How to choose SSD

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b2ap3_thumbnail_iStock_000017706322XSmall_20130827-053419_1.jpgChoosing a solid-state drive is not a simple task for many people. How to choose a drive for one’s personal needs? In this article we are going to answer many questions pertaining to the process of choosing a SSD for personal computer.

  1. The first thing that should be noted when purchasing a SSD is the read/write speed. The higher this parameter is the faster your solid-state drive will work. However, you should also remember that manufacturers in their specification usually show maximum possible speed features and in all probability your solid-state drive won't be as fast in real life.
  2. Another important factor is the IOPS (Input/Output Operations Per Second, pronounced eye-ops), the higher it is the faster your solid-state drive will work with a large volume of files. It is an important factor for a drive with operating system.
  • Controller – a heart of solid-state drive, it is responsible for how fast and how good your SSD will work. We recommend giving preference to time-tested controllers made by SandForce, Intel, Indilinx and Marvell.
  • Data transfer interface. Currently, SSD market is represeted with models with SATA II (3 GB/sec), SATA III (6 GB/sec) and PCIe, the latter are rare and usually require installation of driver. Although PCIe drives are more demanding, their speed features are much higher.
  • Currently, memory chips are divided into two main types: MLC and SLC. The cost of SLC chips is much higher and operational life is on average 10 times higher than of MLC memory chips. If used correctly and carefully, operational life of MLC-based drive is not less than 3 years.
  • SSD that supports S.M.A.R.T., TRIM, ECC, wear leveling technology and garbage collection will allow controlling solid-state drive's condition and considerably extend its operational life.
  • The capacity of SSD strongly affects its cost. If you buy SSD only for system disk, 60- 90 GB should suffice.
  • MTBF (mean time between failures). Most solid-state drives have 1-2 million hours, the higher the value is the better.
  • Energy consumption and off-line work time are important factors for laptops. Although SSD are much more effective in terms of energy than traditional HDD, there are models that consume more and there are models that consume less energy.
  • Many customers consider price as the main factor while selecting SSD, i.e. the more expensive the drive is the better it is. It is true but only to a certain degree... Do not forget that the cost of new drives is usually higher and after several months have passed its price considerably falls. Buying a solid-state drive 3-5 months after it was released will save you a lot money.

Before installing SSD it is strongly recommended to update its firmware to the latest version that can always be found on the manufacturer’s website.

Last modified on Wednesday, 20 May 2015 18:22
Data Recovery Expert

Viktor S., Ph.D. (Electrical/Computer Engineering), was hired by DataRecoup, the international data recovery corporation, in 2012. Promoted to Engineering Senior Manager in 2010 and then to his current position, as C.I.O. of DataRecoup, in 2014. Responsible for the management of critical, high-priority RAID data recovery cases and the application of his expert, comprehensive knowledge in database data retrieval. He is also responsible for planning and implementing SEO/SEM and other internet-based marketing strategies. Currently, Viktor S., Ph.D., is focusing on the further development and expansion of DataRecoup’s major internet marketing campaign for their already successful proprietary software application “Data Recovery for Windows” (an application which he developed).


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