Short Stroke RAID0 vs SSD
I'm starting to look into what I am going to be doing with my next rig, but I wasn't sure about storage. I need around 100-200GB for all my games and programs. The two options I am considering are:
4 x Seagate 500GB 7200.12 short stroked to 50GB each in RAID0 - $220 for 200GB
120GB OCZ Vertex - $400 for 120GB
I am leaning towards the short stroked array as I get a lot more space for almost half the price. I was just looking for second opinions on whether it would be worth the extra $180 for the SSD. (I am in university right now so my money isn't exactly burning a money in my pocket).
The computer will be used for primarily gaming but regular computer use as well. It wont be run 24/7, only when I am using it.
The short-stroked drives aren't going to be anywhere near as fast. Your access times will still be around ~ 10ms, vs the 0.1ms of an SSD. The HDD's will provide more throughput, but that will be the only benefit.
I went with exactly that short-stroked setup for Behemoth. 4x 7200.12 500Gbs. 10% short stroked = 200Gb. Yes, I notice the access times a little, but considering the throughput (which I do notice) and the cost (Half the price of SSDs or less) im happy with my desicion. Its just my opinion, but i'm waiting till SSDs reach reasonable $/Gb ratios before really investing in them.
I think everyone knows where i stand on this ssd if you can afford it
Boot from pokey old HDDs? Ewwww! Yuck!
The cost benefit of 4 short-stroked mechanical drives is obvious but the access times are still poor relative to a single SSD. Not to mention the massive IO per second difference. A single SSD will still perform more IO per second in the order of x times 10^2.
Not only is the access times going to blow in comparison....you are relying on FOUR hard drives to not die on you. One bad one and POOF your data is toast.
IMHO, IF you can can't afford a 120.... go with a 64GB Vertex/Torqx/Falcon and upgrade later.
I don't think I'd be able to get by with 64GB as I'd need 20GB for Windows and my Steam folder is ~40GB, which is definitely less than everything I'd plan on installing. Besides the price, part of the reason I'm leaning towards the HDDs is for gaming, which is primarily seems to be loading a large amount of content at one time, the higher bandwidth would give a more noticeable improvement for a gaming PC. At least 50% of the time I am actually on my PC I am playing games (~70h of Steam games in the past two weeks) so the gaming performance is what is most important for me. And I also haven't actually experienced the extremely low access times of SSDs so the 10ms access time is pretty much what I am used to with my 640GB Black drive that I currently have.
I just have a hard time justifying spending an extra $200 for better access times, a bit more security for my data and more IO per second. If someone could explain where exactly the better access times and IO per seconds would be noticed, besides just a "snappier" feeling I'd be more likely to be converted to the darkside!
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