack your thread)
     
  15. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    May 6, 2008
    #15
    It's possible (I don't think it's a short - I figured you didn't connect a wire or it's not making proper contact if you did - easier to do than you might realize).

    It's also possible that you didn't install the thermocouple properly or at all (assuming my recollection of that bit for the 2008 is correct, and I'm fairly sure it is). Still part of the above causality.
     
  16. Olegphoto thread starter macrumors member

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    #16
    Excuse me, this is my thread !! :D:D:D:D:D:D just kidding!
    Thanks to you all !!
    It is a relief to know that the scratch disk doesn't need so big. I will still get the 120 so I can work with my files on it.
    ;)
     
  17. Honumaui macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2008
    #17
    I am a big PS user :)

    with files up to 800 you might tap out a 40 gig scratch disc ? hard to say I use two 40s in raid 0 and have not tapped out my 80 but have taped out a single 40 with some big files

    the reason I went with the twin 40s was two reasons price was cheap and if one fails and I cant get one for a week %95 of my PS work does take less scratch than 40 so I wont be penalized and go backwards to a slower system ! something to think about !! I hate it when I have a failure and my BU system does not work close to my main system

    also price was a issue at $99 not a big deal for two of them

    the next thing is memory !! 16 ? check efficiency of course with your files I have 24 gigs cause I do hit up around 18-19 gigs total useage so I want that room with 800 meg files 16 I think might be to little and you are going to hit scratch more so depending on funds to upgrade or get memory go 8 gig sticks that way on the new macs you (single ones) you can go up to 32 gigs


    also large files if you save as uncompressed tiffs can save you a lot of write time !!! good tip their

    I have a 8 disc areca raid for my working files and a SSD for boot and raid 0 SSD for dedicated scratch its a nice snappy system :)

    I have a post production company and do PS and LR work for pro photographers and was also a big time pro for years still shoot but not as much :) but my specialty was interior architecture then got into weddings :)
    just figure you know my background then :)
     
  18. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #18
    IF there's sufficent memory, I'm thinking a 40GB will be big enough, as there won't be much need to use it. I don't disagree that in some cases, a striped set of 2x 40GB's is a good way to go, but you've the Areca to help get the load off of the ICH (system SATA ports).

    Or am I missing something with an 800MB file not fitting on 40GB disk? Or do you mean layers, batch processing, ... that's multiplied enough times that it can consume the total capacity of the scratch volume?

    Now if the RAM capacity is insufficient, then the scratch SSD will be thrashed much harder (reduce the time it will be usable due to the write cycle limitations of MLC based NAND Flash, and capacity helps mitigate this due to more cells available), and smaller capacity units may not be of sufficient size.
     
  19. Honumaui macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2008
    #19
    a 40 should work just fine :)

    the problem is it can build up with things and not release the scratch till next image ? not sure why never bothered looking into why but you can fill one up but this was with huge files like 2 gig or something and tons of stuff and kinda trying to do it :)

    also a good note ALWAYS have a second scratch checked in the settings so if one over fills you keep going


    also a thought if you fill a 40 ? the extra time savings at that time wont matter to much

    lets take saving 10 minutes in a car trip ? if that trip is 30 minutes then it helps if its a cross country 4 day deal 10 minutes wont matter

    so sometimes HIUGE files takes time to do things


    so a 40 most likely would do just fine ;) and just point it at the next fastest

    biggest thing is check how much memory you are using now in PS and then in the system and decide if you need more

    the other thing to remember is the second you open PS it allocates scratch space so that SSD even if you dont hit the scratch does make things a touch quicker

    for some reason to some things can drop in efficiency a bit but not take the memory hit like writing files to disc etc..
     
  20. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #20
    This is where I get a bit confused as to what PS does with it's operation of the scratch volume. :confused: I know it initializes it when you launch the application, but what is it placing on there when there's sufficient memory that going to scratch isn't actually required? :confused: :confused: :confused:

    Never found an answer to this question yet. :(
     
  21. Olegphoto, Dec 30, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2010

    Olegphoto thread starter macrumors member

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    Paris
    #21
    Hi
    I just bought 2X4 gb ram from Kingston, I can still return. Do you know if the OWC 2X 8 is compatible with the kingston?? It would be great to have 24 gb ram. Thanks for the info!:)

    Just saw it, incompatible.
     
  22. Arcadie macrumors regular

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    Dec 6, 2008
    #22
    dont buy v series, they fail easily.. get a enterprise class SSD like the intel x-25
     
  23. Honumaui macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 18, 2008
    #23
    if its not to late I might say return but thats a personal question and if you can swing it get the 8GB sticks and 3 of them ?

    just to be clear :) since often I am not :) hehehehe
    check your efficiency out first
    but SSD for scratch is nice and as you know now 40 GB should do it thats only $100 ballpark
    getting memory updated later might be more money if you start with 4GB sticks then have to get rid of them and get 8s cause you find you need more memory ?

    again you might be fine with the 16 this is why what I say or others does not always apply to you

    but memory is king over anything !!!!!

    SSD for boot is nice and a luxury but once you have it hard to go back but at the same time once going in PS you wont notice so MYSELF ;) I would get more memory over SSD boot drive

    the fact you were talking about spending on larger SSD means you have some budget so that is also why I keep throwing out the 3 8GB sticks for 24 total
    I usually get OWC but this time around got transintl cheaper and no issues :)
     
  24. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #24
    Only the X25-E is enterprise grade (SLC based). The rest of the X25 series are consumer grade (MLC based).
     
  25. Olegphoto thread starter macrumors member

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    Dec 23, 2010
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    Paris
    #25
    tomorrow i try to cancel my order and see f i can return the 8 gb that did not come out the box since i'm on holidays.:D
    And i will order the 24 gb from transit if you recomend it. I already ordered
    2X120 Ocz vertex series 2. can't wait to get all together.
    Thanks :)
     

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