Best SSDs For The Money: April 2011

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clonazepam

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If people really want a $500+ range maybe just have 2 recommendations for the $500+ segment. Of all the available SSDs priced over $500 and are worthy of the price, specify 2 models. One model is a honorable mention for fastest of the fastest and another honorable mention for maximum storage capacity. Then you can just say for over $500 u can get this model that's the fastest, or this model for its maximum capacity while still maintaining excellent speeds.
 

kkiddu

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Thanks, Toms. Please give us a hierarchy chart for the next month. The CPU/GPU chart links have become indispensable.
 

blue7053

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After finding 3 pages of lists of lists, and just before I blew my top, I saw your note to me:

"For those of you too busy or without the confidence to read test data, we have selected the fastest for the leastest."

Thanks, Guys.
 

Mark Heath

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"Steam has a bad habit of not letting you choose where to put your games once it's installed"

not true, you can drag and drop the steam directory anywhere, even onto a totally new computer and it will work.
Pretty what they mean is that ALL games must be installed to the same place as steam e.g. you can't install steam and tf2 to one drive then have hl2 and cod installed to a second drive.
 
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Thank you so much, this will save me a lot of time in the future!
 

FamousRon

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It's apparent that we all enjoy toms hardware...
Thanks to Bestofmedia Network...
WHO the hell is 'Bestofmedia' ?

Toms hardware guys do good work... please provide us with a way to let you know we appreciate their effort...

Famous Ron
 

bit_user

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Please create 2011 SSD charts!

Also, I'm puzzled by the lack of IOPS. For boot drive & application load time, I'd expect read IOPS to correlate better than read throughput. Is this true?

BTW, thanks for this. I am finally planning to buy a SSD boot/programs drive, this year.
 
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I just bought an Intel 510 SSD (120GB) and it works really well. I've never used a computer this fast before!
 
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+1 on the request for adding raid0 configurations. Interested in knowing how the pair of raid0 AData SSDs from the System Builder Marathon, (and my new PC,:) stack up in this chart.
 

madmonkeymusic

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Great article! There has been so much speculation about SDD speeds (high and vs low end,crucial vs OCZ, 3mb/s vs 6mb/s) so the take home message that ANY current gen SSD vs a mechanical is the most significant performance gain is super helpful. I just did my first build with a Vertex 2 80G as my windows 7 boot drive and I have to say I notice a huge real world difference between that and any of the previous computers I have had.
 

Proximon

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I recently installed Win 7 fresh on a new machine, and watched my HDD usage. I was surprised at how slowly my used space grew. I currently have quite a bit on there and I'm still under 100GB.
So, I finally felt comfortable buying a fast drive and I had a loose budget range of $200-320. For me, it came down to the Crucial C300 128GB or the Intel 320 160GB. Both good, reliable choices.
I chose the Intel drive for several reasons - first, the size of course. Second, the speed. Advertised speeds do not tell the whole story and the drive is very comparable to the prior Sandforce drives.
Then there is the failure rate. I knew I could have a lot of confidence in this product, and that's always the most important factor.
Finally, I realized Intel would keep this drive available for some time. It will be easy for me to add another in RAID 0, increasing the capacity and speed if needed.
I got this with coupon for $285, and today it's available with coupon for $295. I might have gone with the C300 with no remorse, but I suspect this was the better solution.
 
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"Steam has a bad habit of not letting you choose where to put your games once it's installed, so dropping the app on your system drive is going to require you free up plenty of room for any Steam-based games you buy."

You can move your steamapps folder off drive, and create a link (using mklink) in the original steamapps folder to the off drive location, now all your games are on a seperate drive.
first, close steam, and move the steamapps folder to your D:\SteamLink\ folder.
Open a command prompt as admin (hit start, type cmd, then ctrl+shift+enter), and use the command:
"mklink /d "C:\Programs\Steam\steamapps\" "D:\SteamLink\steamapps". (if you have windows xp, you need to install a microsoft module to enable this command, consul the internets for help)

Once the link is created, start steam, it will be none the wiser as to what you've done.


The same strategy can be used to move apps you accidently install to your C drive to another location, to move users folders (this can be tough), and to move select apps onto your SSD (like this weeks favorite game).
I advise against moving anything from the windows folder in this manner, in some cases it can be done, but I've had issues with system updates after doing so.
 

csm101

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good thing to start this. hoping to get a SSD by the end of this year. so by that time this article will be the first thing to reference. and by that time price should go bit below too.
 

ixlr8

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Watch out for Crucial M4 SSD's. They do not work well with power saving features of laptops. The LPM signalling is broken and many different platforms are having problems, from Mac's to my XPS17. No problem with the C300 series.
They do work while laptops are plugged in, and very few problems with desktops. Fantastic speed, when they work.
There are 17 threads about problems on the first page of the Crucial forums.
 

ixlr8

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Watch out for Crucial M4 SSD's. They do not work well with power saving features of laptops. The LPM signalling is broken and many different platforms are having problems, from Mac's to my XPS17. No problem with the C300 series.
They do work while laptops are plugged in, and very few problems with desktops. Fantastic speed, when they work.
There are 17 threads about problems on the first page of the Crucial forums.
 
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Looking an the newegg reviews of the OCZ Vertex 2 (90 GB version), I'm amazed by several reviews in a row about complete drive failure after just a few months. Any thoughts on this??
 
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