SSD impressions

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by 1BadMac, Jan 29, 2010.

  1. 1BadMac macrumors 6502


    Jan 27, 2010
    After spending some time researching and contemplating an SSD, I took the plunge late in December. I've had just over 30 days experience with it and wanted to post some impressions and data, as I've noticed there seem to be threads every so often where people have the same debate.

    Overall, the install experience was incredibly easy. After flashing the firmware for this particular drive (OCZ Summit - 120GB - 19C1 FW w/ GC and TRIM), the installation was incredibly easy. After a quick 40 minute install/restore from my Time Capsule, it booted up with no issues.

    Boot time has significantly decreased. Anywhere from 10 - 15 seconds to the desktop. Programs launch must faster now. Firefox doesn't "bounce" as many times as it used to. In fact, it's almost instantaneous opening (although I find myself using Chrome more and more - which has always opened faster than FF). Photoshop Elements also fires up in 2-3 seconds. iPhoto '09 runs much better. Once bounce and it opens to right where I left it off, and my photo database is roughly 10 GB. Word, Excel, Entourage, etc... same thing - quick to open, quick to respond.

    Boot Camp works great with Windows 7 and SSD. Boot time significantly decreased, only takes about 20-25 seconds to get to the desktop.

    I've also been logging some data from Xbench to track the drives performance. I was really happy to learn that OCZ was releasing a flash to include garbage collection for this drive (as well as TRIM support for Windows). The drive should maintain performance now without reducing speed, but I plan to track that over the coming months just to make sure it's working! I'm also tracking battery life as well, which seems to have improved slightly with the drive. I'll attribute this to no moving parts, no spinning platters.


    Anyone looking to get an SSD will not be disappointed if they do a little homework and get a decent drive. The MBP no long heats up under my left hand as well. It's whisper quiet, I can't even tell when this thing is on! And sleep / hibernate works flawlessly.

    The 1TB Time Capsule is ample storage for my media, so the 120 GB SSD is a perfect option for me. I even have 20 GB dedicated to my Boot Camp partition (which I rarely use, but have setup for a couple games and other software I can't get a replacement for on the Mac).

    Anyways, just thought I'd post some results in case there were other forum members contemplating the SSD plunge. I can honestly say its one of the best investment / upgrades I've put in a machine and actually noticed the performance gain.
  2. joecool99 Suspended


    Aug 20, 2008
    how did you test the different block size ?
    i assume by default MAC is using 4K block size.
  3. 1BadMac thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jan 27, 2010
    I've been using Xbench - disk test. Probably not scientific, but consistent.
  4. BobK macrumors member

    Nov 16, 2009

    (OCZ Summit - 120GB - 19C1 FW w/ GC and TRIM),
    Does your trim feature work on the Mac OS Partition?
  5. 1BadMac thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jan 27, 2010
    No, TRIM does not work with Mac OS, but it "should" on the windows partition. I listed it as a "feature" of the new FW.
  6. BobK macrumors member

    Nov 16, 2009

    Apparently, there are no SSD devices that have their own Trim feature. I understand that it is up to Apple to incorporate it in OS X. I have an Intel G2 SSD which works really well. Hoping it will not degrade. The procedures I have read to refresh an SSD seem extensive. Has anybody seen a decrease in performance of their SSD after using it for a several months?
  7. neteng101 macrumors 65816

    Jan 7, 2009
    Seems to me that Intel has the best controllers for used/degraded drives, ie. when they degrade, they don't degrade that much. This is with older firmware but the different is night and day...

    The lack of trim shouldn't be that bad, given a really good SSD controller. I hear of plans for an 80GB X25-V later this year, so my guess is that the X25-M is going to be available in 160GB and 320GB versions. Guessing what will happen is the capacity of each NAND chip will be increased.

    Looking to make the switch on my uMBP5.1 once the Intel 160GB drops into the low 200s in price (maybe a year or so from now). I have a 40GB X25-V in a netbook with Win7 right now.
  8. HellDiverUK macrumors 6502

    Oct 24, 2009
    Belfast, UK
    My Crucial M225 spent a few months in my Mini, and is now in the MacBook Pro. It's been excellent. No issues to report.
  9. iMetalG5 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 13, 2005
    love my Intel SSD but not the price I paid. I downsized from a 500 GB stock to a 160 GB SSD. But yes speed is very impressive but how many people really need it? When SSDs are the norm then fine but for the $ I'm not so sure the average person needs such a thing.

    My 500 GB 7200 stock HDD was pretty fast so... i need the SSD for hardcore vid editing. I have a ton of external storage so the 160 GB doesn't phase me.

    SSDs will be a norm and prices will be like HDDs eventually I hope
  10. misschung macrumors newbie

    Jan 27, 2010
    I feel the same way. The price is just so high that I don't think I could afford to add that to my MBP when I buy it.

    It's so tempting though!
  11. 1BadMac thread starter macrumors 6502


    Jan 27, 2010
    Yeah, many of the manufacturers have implemented some sort of firmware / hardware level idle garbage collection, which is supposed to prevent the slow downs over the months of use. Although, I was seeing where people were posting still ridiculous speeds even after "slow downs" - so it apparently wasn't anything you could notice unless you were comparing old --> new benchmarks.

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