So I propped a new SSD in my 2009 Macbook, and now it's taking about 5 seconds for EFI to pick up the drive and start booting.
When I first inserted the drive i held the key to set it as my default boot device, and also set it as default in system preferences once I'd booted properly. The boot once the apple logo shows up is really quick, but prior to that not so much.
Most sites suggest I reset.. I believe it was the PRAM, I forget what but it was hold command-option-P-R while rebooting, I went through the reboot cycle three 'chimes' worth doing that and it didn't improve anything.
For bonus here's a video of it booting, I hit the power button at around 0:59
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZUAQLWwl ... ature=plcp