Choosing the appropriate SSD for your PC as per your requirements and use is one of the most primary aspects in determining your system’s performance, providing the opportunity to enjoy things like free online car games. For instance, you could end up slowing down your PC with one of the best gaming CPUs if you couple it with a slow storage device. Your processor is capable of handle billions of cycles (refers to a clock frequency) a second, but it often depends on your storage drive to provide data for processing. Conventional Hard disk drives (HDDs) show slow performance as they possess rotating platters with a read/write magnetic head that has to physically maneuver to the data location your processor requested for. To get faster performance, it is recommended to opt for a solid-state drive (SSD).
When it comes to speed the SSDs are the winner but in terms of storing enormous amounts of data hard drives provide utility for bulk storage which SSDs cannot. Another notable factor is budget. You can acquire a 10TB hard drive for under $200 but a 4TB SSD can cost you around $400. Let’s have a comparative analysis of both storage modules.
SSD or HDD – Differences Explained
The cutting edge of Solid-State Drives – SSDs is their better transfer speed and durability. Due to the absence of any mechanical components, they offer better performance than Hard Disk Drives – HDDs in terms of speed. SSDs possess NAND flash memory to contain your data but this also comes with some restraints. For instance, you can’t store overwhelming amounts of data in SSDs compared to HDDs. Apart from that, they are SSDs are budget-friendly products. Buying a single unit can’t impact the budget that much but if you are a system integrator and want to purchase multiple SSDs it can have a significant compound impact on overall investment. On the other hand, HDDs feature high storage capacity ( as of February 2021, the largest HDD available in the market features 18 TB of storage capacity) and you can buy the latest one for a more affordable cost.
If less storage capacity and higher cost doesn’t bother you, it is recommended to opt for faster and durable SSDs. But when it comes to storing overwhelming amounts of data and you want to acquire multiple storage units, HDDs can be a better option.
Things to Remember
Below are some significant aspects you are highly recommended to ponder over before opting for the HDDs.
- Know your Motherboard – Your motherboard can either possess a slot for M.2 SSDs or a 2.5-inch SSD. Check it out before choosing your SSD in order to refrain from facing compatibility issues.
- 500GB to 1TB capacity – Refrain from buying an SSD that offers less than 256GB of storage space. 500GB SSD offers decent storage space and cost for an average user. Whereas 1TB SSD can cost you around $100. It offers very roomy storage space and sustains most of your storage needs.
- SATA is cheaper but relatively slower than NVMe/PCIe interfaces. Opting for an SSD that comes with one of these standard interfaces. SATA drives are more common SSDs with affordable price structures and still feature remarkable performance for most applications.
- SSD or HDD – Even the entry-level SSD can be three times as fast as the most commonly used HDDs. Depending on certain requirements, the performance of SSDs in terms of speed is remarkable.
Differences between 2.5-inch SATA and M.2 SSD
2.5-inch SATA SSDs
The most commonly used SSDs are 2.5-inch SATA HDDs with the appearance of mainstream laptop hard drives and connect with the motherboard via SATA interface. If your laptop or desktop PC has a 2.5-inch hard drive slot/space and offers SATA connectivity.
M.2 SSDs are much smaller and appear like the strips of RAM but much smaller, M.2 drives were introduced to be used in slim laptops or notebooks. Many high-end motherboards feature two or more M.2 slots.
Normally, M.2 drives are 22mm in width and 80mm in length, whereas some have shorter or longer dimensions. You can easily check it using four or five-digit numbers in their titles. For instance, the first two digits showcase the width and the rest show length. The most common M.2 SSD is titled M.2 Type-2280.
Choosing between a SATA or PCIe interface
It is the most confusing decision to choose between SATA and PCIe interfaces. As we have discussed earlier, 2.5-inch SSDs incorporate the SATA interface, which was formerly introduced for HDDs in the early 2000s.
M.2 drives are available with both SATA or PCIe interfaces and the fastest M.2 drives support the NVMe protocol that was introduced specifically for fast storage modules. Keep in mind the SSDs available in the market can be either SATA-based or PCIe-based without or without NVMe support. The most high-performing and latest M.2 SSDs support NVMe protocol.
Ensure the compatibility criteria of your system by reading the manual for your motherboard, laptop as well as what a certain drive supports, before concluding your purchase decision.
If your routine tasks are centric around web browsing, word processing, or even gaming, you can hardly notice any difference between highly expensive NVMe SSDs and the least expensive SATA models. If your workloads include large file transfers, HD videos editing, or compression/decompression of massive files, then NVMe SSD is the recommended option as these drives can offer 5x higher bandwidth than SATA drives and improve performance in high-end productivity tasks.
In addition to this, some NVMe drives offer cutting-edge price structures and cost less than most SATA SSDs. So, if your motherboard features NVMe support and you find good pricing for your drive, you can go for NVMe even if extra speed is not your concern.
If you have a desktop PC or a gaming laptop and you want to acquire high storage capacity, it is better to go for a couple of 2.5-inch SSDs, which will often spare you a significant sum of money. 1TB or 2TB are the most frequently-used storage sizes whereas 4TB and above is the cup of tea for professionals having relatively high budgets. Refrain from opting storage device with less than 200GB of space, as most portions will be occupied by OS itself and you will be left with very little space.
Crucial Solid-State Drives – SSDs
Crucial SSDs with NAND flash memory enable you to boot up in a matter of seconds and load, save, and transfer files instantaneously. As far as the Crucial BX300 CT240BX300SSD1 review is concerned, you can upgrade your desktop or laptop PC, laptop by installing Crucial BX300 CT240BX300SSD1 240 GB SSD with SATA interface that offers 6GB/s of transfer rate. Crucial BX300 CT240BX300SSD1 is extremely energy-efficient and significantly more durable than an HDD.