What would be the disadvantage of buying a 512 SSD over 1TB Fusion for retina iMac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by letsudo, Dec 22, 2014.

  1. letsudo macrumors member

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    #1
  2. mlody macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    the only disadvantage i see with this is that it costs $300 more. Anything else is a huge advantage in favor of 512gb flash. if you re going to run multiple VMs I would highly recommend to go with flash only storage and forget fusion drive.
     
  3. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #3
    An external SSD will never be as fast as an internal one.

    My Transcend 960GB SSD drive clocks in at around 400MB/s in reads and writes.

    Meanwhile, the internal 512GB SSD in my iMac clocks in at 720MB/s in reads and writes.

    A Fusion Drive will never be as fast as a pure SSD setup.
     
  4. Velin macrumors 65816

    Velin

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  5. UniDoubleU macrumors regular

    UniDoubleU

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    #5
    The main advantage of Apple Blade SSDs are their sheer speed. The one in my rMBP 2012 is already über quick, and the ones in iMacs and Mac Pros are way faster.

    Having said that I ordered the 3TB Fusion option and finally being able to store everything in the iMac is something I've missed a little. I've been using internal SSDs since 2010 and can honestly say that currently the Fusion drive feels sufficiently snappy. The same thing couldn't be said in Bootcamp and I felt the ancient decades old technology weighing on me hehe. :mad:

    My plan in 2-3 years time is to upgrade the Blade SSD to 1TB and install a 2TB or 3TB or whatever is the biggest 2.5 SSD in the HDD partition. By then hopefully they'll be way cheaper What you don't get is the SATA3 connectors if you order the pure SSD option.

    By that time Apple and Intel would have launched Thunderbolt 3 so Thunderbolt 2 would become relatively more affordable also. I do look forward to the future of fast connections!
     
  6. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 603

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    #6
    The disadvantage of fusion

    The main disadvantage of Fusion is that if you boot into windows it only uses the HDD not the SSD. Other than that it is a fine solution that OSX manages effortlessly.

    The main advantage to SSD is speed and all your OS's being able to use it. The 512 SSD with an external thunderbolt or USB HDD will give you all the space you need and the best of the speed.
     
  7. hologram macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Why would you assume there's a disadvantage?
     
  8. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

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    #8
    If you can afford it and if all your frequently-accessed data fits on the SSD, there is little disadvantage, only advantages.

    However -- if the SSD size you can afford forces you to put frequently-accessed data on a slow external HDD, you may end up being slower than if everything was on a Fusion Drive.

    Whether you get SSD or Fusion Drive, you need another external HDD to back up everything. That means if your data won't fit on the internal SSD, you need *two* external HDDs -- one for the extra data and another HDD to back up SSD and the data HDD. So in that case the total cost of the SSD would entail buying an extra HDD which you wouldn't have needed with Fusion Drive.

    In general I'd recommend SSD, I just wanted to give a balanced perspective based on real world use.
     
  9. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    #9
    A spinner inside of a computer is a FAIL in 2014. SSD all the way baby!
     
  10. mjfutures macrumors member

    mjfutures

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    #10
    I would not be caught dead with a spinning drive in my main computer. Heck I won't even put a spinning drive in a junker. I would not use a fusion 5k iMac if it were given to me for free. I need speed and the thought of a fusion drive is crippling! :eek:
     
  11. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    #11
    You are completely right! We must be brothers!
     
  12. JustMartin macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    ok - indulge me. What do you guys do exactly that requires this speed? And how does your usage pattern preclude a Fusion drive?
     
  13. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #13
    For me it's heavy 4K video editing.

    I need continuous fast random I/O.

    I also run lots of VMs. And Boot Camp as well.

    I went for a pure SSD over a FD for speed and reliability reasons.
     
  14. edjrwinnt macrumors member

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    #14
    I've have over 30 hard drives sitting in my server closet that have died over the last 20 years, including an SSD from my home office and small business. I would rather have two hard drives in this computer because I plan to use it for 5-10 years.

    If one hard drive dies, I can still use the other one without having to attach an external hard drive to it. I've have no desire opening up this retina iMac to replace a hard drive after upgrading my iMac late 2009 with a SSD drive.

    I won't be using much beyond that first 128 Gigs, and I have servers to store all of my data.
     
  15. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    #15
    Not just speed. Lack of ancient mechanical heat and noise producing parts has much to do with it as well. Spinners have a place in external drives.

    At the end of the day, SPEED is always more of a game changer than people suspect. Like going from dialup to DSL to real broadband.

    I never hear anyone say they want things slower. Ever.

    5K is also a huge game changer. But it will take awhile for most people to realize that. I am a genius, so I realize things quickly :)
     
  16. ggibson913 macrumors 6502a

    ggibson913

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    Dissenter from the crowd

    If you are an average user, the Fusion drive should be fine for you. The only real world reason would would need non-fusion is if you were doing professional level video/ sound editing. With fusion you get the best of both worlds, space and an SSD for faster boot up times.

    The only caution I would give is if you are using Boot Camp or VM Ware to run Windows, in that case you may want to consider getting all SSD. Hope this helps.
     
  17. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    #17
    SSD is the future. Spinner is the past. Do you still take your horse and buggy into town?
     
  18. ggibson913 macrumors 6502a

    ggibson913

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    #18
    Wow, that was unnecessary. Was simply offering my opinion to a question asked on the forum. If money is no issue sure SSD, since the OP was asking I assume it may be and think that money may better spent on AppleCare.
     
  19. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

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    #19
    I'm a professional video editor, and Fusion Drive works just fine. My 2013 iMac 27 boots in about 20 sec. I have most of my video data on a Thunderbolt drive array, but I've tested it on the FD, and it's OK.

    Most video editing using compressed codecs is not I/O bound but CPU bound. You definitely want good I/O performance but after a point it makes no further improvement in workflow speed.

    There's a difference between speed on a benchmark test and whether that translates into a significant difference in real world workflows. If it doesn't make an appreciable difference on your actual workload, it's just a number.

    The internal SSD has faster writing speed than FD, but reading speed is about the same. Under most workloads reads outnumber writes by 5:1 or so, so FD is fast at the most important thing.

    That said, the SSD will be consistently fast, whether running an app, used as a scratch area, or copying files. By contrast FD is usually fast but this varies based on many things, such as the I/O pattern (aka locality of reference), how full the HDD is, etc. If your I/O ends up missing the FD's SSD, it's no faster than a regular HDD. My tests show a 3TB FD can be very fast and hit the SSD "cache" when 99% full, so good performance is not limited to just 128GB of data.

    In theory the reliability is better with SSD, since if the 128GB SSD or HDD portion of FD fails, the whole thing fails. However SSDs can fail -- one study estimated approx 1.5% SSD failure rate vs about 5% for HDD.

    The internal SSD on many iMacs is a lot larger than the 128GB SSD on FD, so there are a lot more memory cells to fail, even if individually they are more reliable. If SSD failure probability is in any way proportional to storage size, a large SSD might have more chance of failure than a small one.

    My two MacBooks have SSD and my next iMac will probably have SSD but FD is perfectly good for many tasks, even with fairly demanding I/O. If anyone blows their budget on an SSD iMac and have to use a slow bus-powered external USB drive, this can end up being slower overall than just using Fusion Drive. If you have no money limit or just work with little files, yes go ahead and get SSD.
     
  20. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    #20
    I get that and did not mean to be rude in anyway.

    But I really feel the need to influence the purchase of SSD whenever possible as the person will have a better computing experience as well as possibly more reliable as well as higher resale value.

    The lack of something spinning at 5400/7200rpm INSIDE the computer is something most people will not fully appreciate until they try it.
     
  21. Yakibomb macrumors 6502

    Yakibomb

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    #21
    I 100% agree, I personally thought SSDs where overrated till I got my rMBP, they really are a game changer
     
  22. Cape Dave macrumors 65816

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    #22
    I have known since the very early days of SSD. I owned an SLC 16GB SSD for like $600 back in the day :)

    Yes, 16GB. Would hold Windows and Office with room to spare :)

    My main external drive is also a 512GB SSD, consumer grade. Crucial MX100 I think.

    You have not lived until you have swapped a few hundred GB all around from SSD to SSD.

    Merry Christmas! And to those who are thinking of SSD, go ALL IN. Drink less beer for a week or two if you have to, but you will never be sorry you went SSD for your main drive.

    I wish everything else in life was so clear :)
     
  23. letsudo thread starter macrumors member

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    #23
    I've heard that if you're going to use Parallels you need to get the 512 SSD; would you agree?
     
  24. yjchua95 macrumors 604

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    #24
    Absolutely a must, if you intend to run virtual machines all the time.
     

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