From one of my earlier post dealing with a simular question Changed a little for your specify needs..
My recommendation would be for the 128 gig Curcial M4 (for OS/Programs) and a smaller one for your games, say a samsung 64 gig sata II 470 ($227 + $114) vs $278 for Intel 510. NOTE: you can catch the 128 Gig M4 on sale for Under $200, last one I bought was around $175. The 3rd SSD for "movies /music/ect may be overkill. Misic plays fine off of a HDD so no advantage there. Whatching even a Blu-ray Movie plays fine from a Blu-ray player which is even slower than a HDD, still no advantage over HDD. If editing video / working with large video files then an SSD would make sense, BUT remember DVD files are 1 gig ea (Movie 4 -> 6 Gigs) and single blu-ray file is up to 40 gigs.
(1) The M4 and Intel 510 use the same controller, diff firmware. Both have simular 1/2 egg ratings. NOTE: This the first Intel drive that does NOT use an Intel controller. The M4 (with firmware 9) is quite good. For both drives need to factor out Max problems.
(2) OCZ Vertex / Agillity III - GREAT if you have no compatability issue - Considered Plug & PRAY
(3) While the Samsung 800 series should be a great drive, I'd like to see 6 monthes of user evaluations before buying (Pricing vs user problems vs performance.
(4) Reliability - Long term performance is differnent from Initial user "compatability" problems. While Intel was KING-of-the-Road with Sata II drives (Note Exception Intel 320 bug with their newest Sata II drive which has yet to be fixed to my knowledge) in terms of Reliability, the SATA III is still more open ended.
I have 8 SSDs 4 older ones ranging from Intel G1 and G2 -> Gskill Pheonix Pro. HAVE had NO problems with any of them. NO problems with M4 ( 2 of them). also have 2 Agillity III drive - only problem Agility III was incompatable with SB notebook, but worked fine as a data drive in I5-2500k Notebook.
Still Do Not recommend SF2281 based SATA III SSDs (Plug& PRAY)
Thanks for the reply but I don't understand some of the stuff you said. I'm pretty much fixed on my current plan;
#1 SSD Dedicated Boot Drive + Misc Apps (Norton, MSN, etc)
#2 SSD Dedicated to games
#3 HDD for movies and music
I've only done an hour's preliminary research so far, it seems the OCZ Vertex III and Agility III have pretty reliable track-records; not the best but much better than most SSDs. That being said I plan to take full advantage of Windows 7's TRIM support - to the best of my knowledge it works wonders on SSDs as it helps maintain their maximum speeds.
Not sure if the following info is relevant but I'm currently running:
Mobo: Gigabyte 890GPA-UD3H Gigabyte Mobo
Ram: Gskill DDR3 1600 Mhz 2GB x 4 = 8GB
CPU: Phenom II x4 945 C3
GPU: XFX 5770 [Will be upgrading to a 6950 2GB in about 3 months]
I'm a relatively new mobo, I accept the possibility of compatibility issues but it should be relatively unlikely???
I plan to get a Agi/Vertx III 60GB as a boot drive - as I don't plan to install any intensive misc apps. Norton will probably be the most resource intensive misc app I'll run besides my OS on my boot drive anyways. A Agi/Vertex 90GB for my games as I've accumulated over 200 games on steam and I've yet to play half of them, work is keeping me quite busy which is why I'll need the reduced loading times.
It will be at least 80 days or so before I make a purchase since I'm waiting for boxing day.
.. Curcial M4 would be faster than agility 3, lower Sequencials for Vertex 3.
However, in day-to-day usage you will not notice a difference (I have both agility 3 and curcial M4 and the curcial M4 is faster.
..When looking at the benchmarks - Note that most of the benchmarks are for data that is compressable - real life data is closer to uncompressable, The SF2281 controller (OCZ) does great with compressable data.
Look on new egge and compare the Unsatisfatory percentage between Aggility 3/vertex 3 and the Curcial M4 - Big difference. Also go to the OCZ web site and look at the problems and OCZ rep responses.
Thanks again for your reply. I went back to the drawing board and did some serious reconsideration, this is what I have come up with so far:
Instead of getting two SSDs, I think it's better to get a Curcial M4 SSD for my games and possibly a Seagate Momentus XT Hybrid for booting. Which is why I need to ask if your familiar with Seagate Hybrid drives.
I'm not too restricted in terms of budget, I just don't want to spend more than I have to. I'm willing to pay about $150-180CDN for my gaming SSD but I'm beginning to debate how much I should dish out for my booting drive. Keep in mind I'm in Canada and I plan to make my purchase on Boxing Day.
Sounds like it better than a conventioal drive, not as good as a SSD, for boot +progams. Not sure on how much better for data I think that will depend highly on usage (individual performance gain will differ).
Also I noticed a reference to this drive ($30 USD cheaper. Same drive, older SKU Number): http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...