Which configuration is faster? Right now my laptop has a 1TB hard drive with a 16GB cache SSD. Would I see any improvement swithching out the 16GB SSD with a hybrid drive for boot and use the hard drive for storage or am I better off right now as far as speed goes.
Note: I am aware that using an SSD for boot would be the fastest option, I am just exploring other options and most SSD's are out of my price range at the moment.
There will be essentially no benefit from moving the 16GB to a Hybrid SSD other than capacity. Most hybrids have 4GB or 8GB of cache to their spinning disk where you have 16GB now, so you actually would have less space for common things to be placed for quick retrieval.
If you need more capacity then the hybrid drive may be teh way to go, if you want more consistent performance then just wait and save for a full-on SSD.
The Intel caching solution is inferior to the Dataplex caching drives. Unfortunately, Dataplex drives, while still available, are generally in EOL status (see http://ocz.com/consumer/synapse-sata-3-ssd). Dataplex is also only suited to Win 7. It sometimes runs in Win 8 but it is not supported.
Dataplex software caching runs anywhere from 3X to 10 X faster than Intel's caching. While running under Win 7 I had a OCZ caching a WD 640 GB HDD giving me approximately 480 MB/s speed.
chesteracorgi - Just about all of the OCZ consumer oriented ssd's have reached end of life and are no longer in production due to financial problems. The only two consumer ssd's left are a few Vector and Vertex models.
The reason that Synapse and other Dataplex caching drives have reached EOL status is that Samsung bought Novello, the owner and producer of Dataplex caching last January; and Samsung is not granting new licenses to outside OEMs. Samsung seems to be planning to utilize the Dataplex exclusively in its own products. However, they continue to support existing Dataplex drives.