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Intel X-25 MLC SATA2 80gb at capacity. Upgrade to what?

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February 28, 2013 9:04:56 PM

I bought a Lenovo Thinkpad x201 in April 2010 that had an Intel Core i5-520M Processor with 4GB ram. It only supports SATA2.

I installed this Intel X-25M 80GB MLC SATA2 SSD back in October 2010. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820167023

The drive has worked absolutely flawlessly and the intel ssd toolbox shows full life and health. I have started staying over at my gfs place and began streaming movies from my laptop onto her xbox. So I've started to hit the ceiling in terms of storage on my laptop.

If I upgrade to a newer TLC SSD will I see a significant drop in performance? I think I'll only keep this laptop for another 2 years or so. I was debating upon the crucial m4, samsung 840, and samsung 840 pro. Although would I not see any performance gains without SATA3?

I would be content with the same performance as my Intel X-25M MLC. Better performance from even a TLC drive would be a huge plus. Thanks for the help.
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February 28, 2013 9:26:48 PM

"Although would I not see any performance gains without SATA3?"

if your system only has sata 2 then there will be very little performance to gained by going to a sata 3 drive. except the fact that the next system it is used in can take advantage of the sata 3 capability. the sata controller depicts the amount of I/O speed on the motherboard so sata 2 will only run at the max the controller can handle while a sata 3 controller can handle higher amounts of data. most drives cant totally saturate a sata 2 controler because of speed limitations of the controler on the disk its self. even if it is sata 3 capable.

"If I upgrade to a newer TLC SSD will I see a significant drop in performance?"

Not as long as the read/writes speeds are about the same. IOPS is the more common numbers to look at for performance differences between drives.

I'll let someone else chime in on the choices that would best fit your needs.
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February 28, 2013 10:40:23 PM

Newer ssd drives have better microcode, and will run a bit faster even if they are not connected to faster sata ports.

If you upgrade to a larger modern ssd, you will probably get even better performance. A larger ssd has more nand chips that can be accessed in parallel for better sequential speeds.

I think I would look first to a intel 330 or 335 series. Mainly because you can use their free ssd migration tool to clone your current ssd to the new for a trouble free transition.

Other competitors will have approximately equal performance.
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February 28, 2013 11:08:34 PM

I'm a little confused about your use of the term "TLC SSD".

TLC is an acronym for "triple level cell". It refers to a type of memory. Samsung was the first company to use it in a consumer oriented ssd. The TLC memory is used in the Samsung 840 Series which is their mainstream value ssd. Samsung used a more traditional type of memory in their flagship 840 Pro series. I do not know of any other company that uses TLC memory in consumer oriented ssd's.

TLC memory is normally used in memory cards, media players, and mobile GPS so this is something new in the ssd market. A concern has been expressed about the longevity of TLC memory in the 830. There is no definitive answer yet.

According to the Lenovo datasheet the X201 has 3 USB ports. Have you considered an external hard drive as a possible solution?
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March 1, 2013 2:25:28 AM

geofelt said:


I think I would look first to a intel 330 or 335 series. Mainly because you can use their free ssd migration tool to clone your current ssd to the new for a trouble free transition.

Other competitors will have approximately equal performance.


Thanks for the recommendation. I'll take a look at the migration tool.


JohnnyLucky said:
I'm a little confused about your use of the term "TLC SSD".

...
According to the Lenovo datasheet the X201 has 3 USB ports. Have you considered an external hard drive as a possible solution?


I mentioned TLC because the 840 was one of the drives I was considering. I have considered an external drive. I haven't tried streaming from it yet.
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March 1, 2013 9:54:28 AM

The Thinkpad has only USB 2 so please don't use an external SSD. You can use an external HDD. The Samsung 840 is much faster then you current so go with it.
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