256GB ssd too small?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by bp1000, Sep 27, 2013.

  1. bp1000 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2011
    #1
    Do you think this is too small in the latest imac?

    My work is cloud based and I don't have requirements for large amounts of data.

    However I was thinking plugging in a much slower external disk for all my photos might take the shine of having such a fast computer. (I already do this as I have s 128gb MBA)

    So confused wether to cancel and reorder the 512gb.
     
  2. jdblas69 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2012
    #2
    I guess there are a couple ways you could look at this. I think the cost difference between the 256 and 512 is $300, if you went with the 256 you could always use some of the money you save and buy a newer faster external drive and probably still have some $$ left over or get the 512 and have the flexibility and wiggle room of the bigger drive because as it stands now the ability to upgrade the new imac's internals is pretty limited.
     
  3. Chippy99 macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 28, 2012
    #3
    Stick with the 256GB mate. I think 256GB is *plenty* to store all your programs and some often used files. I have a ton of stuff installed on my iMac including lots of stuff I could delete or move if I needed to, and so far I have used 68GB. That includes a 22GB Windows VM image. So 46GB without that.

    By the time the 256GB drive is anywhere near full, my warranty will be LONG gone and I will be happy to rip the machine open to replace the SSD, without fear of losing the warranty.

    I have a 3TB external drive on USB3 which is probably faster than the Apple internal 3TB drive, and another 4TB external for Time Machine. The other advantage of setting it up like this is, if the Mac dies completely and I have to send it back to Apple, I can keep all my really senstive data on the external drives. So no security risk having personal info on the internal drive and no way of wiping it if the Mac is dead.
     
  4. Dweez macrumors 65816

    Dweez

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    Down by the river
    #4
    In my experience, the available storage gets filled. In this case, more is better IMNSHO.
     
  5. Tanax macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 15, 2011
    Location:
    Stockholm, Sweden
    #5
    If all your documents/images/data is in the cloud or on any other type of external drives, the only thing you need to worry about is storage for your programs. How much storage you need depends on how many and what type of programs you want to install.

    For instance, Adobe programs are very storage -demanding and can consume up to 20GB each. Standard games these days can take up a good 5-20GB each as well. Any type of serious music program like Cubase take up a good chunk of storage as well (even if you store your VSTs on external drives).

    If you want install Parallels and Windows (with storage to install Windows programs as well) will take up a good 50GB or more.

    I'd say go with a Fusion drive. In the beginning I was against it and was very much for SSD - but now I'm leaning more and more toward Fusion drive instead.
     
  6. bp1000 thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jul 7, 2011
    #6
    I think my impatience won over the technicality

    Here is how I see it

    256gb is more than enough for os, apps, iTunes Match even iphoto.

    All my photo libraries can live on backup drives as references so my entire library can still be on the ssd but only as meta and thumbs.

    Having said that very large libraries aren't great either so might mean I could split up libraries by year keep them on the ssd in a managed format.

    Plus

    USB 3.0 hdd or ssd is only 10% slower and 10-20% slower than internal retrospectively

    Fusion 1tb or 256gb ssd is the same upgrade cost on the top 27" imac - I figured 256 gb would be faster as larger storage in the MBA is quicker. If I added 1tb hdd it would only be 10% slower in read writes than internal (unless internal fusion is only 5400rpm) - also tests on iphoto / apeture shows exports are the same regardless of drive - CPU is the bottleneck
     
  7. fredr500 macrumors regular

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    Apr 12, 2007
    #7
    Another way to look at is the 1TB Fusion gives you 128GB of SSD and 1TB of spinning disk, and the OS will manage it for you. You're only getting half of the SSD but you get a place to store your pictures and the OS determines how to get you the best performance.

    Of course you still want an external drive for backup, but I found a 3TB USB drive on sale for $120. And always remember, if it is plugged in to anything it is not a real backup. Take it from someone whose house was hit by lightning.
     
  8. Apple fanboy macrumors Core

    Apple fanboy

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    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    Behind the Lens, UK
    #8
    This. I have that set up and love the fact the OS just moves the stuff I use to the right place? Leave all that file management to the PC boys who love to tinker and fiddle.
    Me, I just want to be able to get on and use the machine to do the stuff I have to get done.
     
  9. JonnyBlaze macrumors regular

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    May 5, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #9
    Really interesting to read all you views, as this is what I'm deliberating over as well....256 SSD is just getting my vote so far, but the fusion drive is very tempting. Hard to know how if the SSD will be noticeably faster, and I also like the idea of a computer with no moving parts.
     
  10. Johnf1285 macrumors 6502a

    Johnf1285

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    Dec 25, 2010
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    New Jersey
    #10
    For me personally I was torn between 256 and 512. With a current use of about 130 gb, I figured 512 would be the better bet. I fear that if I get close to that 200 mark I would be kicking myself. The only foreseeable items filling it up anymore is more apps and music - which will take a lot of time to happen... Hmmm maybe I should've went with 256 then :eek:
     
  11. fig macrumors 6502a

    fig

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    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #11
    It most likely won't be. The Fusion drive in my Mini feels just like an SSD during day to day operations.
     
  12. in4fun macrumors regular

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    Dec 4, 2012
    #12
    What about durability?

    In my (made up) logic a pure SSD drive seems more reliable than a fusion drive. As I can always plug-in (and exchange) external drives for mass storage I would assume that a pure SSD drive is the safest bet if you want you iMac to be as failsafe as possible.

    ..please correct me if I'm wrong
     
  13. ioannis2005gr macrumors 6502

    ioannis2005gr

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    Aug 10, 2013
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    Europe
    #13
    In my opinion, you need the 256GB PCI-e SSD option.
    Otherwise, choose 128GB PCI-e SSD + 1TB HDD (fusion drive).

    Doesn't change cost.....needs drive your selection.
     
  14. bp1000 thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jul 7, 2011
    #14
    I think i agree with my limited understanding too. But wouldn't the ultimate in data loss be getting several external drives to spread data around with a central backup solution?

    It's ironic that I dislike putting everything in one place hence the 256gb ssd but I wonder if that space is too limited

    I'm planning on getting a 256gb samsung 840 pro for other data
     
  15. ioannis2005gr macrumors 6502

    ioannis2005gr

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    #15
    BackUp solutions are generally required.

    Of course, regardless your iMac selection, you have to buy external storage devices to backup your data!
     
  16. in4fun macrumors regular

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    Dec 4, 2012
    #16
    I'm not talking data loss here since huge backup drives are so cheap nowadays.

    More important to me is not giving my iMac away for several weeks to get it fixed, which is what would happen if the mechanical part of the Fusion Drive fails. That's why I think pure SSD is the smart choice here.
     
  17. ioannis2005gr macrumors 6502

    ioannis2005gr

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    #17
    This is a good approach...but it's your own decision!
     
  18. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

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    Mar 20, 2009
    Location:
    Near London, UK.
    #18
    I would go either for a bigger SSD, because 256 isn't that much and when it comes to resale value I suspect it will be much lower, or for a 1TB Fusion as the speed in use will be pretty much the same as a 256GB SSD.

    FWIW I am going to go for a 512SSD, so I don't have any moving parts.

    It helps that I only have about 200GB of "main" data on my current iMac (a 640GB disk). I have a bunch of infrequently accessed files (such as videos, SD card backups, miscellany) on external drives that wouldn't fit in 768GB by a long way, and the extra price for that is way too much for me to stomach.
     
  19. in4fun macrumors regular

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    Dec 4, 2012
    #19
    I would do the same in a heartbeat but in my store the upgrade from 256 SSD to 512 SSD is €300 extra. Next to processor & GPU upgrades I'm well over my current budget of €2.500. I also can't see myself downgrading CPU or GPU - therefore I have to go with the poor mans choice :(
     
  20. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000

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    Mar 20, 2009
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    Near London, UK.
    #20
    Yeh its the same sort of cost here (UK), the 512 is £225 more than the 256. If you want to rationalise it you'll get a fair chunk of the extra cost back when you resell, in say 4 or 5 years time how many people would want a Mac with a 256GB internal disk only? I think if I was really restricted on budget, id go for the 1TB Fusion.
    Are you doing a lot of gaming? Otherwise I dont think you'll notice the difference for those processor or GPU upgrades.
     
  21. in4fun macrumors regular

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    Dec 4, 2012
    #21
    So I just pulled the trigger and went with the 256 SSD only (maxed out CPU & GPU).
    My reasoning is that 256 GB is enough for os x as well as my apps, music and games.

    I don't run bootcamp and all my work files (graphics & videos) will be saved on an external SSD drive.

    I also don't care for resale value as I regularly pass on my old computers to my kids (and they may use it until it dies).
     
  22. APhillyApple macrumors regular

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    Sep 3, 2013
    #22
    I think I would have gone with more storage, better to have it than not. 256GB is really not that much, 512GB may be the better option.
     
  23. CWallace macrumors 603

    CWallace

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    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    #23
    I have a 256GB in my 2011 and went with the same for my 2013. Never filled half of it, but all my audio / video is on an 8TB NAS. :)
     
  24. johnnyturbouk macrumors 68000

    johnnyturbouk

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    #24
    Depends on usage, i think 256 pure pci-express for os, bare essentials and itunes, the rest can be housed on usb3 or TB enclosures.

    IMHO, i would get 256gb SSD with the imac, then lacie litle disk: Dual 512 samsung evo in raid 0 over TB, mirrored to a 4tb back-up drive that acts as my time machine.

    However, factoring in all the additional cost of this kind of set-up, i decided to go for the new macpro (unless it is heniously expensive) I do love the imac screen, very sleek design, but prefer the matte finish of my dell ultrsharp! Eventually, i drool to think of a dual 4K set-up
     
  25. bp1000 thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Jul 7, 2011
    #25
    What about just using a USB 3 hdd - likely to be only 10% slower than a fusion hdd portion and the 256gb SSD is quicker than the 128gb part of the fusion drive when looking at the new MBA lineup
     

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