I'm building a new gaming pc and have heard conflicting reports about the lifespan of a ssd. I want to get a ssd for faster loading in games and I heard it can help with stutter issues as well (ie. Skyrim). I can't seem to get a solid answer as to the average lifespan of a ssd. I heard they only last on average 2-3 years depending on size and how many times your computer writes to it a day. Is that the case? Cause I don't want to drop $150+ bones on one if it's gonna die in 2 years... I'll just live with the slower loading screens.
Bottom Line: Should I be concerned about the lifespan at all? If it helps, I'm interested in a crucial m4 256gb, as amazon has them on sale for $169.
It's hard to know for certain since most SSDs in use aren't all that old. Early generations of SSDs were more expensive and also had more issues with firmware and support from the chipset and OS, so they would often run into problems.
You might consider the 250 GB Samsung 840 at Amazon for $170, it's faster than the Crucial m4. On the other hand, while the m4 is older and slower, it's also stood the test of time. Plus it has more write endurance than the 840.
ssd wont generally help gaming, yes it will shorten load times in some but not all and overall performance as most games wont be increased as they dont employ direct streaming of textures. the odd exception like rage and black ops.
most of the time the textures are buffered in ram then sent to the gfx as and when there needed. and only load off the hdd/ssd at the beginning of a level. so while ssd's give you fast loading times for your o.s they have little real impact on gaming.
your best bet is 2 identical hdds in raid 0. you will get most of the benefits of an ssd without the drawback of limited space and high cost per gig.
i have ran a raid 0 config for the last 3 years on 2x1tb spinpoint f3's and get very high average speeds compared to 1 drive.
windows still takes 40+ seconds to boot but i dont have any texture pop issues unless there actually draw distance created (when a low rez object turns to high rez) and in games where texture pop is reported as an issue it tends not to be for me.
on the whole my system runs very smooth with little or no delay when opening multiple apps. so to me raid 0 is the better option for now over ssd.
I can recommend SSDs! OS, Apps and Games load much faster, your total system response's more quickly.
SSDs usually die because of software failures in firmware or dying NANDs. Wearing out is really seldom. Guys at extremesystems has written hundreds of TB one on SSD. If you want to reach this amount you need to fill up the complete multiple times a day and this for years.
Samsung and Intel SSDs are known for good reliability. I'm using a Samsung 830 and a 840 and am very satisfied.