I would like to buy a new main hard drive. I want to use this drive to boot Windows 7. I have 2 other large hard drives to store games and apps.
I currently have the BFG 680i mobo with a Q6600 CPU and I don't plan on upgrading it for a while, even though I would love to upgrade . My intention was to buy a SSD, but I was reading that my motherboard doesn't have AHCI. Would I be able to use a SSD disk anyway? Would the SSD performance decrease?
My other option is to find a SATA 2.0 (3GB/s) hard disk. I did not find any recent benchmart chart on 3.5'' internal SATA 2.0 drives. What are the fastest drives out there that I could buy? I am looking for performance, limited to what my current hardware is able to handle.
In case I cannot use a SSD, would a Segate Barracuda .12 be a good choice?
from what i've read ahci-mode can generate slighly better performance numbers in synthetic tests but can also be trouble or hang-ups at times.
ide-mode doesn't have quite the performance numbers but is reliable. this is the mode you should be running in.
since you're limited to sataII there is no use in going with a bleeding edge sataIII drive. something like the ocz vertex2 is fine. the one i have is sataIII running in sataII mode. i paid about $180 for 80gb (x2, raid1)
the fastest mechanical drives are 15,000rpm but are typically scsi-interface which aren't really suited to your needs. 10,000rpm velociraptor drives are snappy but also are more expensive per gb then they need to be. heat and noise can be an issue as well.
you forgot about a third option, you could raid0 two lower-priced 7200.12 drives and get decent performance. this is normally in the range of +15 to 50% or so. great if you want better performance on a budget.