If you are still using Hard Disk Drives (HDD) in your laptops/desktops to store data and applications in your laptop/computer, you are missing the advantages provided by Solid State Drives (SSD). A solid state drive is similar to hard disk as it can store data, but it doesn’t use rotating disks to store/retrieve data. Data is directly stored using solid state chips, which look similar to a processor. Let us first look at the advantages of Solid State Drive (SSD) technology.
Advantages of SSD (over HDD):
- Faster and better read/write performance (data transfer in MB/sec)
- Faster OS/application load time
- Durable and reliable, due to absence of moving parts (rotating disk)
- Quiet operation (no fan)
- Light weight and hence makes the device (on which it is installed) more portable
- Reduced power consumption and longer battery life
- Less heat
- Rugged and can handle temperature extremities
Video Introduction to Crucial SSD’s:
The Crucial 2.5 Inch Internal SSD can be used with both laptops and desktops. This model supports SATA III/SATA II connectivity giving a throughput of 6 GB per sec/3 GB per sec. The Crucial range of SSD’s come in multiple capacities including 64 GB, 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB. Normal hard disk drives are available in higher capacities and are cheaper than solid state drives, but due to the above mentioned advantages, there is a premium attached to its price.
If you are a gaming enthusiast or if you work with graphics/multimedia softwares (like Photoshop) or any other performance-demanding applications, you can see a huge difference by replacing your hard disk drive with a solid state drive. Even otherwise, one can easily note the difference, in the OS start up time (it starts quickly with SSD) or while watching high quality movies in high-definition format once they upgrade to SSD from HDD. Multi-tasking (with several windows open at the same time), DVD writing, file transfers to external media and other such functions can be significantly faster with SSD.
Solid State Drives are internal drives and need to be fixed inside a laptop that supports 2.5″ drives or a desktop (with a frame/conversion kit). So, if the laptop already comes with a hard drive, it may have to be replaced. If you plan to buy a laptop, it’s better to buy it with the lowest possible memory configuration in order to save some cost while replacing it with an SSD.
The Crucial SSD models are compatible with SATA II (3 GB/sec), in addition to SATA III (6 GB/sec). They support around 500 MB/sec and 260 MB/sec for sequential reads and writes, respectively. They come with a 2.5″ light-weight plastic casing.
Among the limitations of SSD’s, their cost is the primary concern for many people. Right now, HDD’s are cheaper but SSD’s are expected to get cheaper with mass production and improvements in manufacturing technology. SSD is a relatively new technology and hence there might be a short learning curve for users, while putting them to use.
- Check if the Crucial SSD has the latest firmware. Otherwise, upgrade the firmware by downloading it from their website, writing it to a DVD and booting from the DVD.
- Check if your computer supports SATA III/ SATA II connectivity. SATA III is better.
- For best performance, install the OS and applications on this SSD even if you have dual disk-drives on your computer.
- In Windows 7, turn on ‘TRIM’, turn off ‘Pre-fetch’, ‘Disk defrag’, ‘System recovery’, Drive spin down’ and other such hard drive specific functionalities for best performance.
Additional Information: Have a look at the SSD buying guide, product info and how-to videos from Crucial website.
Where to buy: If you live in the United States, you can buy the Crucial range of SSD’s from Amazon.
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