Upgrading 2013/2014 Macbook Pro SSD to M.2 NVMe

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by maxthackray, Mar 1, 2017.

  1. TokMok3, Feb 16, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2018

    TokMok3 macrumors 6502

    Aug 22, 2015
    Congratulations for that upgrade and for sharing this information... Thank you!
    I have a MacBook similar as yours.
    What kind of adapter did you use for the EVO 960 1TB SSD?
    I was planning to install the EVO 960 PRO 500 SDD, do you thing it will work without problems on MacOS Sierra?

    Thanks in advance!
  2. Ericopp macrumors newbie


    Feb 4, 2018
    Michigan, USA
    One more update: installed a 500gb Samsung 960 EVO into my early 2015 MBPr 13" retina in place of the factory 128gb. Used the big green Sintech adapter and have transferred all my data and reinstalled applications. I have had no kernel panics, no sleep issues, no restart issues, and no startup issues, but it's only been about 24 hours. I have done some video editing, and transferred a couple 5gb+ files. I did not have to change any system settings. Formatted in AFPS. Getting about 900 write speeds and 1400 read speeds per Black Magic, which was about 600 and 1100 on the old Apple Drive. So...bigger, and faster!

    One minor thing I've noticed: when trying to view storage usage, I get an accurate total, but I do not get a breakdown of how much usage is memory, apps, music, etc. It is just stuck on calculating.
  3. TokMok3 macrumors 6502

    Aug 22, 2015
    Thanks for sharing...
  4. Audit13 macrumors 68040


    Apr 19, 2017
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    The Samsung will require high Sierra.
  5. Brawlzapper macrumors newbie


    Jan 11, 2018
    Outside Space
    Hi, So I have a MacBook Air Mid-2013, I bought a Sintech adaptor and I had a PC300 SkHynix NVMe SSD lying around. So I installed it and Since I am booting High Sierra from an external hard drive, I cannot see the new SSD I installed. I even went to the recovery and recovery cant recognize the partition. I created a Windows bootable pen drive for installing and when I go into the setup, I can see the SSD, I can even format the SSD there, But when I try to install windows on the SSD, Installation goes fine, but when it reboots to finish the installation and boot from the SSD windows was installed on, it is unable to do so, I cant see the SSD in the boot menu when I press Alt when restarting. Please help me.
  6. Audit13 macrumors 68040


    Apr 19, 2017
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Was High Sierra installed with an original Apple SSD inside the Air? Installed kapton tape?
  7. onestyle1 macrumors newbie

    Jan 22, 2014
    Hi everyone.
    I have bought a late 2013 MBP, this adapter and a Samsung 960 evo SSD with 512 GB.
    My Problem is, that the disk will not be recogniced by the book.
    I checked this by booting from an external drive and the terminal command „diskutil list“.
    Have read a lot of this threat (but not all) to solve my problem.
    - Yes, there was macOS 10.13.3 High Sierra installed on the original disk before I tried to exchange.
    - What‘s about the comments with the tape? Where and how should be tape added? does it matter what tape I use?
    - Should I buy another adapter, where I can screw the evo on the adapter and screw the adapter into the case? Have you an ebay link to an adapter you made good experiance with?
    - do I have to expect issues while booting or wake up after sleepmode with my setup? How can I prevent these?

    Thanks a lot for your help
  8. flemmingdjensen macrumors newbie

    Nov 30, 2017

    I have the Sintech Large green adapter - and proper taping...

    I wouldn't say without problems - when its booted up it seems to run fine with super fast performance

    But booting sometimes gives KPs and the boot time is very is slow....

    I am currently investigating why...

    By booting in verbose mode (CMD-V) the log seems to get stuck at some point and then reports the following:

    apfs_vfsop_sync:2928: failed to finish all transactions in sync()! (err 16)

    I think this is related to TRIM support or APFS...

    BTW: Does anybody know where I can find the Verbose kernel boot log after startup? I cannot seem to be able to find this log.

    Tried sudo dmesg and also going through all the logfiles in /var/log :(

    /// Flemming
  9. Brawlzapper macrumors newbie


    Jan 11, 2018
    Outside Space
    Yes, and No Kelpton tape. Does it make that much of a difference ?
  10. Earl Urley macrumors 6502

    Nov 10, 2014
    If you notice where the green adapter goes in, the original SSD slot has a big metal hood over it.

    Now, that metal hood is covering the pins from the insertion slot leading to the motherboard.

    Putting your SSD into the adapter places the I/O slots of the SSD outside of the original metal hood.

    The pins on the adapter are totally exposed because they're outside of the hood.

    Putting tape over those pins mitigates somewhat the signals coming from them, which in turn cause slowdowns.. PCIe controller will negotiate a slower speed if it detects too much interference.

    People often report improved speed if they apply the Kapton tape over the pins.
  11. Brawlzapper macrumors newbie


    Jan 11, 2018
    Outside Space
    Thank so for that explanation. But OSX can't even recognize my ssd, would applying tape work on that? Cause the windows 10 bootable usb setup and recognize it and install windows 10 but can't boot from the ssd as its not being recognized by anything else.
  12. armoured macrumors newbie

    Feb 1, 2018
    I found this comment elsewhere, suggesting answer is to reinstall as HFS+J instead of APFS:

    If you search around web, you can find instructions how to force system not to use APFS.

    YMMV, I've no experience personally with this.
    --- Post Merged, Feb 19, 2018 ---
    I received a no-name adapter I got off aliexpress - green, but not as long as the sintech adapters. I have a sintech adapter on order but I'm going to try this one while I wait on the (slow) delivery.
    Anyone know if the numbers on the top side of the adapter have any meaning? This has '172102' emblazoned on it. No other identifying marks I can see. Otherwise looks like the pictures others have put up here.
  13. Batmandc, Feb 19, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2018

    Batmandc macrumors newbie

    Jan 10, 2018
    So far, so good. Macbook mid 2014, Samsung EVO 960 and the green adapter. Kapton tape, ESD version in place. 1400 read and 1500 write. No problem with sleep, no KP and fast boot. Only problem is that Windows/bootmanager failed the last step of windows installation. So, skipped that.
    Console log is a bit spammed with TIC TCP Conn Cancel but as I understand it that is another bug related to high Sierra.
  14. Audit13 macrumors 68040


    Apr 19, 2017
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    The tape can make a difference as it prevents improper contact between the adapter and SSD slot pins/cover.
  15. R2-D2 macrumors newbie


    Dec 30, 2017
    I am following this thread for quite some time now and I wanted to say how grateful I am for so many people sharing their experiences. Now I want to share mine. It's nothing really new, but still data which can be used for future expectations.

    About two months ago I decided to upgrade my MacBook Pro Mid 2014 with a nice Kingston KC1000 960GB SSD. So I bought the green adapter from Sintech, formatted the disk via ubuntu bootstick accordingly and installed everything. I set the hibernatemode to 3 and for the first couple days everything seemed to run smoothly. After that kernel panics occurred quite regularly. I already had kapton tape in use, so I did not really know what to do here.

    I had ordered a second adapter before reading here. It's form kalea (link below). I wanted to try it out. Didn't fit too well, no changes. So much for that experience, back to the sintech, which seem to result in less issues.

    I tried experimenting with some power settings. I switched between the individual hibernation modes and simply tried to figure out how they would affect the system. It did not really matter, had similar problems with all, kernel panics, boot failures (disk not recognized) and so on.

    I had read in another forum that one fixed similar problems by setting the standbydelay to a high value, basically keeping the computer from going into standby. Tried that by entering the suggested 84000 as the value, still problems after a while so I changed it back.

    I reinstalled everything once, including new tape.. I don't know what I hoped would happen but now I am pretty much clueless on what to do. I could simply go back to my old ssd but that's boring.

    In the following I want to add the problems that I experienced ever since I changed the ssd:
    • kernel panics, mostly within the first minutes after booting when to many tasks are executed at the same time. When it is in fact running, it runs good. Never had issues while working usual hours during my workdays. When it's running, it's running.
    • kernel panics when after getting the notebook out of sleep mode.. guess that's an hibernation issue
    • battery life suffered, but that's acceptable.
    • I started shuting off my laptop at the end of my days, cause I figured it might help hibernation issues. Well now after booting I get one out of four responses:
    1. regular boot (yeah!)
    2. no start-up disk found (folder, with question mark inside..., after a couple reboots everything goes 'fine'. Kernel panics might occur during the reboots...)
    3. No system folder found (circle with a slash symbol... takes a little longer compared to the previous one)
    4. Battery dead.. (though the battery is at 100%. After attaching the charger for the booting process i can detach it and the battery runs 'fine'. I should add that my battery is currently at 527 cycles. But I never had any problems with it before and its only been 2 months, since I changed the ssd. I can't tell if there is a correlation here.)
    A little about my current system:

    macOs High Sierra; Version 10.13.3​

    Model Name: MacBook Pro
    Model Identifier: MacBookPro11,2
    Processor Name: Intel Core i7
    Processor Speed: 2,5 GHz
    Number of Processors: 1
    Total Number of Cores: 4
    L2 Cache (per Core): 256 KB
    L3 Cache: 6 MB
    Memory: 16 GB
    Boot ROM Version: MBP112.0142.B00
    SMC Version (system): 2.18f15

    Capacity: 959,88 GB (959.882.506.240 bytes)
    Mount Point: /
    File System: APFS
    Writable: Yes
    Ignore Ownership: No
    BSD Name: disk1s1
    Volume UUID: BB323C7A-012A-3794-B423-5F6EAB515188
    Physical Drive:
    Device Name: KINGSTON SKC1000960G
    Media Name: AppleAPFSMedia
    Medium Type: SSD
    Protocol: PCI-Express
    Internal: Yes
    Partition Map Type: Unknown

    This turned out way longer then I thought it would. Sorry for that. Though, it might be interesting for some of you, especially if you're having similar issues or think about upgrading. Maybe someone even has a solution for some of the issues? :)

    Kalea Adapter (not advisable imho)
    Attached is also a screenshot from a speedtest. Somehow it changes sometimes, I got it up to aprox 930 once but around 720 seems to be the average.

    Attached Files:

  16. apemaia macrumors newbie

    Feb 4, 2018
    I'm searching a way to upgrade firmware of samsung 960 pro in an easy way, without install windows on bootcamp or find a usb adaptor to plug the M2 ssd in a PC... Maybe it is possible to put the ssd in the macbook pro (mid 2015) and attach it in target mode to a PC and then upgrade the firmware like a standard external disk?
  17. ravic macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2007

    R2-D2, thanks for the information. I am sure it will help someone out.

    For your MacBook Pro 2014 and large green adapter, I have seen a lot of posts where folks were using Samsung drive. you might have better luck with that. Did you buy the adapter directly from sintech?
  18. andi.radulescu macrumors newbie


    Feb 12, 2018
    Just got a reply to an e-mail I sent to Sintech about the ST-NGFF2013-C version http://eshop.sintech.cn/ngff-m2-pcie-ssd-card-as-2013-2014-2015-macbook-ssd-p-1229.html

    Just ordered one to see how it goes, since I really like the longer one for stability.

    Will test it with a recently bought 512GB Toshiba XG3 and get back with the results. Bought it cheap from Amazon ($140) couldn't find it lower on eBay.

    Thanks a lot to @gilles_polysoft for all the information provided (can't thank you enough), @wawon for opening the subject about ST-NGFF2013-C and to @gymboy for all the helpful knowledge sharing.

    P.S. also tried ordering ST-NGFF2013 black version since it's cheaper but asking them to send the green version instead. they didn't accept and refunded, asking to buy ST-NGFF2013-B http://eshop.sintech.cn/ngff-m2-pcie-ssd-card-as-2013-2014-2015-macbook-ssd-p-1143.html

    P.P.S. if you're the first time on this thread, be sure to check Page 36 and @gilles_polysoft Feb 9 post #892.

    Happy upgrading to all!
  19. ravic macrumors member

    Jul 2, 2007
    Happy to report things are quite stable with my MacBook Pro 13" Early 2015, Sintech black adapter, Samsung PM961, Some sleep setting change.

    I have not had one kernel panic or freeze for the last week. Also sleep works really well. I put it away by closing the lid 5 days ago, opened it up this morning and still have 97% battery left.

    I do have a sintech green adapter on order, but at this point I am wondering if I should not mess with it.
  20. gilles_polysoft macrumors regular


    Jul 7, 2017
    Tours (France)
    Sorry, but at present you can only upgrade a 960 Pro to 4B6QCXP7 with Samsung Magician, which only runs under Windows (so Bootcamp or a real PC are the only solutions here).
    You can otherwise wait for Samsung to release this firmware as a bootable ISO, which they may do but no one knows when...
    --- Post Merged, Feb 20, 2018 ---
    Hi R2-D2,

    obviously there is a problem with both of your adapters, sorry...

    With a green Sintech adapter and a Kingston KC1000 yo should get ~1400MB/sec read and ~1200 MB/sec write on your rMBP 2014. You report reboot problems and a speed of 700MB/s so it seems you have only 2x lanes working (and randomly) which this is symptomatic of bad insulation of the adapter...

    I trust when you say you have put some insulation tape but can you please post a photo of your adapter with the insulation tape ?
    Also if you are in europe I can send you a good working adapter...

    best regards
  21. xelanaiznac, Feb 20, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2018

    xelanaiznac macrumors member

    May 13, 2013
    hi guys.
    really strange behavior here.
    i have a MacBook Pro retina 15 2015, high sierra 10.13.3 and sintech large adapter + tape.
    issue is that my Kingston skc1000 960gb is linked at x2 8.0 gt/s, and obviously "slow" speed
    i have done smc reset and pram reset but nothing changed.
    ssd firmware issue or bad adapter?

    Nome modello: MacBook Pro
    Identificatore modello: MacBookPro11,5
    Nome processore: Intel Core i7
    Velocità processore: 2,5 GHz
    Numero di processori: 1
    Numero totale di Core: 4
    Cache L2 (per Core): 256 KB
    Cache L3: 6 MB
    Memoria: 16 GB
    Versione Boot ROM: MBP114.0177.B00
    Versione SMC (sistema): 2.30f2

    Apple SSD Controller:
    KINGSTON SKC1000960G:

    Capienza: 960,2 GB (960.197.124.096 byte)
    Supporto TRIM: Sì
    Modello: KINGSTON SKC1000960G
    Revisione: E7FT04.6
    Numero di serie: 50026B727BC66D99
    Ampiezza link: x2
    Velocità collegamento: 8.0 GT/s

    update: tried another sintech adapter, same situation.
    tried a different brand small adapter that I bought from amazon, and it gives me x4 @8.0gt/S
    maybe sintech adapter is not suitable for my Kingston skc
  22. ohnggni macrumors member


    Feb 21, 2018
    Hwaseong, South Korea
    Hi, guys.
    I have a 13" macbook pro retina mid-2014.
    Could you please advise what is the best choices?
    If I choose "sintech large green adapter + samsung 960 evo", what problems can I face with?

    I've read these threads very hard, but I'm still confused if they are safe choices.
    Please help.
  23. Earl Urley macrumors 6502

    Nov 10, 2014
    Was the laptop upgraded to High Sierra using the OEM Apple SSD or equivalent BEFORE you did anything?

    The new firmware provided with High Sierra is key to improving NVMe connectivity.
  24. ohnggni macrumors member


    Feb 21, 2018
    Hwaseong, South Korea
    Your MacBook mid 2014 is 13inches or 15inches? And after your post, have you ever any problem happened?
  25. Ericopp macrumors newbie


    Feb 4, 2018
    Michigan, USA

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