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Asus P7P55D mobo and samsung 840 pro SSD

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August 2, 2013 7:29:48 AM

Hi folks,

I built my computer back in December 2010 - i7 860 CPU on an Asus P7P55D mobo. Recently my old hitachi 1TB hard drive has been chugging, so I picked up a samsung 840 pro SSD 128 GB and reinstalled windows 7 on it.

However, after running some speed tests on it, I'm only getting about read speeds of about 220 MB/s - far from the advertised 530 MB/s. Would this be due to the fact that the motherboard is SATA 3.0 GB/s instead of 6.0 GB/s? It's definitely faster than the hitachi (about twice as fast), but I want to squeeze all the performance I can out of this bad boy - any suggestions?

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a b Ĉ ASUS
a c 172 G Storage
a b Ô Samsung
August 2, 2013 7:35:40 AM

Yes, it is the sata speed that limits the sequential rate. 220 is about right.
But, as you noted, the ssd is definitely quicker. That is because the OS does 90% small reads and writes which are not affected by sata speed.
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August 2, 2013 7:50:17 AM

Thanks geofelt, appreciate the quick response! On a side note, if I want to get a new mobo that supports 6.0 GB/s SATA, are there ones that will support my i7 860 CPU as well as the new generation of intel procs?
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a b G Storage
August 2, 2013 7:52:04 AM

Keep in mind that 530 MB/s is the max theoretical speed, even with a 6GB/s controller you'd reach that only in some rare scenarios. You'd probably be more around 400 or 450 MB/s because of the overheads generated by different components. So yeah, if we divide by two because of your controller, 220 MB/s sounds about right. But read and write speed isn't the only advantage for SSD, there's also the latency. All in all, even with older disk controllers, SSD are still worth it and make a big difference. I wouldn't change the motherboard just because you want a 6 GB/s controller, if you change motherboard, might as well go with a new CPU then. Or you could postpone this upgrade to later, SSD gives enough performance gain even on a 3 GB/s controller, not sure if you would notice such a big difference with a 6GB/s controller. Always remember that benchmarks numbers are one thing, but the perception of speed in real life scenarios doesn't always scale up accordingly.
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a b Ĉ ASUS
a c 172 G Storage
a b Ô Samsung
August 2, 2013 8:16:33 AM

Your I7- 860 is several generations old. It installs in a 1156 socket which is becoming harder to find. As far as I know, the P55 chipset and the others (H55, H57,Q57) support sata 3gb only.
You are looking at LGA 1155, 1150, or 2011 motherboards where most of the chipsets support some 6gb sata. Your cpu is not compatible with those.
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a c 290 G Storage
a b Ô Samsung
August 2, 2013 11:48:22 AM

Well, you already know that your motherboard only supports SATA 2 3Gb/s devices. None of the P55 motherboards supported SATA 3 6Gb/s. In addition, those motherboards are no longer in production. Newegg has only one P55 motherboard left.

I have three computers in my home office. One of them just happens to be an Intel Core i7 860 CPU based system with an Asus P55i Sabertooth motherboard and a Samsung 470 SATA 2 3Gb/s 256GB ssd. When I looked into upgrades I came up with 2 possible solutions.

1. Upgrade the cpu and motherboard and recycle the existing memory.

2. If the existing P55 motherboard has an available PCI-e 2.0 x4 or greater slot, then consider upgrading to an affordable consumer oriented PCI-e based ssd when they are introduced at the end of the year. Of course that means having to wait for the new PCI-e ssd's.

Personally, I'd like to try a PCI-e based ssd just to see what happens so I am waiting until the Black Friday sales in November before making a decision.
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