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Posted by cryophonik on Jul-17-2012 18:40:

Question Solid State Drives

I'm preparing to do my semi-annual system drive wipe/fresh install and I'm considering going with an SSD for the system drive (Windows 7x64), and allocate my current HD system drive to another storage drive. Anybody here using an SSD for the system drive? Is the improvement in start-up and access time as noticeable as the manufacturers are claiming? Also, I've read that SSDs can have a shorter lifespan than standard HDs, so I'm wondering if anybody has had one die. Any other pros/cons you've noticed?


Posted by Looney4Clooney on Jul-17-2012 19:04:

Would normally say fuck off as this has been discussed but everyone gets one.

It is faster. But speed is relative. I don't notice it anymore but it was significant when I made the change. I started first with my OS then audio drive. Then expanded 2 more for certain libraries HS and HB. I noticed the biggest difference there were PlAY' piece of shit loading time was unbearable using hdd. Did this fir the 2 computers so they don't et jealous.

For the Audio drive, I noticed that I could have a lot more tracks. My overall CPU use went down. I doesn't run faster or feel faster really. It loads maybe 10 seconds? maybe 30 seconds with hdd.

I haven't had one fail yet and I have 14 is use right now. But most of them don't really do much. Loading samples , reading writing Audiofiles. I use my mepad to browse the net so none of that constant OS cache stuff.

I back up the audio drive 3 times a da, the OS once. The oneswithsamples, I am not too concerned ask have hard copies for most and. All of the backed up on a multi layered raid configuration.

I should show a picture with all my hardrives. It is silly.


Posted by Lobst on Jul-17-2012 19:10:

I bought a 256 GB Samsung SSD drive some time ago and I couldn't be happier. Just for testing purposes, I tried rebooting my laptop just now and from hitting the reboot-button in Windows and to have Windows started with everything loaded again (this included typing in my password) it took only 26 seconds!

Copying stuff, extracting stuff and so on is done at a speed of about 200 MB/s and I don't even notice loading times in games and other applications anymore. Soo....

Buy one!!


Posted by Looney4Clooney on Jul-17-2012 19:13:

Do you actually sit there and watch it load ? My shit loads on a timer and I'm eating am omelett. I doesn't really matter. My computer room is 2 degrees colder tho.


Posted by cryophonik on Jul-17-2012 19:17:

quote:
Originally posted by Looney4Clooney
Would normally say fuck off as this has been discussed but everyone gets one.


I did a search using TA's shitty search function and google site:search and found nothing addressing my questions, at least not from any producers in this forum. But, thanks for the info.

When you say that you have 14 in use right now, those are all SSDs?

quote:
Originally posted by Lobst
rebooting my laptop...took only 26 seconds!

Copying stuff, extracting stuff and so on is done at a speed of about 200 MB/s and I don't even notice loading times in games and other applications anymore. Soo....

Buy one!!


I'm looking at some other forum discussions and that seems in perfect agreement with almost everybody's experience, so I think the decision is made, although I'll still keep an eye out for other responses. Thanks guys.


Posted by Looney4Clooney on Jul-17-2012 23:48:

yup.

4 in each mac pro. 2X Intel 128, 2 X Vertex 256
Then my 6 raid 0 thunderbolt read time of death.
6 X Vertex 256
3 of the G drives have 2 SSD each.

i didnt' count the extra intel and vertex i have as backup. So i guess 16 ?

I recently I bought 2 more of those thunderbolt drives but they just have regular HDD.

ANd then i have let me count, 14 X 3TB g drives . MY old pc which has 6 x 3TB.

And then about 20 or so 500 - 2 TB drives which i no longer use because they aren't big enough for my files.


this is the old pic



I take storage super serial.
You should see my perfume collection.


Posted by tehlord on Jul-17-2012 23:59:

For the last 3 years I've had all my sample and project data on one hard drive.

No backups.


Anyhoo


SSD's are ok for the OS drive, but I really don't see the point for sample storage. I suppose if you're streaming hundreds of channels of audio from them it's a different matter.


Posted by Looney4Clooney on Jul-18-2012 00:29:

if i lose data , i don't eat.

SSD for samples is merely for loading. I mean you are loading 16 gigs, you don't want to wait. And PLAY can take 10 minutes. Some things would take that long to load even with 32 gigs of ram. This way , i save ram, use more DFD cache. Stream more than actually loading from ram/


Posted by cryophonik on Jul-18-2012 00:39:

quote:
Originally posted by tehlord

SSD's are ok for the OS drive, but I really don't see the point for sample storage. I suppose if you're streaming hundreds of channels of audio from them it's a different matter.


Yeah, that's exactly what I was planning - 1 SSD for the OS drive, and keep my 4 1TB HDs for my music projects, samples, media, and backup drives. I have a lot of sample libraries and they take up the better part of a 1TB HD, but I don't think I've ever needed more than 5GB at any given time, so conventional HD is fine, in terms of cost-effectiveness and performance, for my purposes.


Posted by DigiNut on Jul-18-2012 01:16:

I've had an SSD for the better part of a year and really notice the difference when I have to work on a system with an old-school mechanical drive.

Aside from the obvious boot time improvement, I think what really makes a difference is the swap file, which is already completely random-access in nature. Microsoft introduced ReadyBoost in Vista for this very reason, but the performance of a USB thumb drive doesn't even begin to compare to a SATA3 SSD.

So you'll notice a huge difference if you're doing anything memory-intensive; doesn't matter how much physical RAM you've got, there's always going to be some paging going on, and an SSD makes that almost invisible.

That being said, if you do plan to get an SSD, make backups. I thought SSDs were supposed to be more reliable than mechanical drives - due to having no mechanical wear and tear, obviously - but less than a month ago, my drive (Vertex 2) suddenly died without any warning. I mean completely shitcanned, just blue-screened one day and the computer refused to recognize it after the reboot. Could not resurrect, the usual Linux Live CD standby and even the manufacturer's firmware tools wouldn't help.

I subsequently found out that the older OCZ drives (prior to series 4) have a reputation for this, as do all SandForce-based drives (which is... almost all of them on the market), and therefore chose to replace mine with a slightly older model that has a proven track record (Plextor M3). Still, I feel a little like I'm walking on eggshells.

Even Intel, whose original X25 drives were rock solid, has recently switched to SandForce technology, and (surprise surprise) users are reporting a lot of problems with their newer drives (330, 520, etc.), specifically that "8 MB bug" which they've supposedly fixed, but reports are still coming in that the fix isn't 100% effective.

So, expect a noticeable performance improvement, but just be prepared for problems. Fortunately, since throughput is so high, you should be able to do a full restore in a matter of minutes - as long as you have a recent/recoverable backup!


Posted by Juan Paulino on Jul-18-2012 07:37:

Does flash/ssd have any effect on audio?


Posted by Mel David on Jul-18-2012 13:51:

I tried an SSD recently but didn't notice much improvement. But this is because I just used an external case connected via Firewire 800 to an iMac, as I didn't have a 2.5>3.5" converter, and couldn't be bothered opening the iMac to replace its internal HD - you have to remove the glass and then the screen to get to the HD. If I was going to do such an operation I wanted to wait till I had a more useful SSD size. 128GB is not enough.

My DAW is on a PC system, and I never shut it down, so boot up times are a non-issue for me.


Posted by cryophonik on Jul-18-2012 16:02:

quote:
Originally posted by DigiNut

That being said, if you do plan to get an SSD, make backups. I thought SSDs were supposed to be more reliable than mechanical drives - due to having no mechanical wear and tear, obviously - but less than a month ago, my drive (Vertex 2) suddenly died without any warning. I mean completely shitcanned, just blue-screened one day and the computer refused to recognize it after the reboot. Could not resurrect, the usual Linux Live CD standby and even the manufacturer's firmware tools wouldn't help.

I subsequently found out that the older OCZ drives (prior to series 4) have a reputation for this, as do all SandForce-based drives (which is... almost all of them on the market), and therefore chose to replace mine with a slightly older model that has a proven track record (Plextor M3). Still, I feel a little like I'm walking on eggshells.

Even Intel, whose original X25 drives were rock solid, has recently switched to SandForce technology, and (surprise surprise) users are reporting a lot of problems with their newer drives (330, 520, etc.), specifically that "8 MB bug" which they've supposedly fixed, but reports are still coming in that the fix isn't 100% effective.


Sorry to hear about your troubles, Diginut, but that's exactly the kind of information I was looking for. I'm going to do some research over the next few days and order the SSD this weekend. If you, or anybody else, has any suggestions for an SSD (128GB is probably perfect, for PC/internal system drive only), I'd love to hear them.


Posted by Terrence Parker on Jul-18-2012 16:11:

I am building a new machine atm, my plan is also to have the system drive on a ssd + second hdd which will store the rest.
Ordered the Samsung 830 ssd, will see how it goes.

Here are some nice tips for SSD optimization: http://thessdreview.com/ssd-guides/...zation-guide-2/


Posted by meriter on Jul-18-2012 16:33:

quote:
Originally posted by cryophonik
Yeah, that's exactly what I was planning - 1 SSD for the OS drive, and keep my 4 1TB HDs for my music projects, samples, media, and backup drives. I have a lot of sample libraries and they take up the better part of a 1TB HD, but I don't think I've ever needed more than 5GB at any given time, so conventional HD is fine, in terms of cost-effectiveness and performance, for my purposes.



Maybe the difference in negligible but wouldn't you want to at least copy your current project and samples over to the SSD? Unless youre interfacing with your external harddrives with like eSata or whatever it's probably worth doing


Posted by cryophonik on Jul-18-2012 16:39:

quote:
Originally posted by meriter
Maybe the difference in negligible but wouldn't you want to at least copy your current project and samples over to the SSD? Unless youre interfacing with your external harddrives with like eSata or whatever it's probably worth doing


I don't have any external HDs. I have 4 internal SATA2 drives - one is allocated to my samples, another to all of my music projects. The other two are for media (mp3s, photos, videos), and backup. I like the idea of having my current projects and samples on the main SSD, but I haven't done that in the past because of the performance benefits of having them on separate drives. I assume that would still apply to SSDs???


Posted by Looney4Clooney on Jul-18-2012 22:38:

i would definitely put your audio on an ssd. Ever since doing that, my CPU meter is never past 10. Which is weird but i think it doesn't give a real value but rather an idea and having the SSD makes it possible to play circa 100 audio tracks with no spikes.

Just save a few times a day. WHen ever i eat or get a coffee. I press a button and shit saves automatically.


Posted by cryophonik on Jul-18-2012 22:47:

quote:
Originally posted by Looney4Clooney
i would definitely put your audio on an ssd.


I'll probably do that when the price of large SSDs (e.g., 640GB or more) comes down to something more reasonable. In the meantime, if I understand it correctly, I should be keeping my applications on a separate drive than my audio (i.e., music projects) and samples, even if the system drive is an SSD, correct?


Posted by Looney4Clooney on Jul-18-2012 23:50:

i meant like more as a project scratch drive. Not samples. Just the audio for your projects. Like bounced tracks.


Posted by cryophonik on Jul-19-2012 00:00:

quote:
Originally posted by Looney4Clooney
i meant like more as a project scratch drive. Not samples. Just the audio for your projects. Like bounced tracks.


OK, got it. Thanks!


Posted by DJ RANN on Jul-19-2012 00:07:

Yes, system drive = SSD, and you want to get at least 200gb which should serve you just fine.

Prices are gradually coming down on the larger size SSD's but its going to be a another year or so before they get competitive.

Intel is really eh only brand to go for right now. They still are the only ones with both great performance and reliability. Even with the new sadforce chips and some of the problems they had with the earlier ones (the 8mb issus) they still had lower failure rates than any of the other manufacturers, and frankly I think it was a case of a a few people having that issue and shouting very loudly. Apparently it doesn't affect many units at all, it's just the instances were well documented.

If it's your OS, it's not really that critical to do backups and anyway, what you should do is once you have done a fresh install and you have it in it's perfect fresh state, make a clone of that drive on a backup drive, so if ever it goes south, you can just use your clone to create a new OS drive in a matter of minutes.

Here is a C&P from the other thread:

The thing is, most i7 systems can handle the projects, it's mor a matter of data bottle necking - even though logic has the discrete CPU and HDD monitors, it doesn't properly account for slow data throughput from your drives. Sure the HDD meter will spike with slow drives but magically, when you put SSD's in there you CPU meter also consistently records lower overall readings.

Basically, go Intel 3 or 5 series, get 200gb+ and make sure trim is enabled. Never look back - any other HDD computer will suddenly seem sooooooo slow.


Posted by Looney4Clooney on Jul-19-2012 01:26:

system drive has your presets and what not so i think it is pretty important to backup. I think you need 2. 1 for os, the other for your scratch audio. I mean for this one , you don't need anything big especially for edm. Even 62 is enough for 1 - 3 projects.


Posted by jonmitz on Jul-19-2012 02:09:

to answer one of your questions, SSD technology is more reliable than magnetic recording, however that does not mean that SSD Y is always better than magnetic drive X

use newegg.com and find something well reviewed with the capacity and price range you are looking for and you should be fine


Posted by Looney4Clooney on Jul-19-2012 02:17:

they are in theory. Its just that when they fail, you can't get the data back. I had to retrieve data from a hardrive once, cost me 2000$. But i got most of it back. I think that is the caveat. I don't know for sure but i would think that the interface you are using to access the drive matters. I've never had anything fail that was in my mac pro. external drives have failed. Perhaps it is the power supply ? The mac one is a pretty good. And if you are using dirty power....


Posted by cryophonik on Jul-19-2012 03:13:

Thanks guys, lots of good info here.

quote:
Originally posted by DJ RANN
Yes, system drive = SSD, and you want to get at least 200gb which should serve you just fine.

Basically, go Intel 3 or 5 series, get 200gb+...


What makes 200GB the magic number, RANN? My current system drive is using less than half that, so I was planning on probably going with a 128GB, just to be on the safe side. 200GB seems like overkill for me, not to mention a pretty big jump in price, unless there is some other reason that I'm not aware of. Again, the SSD will be for the OS/software installation only - I've 4 other HDs totaling 4TB for storage/projects/backup.


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