I am looking to gain some performance enhancement by adding an SSD drive to my 2010 MacPro. I can mount it in a hard drive slot or get a PCI card and mount it there.

The SATA speed of the Mac is 3Gb/s, but the PCI shows 'Link Speed:5.0 GT/s' which (I could be wrong) is 5G 'transfers' per second, since the encoding is a 10 to 8 ratio it's really 4Gb/s?

It seems if I'm going to make the effort, it's worth it to gain a bit of speed, and not lose a HDD slot. I've googled quite a bit, and not seeing this discussed anywhere.

1 Answer 1


I have a 2008 Mac Pro and I swapped the main HDD with an SSD and re-installed OS X and I saw a HUGE performance increase. You'll always see a performance increase when going from HDD to SSD simply because it's a different class of hardware. SSDs are, as their name implies, solid-state. There are no moving parts and there's nothing that physically degrades over time. HDDs start to wear immediately; while it's a slow process it does happen for as long as the drive is in use (that's why most operating systems tend to turn HDDs off when not in use - it prolongs their life).

That's my experience and my recommendation (my recommendation is definitely do it).

  • Thanks, Mike! Hoping to hear if the installation thru PCI slot is even better. I appreciate your response. Jan 16, 2014 at 10:22
  • The statement "There are no moving parts and there's nothing that physically degrades over time," is not entirley true. SSDs use magnetic fields to store data as 1s and 0s. Over time, the magnetic charge degrades, making it less clear what is a 0 and a 1. Thus if you do not use a SSD for several years you may use data. May 30, 2017 at 16:25
  • @EvanRosica there is no "physical" degradation as I previously stated...
    – MisterMike
    Jun 18, 2017 at 0:34

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