We searched for some time to understand a solution for the Mac Pro Late 2013 storage challenge. This being expensive and often hard to find solutions from OWC, Apple or the “seller refurbished” wasteland of eBay.
We looked into M.2 adapters, and we have a review of an NVMe drive coming up using an interface adapter, but we wanted a proprietary interface as one of the requirements for this solution and review, enter Transcend and the JetDrive product range. This range is aimed squarely at the gap between Apple products and normal SSD pricing. OWC range of similar products had been priced to match Apple products but have now come down in price to match the Transcend JetDrive range, proving that a more than one supplier of any product can only be a good thing for consumers.
We had intended to run some more PC orientated benchmarking, such as CrystalDiskMark and include them in this review, but we quickly realised that it’s not really that relevant. What is, is the fact the solution exists, not just being a faster drive, utilising the full Mac Pro’s bandwidth, but also as in this review, being available up to 960Gb, and still at a relatively “normal” price.
[Update] As of today, the JetDrive 850 960GB SSD is £264.90 in the UK which is about £150 more than a standard M.2 NVMe 1Tb drive. OWC have reduced their prices for their similar products, for example, the OWC 1.0TB Aura Pro X2 SSD for MacBook Air is now £261.73 on Amazon UK.
For us, we believe this is a good product, and provides a tasty Read and Write speed increase over the dated Apple drive. It’s also going to help the end user, upgrade smaller drives with an off the shelf solution, albeit at a bit of a price penalty.
We have scored this as 3.6 and worth consideration, but we only really marked this down due to the price. With the saturation of Apple products, with the longevity of the supported hardware and software, we should be seeing a lower price point and we hope we will see this in 2020.
The new Mac Pro 2019 should see some older Mac Pro’s being sold on and this should now be a good option for anyone who needs a capable Mac Pro but is put off by smaller and older drives.