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Advice on 'monster' set-up

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  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 22,115

    Sure, a VelociRaptor is faster than any other consumer hard drive on the market.  And it's not terribly close.  10K RPM versus 7200 RPM is a big factor, but not the only one.  And because of that, a VelociRaptor for a high end gaming system made perfect sense three years ago.  But that's in the sense that a Core 2 Quad and a GeForce 9800 GTX made perfect sense three years ago, too.  Not today.

    The reason you get a 120 GB SSD is so that, whenever you want to run an application which is sensitive to storage performance, you can run it off of the SSD and don't need to use a hard drive at all.  A good SSD is enormously faster than a VelociRaptor.  The only things you use a hard drive for are those where storage speed doesn't matter.

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    The PCI Express specification states that PCI Express devices are allowed to draw 75 W through a PCI Express slot, 75 W through a 6-pin PCI-E power connector, and 150 W through an 8-pin PCI-E power connector.  A Radeon HD 6990 has two 8-pin power connectors, which offer 150 W each.  Add that to 75 W for the PCI Express slot, and you can get 375 W for the card.  Meanwhile, AMD's PowerTune will cap power draw for the card at 375 W.

    Of course, the PCI Express specification also says at most 300 W total for a PCI Express compliant device.  But my point is, the card shouldn't draw more than 75 W through the PCI Express slot.  That's no more dangerous to the slot or motherboard than a 75 W video card with no extra PCI-E power connectors.

    The GeForce GTX 590 is a different matter.  It has the same power connectors as the Radeon HD 6990, but will pull well in excess of 400 W.  That's out of spec somewhere, or perhaps in a lot of places.

    It's also true that higher power draw from a power supply can often lead to lower voltages.  High quality power supplies will compensate for this pretty well, so it's only a difference of .1 V or .2 V or so, across the entire wattage range that they can deliver.

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    "Also, would you think losing the SSD and go for a raptor for a reliable set-up? Plus I would save quite a bit $$ and lose minimul preformance. 'According to what you were saying' ?"

    No, no, no, no, no.  That has it entirely backwards.  Skip the VelociRaptor and get an SSD.  Here:

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/3681/oczs-vertex-2-special-sauce-sf1200-reviewed/6

    The Mushkin Callisto Deluxe isn't shown there, but it's basically equivalent to the OCZ Vertex 2 and the Corsair Force, both of which are shown.  Conveniently, the Western Digital VelociRaptor is also shown on the same charts.  Do click the link.  You need to see just how big the performance gap is.  And yes, longer bars are better, and a bar that is zero pixels in length means no performance at all.

    The VelociRaptor is omitted from the second chart.  That's because the bar length would have rounded to zero pixels.  It's not just slower than a good SSD.  It's two orders of magnitude slower in IOPS, which is the reason to get an SSD rather than a hard drive.

    If reliability is the big issue for you, rather than performance, then get two hard drives in RAID 1.  Also do image backups of your SSD.  This way, if a drive dies entirely, you don't lose any data.

  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 22,115

    Originally posted by Antarious

     

    In regards to your SSD question.   There is a lot of information on SSD drives available and it would do you well to read it.  Simply because if you are interested in a technology you should understand it and its limitations.   As opposed to a theoretical situation someone presents to you.   User education is always the best so you can make an informed decision.   SSD is going to depend entirely on how "you" use your system.   If you are someone that tends to uninstall software often, you may not want to use SSD.   Simply because the biggest weakness to SSD is writing data to the same areas over and over.   This is going to be the biggest factor that impacts the life of your SSD.  

     

    You can also set up a smaller SSD as your OS drive and then use another non-ssd for data (aka game installs etc).   This is very common and in fact is what I use personally.   Tho I do have a few games on my SSD's in all 3 systems that have them.

    While it is possible to wear out an SSD by excessive writes, merely installing and uninstalling programs isn't going to do it.  If you write over the entire size of the SSD every single day, which is 120 GB of capacity, you'll wear it out from excessive writes in about 15 years.  Realistically, it probably won't last that long, just because magnetic storage media doesn't last 15 years, whether hard drive platters, NAND flash, or whatever.  That's an awful lot of installing and uninstalling, and every single day.  If you write to it less than that, then write endurance is that much less of a concern.

    Now, if the SSD is meant to host a database that you aggressively write to 24 hours per day every day, you can wear it out in a matter of months.  There are some enterprise uses where this is a big deal.  For an ordinary home gaming system, it's not a meaningful factor.

    Games aren't data.  Games are applications.  Some programs will benefit tremendously from the speed of an SSD, and some will only marginally benefit.  Data is things like videos, music, or pictures, which really don't benefit from faster storage.

  • RidelynnRidelynn Member EpicPosts: 7,060

    As far as Raptor vs SSD - skip the raptors for gaming. They are very noisy, and while they are fast drives, they are no where near as good as a "good" SSD. I put in that caveat because there are a lot of poor ones out there that are really just USB flash drives on a SATA interface. Stick with the Sandforce/Marvell/Intel controllers for the most part, and you'll be fine (OCZ Vertex, Crucial C300, etc).

    Raptors are fast, especially at extended read/writes. They are great for video recording/streaming, or large file manipulation (Audio/Video). Raptors are also physical devices. Don't buy into the "Enterprise" label, that's just a marketing tool to allow them to pretend to be selling a big boy product without really marketing it to the video game crowd - no one in business really uses them, if they want reliable and fast, they go spend $1k+ on SAS or FC, or just buy enough cheap drives and parallel them such that the odds of all of them failing simultaneously is next to nil. They aren't any more reliable than any other platter based drive out there. The older Raptor series was absolutely awful on reliability, the newer Velociraptor is supposedly much better, but it's still a rotating platter, slam a book on the desk that your computer is on while it's running and it's just as likely to trash the drive as any other hard drive is.

    Gaming, however, typically uses a lot of little files. Lots of them. Open up a typical game folder (MMO or not), and it's not uncommon to see thousands of files listed there, any of which could need to be loaded at any time. This means that random I/O (Seek time) makes a bigger impact than sequential read/write times for gaming. SSD's are vastly superior to any rotational drive when it comes to random I/O, because they have instant access to any memory location, rather than having to wait for a drive head to position and for the platter to rotate in the correct spot - no matter how fast the drive head is or how fast the platter spins, they still have to physically move.

    Lots of people love to point out that SSDs slow down as they get full, or slow down as they get old, or slow down as they get hot. Maybe, but even slowed down they are still fast and reliable, and they have so many other benefits (totally silent, almost no heat production, shock resistant, physically small, constant power draw) that it beats out anything else anyway.

    And if Shinami starts going off about RAM drives being faster yet, ignore him. No one installs a 10-30+G video game on a RAM drive, and even if you did that much RAM is retardedly expensive (32G in 4 DIMMs would cost about $1000, and almost all 8G DIMMs are slower parity-checked DIMMs), so it's all a moot point.

  • RoinRoin Member RarePosts: 3,393

    Originally posted by Ridelynn

    As far as Raptor vs SSD - skip the raptors for gaming. They are very noisy......

    Noisy? I've had my PC for little over a month now.  Has a SSD and Raptor in it.  I've yet to hear either one make a noise (expected from the SSD I know).  Most of my games are on my Raptor as well as all my of my Steam games that I currently play. I've never heard it make a noise even when stuff is being written to it.

    In War - Victory.
    In Peace - Vigilance.
    In Death - Sacrifice.

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