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Hard drive confusion

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November 7, 2011 4:58:56 PM

so i'm looking at a computer config on ibuypower.com. under "primary hard drive" it gives the choice of SSD or hard drive. actually it has chosen "40 GB Intel 320 SSD".

for a gaming computer, thats going to play mostly MMOs, which one should i get the "1 TB HARD DRIVE -- 32M Cache, 7200 RPM, 6.0Gb/s" hard drive for an extra $81, or the "40 GB Intel 320 SSD"?


another question i have is in a seperate area, it gives the choices for "Intel Smart Response Technology" with different choices of SSD Cache for $80 - $160. what does that do? is it worth having? if i get it, does that make any difference into what i should use for my primary hard drive between a SSD and a 1 TB HARD DRIVE?

thanks for your time everyone. i know squat about computer tech so try to answer as if your talking to an idiot (cause i am)..

More about : hard drive confusion

November 7, 2011 5:07:57 PM

A 40gb SSD hard drive would be enough for windows, a few apps and maybe a game or 2. That's a very limited amount of space, but it WILL launch windows a lot faster, and your applications will open and close much faster.

Personally, my opinion is that a traditional 7200rpm 1TB hard drive is a better choice. I'm not clear if you're saying the 7200 RPM drive costs $81 more than the SSD, but you'll need both anyways if you buy the SSD because that won't be enough space for your pc with only 40gb by itself. The SSD will NOT make your games run faster, it will just make the load screens go faster probably, and windows boot up faster, etc.

The intel smart response is kind of in between using SSD and traditional hard drive. It generally uses the hard drive all the time, but uses the SSD drive to cache frequently loaded programs and windows, to assist in speeding these up, but the speed increase is not as fast as a standalone SSD.
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November 7, 2011 5:19:02 PM

Intel Smart Response Technology (SRT) uses a SSD as a cache for a HDD. The idea is that everything is stored on the HDD, but things you use often have a copy on the SSD. When you read a file that has a copy on the SSD it goes a lot faster than if it had to read it off the HDD. Also, if you write a small amount of data it can cache to the SSD and your program will think the write went really fast while the computer takes its sweet time to flush the data all the way to the HDD.

Now, as for the setup you should choose, it depends on budget and what you want out of the system.

If you choose the Intel SRT, then there is no need for a SSD as the primary drive, since that is what SRT is for. Not familiar with ibuypower's website, but I would think you have to choose the HDD as the primary drive and then add SRT. SRT isn't quite as fast as using a dedicated SSD as a OS/Programs drive, but it is better than a HDD alone. There isn't much point in using SRT for a secondary data drive.

If you choose the 40GB SSD as the primary drive, then Windows will boot really fast and whatever few programs you put on it will also load really fast. However, it doesn't speed up processing so you will not gain any graphics rendering performance in games. Win7 takes a little more than 20GB on a default install. You can reduce space usage by turning off hibernation, restore points, and reducing page file size. Even so, I think it still takes like 15GB. If you get the SSD you'll need a seconday HDD to act as a storage drive.

If you don't have the budget (or don't mind the slightly longer loads), then a HDD for a primary drive is perfectly suitable for a computer and is the cheapest (per gigabyte) option. This is probably the option for you.
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November 7, 2011 5:23:24 PM

well, ssd is particular design for OS and some heaviest games it boost it and perform faster than hdd 40gb ssd is too low get 64gb or if you can afford to buy an 120 gb its much more better to add some more games.but 1tb hdd is important for other stuff.
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November 7, 2011 10:21:47 PM

thanks guys.. that cleared it up..
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