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View Full Version : Solid state drives - good or bad for audio production?


Smenelian
01-01-2010, 12:32 AM
I'm trying to decide if it's worth it to invest in one of these. Obviously the cost/gig factor is not very enticing but aside from that are there any other downsides? I've heard the drives encounter a performance hit during writing operations but that shouldn't affect loading programs and samples that have already been written. I'm considering installing Windows on the drive and some of my primary sample libraries. Thoughts?

DZComposer
01-01-2010, 05:58 AM
If what you are doing will be write-intensive, then stay away from them. Flash memory can't handle nearly as many writes as a magnetic disk can. Though if you just keep samples on it and only really read off of it, lifespan shouldn't be too much of an issue.

I hear the high-end SSDs are great, but the ones I've had experience with (the lower-end ones used in HP laptops) actually underperform the regular-old HDDs.

I'd say at this point you're better off spending that kind of money on SAS (serial attached SCSI) drives with RAID (the current enterprise standard for high-performance storage) as you'll get greater capacity and higher-quality for your buck. But adding a decent SAS RAID card to your comp will run you a few hundred bucks on top of HDD costs. Probably enough to make the cost pretty much the same (albeit you get more space and reliability for it).

Moseph
01-01-2010, 06:26 AM
I'm considering installing Windows on the drive and some of my primary sample libraries. Thoughts?
Conventional wisdom is that, if possible, the operating system and the samples should reside on different drives so the computer won't have to balance accessing system files and streaming samples from the same drive. I believe the operating system's page file is the most likely to cause speed issues for sample-streaming, and you can change the location of that to whatever drive you want regardless of where the OS is installed, but you might want to do some reading on this and/or consult someone more knowledgeable than me before you commit to putting both Windows and the samples on the same drive. This may be a more important factor for speed (at least for sample library purposes) than solid-state versus disk is.

Smenelian
01-09-2010, 08:02 AM
I was under the impression that an operating system and samples on an SSD wouldn't be a problem due to the fundamental differences between the SSD and the traditional hard drive, but I'm not sure of that.

SCSI drives are the ones that spin around 10k-15k rpm right? How is the noise level?

Moseph
01-09-2010, 08:08 PM
I was under the impression that an operating system and samples on an SSD wouldn't be a problem due to the fundamental differences between the SSD and the traditional hard drive, but I'm not sure of that.
Might be. I don't have a definite answer for that, but I'd be interested in knowing. I guess physical access wouldn't present the same sort of problem that it does for disk-based drives, but on the other hand, there's still a finite transfer rate that would have to be balanced.