While this quick round-up doesn't go into great technical depth, the results suggest you needn't rush to purchase Sata 3 capable drives if your system doesn’t support this speed or you don’t plan to upgrade at any point in the near future. The higher price points that some makers command and somewhat questionable performance over Sata 2, would suggest that you buy something designed to max the interface it uses natively. There is, as always an exception, in this case it’s Crucial’s M4.
Out of these 128GB-ish drives, for use on a Sata 2 system, Samsung’s 470 Series really delivered. Despite the rather comical label on the box claiming speeds of 470MB/s (apparently derived from the sum of 250MB/s read and 220MB/s write), this drive is impressive in both quality and performance and gets the Editor's Choice award.
That said, if you’ve got the extra few quid lying around and think you’ll have a stab at this new-fangled Sata 3 stuff in the future, then pick yourself up one of Crucial’s M4 drives. The M4 tested was a larger capacity drive so its performance may differ slightly with the lower capacity models in this comparison. So to be fair, despite a great price, it gets the Reg Hardware Recommended award. But if you want a hassle-free upgrade for existing gear and use your old drive as external storage, then Kingston’s SSDNow V+ 100 drives would be worth paying a little extra for. ®
Seven... SSD sizzlers
Drive size is important
Drive size is important whilst benchmarking as the lower capacity drives have less chips rather than smaller ones. This means you can have fewer active data paths and so the smaller drives are slower. 3 of the 7 drives in this test used larger drives and so they will show greater performance than you would have seen with all 128GB drives. So its not exactly a fair comparison.
UK site, prices qoted in GBP so why are the links to amazon.com not .co.uk?
Couple of tips...
I bought a 40GB SSDNow about 18 months ago, best/biggest I could afford without various TRIM and stuttering issues. Promptly installed Windows 7 on it and it really will transform your computer!
Bear in mind, by default, Windows will create a swap file and a hibernate file the same size as the RAM in your PC, in my case, it created 2x 8GB files, that is instantly 16GB of the 37GB available plus Windows itself. Add in Apple and Chrome creating all their data files on the C partition without asking and you will run out of space very, very fast!
I've made my swap file 512MB, switched off hibernate and system restore and used 'mklink' to create junction points to move things like Apples backups to the spinning disks. Happy enough at the moment but currently looking at drives around the 120GB mark. It's also worth noting that many controllers perform much worse with smaller drives so if you are comparing performance figures, it must be on the size of the drive you are considering.
Using these drives for backup is ridiculous. Use 2TB drives in RAID-1 instead.
These drives are performance enhancers, not volume storage.
At normal usage levels (ie not hammering them with 100GB of backup data per night) this current generation of SSDs should last about 10 years according to most recent studies on the subject.
Remember, mechanical drives fail too. Often well before 10 years if they are in regular use. The difference with an SSD is that the moment of failure is (usually) predictable and measurable.
In terms of power, SSDs generally use a little less than mechanical drives.
All current generation should have TRIM support, with some of the newer/newest ones not really even needing it as the controllers have started running their own garbage collection.
I think Tom's or Anand has much more info on the topic - and apologies in advance if I'm not exactly accurate with my comments above.