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I'm going to buy a new computer, and I'd want to know (in terms of performance) which option is better. Obviously, the best idea is to combine them (SSD for the OS and RAID0 for the data). However, I wouldn't want to spend lots of money in storage.

The future PC is going to be used for gaming.

Regards,

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    With high internet speeds and the trend that most games are downloadable online, i would highly recommend an SSD. Must not even be that big since you don't need any game simultaneously. And the speed-up in loading is remarkable. – h0ch5tr4355 Nov 10 '15 at 9:53
  • Thank you. At the moment I don't have a high internet speed connection. – antonioalopezfernandez Nov 10 '15 at 10:52
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SSD's and normal 7200 RPM and 10000 RPM drives:

The greatest differences between SSD's and what we would call "normal SATA III drives" (henceforth referred to simply as "HDD") is price per gigabyte and read/write speeds per drive.

SSD: Higher price per gigabyte, but faster read/write speed.

HDD: Lower price per gigabyte, slower read/write speed.

Both of these gain from being in any RAID configuration. Mainly for gaming RAID 0 is used, as it increases read and write speeds, but at the cost of reliability.

The issue with HDD's in RAID 0 is that you need several drives to gain up to just one SSD in terms of read and write speeds and you lose reliability. If one of your drives crashes/breaks, all data is lost.

The average R/W speed for a 7200 RPM HDD is about 70-100 MB/s, for 10,000 RPM drives we get up to around 100-130 MB/s. While most SSD's used in gaming setups easily go up to 450-500 MB/s. (These numbers are rough and do not always represent actual usage speeds. Values may vary on drive age and manufacturer/drivers)

So, if you want more space and pay less and aren't worried about a RAID 0 configuration messing things up, go for a few HDD's.

You want to ensure you have constant high R/W but don't mind having a bit less space available, go for SSD's.

Today SSD's are cheap enough to be used for pretty much any storage (with perhaps the exception of media storage) and offer greater speeds than commonly needed, even in gaming.

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  • So well explained, thank you very much. But I'd want to make one last question: If a normal SATA3 drive has a 100 MB/s speed, will a RAID of two disks duplicate this rate to 200 MB/s? Theoretically it may do so, doesn't it? – antonioalopezfernandez Nov 10 '15 at 10:52
  • In theory yes, in practice not quite. It's close, but no cigar. You'll probably be looking at around 1.9x the speed of one drive. – Leathe Nov 10 '15 at 11:09
  • In all honesty, by today's standards RAID 0 confs on HDDs aren't really worth it. SSD's are simply too fast for there to be any major gain. – Leathe Nov 10 '15 at 11:23
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I would go with SSD any day, and RAID0 is not very safe (if one drive fails you won't be able to extract useful data - you mentioned in terms of performance, but I think this is always a good thing to point out since performance can be measured in many ways. Such as reliability performance etc). Also it is probably not sequential speed alone you are looking for but random access and IOPS at low Queue Depths (QD 1-4). Even if it is a gaming computer, the performance will be noticeable in almost very other aspect of usage as well. I have run RAID0 mechanical disks and then replaced with my first SSD a few years back and the difference was huge. Personally I would not go back to RAID0.

Your computer will definitely feel faster - at the very least, get a 256GB SSD for OS and then perhaps one mechanical for storage. At 512GB SSD you'll be able to push some games in as well. Prices for SSDs are low enough to be able to recommend a 256GB at the very least to almost any budget for upgrades I think.

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I have the raid 0 mechanical drives for years, they are very reliable for day to day home use, the speed is adequate.

Again, this is all in the context of what you are using the system for. If you use the system just for browsing the internet, occasionally transfer large files, raid 0 HDD is certainly good enough and reliably enough for the purpose.

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