When will SSDs be standard?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Mahzari, Nov 24, 2011.

  1. Mahzari macrumors newbie

    Nov 24, 2011
    I have a pretty simple question: do you think the next iMac will have an SSD as standard, or are we a while away?

    After using a MacBook Air with an SSD, my computer (20" Core 2 Duo iMac) feels soooooo slow
  2. SR20DETDOG macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2011
    Queensland Australia
    Personally I can't see iMacs coming with SSDs standard for quite a while yet.

    The Macbook Air needs an SSD so it can be lighter, smaller, cooler, faster and have better battery life. So it makes a lot of sense to have SSDs in the Airs standard.

    On the other hand, iMacs don't need to be lighter, nor smaller and while running cooler and using less electricity are more than welcome they're not necessities. The only real advantage that justifies the price is the extra speed you will get and for a lot of people they just don't need it, or at least, aren't yet willing to pay the prices for it.

    I think SSDs will only become standard in iMacs when they become THE standard in general. It'll be interesting to see what happens anyway.
  3. Mahzari thread starter macrumors newbie

    Nov 24, 2011
    Good points and I tend to agree with that. Currently, the cheapest iMac available with an SSD is $1,999. I'll probably wait until the next cycle and order one with an SSD
  4. jsolares macrumors 6502a

    Aug 8, 2011
    Land of eternal Spring
    the main issue i see for this is the price of SSD's is still a lot more than regular HDD, until that gap is closer we won't be seeing it as standard
  5. Thetonyk123 macrumors 68000


    Aug 14, 2011
    When the price of the ssds go down near hard drives, then we will probably see it more in the iMacs
  6. thekev macrumors 604


    Aug 5, 2010
    When we can at least see something along the lines of an affordable 512 GB drive, then they'll probably be the norm. I get that everyone likes their SSDs, but they are nowhere near the potential speed gain in an imac that you could see in a laptop. Imacs are less ram constrained and contain faster baseline hard drive options (3.5" 7200 as opposed to painfully slow 2.5" drives).
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    "do you think the next iMac will have an SSD as standard, or are we a while away?"

    They will become "standard" only when the majority of "hard drives" offered and sold in the marketplace have become SSD drives, rather than "spinning platter" drives, and the price has dropped to the level of spinning drives of equivalent capacity.

    Some time off in the future as of yet, I'd imagine....
  8. Spike88 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 25, 2010
    Yes. I do. Perhaps in 5-7-10 more years. In the future, I see a computer system with NO moving parts. I see computers using internal SSDs, I see some super large size USB sticks (for portability) and I see wireless on HDMI feature as well. Today, we already have wireless to Home Media Players (like the Patriot and WD Media Server units).

    Not long ago, "wireless" to a communicaions Hub was new (and a ethernet "wire" was standard). On today's MBA (MacBook air), wireless is now standard and Ethernet cable is optional. On today's iMacs, mouse and keyboards are now standard "wireless" ("wire" as optional order) as well. Yes. In time, I can see internal SSD being the normal within iMacs and including a "moving parts" HDD will be optional order. Especially seeing SSDs getting larger and more affordable as time goes on. Its just a matter of time before iMacs have "standard" internal SDDs as well.

  9. daneoni macrumors G4


    Mar 24, 2006
    When they match or exceed the price per gigabyte ratio of hard drives.
  10. TrollToddington macrumors 6502

    Feb 27, 2011
    No, I don't. I see it from a different angle, though.

    Right now I have a Nikon D90 camera (12 MP) whose RAW files are ~10MB each which means 100GB of disk space can hold ~10000 pictures.

    On the other hand, Canon 5D Mark II (21MP) produces RAW files at ~25MB each. Thus, 100GB of disk space can hold ~4000 pictures. (Deviation: Guys, in 1986 the first PC at our home was a 286 with 20MB hard drive. Its space wouldn't have been enough for a single Canon 5D mark II RAW file!!!)

    There is a tendency for future cameras to provide more and more megapixels which will make them produce even larger RAW files. Whether the average Joe (read: me) needs such detailed pictures is another question. The camera manufacturers like Nikon do not offer lower resolution options any more.

    It is highly unlikely that space requirements will stop increasing. Besides the aforementioned example, the programs will take up more and more space. The games, especially, will require more space because of the ever increasing monitor resolutions.

    Having said that, I don't think the plate HDDs are going away anytime soon. I'd give it 3 or 4 years before SSDs start to become affordable option for the low-end iMacs.
  11. gnasher729 macrumors P6


    Nov 25, 2005
    I found SSD drives for about £1.20 per GB; my external drive was about £0.05 per GB. So I can store 800 pictures of 25MB each for one pound; with SSD it would be about 32.
  12. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    And even as SSD capacities go up, so do HDD capacities. It's no problem to find a 2TB or a 3TB HDD and Apple offers 2TB as an option on the iMac. If you need lots of storage, an SSD is not going to cut it. While a laptop can get away with SSD only, for a desktop you tend to want a lot of disk space.

    When you can find a 2TB SSD for no more than twice the cost of a HDD, then it might become more widespread. I just looked on newgg, and even a 300GB SSD runs close to $600. I can buy a 2TB external HDD for only $100. The price difference is quite a LOT.

    Does anyone even make a 2TB ssd?

    You can easily do a hybird system, with SSD for boot/programs and HDD for data.
  13. TheG5 macrumors newbie

    Nov 25, 2011
    When they cost under $0.25 per GB.
  14. Michael383 macrumors 6502a

    Mar 17, 2011
    My estimate for an SSD to replace an HDD as stock in an iMac would be 3-5 years.
  15. Wreckie macrumors regular

    May 9, 2011
  16. Ice Dragon macrumors 6502a

    Ice Dragon

    Jun 16, 2009
    If you are worried about doing it yourself, you can buy an SSD and send both it and the iMac to OWC to have them install it in the computer for you for $100.

    I'm still debating on doing that with my Mini (although I may ultimately try it myself) though it is definitely worth a shot if you don't have a lot of money to burn.

    I know how you feel though since I love my Mini though seeing people with an SSD in their system, it's equivalent to being on the highway and doing 55 MPH while everyone is zooming ahead of you at 100 MPH.
  17. sfoalex macrumors 6502

    Aug 11, 2001
    I'm absolutely on the side of switching every Mac to SSD. Apple is typically the frontrunner on adopting advanced technology as their standard. SSD should be adopted as standard.

    Apple should push to buy enough NAND flash to be able to offer 512 and 1024 GB SSD drives as standard and thus bring the cost way down. I think the real issue is making sure the controllers and NAND memory are both so good that the return rate is minimal. I think that's the real problem for now. People still report too many issues with the SSDs. Hopefully the controllers and the NAND chips have reached an inflection point where quality is no longer an issue. And once we're there, ditch these old hard drives. They are truly holding back performance.

    With a good SSD, you won't want to go back to hard disc at all. To me, they feel like I'm using a computer from 1995. Use 4 drive RAID array for storage and SSD for booting and running the day to day OS. Once you get used to this, you simply can't go backwards.

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