3 Replies Latest reply on Dec 4, 2013 9:25 AM by JEShort01

    Is it worth having 2 SSDs for editing on Macbook?


      Hi guys!


      I'm considering having a hard drive upgrade for my late-2011 Macbook Pro and wanted to get some advice on how to utilise my resources the best, please!


      I use the Macbook for pretty much equal parts of Premiere editing (ProRes HQ mostly) and After Effects.


      Currently I have a humble 2 disk setup - an external WD My Studio 2tb through Firewire 800 for media, project files and exports and Apple 128gb SSD (actually Toshiba, with the TS128C id) that came with the Macbook back in 2011, which is used for OS/applications and media caches. The SSD is starting to feel a little too small and it's also quite slow compared to most SSDs - I'm getting around 125 MB/s write and 200 MB/s read speeds (could it be worn out already?!).


      So these are the main reasons I am looking at Samsung 840 Pro 256gb SSD to replace it (the internets report 500 MB/s R/W on this).


      My question here is when I do get the Samsung SSD, is it worth switching to a 3-drive setup?

      I could put my old Apple SSD in place of the Macbook's DVD drive - I would then have the fast Samsung SSD for OS/applications, the WD external for media/projects and then the Apple SSD for media cache and exports.


      Would you say it is worth doing so? While I understand that when dealing with HDDs (non-raid), one would definitely benefit from a separate media cache and exports drive, is it the case with SSDs too? Or should the Samsung SSD be fast enough to accommodate the OS/applocations AND the media cache + exports and I wouldn't really see much of a difference from the 3-drive setup?


      Or… maybe you would suggest leaving the Apple SSD in the main bay, continue using it for OS/Applications and but the new Samsung SSD in the place of DVD drive and use that solely for media cache and exports?


      So these are the options I can see currently. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!

        • 1. Re: Is it worth having 2 SSDs for editing on Macbook?
          JEShort01 Level 4

          Of the options that you suggest, I would think that considering the hassle-factor and performance, that replacing your optical drive with the 840 pro would be the best option.


          However, if you have a late 2011 Macbook Pro then don't you have Thunderbolt? And if so, I would suggest a RAID 0 Thunderbolt external drive; Lacie, G-RAID, and others are making both SSD and 7200rpm external RAID 0 options that are excellent.





          • 2. Re: Is it worth having 2 SSDs for editing on Macbook?
            krxz Level 1

            Thanks for the response!


            Yes, my Macbook indeed has a Thunberbolt and although a TB RAID sounds pretty sweet, for my needs I find the FW800 external as a media+projects drive to be fairly ok - at least I don't think it's seriously bottlenecking my setup - so at this point it would be more of a luxury than necessity that I can't afford.


            As for hassle in regards of replacing SSD - I'm looking to reinstall my system anyhow (to start the new year with fresh start, so to speak ) so that wouldn't be much of an issue.


            I guess in essence my question is whether it would be a good idea to install the Samsung SSD as the main drive and run OS/applactions AND the cache from it, or would I see a noticeable improvement if the SSD was used solely for cache and OS was on a different SSD?




            • 3. Re: Is it worth having 2 SSDs for editing on Macbook?
              JEShort01 Level 4



              You may hear from others with varying opinions, but I would think that going with the 840 pro as boot/os and cache would work fine for your situation.


              Then, go ahead and repurpose the 128GB apple SSD to the optical bay. You can tune/tweak where you put what files after you have all the hardware configured to find the "optimum" setup.