Apple Compatible MacBook Air SSD Upgrades

The endlessly changing pinouts, interfaces, and varying form-factors of SSD drives makes SSD MacBook Air drive swaps and upgrades challenging to cover. Over the years, Apple has shifted from 1.8" sized PATA drives to custom pinout micro-SATA type M.2 SSD modules that progressively supported SATA I, II and III interface speeds. In its latest generation of Air laptops, Apple has transitioned to proprietary PCIe SSD modules - and once again your choice in compatible 3rd-party aftermarket solid-state drive modules for MacBook Air is somewhat constrained.

If you explore the resonable but limited selection of solid-state drive modules for MacBook Air you'll see that Other World Computing - OWC, Feather and Transcend offer model-specific Apple compatible SSD cards for MacBook Air laptops. OWC also offers blade/case bundles with external USB 3.0 drive enclosures to help with the data transfer process and repurpose your original Apple MacBook SSD module as a fast USB 3.0 external backup drive.
OWC MacBook Air CardsMacBook Air SSD ToolkitTranscend MacBook Air Cards
OWC Aura Pro SSD Module

SSD + USB3 External Case
Drive Upgrade Tools

Complete Driver Bit Set
MacBook Air SSD Module

SSD + USB3 Enclosure

You'll need to check the fine print labeling on your Mac and Hardware Info in Apple's System Profiler to absolutely verify the EXACT SSD card compatible with MacBook Air that you own. Variations from year to year (Early, Mid, Late) various logic-board revisions make Apple SSD blade replacement tricky to order.

Custom PCIe SSD Modules for 2014 and Later MacBook Air

Apple shifted to MVMe PCIe SSD blades in late 2013 again with Apple-specific pinouts that differ from readily available off-the-shelf M.2 standard PCIe blades. You can buy small pinout adapters to convert a standard blade or purchase Apple compatible modules from OWC, Feather or Trandscend.

OWC MacBook Air Compatible SSD

WIth USB NVME SSD Enclosure

Custom SATA SSD Modules For 2010-2012 MacBook Air

In 2010, Apple again changed the MacBook Air SSD drive form-factor to a CUSTOM interface flash chip module. Upgrade options from Transcend (with their JetDrive line) and Other World Computing do exist. OWC's "AURA" line of SSD's can be very specific to particular model revisions of the Air released over the past few years, so your exact Apple model # and product ID is essential to order the right Apple compatible SSD card upgrade.

More like a slim memory chip upgrade, it's proprietary shape somewhat limits options for upgrading to a larger drive module. If you can afford it, OWC offers custom SSD moduleus up to 1TB for specific Air MacBooks.

Retina Display MacBook Air PCIe SSD Cards

Once again, Apple is using a proprietary PCIe SSD interface for the new Retina MacBook Pro line. You can only upgrade the SSD if you BTO - Build To Order at time of purchase and opt to upgrade to 512GB of solid-state storage. The ultra-slim form-factor (as with the Air) necessitates dumping our notion of conventional hard drive sizes to fit into ever tighter notebook designs. Word has it the off the shelf configurations of early Retina MacBooks may ship with EITHER Samsung OR Toshiba SSD modules with slightly different performance factors - and you really won't know WHICH SSD manufacturer has been used until after the fact.

Early Rev A/Rev B MacBook Air SSD Insights

Apple changed the TYPE of SSD in the original MacBook Air: When first introduced, the Rev. A Air used a PATA - Parallel ATA 40-Pin ZIF interface 1.8" 5mm thick SSD made by Samsung. See this article about the MTron Mobi PATA SSD at which can be used to upgrade/replace an SSD in the Rev A MacBooks.

SATA 1.8" SSD For 2008-2009 MacBook Airs

OWC 1.8" SSD for Air

With Custom Cable

Things changed again, with Later Rev B and subsequent models of the MacBook Air. Apple switched to an unusual, somewhat non-standard Low-Insertion-Force LIF cable SATA I Interface rather unique to Samsung and perhaps custom spec'd for Apple.

Learn more about OS X compatible flash memory hard drive options for Macintosh desktop and laptop computers: Visit the Home Page of Apple Solid-State Drive Upgrades for New Flash Storage Product Announcements, Best Performing SSD Prices, Cheap Flash Drive Deals, and Upgrade Tips.

Tags : macbook air compatible ssd, solid state drive for macbook air, ssd card for macbook air, macbook air blade ssd, macbook air ssd module

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