Will I see some speed improvment by replacing the original 5400-rpm with a SSD on a MBP Core2Duo with Filevault2 enabled? Or it is a waste of money?

I ask this question because I know Filevault tend to kill performance of SSD on Core2Duo since this cpu doesnt have the AES-ni instructions as i5-i7 have...

I didnt find many benchmarks results...

My current HDD stats with Filevault2 enabled are (measured with XBench):

  Uncached Write: 46MB/s (4K blocks)
  Uncached Write: 30MB/s (256K blocks)
  Uncached Read: 15MB/s (4K blocks)
  Uncached Read: 42MB/s (256 blocks)
  Uncached Write: 0.95MB/s (4K blocks)
  Uncached Write: 18MB/s (256 blocks)
  Uncached Read: 0.39MB/s (4K blocks)
  Uncached Read: 15MB/s (256 blocks)

UPDATE: I installed a Crucial M4 here is the new stats:

  Uncached Write: 153MB/s (4K blocks)
  Uncached Write: 97MB/s (256K blocks)
  Uncached Read: 23MB/s (4K blocks)
  Uncached Read: 130MB/s (256 blocks)
  Uncached Write: 93MB/s (4K blocks)
  Uncached Write: 101MB/s (256 blocks)
  Uncached Read: 13MB/s (4K blocks)
  Uncached Read: 119MB/s (256 blocks)

As you see, a nice boost even if it's only a non-AES-NI Core Duo 2.26 with Filevault2 enabled

2 Answers 2


You will see a great improvement in performance. You will lose some performance due to the encryption but you will at least get two and half times the performance of your current drive.

  • @pieuvre Happy to help. You should mark my answer as correct. :)
    – Alex
    Oct 26, 2012 at 11:43
  • I can concur. My mid 2010 MBP with Core 2 Duo is way faster, even with Filevault 2 enabled. It boots in about 20 seconds, down from over a minute with my old HD.
    – balexand
    Apr 16, 2015 at 0:21

I used to have a HDD on my mac mini 2009 (intel core duo 2) and it was pretty slow! So I switched to a SSD and everything launched and performed a LOT faster!

  • Was that using filevault?
    – mmmmmm
    Oct 21, 2012 at 10:16
  • @Mark I honestly don't know
    – JomanJi
    Oct 22, 2012 at 13:32
  • @JomanJl - filevault is the whole issue for the question
    – mmmmmm
    Oct 22, 2012 at 13:34
  • @Mark Oh sorry, I didn't know that
    – JomanJi
    Oct 22, 2012 at 14:10

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