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Old 17th Feb 2013, 09:15   #1
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Best SSD and Graphics Card

So I've finally gotten fed up with my current computer (see signature) and have decided to build a new rig for the first time in about 5 or 6 years...

This is what I'm building it around:

i5 3570K
Gigabyte GA-Z77-D3H
8Gb DDR3 1600
be quiet! BN181 L8 530W PSU

I'll have an i30 cooler plus a 2Gb HDD for mass storage.

Any recommendations for SSD for the boot drive? I'm looking at 256Gb size as they seem fairly good value for money - BT recently gave the Samsung 840 a good review but I've heard some not so good things about it. Anyone got one? What about the Vertex 4 (although that's rather more expensive than the others)?

I'm also looking for a GPU - budget for this is about £150 so I was thinking a 2Gb Radeon HD 7850. Any other good bangs for that buck? My current monitor is 1440x900 and I'm not going to go multi-monitor in the future but I will buy a 24" one at some point.

I'm looking to build a rig that will play any games with a decent frame rate last me a good few years without any major upgrades being needed.

Cheers
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 10:06   #2
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Ok it's simple, somewhat. You have 2 types of MLC SSD: synchronous and asynchronous, and you have TLC memory which is what the Samsung 840 uses (the only SSD that uses it), it's chip used for USB flash drives.

-> General computer usage, where you don't do much much write (media PC, mom/pop PC, etc), any SSD will do. Pick the cheapest price.

-> if you seek a good level of reliability where you want it to keep a solid 3-5 years without worry, any MLC asynchronous SSD will be perfectly fine. (So, no Samsung 840, as it uses cheapo TLC chips, supposedly "high grade", and can hold one for many years. To me it's still the same chips as USB flash drive, and it's a big no no)

-> If you are going to do some heavy write amounts like crazy, and want similar durability as an HDD for your writes and last for over 5 years, or seek maximum performance, where real world performance really much closer to benchmark than the other benchamrks. MLC synchronous SSD is what you want.


Examples of asynchronous MLC SSD: Corsair Neutron, Corsair Force, Crutial V4, OCZ Agility 4, Samsung 830.

Examples of synchronous MLC SSD: Corsair Neutron GTX, Corsair Force GT and GS, Crutial M4, OCZ Vertex 4, OCZ Vector, Samsung 830 Pro and 840 Pro.

An easy way to identify synchronous model, is that they have a 5 year warranty.

I can't help you with your GPU's sadly, as I don't know the prices in U.K.
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 10:14   #3
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I was planning to use the SSD for Windows and to store my games on so I'm guessing a synchronous MLC SSD then or will I be OK with asynchronous?
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 21:14   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes View Post
Examples of asynchronous MLC SSD: Corsair Neutron, Corsair Force, Crutial V4, OCZ Agility 4, Samsung 830.

Examples of synchronous MLC SSD: Corsair Neutron GTX, Corsair Force GT and GS, Crutial M4, OCZ Vertex 4, OCZ Vector, Samsung 830 Pro and 840 Pro.
There's a bit of a typo here with the Samsung models as a 830 Pro doesn't exist.

The 830 is a synchronous nand equivalent one, whilst the 840 (non-Pro) is the asynchronous equivalent.


The top 2 models for über performance (well, within a normal consumer spend) that are easy to get hold of over here are the 840 Pro & Vector - though the former is cheaper (hence personally owning a pair - along with a pair of 830s btw)...

...but 'if' you want something more budget orientated then i'd wait for the Crucial M5/M500 (the model name could be either) as, unless they do something horrendous, it should be the best budget drive - in particular as the official press releases are that the pricing will be very aggressive so it will be possible to get something much bigger for a decent price.

They're quoting a (nominally) 1TB drive as being less than £450 - which is likely to put a 512GB model at around the £200-210 mark which is exceptionally good value for money for a (hopefully) very decent drive.
[NB the 128 & 256GB models will be slower for writes &, at least with the 128, it's very likely that high QD small reads will suffer (albeit that this is a bit of a niche usage) - but the pricing, compared to what the competition's offering for the same money, is what's likely to make them.]
According to the press release(s) they're going to be available in Q1 - which, naturally, 'should' mean within the next 6 weeks.

Last edited by PocketDemon; 18th Feb 2013 at 18:57.
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 21:54   #5
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Yes you are correct about the 830 Pro, I got confused between my models Thanks.
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 21:56   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by roblikesbeer View Post
I was planning to use the SSD for Windows and to store my games on so I'm guessing a synchronous MLC SSD then or will I be OK with asynchronous?
You'll be ok with asynchronous SSD, unless you seek the best performance.
But check prices for synchronous ones as well. If one is on special or something, or just a few dollars more, why not get it.
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Old 17th Feb 2013, 22:13   #7
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Same as above with samsung 830 or 840 being best value for money. For £150 you could probably push to a 7870 as they go on offer quite often but a 7850 is a great card from what I've heard, and all you need to play most things on max (looking at crysis 3).

This 7870 for example is only marginally over your budget.
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 00:12   #8
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I'd say that the 2GB 7850 with a decent stock cooler is what you should be getting graphics card wise at around the £150 mark. You will also get bioshock infinite and tomb raider (shove them on the marketplace and recoup some dosh if they aren't to your taste)
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 00:22   #9
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If you can go a bit higher with money, then go for £179 GTX660, something like this.

P.S. Yes, I'm a nvidia lover
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 07:44   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes View Post
You have 2 types of MLC SSD: synchronous and asynchronous.
There's also a third type called "toggle", which is synchronous with some improvements. For example the Samsung 830 has toggle NAND.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GoodBytes View Post
So, no Samsung 840, as it uses cheapo TLC chips, supposedly "high grade", and can hold one for many years. To me it's still the same chips as USB flash drive, and it's a big no no
The 840 is on par with asynchronous MLC based disks. It's not as bad as you say.

Here's a thread where they torture test various SSD. The sample sizes are too small for drawing conclusions, but you get some general indication on the reliability. http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/...e-25nm-Vs-34nm

For the record, I'm a pretty heavy user of my SSD, and I write around 2TB a year.
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Old 18th Feb 2013, 16:35   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mm vr View Post
There's also a third type called "toggle", which is synchronous with some improvements. For example the Samsung 830 has toggle NAND.

The 840 is on par with asynchronous MLC based disks. It's not as bad as you say.

Here's a thread where they torture test various SSD. The sample sizes are too small for drawing conclusions, but you get some general indication on the reliability. http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/...e-25nm-Vs-34nm

For the record, I'm a pretty heavy user of my SSD, and I write around 2TB a year.
Whilst you're right that there is a difference, lumping (non-TLC) toggle nand SSDs in with the sync nand ones & TLC toggle with the async ones is about trying to simplify things down.


So, yes, toggle nand is different from onfi synchronous nand -
whilst both will read/write data on the rise & fall of the data query strobe (async nand only does it on the rise), the latter uses a constantly running external clock to time it - whereas the former only runs the strobe when transfers are happening.
- however, it's now not become useful to simply limit things down to suggest that there's some magical innate benefit to one over the other when it comes to performance.

As a couple of quick examples -

- both toggle & onfi have different revisions with different specs
- both have had die shrinkages which 'can' alter the specs (particularly longevity)
- both have different die capacities for the same revision & die size which can alter the specs
- etc...

So it's now far more useful to look at the overall performance & longevity for a capacity between SSDs en masse than it is to focus upon the nand - otherwise you end up with hundreds of different groups of SSDs & no real comparison.

This is why, limiting it to 2 groups as Goodbytes had done, it's kind of appropriate to lump in, for example, the 840 Pro & 830 with the sync nand SSDs - &, as you suggest (& i did, using Goodbytes list) the 840 with the async nand ones.


Having said that, imho it's getting to the stage where, for example, the M4 probably needs to be in a 3rd mid-point category, that also includes the 840, as the former's gotten more & more outclassed & the latter is a 'compromise' SSD.

Well, with the 840, (as Goodbytes said) it is more down to the longevity as, whilst its write speeds aren't great, it'll outperform something like the M4 (the lowest spec sync nand SSD that it's previously been worth considering) overall for most consumer uses.

Now, with the M5/M500 coming up, this should also fit into the higher end of this new mid-category point for the 256GB model (the 512 & 1024GBs are likely to be somewhere in the top one) - but it doesn't have the compromise element of the 840, should be faster than the M4 & the pricing is reported as being exceptionally good.
[NB i personally think the 128GB is likely to be a pos if, as is reported, they are using 128Gb nand dies in all of the models.]

As to the async nand SSDs, they were shonky when they came out - & time & tech has moved on without them improving.


& torture testing SSDs has little to do with r.l. - you're not looking at r.l. data & where's the wear levelling that occurs over time &...
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Old 19th Feb 2013, 17:20   #12
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Thanks for all the advice guys but I'm still not sure which SSD to buy... what about the Crucial M4 (with the firmware update that significantly improves the performance)?
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