How/why do you afford to buy SSDs?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Yumunum, May 13, 2011.

  1. Yumunum macrumors 65816


    Apr 24, 2011
    I'm looking to buy a new Mac, and I'm thinking about the possible upgrades I'd pay for. I look at the cost of SSDs, and gosh, the smallest one I could upgrade an iMac to is $500! And for $100 more it could be 1TB. So I guess my question is, why do you guys fork in the extra money (the price of a good Windows laptop!) for these things? Is it really that good of a speed boost? What size do you get? Or are most people replacing the hard drives yourselves for a lower cost? :/ I really don't want to waste my mulah.

    Sent from my iPad 2
  2. Badger^2 macrumors 68000


    Oct 29, 2009
    If you dont really know what a SSD is or how it would benefit you... then you probably dont need it.
  3. Cougarcat macrumors 604

    Sep 19, 2003
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8G4 Safari/6533.18.5)

    It's really that good of a speed boost.

    Although, right now I'd only recommend one if you don't have a lot of files (<128 GB) or you're installing it in a secondary computer. The larger sizes are very expensive at the moment.

    And yes, Apple charges a lot for their SSDs, and they aren't the best. Unfortunately it's not trivial to install one yourself in an iMac.
  4. Dresevski macrumors 6502

    May 6, 2011
    This is a fact that extends to much more than just SSD's. Look at all the damn RAM threads about the unnecessary confusion over which brands and at which prices. The speed of the SSD will most likely be unnoticeable to you if you do not understand how and why it is faster than the HDD. Also, if you are on that level it will require even more research into how to install OSX and move folders around on your system (which is very easy but...maybe not). To me it's not worth paying $600 to have the factory SSD installed with a HDD at its side, because I would rather know that my SATA III capable computer is using the fastest drive possible at a lower price.
  5. maxinc macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2010
    The SSDs have 2 big performance advantages over HDDs

    1) Access time. SSD are in the range of 0.1 - 0.3ms while HDD have 8 - 15ms. This makes SSD 50-100 times quicker to get to the information.

    2) Read Write Speeds. With latest SATA3 SSD, the speed has just got ridiculous where you can reach 4-5 times the speed of a normal mechanical HDD.

    Other advantages include low power consumption (and no heat), small form factor and completely silent.

    On the bad side, they are expensive, especially the bigger ones.

    Here a comparison on my 2011 i5 iMac with standard WD 1TB Caviar Black vs the 120GB OCZ Vertex 3.


    System boots in less than 10 seconds and everything is snappy like the apps are already opened but minimised.
  6. Shivetya macrumors 68000

    Jan 16, 2008
    I just found that part to be odd :rolleyes:
  7. hsj2011 macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    put it this way. Once you put a SSD in a mac/pc, you'll never go back to not having one.
  8. Georgio macrumors 6502


    Apr 30, 2008
    Essex, UK
    As I've said in another thread, we tried some SSD's at work for our rep laptops and found all failed after a couple of weeks of intensive use.
    By fail, they didn't burst into flame or stop working, but they started loosing crucial data until eventually in one case the OS wouldn't boot because it couldn't be found.
    Reformat/re-install cured the problem in every case, but the whole point of doing this was to cut down extra work not add to it by reformatting/restoring every 2-3 weeks.
    Personally I'm going to wait until the technology is improved as it undoubtedly will; the HD has been around in it's current form for nearly 50 years and it's long overdue a viable replacement.
    I'm hoping that Thunderbolt external SSD drives won't be too far away.
  9. maxinc macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2010
    I think that is just bad luck or a sever incompatibility of some sort. In contrast I've used SSD's for the last 4 years in pretty much every computer I owned. I've been through Samsungs, Kingston, OCZ, Intel and G Skill. The only failure was the G Skill Falcon 2 which died in my Mac Pro last year after 3 months of use. The replacement is still going strong in the MBP. Apart from this, I had no data loss at all so I would be more inclined towards software incompatibility here.

    In the same amount of time I had 2 hard drive failures, one 2.5" laptop ssd and one 500G WD drive. There is no excuse for not taking backups, no matter which type of drive you use.

    At the moment I have SSD's in everything I use which includes a Mac Pro, the new iMac, a MBP, a mini and a couple of PCs. I simply can not live without them :D
  10. Sunday Ironfoot macrumors regular

    Apr 14, 2011

    In a PC you have microchips and RAM chips that are sending electric signals around at close to the speed of light, then they come up against the hard disc, where a needle has to physically move backward/forward across a spinning mechanical disc. Put simply they represents the biggest bottleneck in most PC's, since an electrical signal can move about a few orders of magnitude faster than a needle. With SSD's the last moving part (other than fans) and the last major bottleneck is eliminated.

    The biggest issue is cost and size. To me size isn't an issue, 256GB is enough as I store a lot of stuff in the cloud (photos, source code etc.), I'm currently making do with 160GB Intel SSD, and have only used 100GB of that, that's with a DB Server, Web Server, software dev IDE, various tools and programs, MS Office and 30GB of music, a couple of games etc. If a need to backup large quantity of data, I can get a cheap external 1TB backup drive for that.


    Sent from my iPad 4 (I'm from the future :) )
  11. kfscoll macrumors 65816


    Nov 3, 2009
    An SSD is the single best upgrade that I've ever made to a computer. It's just that noticeable. To be honest I likely won't ever buy another computer without an SSD (at least for the OS).
  12. CHSeifert, May 13, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 24, 2011

    CHSeifert macrumors 6502


    Dec 28, 2010
    Copenhagen, Denmark - Scandinavia
    Why Odd ?

    SSD is the Best upgrade to any computer anyone Can currently make !!
  13. PeckhamBog macrumors 6502


    Nov 28, 2007

    Because the iPad 2 the OP is using runs on a Solid State Drive so you'd expect him to have appreciated the different experience each form of storage gives?
  14. CHSeifert, May 13, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 24, 2011

    CHSeifert macrumors 6502


    Dec 28, 2010
    Copenhagen, Denmark - Scandinavia
    Oki - I see a bit of your point, just not the same with iOS mobile system compared to a regular heavy OS.

    You could then also apply the same logic to iPhone users - an iPad is basically a large displayed iPhone also with flash memory.

    Don't think the SSD argument quite works on mobile devices.....
  15. TallManNY macrumors 601


    Nov 5, 2007
    Yes, it wasn't a great question. I've got a SSD laptop for work and I don't see a great deal of performance improvement. Yes it boots up fast, but I only boot about twice a week on average (either for the occasional travel or for a Win-doh! necessitated reboot). Yes it opens applications pretty quick, but all my standard applications are left open. My home iMac will have upgraded RAM allowing for even greater numbers of applications to be left permanently open.

    Most access of files is through firm's network, so SSD doesn't help there.

    Don't get me wrong, I think my firm was right to get 126 GB SSDs for these little Dells. The cost probably wasn't too bad. But I'm thinking it isn't worth it to drop $600 to add the feature for a home computer (unless it is also a real work computer). The average person would probably be better served using the money for better internet service. I bet internet speed is the real bottleneck these days for most people.

    Hmm, that idea might even deserve its own thread.

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