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  #1  
Old 07-17-2019, 05:31 PM
rballister rballister is offline
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Default ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

I have the current version of ProTools running on a mid-2010 Mac Pro tower with a new Radeon 580 card. OS is Mojave. The Mac Pro tower has several drive bays. I have Pro Tools on one of the SSD drives. I have an older Hitachi second drive (not SSD) with the Pro Tools files and instrument software. I've been thinking about upgrading that second drive with the ProTools files and instruments to a SSD. If I do thls will I see any sort of improvement, speed or otherwise when I work in ProTools? And also is it OK to work this way in general, ProTools app on one drive, ProTools files and instruments on another? I'm a bit past novice as a user but far from a power user so any and all help appreciated!
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Old 07-17-2019, 06:05 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is offline
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

What actual problem are you trying to solve? slow app startup? slow mac boot? slow session startup? slow backup? AAE errors? What exactly? How much budget do you have? What is your budget?

Are you running with disk cache? set to what size?

You should install Pro Tools on the boot/system drive and leave it there. You are just creating more potential headaches for yourself by putting the app in a non-standard location, yes less of an issue that on Windows but still a bad idea.

And what exact SSDs connected how. SATA III SSDs connected to the motherboard SATA II connections run at slow SATA II speeds. You can use a PCIEe SATA III adapter card? Or are you doing that already

Mojave supports PCIe NVMe SSDs including booting from them, and they are so low cost and much faster than SATA, to the point that SATA may make no sense. e.g. https://www.amazon.com/Samsung-970-E...07BN217QG?th=1. These drives are so fast compared to what you have now you could run everything on one singe drive if they are large enough.

Lots of this stuff is being discussed over and over on DUC recently, so you should try searching. Including for discussions about possible longer boot time with NVMe (and mixed drive configs) in Mac Pro Cheesegraters.
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Old 07-17-2019, 06:47 PM
rballister rballister is offline
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

Thanks Darryl but you just went about a mile above my head. The ProTools app is on a SSD (OWC Mercury Electra 6G MAX SSD) boot drive in bay 2 and I have no intention of moving it. As mentioned, the ProTools files and instruments are on a different drive in bay 4, an old (5 or 6 years) Hitachi SATA. Everything is currently functional, not really any problems at all. Not so much trying to solve a problem but wondering if I'll see any benefit (speed or anything else) if I simply replace the aging SATA drive with the PT files and instruments with an SSD (I figure the Hitachi is gonna go sooner or later). Looking at some OWC SSD drives which are reasonably priced so cost is not an issue. I will of course, as you suggest do a search but I value your opinion. (Also, I'm wondering if you are implying I shouldn't separate the files and instruments from the ProTools app on the boot drive. I used to think that was OK).
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Old 07-17-2019, 07:03 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is offline
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

"Looking at SSD" tells us nothing that useful. What *exact* model SSD? SATA or NVMe makes a huge difference.

SATA drives in the internal bays only run at Slow SATA II (e.g. 3G not 6G speeds).

I have no idea why you have Pro Tools installed on a separate drive, it's just not a good idea.

We have no idea of how large any of these drives are or your budget so can't really give you much help.

If it was my system I would remove all the storage and install a few Samsung 970 Evo M.2 SSDs (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07BN217QG...ing=UTF8&psc=1) on PCIe slot adapter cards. Ideally switched adapter cards that deliver full speed to the PCIe 3 based M.2 SSDs. Like this http://www.xlr8yourmac.com/feedback/...ro_Review.html and see https://forums.macrumors.com/threads...-ahci.2146725/

I generally recommend Samsung SSDs over OWC units. Just lots of benefits from Samsung full stack ownership of these drives, e.g. the chips and firmware is all theirs to fix if there are issues.

Also depends on your PCIe slots. What slots do you have available?

With the super fast PCIe NVMe SSDs you can put everything, boot/system, Pro Tools, sessions, samples on one drive. If you need more space then sure start by putting say samples if they are large on a dedicated drive (hopefully another M.2 NVMe drive). Until Mojave it was not easy to use/boot from these M.2 NVMe drives, now it is, you now have storage options not even worth comparing to a HDD.

Samples on a fast SSD... what that might do is let you run more VIs if your VIs use streaming samples, or let you start sessions faster if the samples pre-load. Depends on the VI behavior.

For the low low cost of these super fast drives, it's not worth my time to even think about it. Unless I had huge sample libraries or large video libraries I would put everything on fast NVMe SSDs.

Last edited by Darryl Ramm; 07-18-2019 at 04:26 PM.
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  #5  
Old 07-17-2019, 08:07 PM
rballister rballister is offline
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

I am considering replacing the aging Hitachi SATA drive (3 TB) in the internal bay with an OWC 2.0TB Mercury Extreme Pro 6G 2.5-inch 7mm SATA 6.0Gb/s Solid-State Drive $449.99. All the PCI slots are filled, some with SSDs I use for other purposes and one with a USB C card. I originally separated the ProTools app and the large instrument files/Samples along with my PT sessions when I had much smaller drives. I'll certainly consider your suggestion about putting everything on one internal SSD, perhaps like the above mentioned 2.0 TB Mercury Extreme. Budget is not an issue as I consider the OWC prices reasonable for a 2 TB SSD drive. Thanks, I'll also take a look at the Samsung links.
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  #6  
Old 07-17-2019, 10:06 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is offline
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

Stop looking at SATA drives. Get NVMe drives. Remove what is taking up PCIe slots now and install them there. Start with understanding the difference between SATA and PCIe/NVMe drives. Or wait until later and go full PCIe/NVMe then, it makes no sense to me to add more SATA SSD, esp. if there is no pressing issues.
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Old 07-17-2019, 11:22 PM
peterle peterle is offline
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

....since no pci slots are free , seems you must use the bays , like me..
first: Pt files AND instruments on same HD (!) is no good , better would be
a ssd (as planned by you) AND to move your libraries (instruments) to
the OS ssd , or even better , a seperate ssd , there are two more sata ports
for optical drives available in a mac pro , in fact you can use 6 sata ports.
As you know theese sata ports ar limited to roughly 250 MB/s (SATA2),
a joke compared to pci and not much faster than a spinning HD,

BUT the access time from an SSD is much much better, even on SATA ,
so it will bring a big improvement....


Since you already seem to have a USB C card ...:
Why not use external USB C SSD , much more than the transferrate from the SATA ports of your mac.
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Last edited by peterle; 07-17-2019 at 11:36 PM.
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Old 07-18-2019, 01:45 PM
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ghostwriter ghostwriter is offline
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl Ramm View Post

If it was my system I would remove all the storage and install a few Samsung 970 Evo M.2 SSDs (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07BN217QG...ing=UTF8&psc=1) on PCIe slot adapter cards. Ideally switched adapter cards that deliver full speed to the PCIe 3 based M.2 SSDs. Like this http://www.xlr8yourmac.com/feedback/...ro_Review.html and see https://forums.macrumors.com/threads...-ahci.2146725/
Darryl,

I would like to follow your advice and install a 970 Evo, unless 2 of them would be necessary. But, the links you provided to the switched adapter cards are not going through. Would you be willing to provide a link to the recommended card on Amazon, if it is not too much trouble? I have no idea which adapter card to buy and I have been searching before I came and posted here. I would sure appreciate your knowledge. Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl Ramm View Post
Also depends on your PCIe slots. What slots do you have available?
Does this just refer to the size of empty slots?

Thanks
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Last edited by ghostwriter; 07-18-2019 at 03:41 PM.
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  #9  
Old 07-18-2019, 04:21 PM
Darryl Ramm Darryl Ramm is offline
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

No two are not necessary. Install one and it will use a PCIe 2 x 8 lane slot in a Mac Pro and give you a PCIe 3 x 4 lane at the M.2 adapter.

Sorry I cut and pasted the abbreviated links from earlier in this thread,. I'll correct, but the links are

Samsung 970 Evo SSD:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07BN217QG...ing=UTF8&psc=1

M.2 switched adapter card:
http://www.xlr8yourmac.com/feedback/...ro_Review.html

All you ever wanted to know about NVMe drives on a Mac Pro Cheesegrater:
https://forums.macrumors.com/threads...-ahci.2146725/

Slot availability matters becase you need a slot to put the adapter card in

But not just physical slot size, you want a slot with enough logical lanes actually available in it to meet the performance needs of the M.2 drive. i.e. you need 8 x PCIe 2 lanes for a single 920 Evo SSD, or 16 x PCIe 2 lanes for using two 970 Evo SSD on a single card... assuming you are using a switched card, otherwise you only need half those numbers and only get half the performance.

All this pre-supposed you are on Mojave, which gets you all you need including NVMe boot support.

Boot time sometimes comes up as an issue, and can increase as you add different drives, including NVMe. I hope it's not a issue for most users, and if it is you can reduce it with simpler disk configurations... going all NVMe as an example.

Here is another useful resource that does touch on boot time. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1...h.2yfwj6riry79
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  #10  
Old 07-18-2019, 04:50 PM
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Default Re: ProTools on SSD Drive, PT files and instruments on 2nd (non SSD) drive?

Thank you so much, those are great resources. I will be on Mojave after I install my Radeon RX 560. I’m just trying to get everything sorted before I convert my Mid 2012 12 core into a machine that will get me a few more years use.

Thanks again!
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