P256 Samsung SSD?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by hehe299792458, May 2, 2009.

  1. hehe299792458 macrumors 6502a

    hehe299792458

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    #1
    I bought my MBP back in Nov, so I didn't have a chance to upgrade to a 256GB ssd. However, the Cosair drive that came out recently seems to be a rebranded version of the Samsung P256 SSD (which is ostensibly the best 256GB SSD there is). However, how does this actually perform (e.g. against x-25 or other 256gb models?); are there any obvious drawbacks?; and will there be any new products coming out soon (I know updates are inevitable, but how soon)? Thanks!
     
  2. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #2
    like you said they will eventually come. some manufactures have announced theirs already. i seem to be alone here on this site in saying that i would recommend waiting as long as it takes for the next big batch of them to come out. there are 2 reasons i hold this position.

    1. they are still in their infancy. ie when ever brand new technology comes out you are always over paying for something that is in a relatively new or beta stage.

    2. also with the current SSD's they slow down a lot as they fill up and i mean A LOT. but with a new technology called TRIM projected to be coming with the next gen SSD this will solve a lot of those issues.

    so for now my recommendation is to hold off. but your choice of course.
     
  3. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #3

    Had to look ostensibly up to make sure I understand it correctly but it is not the best by far as the early testings show. Intel is still faster in reads than P256 for sure but P256 is lacking behind the random IOPS. (edited to be more clear, english not my first lang)

    There were some mac users who had p256 and claimed some problems with it and how it actually slowed down to be barely faster than HD.

    It is possible they have updated the firmware to make it better but I am waiting to see more reviews and testing to see where it stands. I still don't think it is the best by far.

    It might be in top 3 along with Intel/Vertex. I agree with that, disagree with it being the best on the market.

    I would recommend you to wait till there is enough information for you to make a decision on the P256. Intel and Vertex we know for sure are very good SSDs with Intel number 1 and Vertex number 2.

    http://www.anandtech.com/storage/showdoc.aspx?i=3531&p=13
    Have the numbers for the P256. (Summit is the rebadge of it.)


    Number 2 is somewhat wrong. TRIM is just a part of a SATA standard that was updated a while ago. TRIM is just a command that the controller AND the OS has to be aware of in order to support it and doesn't really solve a LOT of issues, just the write performance degradation. It helps to maintain the write speed performance after the drive has been used fully. Vertex SSD is already aware of TRIM and there is a Windows 32bit TRIM tool from OCZ that works well. The biggest problem with TRIM is that the OS needs to be aware of it, so far, there isn't any OS on the market that supports TRIM, not even the W7 RC. It would be years before there is an industry scale TRIM support.

    Number 1, well that can be applied to just about anything like you say. Blu-ray is still in its infancy but it doesn't stop people from buying those "overpriced" movies and players. It shouldn't stop anybody from buying those SSDs if they want one and have the money, they should get one. Overpaying is a part of life if people wants to be at the front of the cutting edge technology.
     
  4. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #4
    Not sure i agree with you about operating systems not supporting TRIM for YEARS. it's probably true that it wont be included in the initial release of SL or W7, but it wont be far behind. and write performance degradation is a big problem with SSD's. one of the main things keeping me from buying one (other's being price and size capacity). so anything to rectify that is a MAJOR plus.

    i wouldnt say that BluRay is in it's infancy. we are coming up to the 4th and 5th generation players. some have already been released. i agree with you tho about it still being ridiculously overpriced. i think instead of saying that it is still in it's infancy stage its more accurate to say that it is still in it's "WOW" stage. aka ppl are still blown away with it's capabilities. and as long as it stays that way ppl will be willing to pay a lot of cash for it.
     
  5. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #5

    Write performance degradation can't be fixed because it is by the nature of SSD. There will always be a write performance degradation, no matter how many generations of SSDs it will be there. The question is how much of it can be masked. TRIM is one of the methods, making SSD even faster is another method. HDD has the same performance degradation as it fills up but it slows down in both Read/Write, where for SSD, only the writes go down. For some SSDs like Intel and Vertex, the performance of the writes may still be faster than the typical HD after the degradation occurs. Intel did a much better job with the new firmware, same story for the Vertex, they are improving the degradation by slowing down the rate of the decline with some math work. Both Intel and Vertex and possible Samsung will continue to get better over time as they continue to find more ways to slow down the decline.

    Update: The bigger the SSD gets, the less the write degradation will occur in time. a 1TB SSD with TRIM support probably for a typical user will never reach the write degradation phase because a typical user won't use more than 100GB in a day, so with a TRIM operation once a week, it'll work fine in the background but it doesn't mean there is no degradation. It is there, just being fixed constantly with the TRIM just like defrag tool does to a HD once a week.
     
  6. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #6
    hey i agree with what you are saying but right now there is no remedy for it. the only thing that you can do right now to bring the speed back up is do a secure erase and then load everything back (the intel's being the only ones that have a more practical way). so anything is better than nothing.

    UPDATE TO YOUR UPDATE HAHA: disk space is one of the things i am waiting for like i said. 1TB SSD is going to be awesome!!
     
  7. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #7
    Can't you say the same thing about SSDs? People buy them because of the "WOW, HOLY **** ITS BATS*** CRAZY FAST" performance. And SSD isn't really in its first generation either, I would say 3rd by now. SSD has been around for a decade in other forms but only in late 2007 it started to show up in 2.5/3.5" forms.
     
  8. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #8
    It isn't the only thing. For Vertex SSDs, there is a TRIM Windows32 tool already working perfectly well. They are working on 64bit version, unknown if they will work on the Mac version.

    Check out the OCZ Z drive, it has 1TB SSD via PCI-e slot. I believe they are selling it for $2000.
     
  9. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    yes but BluRay doesnt really have any major changes coming to it. other than the theoretical 500GB capacity, but probably by the time they figure that out for a mass market we wont be using discs anymore. i would say that yes SSD's are in their infancy as well as their "wow" stage. but any cool new piece of technology starts in a wow stage along with their infancy stage. i understand the technology has been around for a while but that doesnt mean anything until it hits a mass market.

    well since we are talking about buying them for a mac and are on a mac forum i thought that the windows versions were irrelevant.;)

    ha i like that 1TB SSD. i will be sure to pick one up tomorrow:p
     
  10. hehe299792458 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    hehe299792458

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    #10
    So, am I correct in concluding that SSDs in general (including this one) provide marginal perform gains over traditional HDDs at near full capacity? Is this true when the driver is only about 2/3 full? I only need about 160GB...
     
  11. Revelation78 macrumors 68000

    Revelation78

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    #11
    Actually, at least to my understanding, you'll only see the degradation if you're writing/removing large files constantly everyday. For the average user that simply installs an operating system, a couple of games and other basic programs - you'll never notice.

    Now, say you're a photographer, you would obviously have a DSLR. You would in essence be writing to disk several hundred MB at a time when your transferring images from your camera to your mac/pc. This person would probably see the slowdown after sometime.

    Unless the average user is constantly deleting and reinstalling games, i.e. betas, I really don't see this as a problem.

    **DISCLAIMER**
    This is my understanding of the issue at hand and I could be wrong.
     
  12. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #12
    Depending on what SSD you get, in terms of reading and latency (snappiness of your applications and general OS) will ALWAYS remain the same. This will always rape the HDD, no matter the capacity. For writing speed, it will drop a bit after the full capacity of the drive has been filled and deleted, it shouldn't be any slower than your typical full hard drive, it still should be faster.

    The bigger the SSD, the longer it'll take to drop in performance however with time and TRIM support, this won't be an issue, again this depends on which SSD you get. As far as I am aware, Intel doesn't have TRIM support yet, they can easily add it in a new firmware update just like Vertex did.
     
  13. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #13
    if you want to know everything about the current SSD's so you can make an informed decision read THIS
     
  14. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #14
    Steadystate is the term that has been going around for the performance degradation. It sound worse than it reallly is. So steadystate is a better term to use.

    Now reaching steady state will also depends on which capacity you get. The same person would reach the steady state much faster with a 30GB SSD than a 250GB SSD.

    Think about this, suppose this person downloads stuff, torrenting and does internet browsing. Let's say he does it for 1GB every day. That would mean for a 30GB, he would reach the "steady state" in less than 30 days. It doesn't matter if he only has 20GB used and 10GB free. He'll get there regardless of free space. After his SSD is in steadystate, there would not be any further performance degradation except if the SSD is nearly full, the controller would have a hard time trying to figure out where to put data but freeing up space will return the speed back to normal steady-state speed. If the SSD was 250MBps read/ 220MBps write, afterward it would be more like 250MBps read / 140-160MBps write.

    For 250GB, it would take the person less than 240 days or 8 months. For 500GB, it would take one year and 4 months to get there. 2 years and 8 month for 1TB SSD.
     
  15. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #15
    You also have to read the update to it.
     
  16. ViciousShadow21 macrumors 68020

    ViciousShadow21

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    #16
    quite true.
     
  17. tm.chen macrumors member

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    #17
    Samsung 256 is one of the best 256 drives there is now in terms of performance. Some batch QC problem might the one screwing it over about CRCs popping up substantially after a few checks.

    As for degradation, all drives will do that but SSD will beat traditional HDDs even when they are in steadystate. SSDs and HDDs will slow down when they are full, but SSDs will still run faster.

    Eg, my ****** 32gb jmicron drive can still read/write better than my 80gb 5400rpm toshiba drive when written it to nearly 90%
     
  18. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #18
    What is your source for saying Samsung P256 is one of the best in performance when we barely know what the performance is? What kind of performance? Seq or random? It should be much better than jMicron drives for sure, but is it at least in the same area as Vertex and Intel? We don't know.

    The fact is that there were many bad batches of Samsung P256 with CRC errors and that has to be taken in consideration here. There were also some early batches that were released and Samsung was saying that they redesigned the SSD and marketed it for release last month which meant the early batches weren't the real P256 drives. We know nothing about this drive right now. There's a lot of bad information around this drive. (Samsung said the Samsung drives are not firmware updatable, which meant the CRC errors can't be fixed with a simple firmware update)

    I wouldn't recommend even buying this SSD until we know more information about this.
     
  19. hehe299792458 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    hehe299792458

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    #19

    hmmm.... those bad batches sound serious. Do you know if they affect the rebranded Cosair ones?
     
  20. sascha h-k macrumors 6502

    sascha h-k

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    #20
    no FW update to samsung's ssd means: NOT buyable. :mad:
     
  21. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #21
    That's my point, nobody knows. That's why i don't recommend buying one until we know more information. Cosair might not be affected at all, Samsung may already contained all the bad batches, they may have fixed the firmware and they may have updated the firmware for better performance. Just look up the other Samsung 256 forums for more information.
     
  22. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #22
    http://www.legitreviews.com/article/965/1/

    It contain a lot of comparsion benches between Intel SSD, Vertex, and the Corsair as well. Check it out. (Note the Random writes benches where it is much slower than Intel's drive)
     
  23. bcaslis macrumors 68020

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    #23
    I don't know where people are getting the impression that the Samsung/Corsair drive is not a good performer. I'd point out this page:

    http://www.legitreviews.com/article/949/9/

    It might not be the fastest in the world but it is fast and seems devoid of the stuttering problems. As for the problem of SSD running slower when they are filled up, I think it is being oversimplified in this thread.

    1.) HDs slow as they fill up. Easy to show. The benchmark data on an empty and 95% full HD are very different.
    2.) SSDs do not vary in read speed even when full. Most people are accessing a drive either as a read or lots of random read and writes for general tasks. An SSD will be a write drop after it is COMPLETELY full or every bit has been used at least once. This is due to the fact that the bit has to be erased and written (when unused the bits are already erased, they just have to be written).

    If you can afford it, other than a possible individual problem, the Samsung/Corsair drive seems like a good balance of performance.
     
  24. tm.chen macrumors member

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    #24
    So far the Samsung has proven itself to be a very stable product. Although the firmware cannot be updated but that might change in the future. Instead, having to constantly update the FW only proves that the company did not come up with a rock solid product in the first place. Those comments I have read about the Samsung having errors, the drives were from a pre release batch,pulled from other Dell computers and not retail versions.

    According to official specs, it loses to intel in terms of random speeds and to the OCZ for the sequential read. Still it has one of the largest size and the faster sequential write. That aside, it is a reputable drive known for stability and solid performance. So with the rising cost for Vertex, I would recommend it over the Vertex.
     
  25. hehe299792458 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    hehe299792458

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    #25
    hmmm... these last two opinions are quite different from previous ones
     

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