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Question fast NVMe + slower NVMe OR 2x slower NVMe in RAID 0 (Adata XPG SX8200 Pro or Intel 660p)

Given: I currently have a single Intel 660p 2TB SSD as my only storage; Sequential Read/Write of 1,800 MBps.

Problem: I'd like faster boot times, and lower latency for application launches.

Proposed Solution: I am seriously considering purchasing and installing an Adata XPG SX 8200 Pro 512GB as my primary boot drive, and relegating the 660p as my storage/steam drive; Sequential Read/Write of 3,500 / 2,300 Mbps. The cost is only $75 for the 8200 Pro. However, it occurs to me that another option would be to purchase another Intel 660p 2TB, instead of the Adata, and place both into a hardware RAID 0 array using the onboard controller. This should result in Sequential performance specs being within the DMI 3.0 limitation, and the volume latency being split in half, minus the negligible overhead.

One thing: If you're going to state that RAID 0 arrays only benefit artificial benchmarks, and have no real world advantage, then I'm willing to listen with an open mind. But please do not reference that six year old Tom's article as your source of knowledge. I honestly suspect anyone who does references that article has never used a RAID array. I personally have, but I'm not sure if it would be a better option to buy the 8200 Pro for $75 or another 660p for the current price of $195. Write endurance and SLC write cache exhaustion are not factors in my dilemma.

Thank you in advance for your input.
 
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anort3

Titan
Moderator
: I'd like faster boot times, and lower latency for application launches.
Buy a faster single drive. RAID INCREASES latency making the very reason for having your OS on an SSD in the first place slower. Those sequential numbers look fancy on paper but they only matter when reading and writing data to another device that's just as fast. The reason an SSD and NVMe in particular are so fast with an OS is the deep queue speeds. Your 660p uses QLC and is on the slow end of NVMe.
 

jimmysmitty

Champion
Moderator
Buy a faster single drive. RAID INCREASES latency making the very reason for having your OS on an SSD in the first place slower. Those sequential numbers look fancy on paper but they only matter when reading and writing data to another device that's just as fast. The reason an SSD and NVMe in particular are so fast with an OS is the deep queue speeds. Your 660p uses QLC and is on the slow end of NVMe.
Just to add to this:


Down a bit is access time. It more than doubles for reads compared to a single drive. Writes remain somewhat the same.

The thing to remember about a RAID 0 is that it has to read from both drives at once instead of pulling the file from a single drive. In todays world with the performance an SSD gives alone its not worth doubling the cost of your drives and doubling (ore more) the potential failure rate as once a drive fails in RAID 0 thats it, everything is gone.
 

Rogue Leader

It's a trap!
Moderator
Either way should work for you and I guess you can just make it about money or go for the raid option. Raid zero works well with SSDs because you can really use that extra bandwidth because they’re so fast
This is wrong and terrible advice see:

RAID INCREASES latency making the very reason for having your OS on an SSD in the first place slower.
Which is the correct answer

I'm doubling down: Switching from LGA 2011v3 to AM4 for higher IPC, and adding a second NVMe SSD and placing both into a RAID 0 array. Thanks for all your input.
If you haven't bought this yet don't. RAID 0 is a waste of time/money with NVMe drives in real life useage.
 
Rogue Respectfully I appreciate your taking the time to offer your input, but in this specific case I disagree, which is okay. All due respect, I believe that your conclusion is based on old information. Whenever you have a free moment, please consider watching the first video that I responded with. It summarizes what I independently learned years ago from past experiences. If you still disagree afterwards, again, that is completely fine. If everyone had the same opinion, then I would argue there'd be little reason for Tom's Hardware to exist =>
 
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Rogue Leader

It's a trap!
Moderator
Rogue Respectfully I appreciate your taking the time to offer your input, but in this specific case I disagree, which is okay. All due respect, I believe that your conclusion is based on old information. Whenever you have a free moment, please consider watching the first video that I responded with. It summarizes what I independently learned years ago from past experiences. If you still disagree afterwards, again, that is completely fine. If everyone had the same opinion, then I would argue there'd be little reason for Tom's Hardware to exist =>

Appreciate your reply but I disagree. I did take a look at the video but its of the same vintage as the link provided by jimmysmitty.

Benchmarks are great, but real life the added latency makes it worse.
 

Mezoxin

Great
Nov 3, 2019
142
17
95
4
Your 660p uses QLC and is on the slow end of NVMe.
The main downside of 660p is that its DRAMless which lowers some performance such as random writes and consistency which makes the performance drop in some occassions to be worse than some mechanical drives

I think the user would benefit more from buying the X8200 pro as their main driver while keeping the 660p for storage
 
Mezoxin The Intel 660p does indeed have SLC write cache. It is not DRAM-less.

The 2 TB variant of the Intel 660p comes standard with 24 GB of SLC cache. In addition, the drive can dynamically fold up to 280 GB of available QLC NAND into 70 GB of SLC cache, for a total of 94 GB of SLC write cache.

The only way to saturate the SLC cache, and write to the slower QLC NAND, is to create a synthetic workload. It does not happen in real world enthusiast workloads.
 
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