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4GB RAM + 3GB Kingston SSDNow + Caviar Green or 8GB RAM+1 Caviar Black

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June 21, 2011 11:55:04 PM

I wonder if it will be better to get less RAM and a small SSD for OS/Apps or More RAM with a cheaper/slower HDD.

SSD I am looking at is Kingston 30GB SSD Now ... wonder if its good, ... its small tho ...

If I get Caviar Black, maybe if I need more speed/reliability, I can get RAID1

I will be using with Intel i3 2100 probably

Usage will be web/software development most of the time. Perhaps some web design (Photoshop). As for most resource intensive usage will be Photoshop, Visual Studio, Virtual Box (Virtual PC app, occasionally for testing). Perhaps some 3D modelling & rendering in Blender in the future as a hobby ... and some games (not much tho). Oh and movies/videos preferrably hi-res or blu ray

OS is Ubuntu mainly. I used a Ubuntu + OCZ Vertex 2 or 3 (cant remember) in office, the performance didnt seem too great for the price ... does Ubuntu benefit from SSD?
a b } Memory
June 22, 2011 8:33:20 AM

I use openSUSE on a slow old HDD, and get really good performance. I doubt Ubuntu would be much different. But for Windows, I'd say the SSD would probably be better, but try to get the Blue rather than Green.
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a b } Memory
June 22, 2011 3:30:40 PM

Since you mentioned Photoshop as one of your main applications, I would opt for the 8GB of RAM & the caviar Black HDD. Have you looked at the Samsung Spinpoint F3 drives? People say they perform as well or better than the WD drives and are less expensive. Having said that, I would go with the WD drive just because I have never had a problem with a WD drive. Still running a 74gb raptor from 2005!
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June 23, 2011 11:47:34 PM

clarkjd said:
Since you mentioned Photoshop as one of your main applications, I would opt for the 8GB of RAM & the caviar Black HDD. Have you looked at the Samsung Spinpoint F3 drives? People say they perform as well or better than the WD drives and are less expensive. Having said that, I would go with the WD drive just because I have never had a problem with a WD drive. Still running a 74gb raptor from 2005!

The samsung 1 is SATA 3GBs. What diff in performance can I expect from a spinning HDD in SATA 3GBs vs SATA 6GBs?

u mean the 7200rpm, or 5400rpm 1?
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a c 347 } Memory
June 24, 2011 12:22:45 AM

If you have a very small SSD, smaller than 120GB, it's more an aggravation than IMO an asset. To have any real benefits the OS + Apps must be on the SSD, and if your running say SQL, Rendering, any data that doesn't get loaded up in RAM {e.g. lot of Sequential edit: or Random accessing} the benefits go away.

Example, I do lots of SQL testing and our i7 9xx pseudo workstations that have a 120GB SSD and RAID HDDs, if I run a large SQL database, mine are extremely large, with the data on the HDD its okay in speed, but if the data and thereby everything is running off the SSD it's twice as fast.

So the answer is it's 100% dependent upon your total environment. RHEL, Windows or any variant of Linux all benefit from the SSD.
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a c 347 } Memory
June 24, 2011 12:26:30 AM

jiewmeng said:
The samsung 1 is SATA 3GBs. What diff in performance can I expect from a spinning HDD in SATA 3GBs vs SATA 6GBs?

u mean the 7200rpm, or 5400rpm 1?

Not much, look up the Read/Writes specs on your HDDs. A SATA2 or SATA3 Interface does ZIP for mechanical HDDs. The fastest mechanical HDDs are at best 1/2 of the SATA2 Interface bandwidth, and most HDDs are 120~150MB/s and SATA2 real world craps out at 290~295 MB/s.
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a b } Memory
June 24, 2011 12:21:24 PM

jiewmeng said:
The samsung 1 is SATA 3GBs. What diff in performance can I expect from a spinning HDD in SATA 3GBs vs SATA 6GBs?

u mean the 7200rpm, or 5400rpm 1?


If you are referring to the 74GB Raptor, it is a 10,000RPM drive. As far as the differences in performance between SATA3GB & 6GB, jaquith has already covered that above, i.e. no mechanical drive will saturate a SATA 3GB connection, much less a SATA 6GB.
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July 1, 2011 2:33:40 PM

Best answer selected by jiewmeng.
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