Ssd or fusion drive? Ah!

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Ghost31, Dec 28, 2015.

  1. Ghost31 macrumors 68000

    Ghost31

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    #1
    I'm starting to look at the Mac mini and I can't figure out wtf a fusion drive is and if I want that over the ssd. In check out it asks 256ssd or 1tb fusion drive. Which is better?
     
  2. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2012
    Location:
    An island in the Andaman Sea.
    #2
    SSD for maximum performance. Fusion to get 5 times the storage, with a small trade off in performance. Your choice, based on your desire and/or needs.
     
  3. Starfia macrumors 6502

    Starfia

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2011
    #3
    Yep. The Fusion Drive really does feel almost like a Flash drive (really fast startups, opening of applications – anything that requires reading from the disk), and even though it's secretly two hard drives and software making them work together, you'd never know.
     
  4. danb1979 macrumors member

    danb1979

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2015
    Location:
    Preston, Lancs - UK
    #4
    I've just installed a 250GB SSD alongside the OEM 1TB hard drive and it's running via Fusion

    It lists as a 1.24TB fusion drive and the boot speeds alone are crazy fast compared to just the OEM 1TB HDD; more or less 11 seconds now compared to close to 2 mins 30secs etc...

    Obviously read/write speeds are sky high in comparison also :)

    This way; the Mac puts all the main user programmes onto the SSD for me and they boot up uber-fast and everything else is on the 1TB HDD :)

    Highly reocmmended
     
  5. navaira macrumors 68040

    navaira

    Joined:
    May 28, 2015
    Location:
    Amsterdam, Netherlands
    #5
    How does the SSD vs HDD bit work with the fusion drive? Does the Mac put apps/data on the SSD part automagically or do you have/get to choose? This has been bugging me for quite a while. (I hope the OP doesn't mind me asking that here.)
     
  6. danb1979 macrumors member

    danb1979

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    Feb 5, 2015
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    Preston, Lancs - UK
    #6
    What's used most will be run via the SSD; the rest will be via the OEM HDD
     
  7. navaira macrumors 68040

    navaira

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    May 28, 2015
    Location:
    Amsterdam, Netherlands
    #7
    Yeah, but how does it work – does the OS move things by itself?
     
  8. Micky Do macrumors 68000

    Micky Do

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    #8
    Yes….. it just works.
     
  9. Celerondon macrumors 6502a

    Celerondon

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2013
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    #10
    Automagically - e.g., Fusion Drive :apple:

    The link posted by danb1979 is from 2013 but it provides a good overview of the Fusion Drive (FD) storage system. Articles like that Tech Radar piece helped to dispel the misinformation created by confusion regarding the origin and function of Apple’s automatic tiered storage system.

    The FD storage option was announced in October 2012. From the start, experts guessed that Apple had merely relabeled an existing technology that was nothing more than a simple caching scheme. Could they have been more wrong? o_O

    Here is a link that shows one of the sources for Apple's storage breakthrough.
    http://web.cse.ohio-state.edu/news/news179.shtml
    This award winning research paper was published in 2011.

    For years folks have speculated that FD might be a transition technology with poor durability prospects and limited utility. Apparently Western Digital had a different opinion! Take a look at their “new” Dual Drive. Does it look familiar?
    http://mac360.com/2015/01/the-macs-fusion-drive-goes-mainstream/
    http://www.storagereview.com/wd_demonstrates_first_pcie_hard_drives
    It took WD a couple of years to mimic Apple’s tiered storage solution. Now their customers can also get PCIe class performance from a relatively inexpensive HDD based storage array! :D
     
  10. iceman42 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2012
    #11
    if you do video editing i would get ssd it would be a lot faster than the fusion drive. if you just do simple everyday thing then you should get the fusion drive.
     
  11. Algus macrumors regular

    Algus

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2014
    Location:
    Arizona
    #12
    The fusion drives are lovely if you want a lot of storage and don't fool around with other OSes. With Boot Camp, Windows is installed exclusively on the HDD. It'll be slower than your OS X partition by a good amount. That's a no go for me unfortunately.

    One of the things holding me back from the 5k iMacs right now is how much a 1 TB SSD costs. I've spoiled myself by putting one in my Mini and now I can't go back.
     
  12. ixxx69 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2009
    Location:
    United States
    #13
    It depends on your needs and usage, but with no further info, I generally recommend getting an SSD.

    If you need more storage than the SSD can hold, I suggest getting an external HDD to go with it.

    If you don't want an external HDD, then get the Fusion.
     
  13. Ghost31 thread starter macrumors 68000

    Ghost31

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    #14
    I don't really need much space. If I ever do, I can always hook up an external hard drive for permanent data storage and projects and such. I would prefer faster speed in daily tasks, so I think I'll probably end up going with SSD
     
  14. gsmornot, Jan 18, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2016

    gsmornot macrumors 68030

    gsmornot

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2014
    #15
  15. Celerondon, Jan 21, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2016

    Celerondon macrumors 6502a

    Celerondon

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2013
    Location:
    Southern Cal
    #16
    I think that ixxx69 is correct in advising that "it depends upon your needs and usage" but your selection of the Fusion Drive (FD) provides a hidden benefit that is perhaps superior to the advantage historically enjoyed by server minis. A 2014 FD equipped mini contains mounting hardware and cabling for both internal storage interfaces. There are connectors for both PCIe and SATA available on the logic board but the FD models are the only minis that come with the full kit of brackets and interface bits. :apple:

    This invisible feature can reduce the cost and complexity of future upgrades. :D
     

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