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solid state sys drive for MBP

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Bob Cole
solid state sys drive for MBP
on Feb 14, 2011 at 12:08:29 am

My system drive for my MBP is showing signs of flukiness. If I decide to replace it, I am tempted to use a solid state drive. I wonder whether somebody here has some experience and/or advice about that.

I use the laptop for on-location editing, as well as everyday Internet work. When I edit, I always use an external firewire drive.

I would not have considered an SSD until now, because they were so small in capacity; but I have seen a 500gb drive that looks pretty appealing. It is labeled as a "Hybrid," and I am not sure whether this is a very good idea or a terrible one, with many more spin-ups and less longevity as a result. ("Seagate Momentus XT STAN500100 500GB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache 2.5" SATA 3.0Gb/s Internal Laptop Solid State Hybrid Hard Drive" at about $150.)

The "pure" solid state drives are much lower in capacity and more expensive. Any thoughts? Should I wait for those to drop in price/increase in capacity? I figure I need at least a 250gb system drive, preferably 500gb, because I use the complete Adobe Suite and Final Cut Studio, as well as downloading SxS cards to the system drive (initially) while on location.

Thanks for your advice.

Bob C


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John Davidson
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Feb 14, 2011 at 12:55:46 am

I have the 128 SSD in the new macbook air. I can't attest for the larger ones, but SSD's are fantastic for the OS drive.


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Sacha Thomas
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Feb 14, 2011 at 1:45:56 pm

If large SD cards start going down in price, I am thinking about trying to boot WIN or OSX off of one. Kind of like a linux CD dist. HMMMM


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Matt Doe
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Feb 16, 2011 at 3:31:31 pm

While SSDs are awesome, I have a 64gb one in my MacBook and it is screaming fast, they can't match the $ per gig of spinning hard drives. I have a Mac Pro to do all my heavy lifting video work.

From the sounds of it this is your work horse machine, you should stick with a traditional drive given the work that you do with FCP and the Adobe Apps.

You could always go the external drive route to house your media, and have the SSD hold the OS and apps only. Not ideal for field work, having yet another piece of gear to lug around, but still an option.



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Bob Cole
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Feb 16, 2011 at 4:01:44 pm

Thanks.

No opinions/experience on the "hybrid" drives?


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Fred Jodry
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Feb 18, 2011 at 7:22:12 pm

I`m afraid I started the guys looking for solid state drives a couple of weeks ago when I saw that a solid state RAID 0 would be perfect work drives for someone`s uses. If you`re thinking about having a really good single or boot hard drive, my choice would be a really worthy 2-1/2 inch IBM/Hitachi drive. You seemingly can`t go wrong there. The Seagate Hybrid sounds like trouble waiting 2 minutes after you begin. Very many of the SSD drives sold will hoodwink you too. The models with memory batteries for their RAM instead of flash memory are of much better grade and purpose. Keep pencil and paper handy if looking for an SSD, to write what`s right and what`s wrong. My sensible advice to most users is to put your Mac book in good shape with a fresh magnetic 2-1/2 inch drive for things like video camera takes, and either use Bob Zelin`s recommendation of a giga-networked external boosting RAID when switching to editing, or transfer the files out of the Macbook into a waiting Desktop for editing. This of course describes data flow levels for pretty stiff video editing. Those of us who are giving the advice are always caught on the wrong foot when the user is editing 4 channel audio or gamma correcting photographs for their newspaper.


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Fred Jodry
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP, even more bad news.
on Feb 18, 2011 at 8:15:52 pm

Easily more than half of the SSD "hard" drives on sale right now produce sustained, streamed, throughputs that are disappointingly lower than reasonable. You can forget SSD drives for only $200. That purchase will end up purring in your secretary`s internet computer. The price of SSDs now is usually going up not down very slowly. Stick to high quality 2-1/2 inch hard drives, often in 320 to 500? GB sizes for really premium throughputs. Pencil and paper looks for 128 GB SSDs is always risky but by the time you see, Kingston, Pny, OCZ, etc., there`s some signs of being in the right area. The Bit Micro and RedRock U320 terrabyte bricks and wild hardware used next to them that server companys use is not for the slight of pocket. While they`ll save expensive electricity and time from the word, "go", their price apiece of $64,000 expensive, $1,700 cheap, with 2 or 3 of them interleaving RAID in an Alexa editor or one of them in a HD editor doesn`t mean they`ll pay for themselves too quickly for the shoot and edit 5 hours a day video man. One of the advantages of non- defective SSD drives is that you can usually aim them right at RAID 0 or single drive uses without worry.


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John Davidson
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Feb 18, 2011 at 9:48:56 pm

Honestly Bob, I'd avoid Seagate if at all possible. Been burned by them several times now.


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Bob Cole
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Feb 20, 2011 at 11:49:37 pm

Hi John, all:

Good link. Particularly alarming to me was this reply from a user: "This is a common issue with UniBody MacBooks. They don't support SATA II very well. All of Apple's Drives are slowed down to SATA1 1.5 Gigabits. I'm surprised they don't know this, its all over apple forums. I had the same problem when I added my own 1TB drive. Some manufactures like Hitachi provide a firmware SATA speed downgrade to fix the problem."

Comments please?

Bob C


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steve knattress
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Jul 28, 2011 at 11:14:36 am

Has anyone experience of the apple 500GB SSD that can ordered with a new 17" MBP?

Unlike extra memory ( has any one found a use for the 2x 2GB memory cards after update? Can they be put into an enclosure for USM memory?), the educational extra price is less than purchaseing and installing one later. ( but I would not have the 750GB magnetic drive)

What extra performance could I expect, at present all of my apps, documents, music, OSX etc are on a 750GB magnetic in my old MBP, all video is on external firewire/esata raid drives.

Is SSD TRIM (does apple use it?) a problem now that Lion "saves" in the background, and that every key press of FCPX seems to access the disc?

Thanks Steve


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Fred Jodry
Re: solid state sys drive for MBP
on Jul 29, 2011 at 5:19:08 pm

Steve and Bob, the following might be a possibility,
Step 1. Go to otherworldcomputing.com. Buy a Mercury Elite Pro Qx2 box (not other model). Fill it not with hard drives (or better yet, SSD hard drives) but with attachments to favorite tape backup drives so you can backup and restore RAID 10 tape workflow. Hand- labelling is a must.
Step 2. (Step 2 gets done before step 1 but has to be planned together). Pick, buy a nice (little) SSD.
Hints and tricks: If you need a small Sata II SSD I just bought a pair of OWC Mercury Extreme Pro SSDs. They were EVERYTHING promised. If you need bigger good SSDs hitch your attention to some of the exchanges in the ARRIDIGITAL website. Most of the SSD hard drives you don`t run across in these 2 places are fraudulent hybrid performance junk that`s not worth it. I haven`t done my own step 1 above so check feasibility and ask more questions.


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