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Are 10,000 rpm drives worth the cost?

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Last response: in Storage
September 21, 2010 2:31:07 AM

I am ordering a new system to run Microsoft Flight Simulator (FS9 & FSX). The basic specs are:

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R Motherboard
Intel Core i7 950 3.06GHz - Overclocked to 4.00GHz
GeForce GTX 460 Sonic 2048MB Graphics
Corsair XMS3 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 12800C9 1600MHz RAM

.. and I was thinking of 2 x Western Digital VelociRaptor 600GB 10000RPM SATA as the hard drives.

But the latter add a lot of money (like £300 +) to the system and I am having second thoughts. Can anyone say whether adding 10,000 rpm drives to the above rather than 7,200 rpm drives would make much difference to games performance? Over £300 worth (if any??)?

I'd really appreciate feedback. Thanks,

Martin

More about : 000 rpm drives worth cost

a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 2:38:23 AM

martinlest said:
I am ordering a new system to run Microsoft Flight Simulator (FS9 & FSX). The basic specs are:

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R Motherboard
Intel Core i7 950 3.06GHz - Overclocked to 4.00GHz
GeForce GTX 460 Sonic 2048MB Graphics
Corsair XMS3 6GB (3x2GB) DDR3 12800C9 1600MHz RAM

.. and I was thinking of 2 x Western Digital VelociRaptor 600GB 10000RPM SATA as the hard drives.

But the latter add a lot of money (like £300 +) to the system and I am having second thoughts. Can anyone say whether adding 10,000 rpm drives to the above rather than 7,200 rpm drives would make much difference to games performance? Over £300 worth (if any??)?

I'd really appreciate feedback. Thanks,

Martin


In My Opinion the no 10000RPM SATA drive is worth it any more. You can get the space you need w/ better performance out of a Solid State Drive. Including slightly better gaming performance according to some. However in terms of gaming neither will make that big of a difference.

When talking about gaming the difference between a 10,000 rpm and 7,200 rpm drive is almost undetectable. The time it takes to boot your computer will be noticeably faster, as will the load time of the game, but in terms of actual game play not much of a difference. 10,000 RPM drives still have their niche, but the gaming community can really get better performance at a similar price for a SSD.

In short, if you don't want your hard drive holding you back, you can spend less than that much money on a quality SSD that will be able to house your Operating system and a game or 2 while providing the best performance you'll be able to find. SSD + 7,200 or 5,400 rpm HDD is the way to go.
a c 415 G Storage
September 21, 2010 2:40:29 AM

For the most part games read everything they need from the hard drive into RAM when they first start up - once they're up and running the speed of the hard drive is really not an issue. But you have to know your game - some of them may load new stuff from the drive when events such as scene changes occur, or when new characters appear on the screen in an online multiplayer game.

So for the most part you can expect that the extra money for Velociraptors won't speed the game up that much once it's loaded. The reason to buy them would be to make the system boot up and get your games started much more quickly. And for the cost of a couple of Velociraptors, you're probably a lot better off buying a single SSD - you'll get a lot better performance for your dollar. The only downside is that you won't have as much space available.
Related resources
September 21, 2010 2:50:22 AM

Thanks - I do need quite a bit of space: SSD would cost a fortune for the capacities I would need for FS with all the addons.
September 21, 2010 2:51:48 AM

.. oh, and using Process Monitor one can see that Flight Simulator accesses the hard drives very intensively once a flight is under way, loading terrian and so on. Maybe 10000 rpm drives would make a difference with this software (the PC is only for Flightsim).
a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 2:58:15 AM

martinlest said:
Thanks - I do need quite a bit of space: SSD would cost a fortune for the capacities I would need for FS with all the addons.


I don't know the pricing where you might be, but you can generally get a SSD of 128 GB or 160 GB for < the price you listed for the Velociraptor. If you still don't think that's enough space, then something like 2x 320 GB Samsung Spinpoint f4s will give you performance that will be so close to the performance of the Velociraptors that you won't know the difference for ~100 USD.
a c 415 G Storage
September 21, 2010 3:06:50 AM

mgrzTX said:
If you still don't think that's enough space, then something like 2x 320 GB Samsung Spinpoint f4s will give you performance that will be so close to the performance of the Velociraptors
The Spinpoint F4's are "green" drives with a slower spin rate. Putting them into RAID might increase their transfer rate, but it won't do squat for their access time.

So it depends on whether the game is stalling because it's reading a few big files (requires fast transfer rate) or lots of little files (requires fast access time). If it's the latter, then you'll need Velociraptors or (way better) an SSD to improve performance.
a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 3:18:18 AM

You have a nice system and you dumb-ed it down with that video card. Upgrade the video card to a 470 or better and get a couple of 7200rpm hard drives to run in raid. The SSD's are nice to an extent but aren't going to help anything in gaming except maybe to load the levels a little faster.
a c 288 G Storage
September 21, 2010 3:28:01 AM

The primary advantage of 10k rpm is lower latency. That is good, but nowhere near the negligible latency of a SSD. I do not know how FSX may or may not use the hard drive once it is launched. I might have assumed that for games, a ssd would not help much excepting for level loads. That assumption may not be correct. At IDF2010 there was a presentation showing this slide:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/sandy-bridge-idf-20...
It shows that a SSD can help minimize some momentary hitches in game play. Read into it what you will.

A 600gb velociraptor would certainly be the best conventional hard drive you can get today. That would even include 15k enterprise drives which are tuned to server usage. Regardless, the performance difference among conventional 7200+rpm drives is not that great. A large SSD can be expensive, but prices are coming down. Expect to see cheaper 25nm SSD's this fall.

A good solution might be a hybrid drive which includes a small MLC cache like the Seagate momentus XT. Strangely, it is listed under notebook drives, being a 2.5" drive:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Here is a review of it:
http://www.anandtech.com/show/3734/seagates-momentus-xt...
a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 3:33:53 AM

sminlal said:
The Spinpoint F4's are "green" drives with a slower spin rate. Putting them into RAID might increase their transfer rate, but it won't do squat for their access time.

So it depends on whether the game is stalling because it's reading a few big files (requires fast transfer rate) or lots of little files (requires fast access time). If it's the latter, then you'll need Velociraptors or (way better) an SSD to improve performance.


They still have the same read access times as the Spinpoint f3 and better average read time. The write times aren't quite as good, but you're not going to notice that while gaming really.

But yea, chances are the transfer rates aren't going to be the problem, it's going to be access times that will help you improve your performance.

That Caviar Black HDD is the best access times you'll probably get for the money along with a large amount of storage. In all honestly the difference between that Caviar Black and the Raptor will be barely noticeable, along with much more storage space. I would say if you're not going SSD, save money and stick with you're average 7200 rpm HDD.
September 21, 2010 3:36:02 AM

At a similar price as the two velocirapotrs you could get much better performance and more total storage space by using a 128gb SSD for your OS and other programs, and a 1-2 terabyte internal hard drive for data. I'd recommend the Crucial Real SSD C300 128gb (as long as you have a free Sata 6.0 Gb/s port) for the SSD and the 1.5 TB WD Caviar Black Hard Drive. Together those would be about 400 USD. Google tells me that's about 280 GBP so thats right in your price range.
September 21, 2010 3:57:47 AM

Thanks for the replies (keep them coming!).

I cannot use SSD, I meed a total of 500GBs absolute minimum for both FSX and FS2004. The cost, especially here in the UK where PC hardware is more expensive than in the US is just more than I can pay.

Flight sim reads the FS9.exe file hundreds of times a second, according to Process Monitor. I guess it's the access times that are crucial - the WD Velociraptors are c.7ms as opposed to Seagate's 14.5ms (the 'standard' drive offered by the guys putting the PC together - Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 1TB).

Given that I am pretty sure for Flightsim accesses the drive so much to read small files, maybe the Velociraptors would be worth the outlay in the long run. It's all down to frame rates in the end. If I get a 5% increase I've probably wasted almost $500 (for the two drives).

Decisions, decisons ..

Martin
September 21, 2010 4:00:04 AM

By the way, the GTX 460s came out really well in reviews. I don't think I'd gain much from the 470s - in any case Flightsim is a very, very CPU focussed 'game' (we simmers don't like to think of it a s a 'game', more a way of life!!) - the CPU in the system is an i7 950 overclocked to 4.00GHz
September 21, 2010 4:10:41 AM

Oh, yes, having a smaller SSD for the OS (Windows 7 64-bit) is an idea, but as I say, it is the FS9.exe file that is accessed so much (Process Monitor scrolls down so fast, and almost all the accesses are to the fs9 or fsx.exe file), so it's Flightsim that needs to be on the fast drive rather than the OS (no?). Also I have so much 3rd. party stuff loaded into FS9 that a flight can easily take 5 minutes to load (!). A 10000 rpm drive would help there I think.

Thanks again for all the input. More welcome - I want to decide and order in the next 12 hours here!! :-)
a c 288 G Storage
September 21, 2010 4:17:11 AM

martinlest said:
Oh, yes, having a smaller SSD for the OS (Windows 7 64-bit) is an idea, but as I say, it is the FS9.exe file that is accessed so much (Process Monitor scrolls down so fast, and almost all the accesses are to the fs9 or fsx.exe file), so it's Flightsim that needs to be on the fast drive rather than the OS (no?). Also I have so much 3rd. party stuff loaded into FS9 that a flight can easily take 5 minutes to load (!). A 10000 rpm drive would help there I think.

Thanks again for all the input. More welcome - I want to decide and order in the next 12 hours here!! :-)


Based on your description of file accesses, look again closely at the 500gb Seagate hybrid drive and review I referenced earlier. The 4gb MLC cache is a learning cache which keeps your most frequently used data in it.

September 21, 2010 4:31:30 AM

I did follow the link.. 2.5" drive. Any comment on that?
a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 4:35:22 AM

I think that people may be to quick to write off the Velicoraptor. I have 3 Velicoraptors two of which are a scratch drive in RAID 0. I also have a RAID 1 set up consisting of two Barracudas 500 GB each. I copied 5 GB of data from the single System Velicoraptor to the RAID 0 Velicoraptors. The transfer rate stayed at 120 MB a sec at a sustained rate throught the copy. When I copied the same file to the Barracudas the transfer rate started off at 100 MB a second and withing seconds had dropped to a sustained 40 MB a second. When reading and writing to the same array the Velicoraptors manage much better read write rates than other hard drives. They are proven technology that offer much better capacity per dollar than the SSD options. For the cost of a high end low capacity SSD you can put two Velicoraptors in RAID 1 and have performance, capacity and redundancy.
September 21, 2010 4:38:56 AM

Geofelt.. overclockers.co.uk (who seem like the best people to go with to build this) do offer small SSDs as options. The idea of the 'learning cache' is interesting, and new to me (can I read more about this somewhere?) but I assume that in getting 2 x 7200rpm drives and adding a smallish SSD I could not get the same effect? I am not sure overclockers offer the Momentus XT...
September 21, 2010 4:42:00 AM

Overclockers do not offer any RAID options (oddly). I am still thinking then of 2 x velociraptors 600GB each, no RAID .. but other options, especially the Momentus XTs are interesting. How would the performance of the Momentus XTs compare to the Velociraptors?
a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 4:48:49 AM

According to Storage Review the Momentus is faster than the average 7.200 Drive but does not even come close to the Velicoraptor.
a c 288 G Storage
September 21, 2010 4:51:08 AM

martinlest said:
Geofelt.. overclockers.co.uk (who seem like the best people to go with to build this) do offer small SSDs as options. The idea of the 'learning cache' is interesting, and new to me (can I read more about this somewhere?) but I assume that in getting 2 x 7200rpm drives and adding a smallish SSD I could not get the same effect? I am not sure overclockers offer the Momentus XT...


I at first thought that the 4gb cache was too small and puny, but the review tests showed it to be quite effective. If you had a small ssd, you would be responsible for moving whatever part of the 500gb drive to it, and moving it back when it was updated. An impossible task. The genius of the hybrid is that it keeps your most needed data in a copy in the cache.
If the drive is not available to you, it is a moot point.

If you go with the 600gb velociraptor, do not try to improve it's performance with raid-0. Raid-0 is only useful to speed up the data transfer of large sequential files. Raid-0 may actually slow down some accesses that span across two drives. requiring double positioning actions to get at one piece of data.

I would consider a SSD for your OS and apps. but I would wait on the SSD. there are supposed to be some 25nm gen 3 SSD products out this fall. They will offer larger capacities, lower prices, and be faster. You are at risk of buyer's remorse if you buy now. Instead, carve out a 160gb partition out of your storage drive, and install your OS and apps there. Plan on later cloning that partition to a new SSD. In the bios, specify sata mode as AHCI,( not IDE or raid) You will then use windows-7 drivers which support the trim command. It is very difficult to change tto AHCI after the os is installed without a reinstall. Trim is necessary to preserve SSD performance after the drive has been filled.
a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 4:53:50 AM

I recommend getting RAID it offers a versatility to your storage needs now and in the future even if you dont want an array now.
a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 4:58:06 AM

But as Geofelt says there is no real advantage to the RAID 0. I run two in RAID 0 as a Scratch Drive but I run my System off a single Velicoraptor. RAID 1 may still be desirable if redundancy becomes a concern.
September 21, 2010 5:04:00 AM

Can the Momentus XTs be put into a desktop OK? Not sure they would be compatible with the M/B, SATA II.. Like the sound of them...

Response from Flightsim community is that I won't see much performance increase getting 10000rpm drives over 7200., though tha's opinion thus far, no facts to say why. If the same exe file is being read so fast and so often, I'd have thought a drive with an access time of 7ms would be an advantage over one of 15ms..
September 21, 2010 5:05:02 AM

I wanted RAID 1, but it's not on offer as I say, so no RAID. No big deal in fact..
a c 288 G Storage
September 21, 2010 5:19:30 AM

martinlest said:
Can the Momentus XTs be put into a desktop OK? Not sure they would be compatible with the M/B, SATA II.. Like the sound of them...

Response from Flightsim community is that I won't see much performance increase getting 10000rpm drives over 7200., though tha's opinion thus far, no facts to say why. If the same exe file is being read so fast and so often, I'd have thought a drive with an access time of 7ms would be an advantage over one of 15ms..


I would consider the flightsim community as a more credible and experienced source of advice.

The momentus is a standard 2.5" drive. You can use a 2.5 to 3.5 adapter if your case does not supply 2.5" mounting. The sata and power connections look the same to me as any ssd.

The value of raid-1 and it's variants like raid-5 for protecting data is that you can recover from a hard drive failure quickly.
It is for servers that can't afford any down time.
Recovery from a hard drive failure is just moments.
Fortunately hard drives do not fail often.
Mean time to failure is claimed to be on the order of 1,000,000 hours.(100 years)
Raid-1 does not protect you from other types of losses such as viruses,
software errors,raid controller failure, operator error, or fire...etc.
For that, you need EXTERNAL backup.
If you have external backup, and can afford some recovery time, then you don't need raid-1.
September 21, 2010 8:30:49 AM

No RAID was just a convenience, but I wouldn't use it with Velociraptor drives, a bit of an expensive luxury. I have good backups in any case.

Well, I consider myself 'Flight Simulator Community' too - been doing it for 10 years, and create files/airports/aircraft/scenery for myself, uploaded to the net. There are reasons I do not agree with the verdict 'you'll see no difference' - some agree with me, others not. Up to me whether I put my money where my mouth is I suppose!! :-)
September 21, 2010 8:31:26 AM

"No, RAID was just a convenience ... " that is!
September 21, 2010 9:29:55 AM

One option, how about this? Since Overclockers do not have the Seagate Momentus XT drives, order the PC with a 60GB SSD drive for Windows 7 but no other hard drives. Then buy two Seagate Momentus XTs and fit them myself. Do people generally agree that these 2.5" drives would be good in this system? Reviews seem to indicate this would be fine.
September 21, 2010 10:08:26 AM

OK, may be talking to myself by this time (thanks for the great input here everyone - it's very helpful). One more (last?) suggestion: I get the PC with an Intel X25-M Mainstream 80GB SSD and have Windows 7 x64, default Flight Simulator 9 and default Flight Simulator X installations on that drive (c.20GBs needed for Win7, <5GBs for FS9 and <15GBs for FSX, so I'd have 40GBs free approx.) and then two SATA 7200 rpm drives to put all the 3rd. party Flightsim data files (can be hundreds of GBs). Sound OK? Thanks for your patience..
a c 288 G Storage
September 21, 2010 2:27:27 PM

martinlest said:
OK, may be talking to myself by this time (thanks for the great input here everyone - it's very helpful). One more (last?) suggestion: I get the PC with an Intel X25-M Mainstream 80GB SSD and have Windows 7 x64, default Flight Simulator 9 and default Flight Simulator X installations on that drive (c.20GBs needed for Win7, <5GBs for FS9 and <15GBs for FSX, so I'd have 40GBs free approx.) and then two SATA 7200 rpm drives to put all the 3rd. party Flightsim data files (can be hundreds of GBs). Sound OK? Thanks for your patience..


80gb Intel ssd is a safe choice for a os and apps drive.

Past that, I think there will not be that much difference with the momentus. It's value comes from what the 4gb cache can hold. If you access the full 500gb of the drive, not much will stay in the cache. Perhaps you can put those smaller volatile files on the SSD also. As to the bulk of other data, I agree with the 600gb raptor.
September 21, 2010 2:42:01 PM

If I get 2 x 80GB SSDs my budget isn't going to stretch to Velociraptors too unfortunately. It's either 2 x 80GB SSDs and 2 x Seagate Barracudas (7200.12 1TB each) or 2 x Velociraptors. Not sure which to go for!!
September 21, 2010 2:51:02 PM

I would go for the SSD and forget about the 10krpm raptors as they aren't worth it. Most normal hard drives are good enough for read depending on the game and app but its pagefile that sucks the most. If you don't got 12gb of ram or more then you are stuck with it slowing down your rig. So go SSD at the very least as a paging drive.
September 21, 2010 3:11:36 PM

Can't help feeling using a SSD as a paging file is dramatically going to shorten its life - all those writes!!

Martin
September 21, 2010 3:20:28 PM

martinlest said:
Can't help feeling using a SSD as a paging file is dramatically going to shorten its life - all those writes!!

Martin


It is going to fail anyway as a boot drive being that is ware the pagefile is by default with the os. Killing a SSD over two or three is years is better than losing the boot or a media drive when used as a paging drive. If only for paging don't aim for a high SSD as most are quick enough any way as pagefile uses 4k random read and writes. That is ware mechanical drives suck the most so it is no wonder why SSD is as fast as it is. Ram drives are faster still. I created a small ram drive using the system ram on my workstation and got 2gbs sequential read in HDtune. I really want that drive from OZC but I don't have $10k usd to spend on it.
a c 352 G Storage
September 21, 2010 3:21:55 PM

Try this out for size.
(1) SSD - Get one now, and a 2nd one latter. I'd skip the Intel G2 80 gigs (I HAVE), They are yesterdays news in performance and cost almost as much as newer SSDs in the area of 100->120 Gig. Look for the SF1200 controller.

(2) two 7200 RPM HDDs - I would skip the -12s, not as reliable as Spinpoint F3 or WD Black. On WD blks: The Sata 6 model = No, Only performance gain over the Sata 3 is in Burst speed. (PS I have one)

From one of my earlier posts on SSD performance.
Crucial RealSSD C300 – Shows comparission between C300 on Sata 3 vs Sata 6, Vortex-2 and Intel G2. ONLY if planning on Sata 6 controller
http://www.anandtech.com/show/3812/the-ssd-diaries-cruc...
G.Skill Phoenix Pro - Came out after C300 review. (Almost Identical is Corsair Force F120)
http://www.hexus.net/content/item.php?item=25198
Votex-2

You would probably be happy with any of the above models - Look for sales, I just picked up the G.Skill Phoenix pro for $250 (less than the non pro model) arrived last night. You would not believe How quickly I imaged the Intel G2 and installed on the GSkill (and resized the partition)
My Bench check: Random 4 K Reads = 27.4 (1.27), Writes = 62.9 (1.96) Nrs in () are for my 1 TB WD Blk Sata 6 drive on Sata 6 controller)

Stay away from:
Western digital Blue, Kingston value products and Dane-Elec (They advertized an Intel 80 gig – They forgot to mention it is the OLD G1). Make sure you check Reviews.

Final word - Understand, you pay in pounds what we pay in dollars = About a 1.5 x markup (approx). But remember that old saying "don't be penny wise and pound foolish", or in this case buy what you will later regreat.

Added:
Don't sweat the page file, But I would set the Min-Max to the same value which prevents the Expanding/shringing issue. I would disable Hybernation.
On trim. I'm not sure, but some of the SF1200 SSDs internally employ a raid0 configuration (ie 120 Gig drive is 2 60 gig drives in raid0) therefor may not use win7 Trim cmd ?? - But their "garbage collect" functions the same as trim.
September 21, 2010 4:23:45 PM

OK, my head's really spinning now!! Thank for all the suggestions. You know how it is though, what you read in one forum is contradicted in another. That's par for the course, but after a couple of days I am starting to get overkill!!

My current line of thinking is (thanks again for your patience!!): Get overclockers.co.uk to fit a 60GB Corsair Force SSDD (SF-1200 I think, no?) for the O/S,Win7 x64, and at the same time, as overclockers are more expensive and don't have the larger capacity SSDs in any case, myself buy a 120GB Corsair Force SSD from Amazon or wherever (c.£225 sterling at the moment), instead of the Intel. That would be big enough for Flight Simulator, once I remove the huge 3rd. party addon folders, which I willput onto one of two 1TB SATA drives I will also get: they offer the Seagates as standard and from what I read (reviews here and elsewhere) they are pretty good: one of those areas where opinions differ online.

Martin
a c 352 G Storage
September 21, 2010 4:47:11 PM

My experience – No diff I have bought Seagate’s almost exclusively (prior to the debacle with the -11s) I then switched to the WD 640 blks. Recently bought a Seagate 1 TB (Not sure which model) and a WD Blk 1 TB Sata 6 drive.
However I cannot ignore the MUCH higher dissatisfaction (1/2 eggs) for the -12 vs the F3 and WD. This is based on a rather large number of responses. The number of defective units due to UPS playing drop kick with packages should be about the same.
September 21, 2010 8:18:53 PM

Well, I want to order tomorrow so I have to make a decision! I will get 1 x 60GB Crosair Force for the OS and 1 x 120 GB same for Flight Simulator. My choice now is for the SATA drives. I sort of prefer 2 x 1GB than 1 x 2GBs and the Samsung Spinpoint F4 only has a 2TB (or 1.5TB) version or a 320GB version. The latter is 7200rpm, the former 5400rpm. Frankly 2 x 320GBs would be more than I need. Or there's a 1TB SpinPoint F3. Is the f$ a real step up? My choice would be 2 x F4 320 GBs. Any dissenters? Thank you again.
a c 352 G Storage
September 21, 2010 8:50:59 PM

Here's one review of the 1 TB F3
qoute
There’s only one way to say it – the Samsung Spinpoint F3 is the fastest hard disk drive we’ve ever had the pleasure of testing here at bit-tech, having ripped through our benchmarks like a butchers knife through wet loo roll.

End quote
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/storage/2009/10/06/sam...

You choose, Never look back, and enjoy. Like picking a blond over a redhead
September 21, 2010 9:05:01 PM

Nice! Well, I'll see what overclockers have in stock and try for a Spinpoint F4 or F3. Will post back (after all this!!) and say what I have finally ordered. I'm sure you can't wait to find out (LOL)..

Martin :-)
Anonymous
September 21, 2010 10:25:46 PM

Quick Input

1) Raid sucks, always has and always will unless you use a dedicated Raid adapter, onboard raid0 arrays are more trouble than they are worth..

2) Velociraptors are not worth the money, fast 1tb drives will be as good.

3) SSD drive is the best and only option you should be looking at if you are serious about FSX. Trust me when I say it is HDD intensive, especially if you have loads of mesh mods..

4) I did not get to see your screen resolution, but you want more than the 460 if you are gaming above 1680x1050, for sure for the best experience of multiple monitors, and ATi eyefinity solutions are the best for Multi screen FSX setup (5850 is minimum to be fair for 19x12 setups) Your CPU will rock FSX

5) Dont worry about size of SSD, get 120GB SSD and a good 1tb HDD 120gb is enough for OS, Apps and FSX, 1tb for other large games less load screen intensive and storage.. Bear in mind MMO (WoW, Lotro, EVE, ect) are loving ssd as well, my microstutter has gone since the stepup)

Best of luck
a c 181 G Storage
September 21, 2010 10:46:42 PM

mgrzTX said:
That Caviar Black HDD is the best access times you'll probably get for the money along with a large amount of storage. In all honestly the difference between that Caviar Black and the Raptor will be barely noticeable, along with much more storage space. I would say if you're not going SSD, save money and stick with you're average 7200 rpm HDD.


The Raptor (WD6000HLHX-$270) is 1.7 times as fast as the fastest Black (WD2001FASS-$175) in access time ... but I still wouldn't buy it :) 

http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/2009-3.5-desktop-har...


My Palm Treo 650 had a neat little utility on it called PowerRun which would let you store applications on the SD card instead of main memory. When launching an app, PR would swap the program off the card into main memory while you were running it and then swap it back when you closed it. Seems an enterprising young programmer could produce a Win7 based utility which would take a game off a HD and "swap" all it's files to the SSD, keep it there while playing, and then swap it back upon closing. I dunno just how "observable" the performance difference might be but I's bet gaming enthusiasts scrambling to buy the thing like a Quake Power-Up :)  Sure seems like a nice way to get by with 400 GB of game files and an 80 GB SSD.

September 21, 2010 11:40:08 PM

JackNaylorPE said:
The Raptor (WD6000HLHX-$270) is 1.7 times as fast as the fastest Black (WD2001FASS-$175) in access time ... but I still wouldn't buy it :) 

http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/2009-3.5-desktop-har...


My Palm Treo 650 had a neat little utility on it called PowerRun which would let you store applications on the SD card instead of main memory. When launching an app, PR would swap the program off the card into main memory while you were running it and then swap it back when you closed it. Seems an enterprising young programmer could produce a Win7 based utility which would take a game off a HD and "swap" all it's files to the SSD, keep it there while playing, and then swap it back upon closing. I dunno just how "observable" the performance difference might be but I's bet gaming enthusiasts scrambling to buy the thing like a Quake Power-Up :)  Sure seems like a nice way to get by with 400 GB of game files and an 80 GB SSD.


The problem is writes and nothing out there is fast enough or durable to sustain such use for long except for ram drives. A mobile app that is only a few MB is one thing. Remember the weakness of SSD is read/write cycle. It has improved a lot since the 90s but it has some way to go but if the quality is high it should last long enough to survive to be a museum piece.
September 21, 2010 11:41:13 PM

Thanks both. Yes, I know FSX is HDD intensive - I have it but never fly it, my FS9 setup is the result of years of tweaking and adding stuff - it accounts for 99% of my flighta. GS9 is also HDD intensive, as can be seen from Process Monitor.

I've had excellent results (in XP 32-bit) at 1920x1200 resolution with a Core Duo T7500 CPU (2.20GHz) and an nVidia GeForce 8700M GT GPU. FS is very CPU centred - I am pretty sure that the 460GTX will be fine (I read reviews and many comments from FS users saying it's great for them), especially in FS9. I use two monitors, one for FS and the other showing FSNavigator - won't ever be piling up multi-monitors. In any case. got to stop spending at some point o the 470 is almost £100 more than the 460. By the time I need something better than the 460 GTX, there will be something way better than the 470 available, that's for sure!!

HDD I'm trying for 2 x Corsair Force SSDs (60GB and 120GB) and 2 x Samsung Spinpoint F3s or F4s..

Reckon, together with the CPU at 5.00GHz, this is going to be a huge improvement on my present rig.. (Oh God, don't let it be a disappointment!!!)..
September 21, 2010 11:44:04 PM

"GS9" typo for FS9 of course!!
a b G Storage
September 21, 2010 11:49:03 PM

nforce4max said:
I would go for the SSD and forget about the 10krpm raptors as they aren't worth it. Most normal hard drives are good enough for read depending on the game and app but its pagefile that sucks the most. If you don't got 12gb of ram or more then you are stuck with it slowing down your rig. So go SSD at the very least as a paging drive.


I don't allow page filing/virtual ram on my main drives. I have a small, separate, empty drive for that.
September 22, 2010 12:13:40 AM

swifty_morgan said:
I don't allow page filing/virtual ram on my main drives. I have a small, separate, empty drive for that.


The small drive has to be of equal or greater performance of the boot or the media drive ware the app is located or you are at a loss performance. I suggest a small but middle of the road SSD. Ramdrive is much different as there is several times. The one that I used was located in system ram. It achieved 2gb/s sequential read/write
September 22, 2010 11:41:44 AM

OK - it's ordered. Hard drive wise I have gone for:

1 x Corsair Force 60GB F60 SSD for Windows 7 x64
1 x Corsair 120GB Force SSD for FlightSim#
2 x Samsung SpinPoint F3 1TB

Hope this will be OK!

Thanks for the suggestions,

Martin
September 22, 2010 1:15:51 PM

Hours and hours of reading stuff online, people's comments here and in other forums, some product knowledge, knowledge of requirements of MS Flight Simulator & what is important for it to run well...
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