June 27, 2010 2:17 AM Subscribe
Should I get an SSD, if so which one?
posted by missmagenta to computers & internet (15 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I have a pretty decent gaming rig, except for the hard drive. Its an old IDE drive so I know whatever I get will be an improvement but I still want to get the best, or at the very least, the best for my money.
I'm currently using about 300Gb of the 500Gb drive *but* that includes 2 copies of the OS a bunch of games/programs that I'm not using and all my data files for the last approx 5-8 years (whenever I got a new computer I plugged in a new hard drive along with the old ones and when I ran out of room I copied it all to this new 500GB drive... I'm a digital hoarder)
My main concern is loading times (which are just painful right now) but also performance. Installing anything feels like it takes forever - Sims 3 World Adventures took over an hour IIRC.
Load times have been a problem in most games I've played recently although performance has only really been an issue in Sims 3. For the most part Dragon Age ran fine on max settings (few problems in really big fights with lots of spell effects going off), Sim 3 performs like my virus scanner is permanently running in the background but I'm not holding my breath for that being much different with a faster hard drive. I think the problem is most the game itself.
I've been torn between the WD Velociraptor and an SSD for some time now but I just can't make my mind up on which or whether I should bother at all. Both options are rather pricey! Looking at Tom's Hardware the max read throughput on the 600Gb Velociraptor is 157Mb/s and the 160GB Intel x-25-m is 232Mb/s - on that basis I'd get the Velociraptor, its not as good as the SSD but its still magnitudes above my current 39Mb/s and its a 600Gb drive but the gaming performance charts are a whole different story. The Intel is listed at 129Mb/s and the Velociraptor only scores 23.2Mb/s. The SSD's weren't even twice as fast as the SATA drives on max read throughput but on gaming throughput they're nearly 6x as fast! If I tried to compare all the charts, I think I'd go insane.
On paper, clearly the SSD's have it but all these numbers don't mean a lot. Will there be a significantly noticeable difference between 7200rpm drive vs 10000rpm drive vs SSD and is that worth the cost/lack of drive space.
Obviously, whichever I choose I'm still going to keep my 500GB IDE drive in their too for general storage.
So, hive mind - which (if any) new hard drive should I get?
Also - I'm in the UK so bear in mind that things tend to cost more here than in the US and also stuff available in the US may not be available here yet.