Since we recently purchased two 2011 MacBook Pros (with lots of issues, as previously reported) we were wondering if SATA III 6Gbps drives would be supported. The short answer is YES, the longer answer is: only on the original Hard Drive port. Here are recommendations on which drive setup is best suited for getting the maximum out of the 2011 Apple machines.
Which type are you?
- the collector: two 750GB SATAII Drives
- fast, but not furious: 256GB SSD SATAIII drive + 750GB HDD in the optical drive slot
- the caretaker: 256GB SSD SATAIII drive + 500GB SATAII hybrid drive in the optical drive slot
- speed enthusiast: 256GB SSD SATAIII drive + 256GB SSD SATAII drive in the optical drive slot
- humongous and rich: 512GB SSD SATAIII drive + 512GB SSD SATAII drive in the optical drive slot
The new MCE OptiBay was created for users who want as much hard drive capacity as possible inside their MacBook Pro, MacBook, PowerBook G4, iMac, or Mac mini. Period
256GB SSD SATA III 6Gbps Drive
The first SATA port on the current MacbookPro models is a true 6Gbps port. That means you can mount SATA III 6Gbps devices without any much trouble into your soon-to-be-blazingly fast aluminium portable.
Recommendations: either wait for the OCZ 240 GB Vertex 3 SATA III 6.0 Gb/s 2.5-Inch Solid State Drive (which sadly is not officially released yet, but already got a great review by Anand from AnandTech) or you can alternatively get a 256 GB Crucial RealSSD C300 which is aleady available and also shows great results
OptiBay: original or replica
The OptiBay is a size adapter, that makes your optical drive slot usable for other "normal" 2 1/2" drives, such as HDD and SDD drives. Unfortunately the SATA port where the optical drive is connected on the new MacBook Pro 2011 Models is only capable of 3Gbps. Still it would be possible to insert SSD drives as well, if you are brave.
You can either get the original MCE OptiBay (which sells for around $100 on the MCE Page), or you can safely get a replica OptiBay, which are starting at $9, sometimes there are even cheaper offers on ebay UK or ebay USA.
750GB Second HDD Drive recommendation: Western Digital WD7500BPKT Scorpio Black 750 GB
If you are careful about your SSD wear (having lots of "traffic" on your disk shortens the lifespan of your SSD) or are downloading torrent like crazy (bittorrent clients are quite a load on the drives), you might consider putting a Hard Disk instead of a SSD in your Optical Drive Slot.
Recommended second SDD for the OptiBay: OCZ Vertex 2 Extended
If you are brave and have the necessary bucks, why not go for a second SDD in your MacBook Pro? We can definitely recommend the OCZ Technology 240 GB Vertex 2 Extended SSD
, since we had two drives already mounted in a 2010 MacBook Pro. Yes, that is a fast setup. If you want to have a mobile power workstation that is suited for high end audio and video production, this is definitely the way to go.
external Optical Drive enclosure
Since you might want to still use your optical drive from time to time, you should consider getting an external casing for it. We can definitely recommend those external enclosures, since they are dead cheap and do exactly what you need them to do: host your Apple internal drive and make it an external one. Recommended: USB2.0 Slim External Enclosure Case
If you don't care so much about the size of your external drive, you can also get an external BluRay Drive, to also watch your HD Movies. Recommendation: the Plextor 6X Ext USB Bd Combo
This post was written by nanofunk on March 31, 2011 and last edited on March 31, 2011
Post categories: apple, deals, diy, examples, experimental, gadgets, hardware, review, tweaking
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