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Upgrading to an OWC Mercury Electra 6G SSD

September 12, 2011

I recently needed to upgrade the hard drive in my June 2009 MacBook Pro. I previously had an Intel X-25 G2 80GB SSD and was starting to feel the size constraint and needed to get something a little bigger. 

I keep most of my large files and media on a separate server with multiple TB of hard drive space and only keep what i need on my MacBook Pro. I use different sync software to keep things organized and to have access to files I don’t normally keep on my laptop, but I still needed a little more room for things like virtual machines and media I temporarily copy to the laptop.

It was difficult to find the right SSD. There are now so many manufacturers to choose from and it is difficult to determine which is best. Each manufacturer uses a different SSD controller which can also affect the performance of the SSD. 

 After much research, I decided to go with the OWC Mercury Electra 6G 120 GB drive. This drive fit my price point and offered a big enhancement in write speeds over my Intel X-25, but with slightly lower read speeds. The lower read speeds were not a big issue as the difference will be indistinguishable. 

The Electra 6G can actually get faster speeds than what I am seeing but I am limited by the 3G SATA controller on my ’09 MBP. Instead of telling you what the manufacturer says the speeds will be, here are my actual speeds using xBench and AJA System Test.

With the AJA System Test, I was able to achieve a Write speed of 188.4 MB/s with the Electra, a 226% increase over the Intel X-25 G2, but the write speeds was about 5% slower with 232.3 MB/s.

AJA Test with OWX Mercury Electra 6GAJA Test with Intel X-25 G2

With xBench, the results were similar showing a large increase in write speeds over the Intel SSD and a slight decrease in read performance. 

xBench with the ElectraxBench with the Intel X-25

My goal here was to find an SSD with more storage than my current 80 GB with equal or better performance compared to my Intel X-25 G2 and I think I found it with my new 120GB OWC Mercury Electra 6G.

Please feel free to leave your calculated speeds in the comments. 



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