SSD performance gains? 53 replies

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#1 9 years ago

I'm about to buy the new macbook pro 15" with 9400m + 9600 512mb...

want to use it for gaming, photoshop and logic pro, which is the most demanding programs I'm going to use..

is it worth upgrading to SSD? seems that the energy consumption is like 10% lower on average for the HD alone, which is worth nothing since it's only 20% of the overall powerconsumption on non-gaming mode.

is there anything a SSD really offers compared to its price?

got a mac with 5400 rpm that works fine... but this mac isnt for gaming, so if you can tell me if 5400 rpm will work with gaming too or 7200 or a SSD is better?




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#2 9 years ago

As far as I know most Macs (especially macbooks) aren't really meant for gaming, unless you want to play older games.


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Mr. Pedantic

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#3 9 years ago

Ugh. You would notice a difference in load times and such for games, whether that's worth the extra $2 or so per GB is up to you, really. As far as I know most people manage to play games fine on 5400rpm HDDs in their laptops, even now the number of mainstream-level laptops that have 7200rpm drives is quite rare.




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#4 9 years ago

The only difference you'll notice between a 5400RPM/7200RPM/SSD is load times. On an SSD or faster platter disk, Windows will boot up quicker, and programs will open faster. You may get better transfer speeds, but nothing too drastic. And there's the added physical sturdiness factor as well. A solid-state disk has no moving parts, and thus is much less likely to sustain crippling damage in the event of a drop or other physical shock.




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#5 9 years ago

I entertained the thought of getting a 32 or 64GB SSD for my next desktop gaming rig, but the cons I've read about them kinda turned me off to the idea. Basically they read really fast but write slowly. You have to read the fine print so the speak because many talk of fast transfer, but that is mainly the rate at which they can read data or transfer to a HDD, rather than file transfer where lots of writing has to be done to the SSD the other direction. At that they can be pretty abysmal, and the more writing you do on the SSD, the more it lessens the life of it, which is more noticeable on some models than others depending on it's build quality and design.

Still though, if you use one that's just big enough for the OS and core files which stay in place and don't get written to a lot, it can be practical and speed up app and prog launch, defrags, installs, scans, etc. It would also help not only sp game level load times, but mp load times, and there every second counts if you want to be first to a weapons cache or ambush spot. They really need to come down in price and write better before they'll be widely accepted though.




Junk angel

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#6 9 years ago

a) If you think of gaming and only graphics work ( I presume non-professional (although the difference there is also more or less gone as long as you have a good display), a macbook is not really a good investment. If I were you I'd rather look into more pc brands which also tend to have alumium cases - many do, or at least combine them with plastics) b) I'd say it's still going to be a few years until they drop prices to be a good investment. Right now, the only thing an SSD might help you with, is, when you run out of ram in photoshop (can happen if you work with very very large graphics) The ssd scratchdisk is noticeably faster. That said, what the state of apple ssd drivers?




Kilobyte

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#7 9 years ago

I'd recommend a 5400RPM drive.

The MacOS X is not really designed with SSDs in mind, and it will quickly wear out early model SSDs. With the cost still up there, and the space minimal, it would not be advantageous.

Furthermore, as I said, the space will be minimal. With your editing programs, free space will be needed. Even more so with Logic Pro. I would recommend 250gb minimum. A 500gb, or 1,000gb/1tb drive would be preferable.

Even if you plan on storing the data on an external device, you will need 80gb minimum to allow for any sort of functional use out of the software. Which means you will be looking at a 128gb SSD.




Sgt. D. Pilla

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#8 9 years ago
Basically they read really fast but write slowly. You have to read the fine print so the speak because many talk of fast transfer, but that is mainly the rate at which they can read data or transfer to a HDD, rather than file transfer where lots of writing has to be done to the SSD the other direction. At that they can be pretty abysmal, and the more writing you do on the SSD, the more it lessens the life of it, which is more noticeable on some models than others depending on it's build quality and design.

They were all Myths though, Intels latest firmware up'd write speeds of the majority of their SSDs to 80MBPS+ (Compared to 20MB or so for a 7200 HDD...). And the life time while being true, is exagerated. A typical life time of an SSD is 10 years, by which time the HDD will be full, dead, or otherwise massivly out dated and due for replacement anyway. Considering mechanical HDDs last 5 years or so average, this puts SSDs life time longer, read and write speeds faster then any mechanical HDD. The Myth on SSDs and life time is the same as that on Plasmas, people say they burn in easy, when in reality you need a static image for 24+ hours before you even start to notice burn in, AND for the past 2 years Burn in in Plasma has been null and void due to whitewashing (Which almost all even semi decent plasma displays have) I have a source for the SSD thing, but it was a number of months ago, If I find it i'll post as I usually do --EDIT-- That was quick lol...

To get that very high speed the process will have to write big blocks (which also simplifies the calculation). We assume perfect wear leveling which means we need to fill the disk 2 million times to get to the write endurance limit. 2 million (write endurance) x 64G (capacity) divided by 80M bytes / sec gives the endurance limited life in seconds. That's a meaningless number - which needs to be divided by seconds in an hour, hours in a day etc etc to give... The end result is 51 years!

http://www.storagesearch.com/ssdmyths-endurance.html I lied, 51 years for an SSD lifetime, compared to 5 for a mechanical HDD. Thus, SSDs are faster, last longer, smaller, cooler, cheaper (to run). Whats not to love? And with prices being just 2$ per GB (Compared to around 60c per GB for a HDD) the advantages are obviously well worth it. and more to sum it up...

As a sanity check - I found some data from Mtron (one of the few SSD oems who do quote endurance in a way that non specialists can understand). In the data sheet for their 32G product - which incidentally has 5 million cycles write endurance - they quote the write endurance for the disk as "greater than 85 years assuming 100G / day erase/write cycles" - which involves overwriting the disk 3 times a day.

Most knowledgable people will know physical HDDs will be worn out (Slower, lounder, maybe not even working) after trying to overwrite the disk 3 times a day ...And to backup my speed claims...

On May 5, 2009, Photofast announced the G-Monster-PROMISE PCIe SSD with capacity choices from 128GB to 1TB, with 1000MB/s of read/write speeds

< Thats from Wiki, I closed the tab though lol ...Further backup up my speed claims and that Intel firmware update... http://www.bit-tech.net/news/hardware/2009/04/14/intel-releases-ssd-firmware-update/1




Mr. Pedantic

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#9 9 years ago
Whats not to love? And with prices being just 2$ per GB (Compared to around 60c per GB for a HDD) the advantages are obviously well worth it.

I'm sorry. I don't know much about SSDs, but this is complete bullshit. In New Zealand mechanical hard drives can be had for as little as 15c/GB, and the best-value SSD is nearing $5/GB. In the States it's 8c/GB for HDDs and about $1.90/GB for SSDs. What exaggeration. What complete and utter swill.

...And to backup my speed claims...

All your quote tells me is that I should put off buying one right now.




Kilobyte

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#10 9 years ago
Sgt. D. Pilla;4912509 SSD Myths and Legends - "write endurance" article in STORAGE search .com ... 51 years for an SSD lifetime, compared to 5 for a mechanical HDD.

I have learned to be skeptical.

5 years is the limit for a poorly made mechanical HDD. After that point, the drive begins to fail. Many mechanical drives are designed to last for 10 years, without failure.

We assume perfect wear leveling which means we need to fill the disk 2 million times to get to the write endurance limit.

Following the math on that page, taking 2,000,000 and dividing that into the life span. It comes down to 17 days for each block.

Which gives the drive a usability period of about 1-2 years before the number of bad sectors becomes noticeable. Probably around 5 for usability.

So while the drive failure is around 50 years, it will likely not experience even wear. Putting the actual failure of the drive closer to 5-40 years.

Unless I am mistaken, 50 years is for complete failure of the drive. Not the point at which the drive becomes unusable. Which means that the drive can be expected to fail sooner.

Based on that information, I would estimate the life span of an SSD at 7-30 years, depending on wear patterns. The given rule is to cut that in half, which leaves 3-15 years, depending on wear.