Mac Pro Hard Drives – Don’t Pay Through The Nose!


This might be a completely inaccurate assumption on my part but I’m guessing that a lot of Mac Pro owners are reasonably tech savvy. I mean the sort of person who splashes out on a Mac Pro usually has fairly specific requirements, and in my case this was for a fast machine that could take a lot of RAM (>8Gb) so that I could run multiple concurrent Windows XP virtual machines as part of my work.

So what baffles me is the dealers out there who think that labeling something ‘Apple’ is good enough reason to ask Mac Pro owners to pay nearly three times the going price for a piece of hardware. So what is this all about?  Well my early 2008 Mac Pro came equipped with a single 500Gb hard disk and the first thing I did was to pull the disk out and have a look to see what make & model it was. Turns out it was a bog-standard Western Digital 500Gb 7200rpm SATA drive, part number WD5000AAKS. When it came time to add more disks, I simply shopped around for the best price on Western Digital SATA disks and I added a second 500Gb drive plus a 1Tb

Mac Pro Hard Disks

Mac Pro Hard Disks

Western Digital ‘Green Power’ drive on which to back everything up.

These extra drives have performed flawlessly over the past year, being well suited to the Mac Pro as they run both cool and very quietly. Still, with the wealth of music, movies and general rubbish I’ve collected over the years, it was time to get another drive and so I have just bought another 1Tb WD ‘Green Power’ SATA drive from Novatech for the princely sum of £81.65 including VAT. Taking just a couple of minutes to fit the drive, I decided to browse the web for a while as Super Flexible File Synchronizer copied the data from my old drive to the new one. I found myself on eBay and decided to have a look see what was for sale in the world of Apple…

Before long I found myself looking at a listing for a 1Tb hard disk for the Mac Pro. Nothing unusual there – except for the price. The dealer was asking over £200 for a hard drive of the exact same spec I’d just paid a fraction over £80 for. Same capacity, same cache, same spin speed, same seek time… everything the same. I was amazed, and very much reminded of how important it is to do your research.

So if you’re in the market for an internal hard disk to fit your early 2008 Mac Pro then pretty much any standard SATA II 7200rpm hard disk will do just fine.

In my Windows PC days I had a lot of bad experiences with Maxtor drives, and gathered a collection of eight failed IDE and SATA Maxtor drives. I then switched to using Samsung drives and more recently Western Digital drives and (touch wood) failures seem to be a thing of the past.

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