SSD's Is it worth getting one now?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by James Cole, Mar 12, 2009.

  1. James Cole macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2007
    San Antonio, Texas
    Just as the title states... Is it worth it getting one at the prices they are now? $250 - $800


    Are these products going to drop in price quickly and its probably better to wait?

    Also... there seems to be a lot of difference between different SSD in terms of speed... how is this so?

  2. bossxii macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    Kansas City
    Peronsally I'm waiting until late summer/fall 09. the 512gig will be released and possibly even the 1TB 2.5 SSD drives will come out and drop the prices. Also there are only 1 or 2 manufacturers currently offering the SSD's so they are priced at a premium.

    I've looked at a few of them, mostly as posted here on the site the G.Skill 256gig but at 500 bucks and the issues it seems people are having I decided to hold off. I know for a fact it makes for a very fast upgrade to overall system speed (based on using a Rev B MBA with the 128gig SSD) but I can wait till I can buy at least a 512gig SSD as I do not want to lose my CD drive.

    Best way to describe the speed differnce is this: 7200 rpm platter dive with 5 or 6ms seek times. SSD are like a 40,000 RPM, .004ms seek times. It's approx 7x faster at reading data and the larger chunks of data are read even faster. Biggest gains will be in read speeds. Booting up your computer will be likely twice as fast. Opening any programs, say imovie will be reduced by at least 50% if not more. The thing to think about is this though, are you someone that shuts down your computer everyday? do you use programs that take a while to load and will this save you time/money etc.. This would simply be a luxury of speed for me, which currently not willing to part with my cash for the price and value. I rarely shut down my MBP so no gain there in boot times and the programs I use the most are the safari and firfox browsers, VPN client for work and emai, all of which don't see much of a gain opening. 3 sec vs 1 sec... not a big deal for me. If I processed large video files it maybe worth it.

    I'm betting those 256gig SSD selling now for 550 range will be under 300 by Sept, so until then I'll just keep watching for the larger sizes and performance improvements.
  3. tubbymac macrumors 65816


    Nov 6, 2008
    Right now is probably not a good time to buy as the prices will keep dropping as the new 256 and 512 gig models are introduced. You can tell there are some ridiculous margins on these things when OEM big names like Dell can sell the 256 gig SSD with their new computers for $400 and still turn a profit. Imagine how cheap they are getting them for when we have to spend $800 for the same thing.

    SSDs are a luxury item. If you can spare the money, they are awesome. But with margins probably as high as 100% or more, there is a LOT of room for the price to drop.
  4. chris7777 macrumors 6502

    Nov 27, 2008
    I have been wondering this after reading an article on them that made out like they are not nessesarily the best rive in the long run.

    But my question is more specifically what about a SSD from apple, other than the smaller memory size, would this be the best option in the long run, with say a TB external drive for offloading, onto?
  5. xoggyux macrumors 6502

    Dec 4, 2008
    does it worth it?
    option 1:if you have to decide whether to buy food for 1 week or upgrade to SSD, then probably you should buy the food HDDs are still functional.
    option 2: money is not necessarily the definitive step (e.g. speed, running temp, etc) then buy it!
    Here is my experience with a cheap one (128GB for $220) not the best but is a good compromise between "decent price" and something way faster and silent than HDD.

    Other thing to keep in mind, many people will inevitable say they will wait until they are "cheap." Unfortunatly whethever you happen to buy it six months later you will find one twice as large for half the price and you unavoidably will feel guilty (this doesnt happen only with SSD, this happend to me when I bought my first 2GB usb memory stick (for 69.99) six months later I could get the 4 GB for $49.99 and one year later (today) the 8GB for that price (in fact I have bought 4GB ones for 9.99,) the thing is that it is much more rewarding when you buy a new technology when it is likely to have an effect, if you buy the SSD when your laptop is 2 years old (or more) yeah you will notice the difference but it might be too late (many of the programs you will likely to run will be comparatively very demanding on terms of resources, thus the SSD will fade in as an "after thought")

    We spend ~$200 in crap all the time, my recomendation is if that money does not represent your next week food or you are not tight in general finantially, then squeze on inecesary spending, save the $200 and trow a cheap-decent SSD (or if you are a profesional and use your laptop for work several hours a day.)

    Anyway take a look at the post so you have an idea what to do and what to decide I will be posting a review of a expresscard eSATA adaptor shortly to compliment the SSD/external HDD/eSATA trio.

    Have a nice day.
  6. Thunder82 macrumors 6502

    Jul 16, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    In my mind, only the quick (an subsequently more costly) SSDs are worthwhile. Sure all SSDs are silent, slightly less power hungry than your standard HDDs, and less prone to failure from shock, but speed is what really sets them apart. Vibration and a little noise never bothered me personally, the extra 5min of battery life isn't much to talk about, and you should ALWAYS have your data backed up in multiple places anyways. I would buy an SSD only if you need the extra speed.
  7. bossxii macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    Kansas City
    While on the subject of SSD's, I put the brakes on after hearing some people say they are losing as much as 10% battery life. The controllers are cheap and the technology will/should evolve quickly with better models every month at it's current rate.

    If money isn't an issue though (as Xoggyux points out) $220 for 128gig is pretty cheap considering the overall performance boost you will experience. My plan is to wait for the 512 gig and not have to keep up dating and if the rumors of the SSD's slowing down if they get to full, as in 90% filled or whatever I can hopefully avoid that issue all together. Lord knows I need to stop spending money on toys for a while anyhow haha. Good luck whichever way you decide.
  8. spacecadet610 macrumors 6502

    Mar 11, 2006
    if you can wait, do it. Your wallet will thank you.
  9. johnnj macrumors 6502a

    Dec 11, 2008
    Not here
    I'd wait for the prices on the new OCZ Vertex drives to go down a little bit, and for there to be some in depth reviews on them and the other new generation of drives.

    The real question is: why do you need an SSD?

    Btw, I bought a Patriot Warp2 128 last summer and regretted it.

  10. mac jones macrumors 68040

    Apr 6, 2006
    i've used a number of them. The Intel is very good and I think the Vertex should be close to the Intel.

    They are good for specific tasks. For most things it's not worth the huge cost. They are still very expensive.

    But for those who want them-and you know how you are.

    personally, I can live without one just fine. YMMV
  11. MikhailT macrumors 601

    Nov 12, 2007
    If you have to ask, you probably don't need it right now. SSD technology is growing very rapidly right now, there's probably going to be new controllers every 6 months, we'll be seeing the new Moore's Law for SSD but unfortunately the biggest problem is that the SATA standards are already too slow for SSDs right now.

    As for difference between SSDs in terms of speed is due to the controller design improving over time. All SSDs can use the same flash memory cells but they won't perform the same as each different controller will do well in one area and do badly in other area. JMicron's controller is well known to be the worst right now, stuttering all over. Samsung and Intel controllers are at the top of the market.

    Prices will continue to drop, I believe it'll be halved every 6-12 months. We should see 512GB SSD selling for 400$ by this time next year.

    As for you getting one right now, it is the question of why you need one? If you can answer, we can help you more but without knowing this answer, we would say that you should wait until you have a reason to get one.
  12. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    I'll wait until SLC-based SSDs, which are faster, use less power, and are more reliable, to reach around 500 GB and also drop in price to a reasonable level. At the pace things are going, this may happen in 2 years, possibly 3 years, so it's not THAT long a wait really. ;) I have absolutely no issues with using a standard harddisk until then. They haven't caused me much trouble up to this point, and I haven't lived life with a computer without an HDD, and things have been fine, so ok, I'll wait for what I want.
  13. MikhailT macrumors 601

    Nov 12, 2007
    I don't think SLC will remain a consumer SSD market, it may be pushed to Servers while MLC will remain the main consumer SSD market. MLC is constantly improving and the life of MLC flash continues to grow over the previous MLC generation to the possibility that it may exceed the HD's lifespan and get close to SLC's lifespan.

    In two or three years, MLC is most likely to be around 2-5TB, lifespan of an current SLC generation and performance would be frigging insane.

    There are newer MLC chips that does 3/4 bit per cells that can be used for massive storage. Which means there could a 1TB storage MLC SSD for same price as high performance 256GB MLC SSD.

    It is going to be very interesting thing to see.
  14. macDonalds macrumors 6502

    Jun 8, 2007
    No. I stay away from cutting edge technology for a couple of reasons:

    1.) Defects
    2.) Cost

    Both always go down over time.
  15. L0s7man macrumors 6502

    Feb 26, 2009
    It's worth it if you can live with only 80GB on intel X25-M. It's the fastest thing you can get and it's undeniably incredible! (And the price is incredibly high too :p)

    It's not worth it if you want to get any other drive. Just get 7200rpm hard drive.

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