A Burning Question: What about IDE SSDs?

The most common question I have gotten from old Mac enthusiasts is the possibility of IDE SSDs to speed up their machines.

Here’s the good news – I have an answer.

But there is bad news too – the common brands you might find available on NewEgg or eBay are generally not recommended. These brands include Transcend and KingSpec. They will work, but the companies that make them are generally not well regarded. You end up spending your cash on slower products with possibly sketchy support.

The good news is that you can follow the advice on my website. Pick up a solid Sandforce drive, like the nicely priced Intel 530, and pair it with an SATA-to-IDE converter. Buying an OWC IDE SSD drive is essentially the same thing, but you might save a buck or two by assembling it on your own. You will want to over-provision the drive to extend its life and performance.

The bonus is that if you do want to move that SSD to a SATA equipped machine, like your recently acquired bargain bin Power Mac G5, you can reuse it as needed.

For older G4 Macs, this gives you an opportunity to get a long lasting, speedy drive to keep your machine a little more relevant for the time being.

I picked up an old G4 Mac Mini, and I’ll update a post or two with how the process of rehabbing that machine goes.

– Nathan