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PostPosted: Wed Jul 31, 2013 7:18 pm 
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I have a 2010 MacBook Pro with a conventional hard drive, and spend quite a bit of time doing things with databases that take the computer a very long time to complete because the hard drive is a hard drive. Database workload is about the worst punishment you can give a conventional hard drive since it consists of lots and lots of very small reads and writes, and consequently takes quite a long time. I strongly suspect I'd spend roughly half the time I currently spend twiddling my thumbs if only these DB processes weren't so badly IO constrained. So, I'm cautiously considering replacing my current 512 GB hard drive with a solid state drive, but need something reliable (at least as reliable as normal steam-era hard drives of similar capacity) that isn't absurdly expensive.

What would you recommend?

For what it's worth, I'm also still ticked at OWC and would rather not buy from them.

- Anonymous


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2013 6:44 am 
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I asked for you over at the non-public forum (more geekish) at Apple and so far this is the best of the replies
Quote:
Samsung & OWC are what I've bought and been very happy with. The techs I work with add Crucial Technologies to the list.

Not very specific for model information. I'll keep you posted if there are any more. Sorry, but OWC keeps coming up.

http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other+Wo ... SDMX6G480/

And
Quote:
I am happy with my Mercury Extreme Pro 6G from OWC

Update:
Quote:
OWC - both Mercury Electra and 6G. Bought an Electra for my work iMac when its drive died this winter and the 6G earlier this summer for an external Thunderbolt drive.

Crucial M500 or M4 - when customers come in for SSD upgrade and have no preference this is what the techs choose. The head tech calls it the best balance for price and quality.

For their personal choice they are about equally split between OWC and Crucial.

When price is the controling factor they choose Samsung because they are so agressively priced. Currently the 840 Pro model is what they are using. Two years ago they were giving Samsung the nod but now that's gone to Crucial.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2013 11:19 am 
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That's all very useful. Thanks!

- Anonymous


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2013 12:55 pm 
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the 2010MBP is 3Gbps SATA (SATA II), so you may not be able to take advantage of the extra speeds the 6Gbps (SATA III) drives offer. after looking on newegg though, there's effecively no SATA II drives being made anymore.

that being said, drilling down on newegg by SSD/SATA III/512GB, and sorting by price, you get the crucial m4 for $399
similarly, SSD/SATA III/500GB, you get the samsung 840 $349.99
finally, SSD/SATA III/480GB, you get ocz agility 3 for $314.99 and crucial m4 500 for $394.99

i'm not sure the diff between the m4 500 and m4?

i suppose my point is if the computer can only do 3Gbps, which i think is 375MBs, then you shouldn't break the bank getting a fast SSD, unless you plan on re-purposing it later. as far as reliability, i'm not really sure how to gauge that :confused: i'm pretty sure most major brand SSDs have been proven to be very reliable at this point. if the database stuff you're working with does a lot of writes, you may want to get a drive that has a high Rated Program/Erase Cycle

i know they just came out with a new samsung 840 EVO, but it doesn't seem to be available to buy yet


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 01, 2013 4:33 pm 
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For reliability in SSD I'm looking at how long the drive and its controller family have been on the market and thus had a chance for its firmware to be patched a few times already, the number of write cycles it supposedly supports, the company's reputation, and the ratio of Newegg five star to one star reviews. There are other things that would probably be very useful in assessing a drive that are difficult to find out about reliably, such as the extra space available for wear leveling and internal management of the drive's data and its Flash memory specifications.

For a while SSDs had pretty strikingly low reliability. I suspect they've improved in the last couple years, but the technology is still young, it's advancing rapidly, the drives are still expensive, and there's lots of opportunity for companies to cut corners to save a few bucks.

For me, the most important performance metric is probably not raw bulk transfer speeds but rather IOPs.

- Anonymous


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 2:20 am 
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If you want the best of all worlds, you should get a Samsung 840 Pro SSD. Make sure it's not a regular 840, which is markedly slower overall. You'll get good IOPS, great speed, and pretty good wear life. They're currently the best all-around SSDs for the money. And they're no slouch with either compressible data or incompressible data, meaning you're going to get the good speeds regardless of data type.

I use a variety of SSDs and have had experience with a few brands. Here's my setup (including the HD):

Samsung 840 Pro 256 GB SSD: Boot drive for SL, ML. Partitioned with 100 GB for each OS, the rest is free space which effectively turns this into an enterprise level drive in terms of wear life.

Samsung 830 128 GB SSD: Partitioned at 1 GB (Chameleon), 16 GB (whatever OS X installer image cloned at the time to use for installing unsupported OS such as ML/Mavericks), and 100 GB (Mavericks). The rest is free space to enhance wear life.

OCZ Summit 60 GB SSD: Windows XP Pro

OWC Mercury Pro 40 GB SSD: Retired due to severe controller/corruption issues (Sandforce based). Had OK read/write for compressible data, horrible read/write for incompressible data (down to <10 MB/sec in some cases)

Intel X-25M Gen 2 80 GB SSD: Retired due to wearing out from constant OS X log writes. Very reliable during its write cycle lifespan. Not speedy vs. more recent models, but plenty fast as a boot drive.

OCZ Vertex 3 120 GB SSD x2: Scratch drive and audio file/Android backup drives. Same general speeds as OWC 40 GB SSD, only with actual reliable firmware.

OCZ Vertex 4 256 GB SSD x2: Blizzard games/Battle.net Desktop Application Beta drive / Primary games drive (Emulation, Stepmania, etc). Very speedy. Reliable in passthrough/legacy mode (JBOD) on my NewerTech (HPT) 6G1e-1i card. However in RAID 0 they drop off the bus constantly, likely due to firmware issues. Achieved 970 MB/sec in RAID 0 while it lasted. Considered one tier below the Samsung 840 Pro SSDs in terms of IOPS/speed.

Western Digital 1 TB Green HD: Partitioned 1: Clone/Backup of current OS partition in use (SL) as recovery partition ready for cloning back to my boot SSD should anything go wrong. Partition 2: Downloads/primary audio file storage, as well as disk images of my mobile devices' MicroSDXC cards.

Any SSD will speed up your system, but only SSDs that deal with both compressible and incompressible data should be considered. That rules out all SandForce based SSDs. Stick with Samsung, Crucial, or the top tier OCZ drives like Vertex 4 and Vector series. Samsung preferred as they have the least amount of firmware issues with Macs, especially with sleep/hibernate.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 08, 2013 12:03 pm 
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Anon, might try emailing OWC Larry, quite an impressive response here I think...

https://discussions.apple.com/message/2 ... 0#22676027


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