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First time SSD user, advice would be helpful.

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October 16, 2012 9:17:24 PM

I picked up a Kingston HyperX 3K 240GB drive the other day, finally taking the plunge into SSDs. The system I have is a Dell XPS 410. Yeah, she's a little long in the tooth, but she's served me very well with the occasional upgrade and addon here and there. Now, one thing she doesn't have is SATA 3. I've been perusing addon cards that I could use to add SATA 3 capability to her. Right now, my PCI Express x1 slot is inhabited by a USB 3.0 card for an external hard drive. There is a PCI Express x4 card connector available, as well as a couple regular PCI slots. It runs an Intel P965 chipset with a Q6600 processor.

So, I suppose my question is two fold... Is there an addon card that could make use of the x4 slot? And, is the performance difference worth upgrading to SATA 3? There aren't that many devices out there that actually do saturate the bandwidth available to them, so is this SSD going to actually bottleneck if plugged into a SATA2 rather than a SATA 3?

Thank you in advance folks.

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October 16, 2012 9:37:16 PM

To be honest you would probably only notice the amazing speed upgrade from your HDD to this SSD even on a SATA2 port. You probably wouldn't even notice a speed difference ( between SATA 2 and SATA 3) unless you whipped out Crystal Disk Mark or another benchmarking tool. I think they only make PCIex16 SATA3 cards because of the bandwidth required, but this might eat up more speed than just sticking it in your M/B's SATA port. Id say get it in your system get the OS on it and take it for a test drive, you can always order a SATA3 card later if you think it will help.
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October 16, 2012 9:46:38 PM

I agree, just wait until you have a mobo with SATAIII. No reason to get an expansion card right now.

Edit: The difference between USB 2.0 and 3.0 will be much more noticeable for you externals than the difference between SATA revisions for your SSD.
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a c 119 G Storage
October 16, 2012 10:07:31 PM

The addon card even though it's a x1 will work in any slot in the computer so it qwould work in the x4 and x16 slaots. Sata2 is 3 gb/s and sata3 is 6gb/s and for the most part the SSD's have a 550 mb/s read and 500 mb/s write so the sata2 port will nor be saturated but the SSD will work better on the sata3 port.
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October 17, 2012 9:07:20 PM

Get a 256 gb SSD. When getting a new machine, move it over into the new machine. Derp.
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October 17, 2012 9:22:26 PM

Best answer selected by shulkman.
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October 17, 2012 9:25:23 PM

cgner said:
Get a 256 gb SSD. When getting a new machine, move it over into the new machine. Derp.


Unfortunately, there is no button for "Completely Unhelpful." Come back when you feel like offering constructive advice.
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a b G Storage
October 17, 2012 9:25:35 PM

SATA 2 is 3 Gb/s and a fast SSD can have reads of 550 MB/s. The key here is that for the read speed it is in bytes, while the SATA 2 spec is rated in bit. So, 550 MB/s is approximately 5.5 Gb/s and will saturate a SATA2 port. My laptop is SATA 2 and it limits my read and write speed to under 300 MB/s. Even at those speeds it is much faster than a standard hard drive because of the much faster access times.
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October 17, 2012 9:30:56 PM

Jim_L9 said:
SATA 2 is 3 Gb/s and a fast SSD can have reads of 550 MB/s. The key here is that for the read speed it is in bytes, while the SATA 2 spec is rated in bit. So, 550 MB/s is approximately 5.5 Gb/s and will saturate a SATA2 port. My laptop is SATA 2 and it limits my read and write speed to under 300 MB/s. Even at those speeds it is much faster than a standard hard drive because of the much faster access times.


Yeah... I'm going to give it a shot as is, with the SATA 2 port. I've got her plugged in now, gave her a volume and a drive letter. Now I'm having a pain of a time cloning my C drive to the SSD. Trying to use DriveImage XML and even though the actual info on C drive is far less (160GB) than the capacity of the SSD (240GB), it's balking every time I try to advance through the process, since the actual capacity of C drive (320GB) is greater than the new SSD. In the mean time, I'm trying to do some reading, figure something out.
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a c 119 G Storage
October 17, 2012 11:14:04 PM

Create a second partition in your current C drive or reduce the volume by going to Disk management and you can do either one there.
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October 18, 2012 12:16:51 AM

Disk Management FTW! hopefully, if not you could always download recuva from piriform and copy your info to an external HDD then put it on a fresh install of Windows. Back in the day when SSD's first came out a fresh install of the OS was the only way to go, im not sure if controller upgrades have rendered this an old wives tale or not though.

EDIT: Also thanks for BA.
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