hello everybody, i happened upon a newegg gift certificate for christmas, and i'm wondering what i should spend it on. i just built my computer a few months ago; it looks like this:
core i5 cpu
gigabyte p55 ud3r mobo
1 tb seagate barracuda
corsair 750tx 750watt psu
ocz obsidian 4 gig pc ddr3 1600
sapphire radeon hd 5770
sony optiarc cd/dvd drive
i have around $200 dollars to spend on upgrades. i do a little bit of gaming on it right now, and i will soon start video editing. other than that just general use.
my hard drive is the low score on my windows experience index. what's the best way to upgrade my hdd speed? add some more drives and put them in a raid array? i am very much a noob to this, do i need to buy a controller or something?
i was also considering a new led monitor, but if there is something i can purchase that will really improve my performance, i want to do that.
The thing that really pops out at me here isn't really the hard drive, but the motherboard. With $200 you could probably get the ASUS P7P55D-E PRO motherboard which has the new SATA III and USB 3.0 ports. But I do understand that replacing a mobo is a lot of work so there's still the hard drive thing. As for the hard drive thing, if you wanted to do a crazy upgrade you could always get an SSD, which will probably take up your whole budget right there . As for the RAID things, I'm in the same boat as you, but I do know that your motherboard supports RAID.
Another quick note about the motherboard. There's only 1 PCI-E 2.0 x16 port on that motherboard, so that quickly rules out and Xfire. A new motherboard might be worth it just to have the option to Xfire in the future (if you're thinking of doing that sometime).
You don't need to buy a RAID controller to do RAID, but if you use the motherboard's onboard RAID, the disks won't be portable to another system. That may or may not be an issue for you. If that is a problem, you could get a controller, but I would be surprised if you found a good RAID controller for under $200.
If you're going to be getting into a lot of video editing, you could consider getting 2x 500 GB or 1 TB drives and putting them in a RAID 0 array, then use that for scratch/workspace. Just be aware that if 1 drive fails on a RAID 0 array, the whole thing is useless, so don't store critical information there. Or back up frequently.
An SSD could also be worthwhile, though it will only improve boot speed and program load times. However, that does really increase the perceived speed of the system.