SSD vs. Hard drive in a Mac Pro

To get a little more speed out of my Mac Pro from 2006, I decided to upgrade my system harddrive to a Corsair 128 GB SSD Performance disk. I had heard that SSD drives could boost system performance by quite a great deal, and wanted to try it out. At 500 USD, it was a bit pricey, but worth a shot. It’s a lot cheaper than buying a new Mac Pro anyway.

Installation was super easy. The drive is 80 grams in weight, and pretty tiny. I just put it inside my Icy Dock 2.5 SSD to 3.5 SATA drive converter, flipped the cover down and swoop. It was connected. I screwed it onto the Mac Pro’s hinge and it was ready to go. I initialized it in OS X, and just ran an OS X install directly to the drive. Easy.

Shut-down/Boot up time:
To get this 100% accurate, I decided to use the restart function to gauge boot times. Basically this also shows how much time the computer uses to shut down and then restart.

Standard harddrive: 1 minute 26.6 seconds
SSD harddrive: 26.7 seconds

Application start-up time:
I also did a test of how much different the application startup time was between the two harddrive types.
All running Snow Leopard, no plugins installed.

Adobe Photoshop CS5
Harddrive: 22.6 seconds
SSD: 4.4 seconds

Adobe Illustrator CS5
Harddrive: 21 seconds
SSD: 5 seconds

Adobe After Effects CS5
Harddrive: 35 seconds
SSD: 29.9

Autodesk Maya 2011 64 bits (1 plugin)
Harddrive: 30 seconds
SSD: 8.3 seconds

As you can see, some of these apps launch at incredible speed on an SSD drive compared to a standard SATA harddrive. Maya actually takes 22 seconds longer to start on that drive. So far, this is looking like a very good upgrade to my Mac.And it worked a lot better than the voodoo curse I tried putting on it last week.

So to sum up:
Superior SSD Technomonology 1 – Voodoo 0.


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