Upgrading into an SSD and question about which one as well as possible other upgrade

Hey there all, so I am planning on upgrading my gaming rig that I am currently running to an SSD drive to maximize loading and booting on it. The rig is soon to be about 2 and and a half years old and I would like to start upgrading/replacing some parts to keep it running smoothly and up to the standards that most things are require.

Currently my build is:

Motherboard : Asus M4A78T-E (Cheaped out on only this piece really when building it and looking to possibly upgrade, question following)
Memory: 3x Cosair Vengeance 4gb SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800)
GPU: Radeon HD 6870
CPU: AMD Phenom II x6 1050T
HDD: Seagate Barracuda 7200 750gb 7200 rpm 32mb sata 3.0gb/s
PSU : Ultra LSP750 750-watt
OS: Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit


So here I am some 30 months after my initial build and the only thing I have done is put more and faster RAM into the rig. I have determined that without question I will be installing an SSD this oncoming weekend but as I have researched more and more I have come with a few questions.

1. My motherboard is a SATA II, while SSD will work on SATA II they do not reach their full potential unless running on SATA III. As my motherboard is a bit outdated and one of the cheap points of my initial build should I go back and upgrade my motherboard as well if I am going to be upgrading into an SSD? Is the difference between SATA II and SATA III that noticeable in real world?

2. As I have skimmed through entry level SSDs I have currently narrowed it down to between the Samsung 840 and the Samsung 840 Pro. I am not partial to only buying what is most popular but I do have a bit of trust in what is most popular. I have read some others who swear by brands such as OCZ. Is the 840 pro that much of a upgrade from the 840, I understand it is the write speeds more than anything else that is different between the two of them. Are there other options that I should consider from other brands that will provide me with a bit more for my dollar because they are not top name brands?

3. I have been reading up on things such as dual harddrives, installing my OS and a few programs onto the SSD while I save all my other files to my origional harddrive so I do not clutter up the smaller sized SSD. If I am typically playing video games on this rig but also doing things like photoshop would I be alright going with the standard 120/128gb ssd or would it really be wise of me to simply just go ahead with a 256 gb ssd right off the bat and not have to worry nearly as much?

I really appreciate any feedback I can get on any and all of these questions, if you are not too confident in one of the questions but have a good answer in another please do not hesitate to give your knowledge, it is truly appreciated and welcomed.

Thank you and look forward to hearing back! :D
4 answers Last reply
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  1. 1- If you change your motherboard, you mind as well build an entirely new machine based on the technology available today... new RAM, new CPU, etc. You will not notice the difference between SATA II and III on your existing hardware.

    2- again, you will not see a difference in performance between any of the top 5 manufacturers of SSD's. Install whatever's least expensive.

    3- IMO a 256GB SSD is a minimum
  2. I am using a little over half of a 256GB (238GB formatted) SSD. Yes, I could probably cut it down some, but it is definitely a convenience.
    The difference between a magnetic HDD and a SSD on a SATA 3Gb/s port is huge compared to the difference between a SSD on a 3Gb/s port and one on a 6Gb/s port. As a matter of fact, my primary system is using a Crucial M4 mSATA SSD on a 3Gb/s port and it is quite speedy.
  3. Stephen Stelzer said:
    1. My motherboard is a SATA II, while SSD will work on SATA II they do not reach their full potential unless running on SATA III. As my motherboard is a bit outdated and one of the cheap points of my initial build should I go back and upgrade my motherboard as well if I am going to be upgrading into an SSD? Is the difference between SATA II and SATA III that noticeable in real world?


    If you are typically just gaming and using standard software such as photoshop then no, the difference between SATA II & SATA III is not that noticable.

    Stephen Stelzer said:
    2. As I have skimmed through entry level SSDs I have currently narrowed it down to between the Samsung 840 and the Samsung 840 Pro. I am not partial to only buying what is most popular but I do have a bit of trust in what is most popular. I have read some others who swear by brands such as OCZ. Is the 840 pro that much of a upgrade from the 840, I understand it is the write speeds more than anything else that is different between the two of them. Are there other options that I should consider from other brands that will provide me with a bit more for my dollar because they are not top name brands?


    With your stated typical use you wouldn't notice the difference in performance between the Samsung 840 & Samsung 840 Pro.

    Stephen Stelzer said:
    3. I have been reading up on things such as dual harddrives, installing my OS and a few programs onto the SSD while I save all my other files to my origional harddrive so I do not clutter up the smaller sized SSD. If I am typically playing video games on this rig but also doing things like photoshop would I be alright going with the standard 120/128gb ssd or would it really be wise of me to simply just go ahead with a 256 gb ssd right off the bat and not have to worry nearly as much?


    Yes, get the 256GB SSD right off so you don't have to worry nearly as much.
    Read/Write performance will also be better (even on a SATA II port) since 256GB SSDs have more NAND chips in them than 128GB SSDs.
  4. have a look at this combo on Newegg's Shellshocker special
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/ComboBundleDetails.aspx?ItemList=Combo.1322700

    ASUS P8Z77-V LK LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS (Model:P8Z77-V LK) $129.99
    1x Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K (Model:BX80637I53570K) $219.99
    1x SAMSUNG 840 Series MZ-7TD120BW 2.5" 120GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) (Model:MZ-7TD120BW) $109.99
    1x CORSAIR XMS 8GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMX8GX3M1A1600C11 (Model:CMX8GX3M1A1600C11) $69.99


    $530 value on sale today for $430 after rebates (465 before.) and would make an excellent start on a gaming build to hold you over for the next 30 months IMO. Basically all you would need to do is upgrade the video card (not that you need to yet) , add in a good cooler for overclocking, and throw another 8gb stick of ram in to enable dual channel.
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