Rec­om­mended up­grades

Mac Format - - FEATURE -

Me­mory is one of the easi­est, most af­ford­able and most ef­fec­tive up­grades you can per­form.

Cru­cial (uk.cru­cial. com) sim­pli­fies the buy­ing process with a free down­load that scans your Mac to iden­tify what you al­ready have and what can be added. Up­grad­ing a late 2012 Mac mini to 16GB costs £72; 8GB will cost you just £36. The ques­tion is, how much is your time worth?

The price of SSDs is fall­ing quickly, and you can now pick up a 120GB one for about £40, which is per­fect for set­ting up a Fu­sion Drive.

We bought a Kingston Tech­nol­ogy V300 drive of that ca­pac­ity from Ama­zon for £39 for the work­shop on page 37. SSDs are op­ti­mised to tidy them­selves up when not be­ing ac­tively used, so per­for­mance shouldn’t de­grade so quickly as a tra­di­tional hard disk will.

120GB is more than enough if all you want to do is cre­ate your own Fu­sion Drive, but if you’re look­ing to re­place your pri­mary hard disk it will quickly start to feel quite re­stric­tive.

Look to buy a drive of at least 500GB ca­pac­ity for ev­ery­day use. Samsung’s 850 EVO 500 is about £130 on­line and will fit a Mac mini and iMac (if you’re will­ing to per­form the surgery).

If you’re up­grad­ing a pre-2013 Mac Pro you’ll need a drive sled to fit a 2.5-inch drive to a 3.5-inch drive bay’s mount­ing points and ports.

StarTech’s SATA Alu­minum Hard Drive Adapter En­clo­sure is £15 from Ama­zon and uses a sprung front door to keep the SSD in place for tool-free in­stal­la­tion.

If you have no choice but to con­nect us­ing USB, re­serve those on your Mac for USB 3 de­vices, if pos­si­ble.

If you’re us­ing a hub, make sure it’s the fastest you can af­ford. TP-Link’s four-port UH400 USB 3.0 hub is £18 from Sta­ples.

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