Are Apple SSDs Proprietary?

I picked up a MacBook Pro A1398 for fairly cheap and it did not include an SSD. Does apple use a proprietary SSD or can I put another type of SSD in there?

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Here's a good source for a replacement: OWC Retina SSD upgrades.


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Apple always use proprietary SSDs on Retina MacBook Pros, however it is just in form factor. I believe in some models it is possible to make it work with an adaptor, but you wouldn't be able to close the bottom lid because there won't be enough space.

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Tom, take a look at Dan's link. These just came out about a month ago.


Those are custom designs to fit the "proprietary" slots.


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I just completed this upgrade using a regular SSD and an adaptor for my mid 2012 retina macbook pro.

You have two options:

1. Buy an m2 form factor SSD from OWC or from ifixit

2. Buy a regular ssd and buy a msata to M.2 adaptor - here are the ones I used:

  • SAMSUNG 850 EVO mSATA 1TB Mini-SATA (mSATA) Internal SSD Single Unit Version MZ-M5E1T0BW
  • mSATA SSD Adapter for MacBook Pro Retina A1425 MD212 MD213 ME662 (52 Pin)
  • mSATA to USB 3 adaptor and M.2 to USB3 adaptor


1. Backup your data to an external drive or two

2. Confirm your backup works

3. Put the mSATA SSD into the USB 3 adaptor

4. Clone the internal SSD into the mSata SSD (use internet booting on your MBP or the backup from step #1

5. Follow the iFixit tear down guide to extract the SSD and install the mSATA SSD (that you have put into the MSATA SSD to M.2 Adaptor

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Do you have to have the mSATA to USB adaptor? Is the reason it's needed is that it will not recognize the drive if you install it first?

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