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Which SSD/HDD setup best option for scratch build?

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June 20, 2012 7:02:02 AM

Hello everyone, new around here but I appreciate the patience if anyone is willing to take the time and offer some advice. I'm doing a scratch build of what I'd call a high-end desktop system, and I am torn between options for storage. I want the fast boot and access times of a SSD, but need at least 500gb (preferably 750gb-1tb) of "extra space" for saving things like music files, completed movie projects, non-essential programs, ect. Besides the OS, I'd like to run a few programs off the primary drive so they can also benefit from the quick read times. Finally, I'd like to have one SSD drive of at least 60gb, possibly 120gb, to save very high resolution photographs and 1080p video clips that will be worked with. I've experienced some real lag when trying to have my current system access such files while they are stored on the same physical drive as the OS and editing program, even with a partition being in place.

I've come down to three logical choices, given that I don't have the budget for my optimal choice of a 250gb SSD for all OS and program files and a second 500gb SSD for all storage. My three thoughts:

Option #1: Seagate Momentus XT 750gb Hybrid= Windows 7 OS & program files + (???) brand 60-120gb SSD (<$120) for select media project files. The hybrid sounds great at launching programs, but I fear may be out of steam fast with large amounts of data. = ~$270

Option #2: Intel 520 SSD 180gb- Windows 7 OS & all program files, (???) brand 60gb SSD for video projects and such, 500mb WD Caviar blue HDD- general storage = ~$340

Option #2: Sandisk/Samgsung/Intel 520 120gb SSD- Windows 7 OS + select program files, (???) brand 60gb SSD- media project storage, 1tb Caviar Black HDD- most program files + general storage = ~$330

Thoughts? :hello: 
a c 353 G Storage
June 20, 2012 5:31:00 PM

My SSD of choice $215, Curcuial M4:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
Just bought mine for $180 and will be here this evening and in my laptop by supper time - LOL

However, You could probably get 2 x 128 gig SSD for $200, One for OS +Programs and one for a "Working" drive (Holds files currently working on, or access often. then a HDD primarily for long term storage. That is how I have 3 of my four systems set up.
.. Probably go with the M4, or Samsung 830 for the OS drive. For the 2nd drive you could probably drop down to a lower end drive such as the Agility III (which are almost as cheap on sale as dog Shi^%$%.

I'd scrap the seagate Hibrad drive, mostly it would cache the OS but beyound that it will be a hit/miss on what it caches.

Added two 128 Gig Curcila M4s @ 125 each + HDD, not bad price.
What I'm doing in My laptop is gueing the 128 gig M4 for OS + Programs (I only use about 40 Gigs) and the 256 gig M4 as my storage disk. For storage/backup I use a 1 TB usb 3 HDD, or my 64 Gig thumbdrive. Most would probably do Vsa versa as the 256 gig M4 is faster than the 128 gig m4.
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June 21, 2012 4:51:05 AM

Thanks for the time and advice guys. I think that I will go with a version of option #2, but will look at the drive selections you guys linked to first and possibly go with different brands/models than I had first suggested. I'm scrapping the idea of the hybrid. An OS system running from a spinning drive of any sort is probably trouble waiting to happen for an overclocked Phenom X4 965, 32gb of 1866mhz RAM, and a pair of crossfired HD6870 graphics cards.

I am actually running a 120gb model of the Intel 330 drive right now and do like it for a cost-effective performance option, but it's got some serious downside to it as well. First, the warranty is only three years compared to the five years offered for every other model of Intel SSD. Second, the sequential read/write times are almost able to keep pace with the 520 series, but the random read/rewrite times are awful in comparison. For functional use, it's really proven to be a little disappointing. Those prices make it tempting, but I wouldn't give this 330 model drive the same sort of brand value I'd give other Intel drives.
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