SSD? Raid?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by thriii, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. thriii macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    #1
    One 2.66GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon
    ATI Radeon HD 4870 512MB
    One 18x SuperDrive
    80GB X25M SATA 2.5IN 9.5MM SSD DRIVE GEN2 + IcyDock 2.5" to 3.5"(Boot/Applications)
    Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB
    6GB Ram

    this is what im currently goin with.. SSD as boot/apps and a 1TB for data.. but a couple people suggest 1TB drives in raid..

    1. what do I need for raid?
    2. how does it compare against the SSD+1TB setup?
    3. can I add raid to the SSD+1TB and get more 1TB drives later?
     
  2. gugucom macrumors 68020

    gugucom

    Joined:
    May 21, 2009
    Location:
    Munich, Germany
    #2
    For Raid you only need two or more identical drives. The Mac Pro supports RAID from the OS X disk utility.

    A two drive RAID0 would be almost twice as fast as the single 1 TB drive but probably still slower than your SSD.

    You can always add drives until your Mac Pro has all ports used. To add a drive to the RAID you have to erase the RAID and start from scatch. It means you can only do it if you have a backup.
     
  3. thriii thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    #3
    so would the setup i currently have be faster for photoshop work? with the SSD + 1TB data drive?
     
  4. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #4
    If you get more RAM, you can set up a RAM disk to use for scratch on Photoshop. That will be very fast. Otherwise, yes the SSD will be fast.
     
  5. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #5
    RAM disks on modern operating systems are largely a waste of RAM... the OS is already using untapped RAM for disk caching so by adding a RAM drive you're effectively caching the contents in RAM twice. This doesn't come from me, but a former developer at Apple. (source)

    Thriii... if you are on a budget, just buy a single SSD now (Intel 80GB is a great start) and add another one later in RAID0... which is easily done using OSX Disk Utility... it basically stripes data across the two disks to double disk performance by splitting transactions between the two drives. OSX has great RAID0 support in the OS... no extra hardware is required.
     
  6. thriii thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Feb 14, 2007
    #6
    ill just go with the SSD then :).. what about the Caviar Black.. would the Western Digital 1TB RE3 be a better choice?
     
  7. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #7
    Good call! :D Since you can get the 1TB Black with your Mac Pro, that's the obvious choice. I don't think they offer the RE3 as an option do they?
     
  8. thriii thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    #8
    the 1TB Black i was goin to buy from new egg and place in the computer myself.. im not sure if apple offers it.. im ordering the computer as bare as possible and replacing the HD/Ram.. so the 1TB drive would be put in the computer the same way if its the Black or the RE3
     
  9. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2008
    Location:
    Vancouver, BC
    #9
    I would just opt for the 1TB drive when you order the Mac Pro... you will get the WD 1TB Black. The stock 640GB is often a WD Blue and not worth it.
     
  10. Transporteur macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #10
    The 1TB upgrade for the first hard drive makes 100$ in the Apple store. You can get the 1TB Black for about 90$ on the internet, so it's definitely NOT worth it to take the upgrade from Apple.
    You can get the stock 640GB (mine was a Black) + a 1TB WD Black for the same price.
     
  11. thriii thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2007
    #11
    any idea how the black compares to the RE3?
     
  12. Transporteur macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    The performance should be identical, but from what I've heard the RE3 are supposed to be a more silent than the Blacks.
    I can't support that because I've never tried the 1TB RE3 drives. I have the 1TB Blacks in my Pro and except from the noise (they are definitely noticeable) they perform very good.
    Writing speed of a Raid0 from two Blacks is 200MB/s +.
     
  13. justit macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2007
    #13
    I tested his theory with PS CS4 since it can't allocate more than 3GB of ram, I created a 2GB ram disk. I can open and apply effects to a 400MB file and it takes about a second. I noticed that the used size of the ram disk grew. And when I quit it went back to 2GB. Unused RAM in the OS using iStat remained the same.

    Maybe 2 GB Ram disk is a bit much but there is definitely a speed increase, much faster than SSD.
     

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