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Thread: mixed hard drives

  1. #21
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    We actually DO the tests on all buses to find real performance numbers. And I have yet to see published numbers match what reality is. We have 6Gb SAS cards with over 1.5GB/sec throughput capability, we have full speed USB 3 buses (in PCs, not Macs). We have SATAIII buses to test on. And we have built in Mac buses. Any consideration of a SSD or hard drive must go through the full gamut: reliability, compatibility with Macs, support from the manufacturer, and REAL performance. Just tossing out that a given, new model drive from manufacturer 'X' is so much faster on paper, and hence the only drive to consider, is too small of a data set to be useful for us.

    When I stated I would have to go look at the results, I mean look at what I have in my files, not go back and do them. At least for models we have tested. It takes quite a bit more than just the bare performance numbers though. Just considering Trim modes on different manufacturer' drives can have incredible impact on long term operating reliability on a Mac. On a PC as well, but manufacturers write their firmware first for PCs and many don't even test on Macs, let alone make the firmware reliable over time in a Mac.
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  2. #22
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    Unfortunately I don't have a shed load of other people's money to buy loads of drives with. The only criteria that I can go on are reviews and tests I find online.
    The problem there is that there is just massive amounts of conflicting opinions and data.
    I have to keep my criteria simple anyway as 100% of my clients don't know anything about the workings of Macs and for most of them, the big question is "how much will it cost?".
    As long as the drives make their Macs faster and it doesn't cost too much then they're happy.
    For my part, I'm not too bothered whether one drive is half a second faster doing a particular task than another drive, but when I show a write speed of 525MB/s on one and 175MB/s on another it's a given that the 525 is going to be faster writing than the other. What difference that makes in the 'real world' I can't say I'm too bothered about. The only people who get bunched about that are usually PC wallahs who are wanting to make their games go faster. I don't have any video-based or 3D clients so that's not a concern either.

  3. #23
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    I don't have other peoples money to spend on drives either. Every penny my own, company money being directly out of my pocket if I waste it.

    My point in the conversation is that I have reason to carry Crucial that are beyond manufacturer's claimed performance numbers. You also have valid reason to use OCZ. Giving advice that you wouldn't buy one of the Crucial's has to at least be considered and discussed. I can't just duck all the other factors in the consideration of which SSD or hard drives to carry.

    In the past, similar situations have come up, here on the forum, with spinning hard drives. A new drive comes out, spec's at Storage Review or other sites show it faster than whatever we are carrying at the time. But until I get a history I don't/can't just change drives, too many ways that a new drive can screw you, so until proven otherwise I may be carrying the 6% slower 'rubbish' from another manufacturer. It can even get heated when one person swears by the latest greatest and another drags their feet for tried and true. MacGurus is into performance, it's what we do. But we absolutely must toe the reliability line, especially when it comes to a customer's business storage. And any manufacturer that cannot support Macs properly isn't going to get much consideration by us, no matter how much faster the drive. That is another biggie in our list.

    A lot of research must go into what drive recommendation we make. And a lot of money gets spent doing it. We test new drive models in pretty much every configuration we can think of before recommending them. And we then use them inside our workstations and personal machines as well. I am constantly bringing in new drives when model changes occur. And that gets tough with SSDs because there are so many manufacturers and so many changes to the technology is so short a time. Way out of our league. So these conversations have a big impact on how we choose what to test.

    My apologies for jumping on you, wanting facts and figures. I couldn't leave the statement that you wouldn't buy what we sell stand alone without at least having the discussion of why. I either need to justify the reasons for a potential customer to get the Crucial or change what I sell.

    I thank you for your patience with me. I can get myself in trouble now and then. I appreciate the discussion more than you will ever know.

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  4. #24
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    I won't trade speed for reliability. Also since EVERY single drive maker has bad product from time to time, I also have to have a company with a great customer service reputation. So Seagate for spinning drives and Crucial for SSD are the companies of choice for me.

    I only recently switched off of high speed scsi gear, I refused to depend on pATA drives ever so I was a scsi person until SATA had proven itself to me.
    Damien,

  5. #25
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    If you ask 10 plumbers for their heating boiler of choice, you'll get 10 different answers.
    If you ask 10 different economists what the economy will do next year there will be no consensus either.
    If you look at 10 forums for opinions on hard drives and SSDs you'll find the same disparity.
    For me? I used to only use OWC memory - yes, I used to import $5000 a month of ram into the UK a few years back - but the returns were too high from OWC, so I started using Crucial. Then they started marketing direct to end users and what used to be a small margin as a trade account was frequently zero AND I was getting faulty ram from time to time as well.

    So for me Crucial was no better than anyone else. I've not used their drives so can't comment, but they're out on price and I've had no reason to question the reliability of the OCZ or Samsung drives I've used.

    No problem with a debate, Ricks, always open to it. But when we have different criteria we're always going to have different views.

    You say you don't have other people's money to use, but that's not quite true as you do sell and endorse things at Gurus and that means that you have vested interests to take care of in the form of better discounts or prices than I would get. That's fine, but as I don't make ANY money out of selling hardware I don't have any vested interests other than those of my customers to worry about.
    Should OCZ or Samsung supply drives to me, or to my customers, that have problems then I'll no doubt be looking at what else is available, but for today, an Agility 4 256gb has just made another customer very happy indeed.

  6. #26
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    MacLoon:
    Earlier you stated flat out that some other SSD's are faster than Crucial, and I asked for independent data to back that up. Still waiting. I too can read manufacturer's specs, but I learned not to count on them at first glance.

    Rick:
    Ten years ago or so I learned that you do have "reason to carry" certain equipment and recommend it aside from mere manufacturer's claims. I have been buying stuff from you, always got what you promised, had great service, and most of all, when it came to workings of a computer, you know your stuff. What you have written so far in defense of your operation many others have known for years.

    Damien:
    Amen. I too won't trade speed for reliability.

    marrand

  7. #27
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    Marrand, I'm not getting involved in arguments when you're talking to people about things that they are selling - way too emotive.
    There are loads of comparison sites out there, you've only got to google for reviews etc: ssdreview, anandtech, storagereview and tomshardware were all ones that I looked through, along with a couple that haven't shown up on the search I've just done.
    I've seen Crucial ranked at the bottom, I've seen them ranked at the top.
    I've also seen OCZ Vertex drives at the top, but never at the bottom.
    The Samsung's close to the top, but also never at the bottom.
    The Agility 3 was consistently high, but in all of these cases NONE of the drives have been around long enough to be classed as unreliable.
    The biggest factor in ANY drive is the mechanics. No mechanics in SSDs means that they are going to be inherently more reliable than spinning platters.
    If you want numbers, then do what I did - go find them for yourself and look for the ones that match your criteria.

  8. #28
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    I REALLY try and set a tone of polite interest in what someone else has found true for them. Not have an argument. My apologies again if that is how it came off. I cannot test nearly enough products to be an expert on every bit of all the new stuff out there. I depend on feedback here. So don't stop!

    I freely admit I have multiple motives. Main thing is I always want to recommend the best possible solution for Mac users. Many products I recommend I cannot directly sell because I cannot afford to sell them - IE: Sonnet undersells us as a dealer, on their Thunderbolt products, by direct selling on Amazon. So I just recommend that those needing that product go to Amazon and get the best deal. I still want to recommend the best.

    Rick
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  9. #29
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    I wasn't taking any issue with you Ricks, what I was taking a small exception to was Marrand demanding information.
    I'd set out my answer, based on my limited criteria well enough, I thought. If he wants more then he'd better go and find it.
    My comment on Crucial was also explained in detail. What I didn't say, and maybe I should expand slightly to do so, in response to your comment about claimed speeds and actual almost never matching real world speeds is that if one is only claiming to be half as fast as another drive, there isn't a cat in hell's chance that it will turn out to be faster! Ipso facto, the Crucial drives WILL be slower writing than those it claims to be only half as fast as - it ain't rocket science and I really cannot be bothered to find the figures to back up something that is blindingly obvious.

  10. #30
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    Glad I was out of town for this.

  11. #31
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    My two cents:

    While it is true that there are lots of variables with SSDs, especially regarding speed.... Any that are average or better will get you a really noticeable bump in boot and app launch time, especially compared to a 3+ year old OEM spinning HD. Not arguing against speed, just pointing out that the first few seconds are what the average user feels the most, not the last few fractions of a second, that we like to argue about here.

    Diminishing returns as things get faster, at least in the perceptible world. That's great news overall, and also a reason—at some point—to declare that most current, average or better SSDs will make most users happy.

    Speed demons, power users, and bargain shoppers will forever be looking for the latest, better thing. Welcome to computing.

    One of my biggest rules for both SSD and HD: Almost always better to buy models that are not new model released today and untried, nor close out sale models that may have been sitting in a warehouse for two years. There are exceptions, but I shoot for stuff that has been out and used for a few months. Lots of reviews, and time for gripes or issues. Let Ricks be the Guinea pig.
    "Imagine if every Thursday your shoes exploded if you tied them the usual way. This happens to us all the time with computers, and nobody thinks of complaining." -- Jef Raskin

  12. #32
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    Too bad guinea pigs don't have a manly growl or grunt - I'd have a nice little audio file to attach to my name.

    R
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  13. #33
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    Good to see some lively debate!
    "illegitimis non carborundum"

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricks View Post
    Too bad guinea pigs don't have a manly growl or grunt - I'd have a nice little audio file to attach to my name.

    R
    I believe they whimper in a most unmanly fashion..
    Damien,

  15. #35
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    I would say that it is my thought that one cannot take intent too seriously on an open forum. Phrasing 'just right' is hard. All of us post fastish and it is best to let most things slide. This isn't a forum that gets much, if any, combat. I tend to let things roll off my back most times (except with Damien) and assume it wasn't meant personally.

    That said, I am NOT going to record an unmanly guinea pig whimper!
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

  16. #36
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    What is all this ruckus? I thought I might wade in here and help clear the air. But I don't know if that possible. Heck everyone who knows anything about guinea pigs, knows that they don't whimper, they whistle. Hence the other name whistle pigs. Why am I always the one who has to come in and straighten things out?


  17. #37
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    Tongue

    McLoon took me to task for not researching the internet for SSD performance data. So I tried. The numbers I found didn't seem reliable, but I found something else which may be very useful for effecting more precise communications in forums such as this.

    That is: definition of terms.

    manly growl = when your hard drive crashes
    guinea pig whimper = when you realize you have no back-ups.

    Don't see any whimperers here.

  18. #38
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    I had two Guinea pigs many moons ago... I thought they squealed.

    Maybe that was the one my sister let out and the cat attacked.

  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by marrand View Post
    Don't see any whimperers here.
    You obviously don't remember when Ricks dog peed in the front of his (running) MacPro tower. Rick whimpered for weeks over that..
    Damien,

  20. #40
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    That was NEW running G5 Tower.


    And the smoke coming out of it smelled terrible.


    R
    Last edited by ricks; 12-21-2012 at 02:51 PM.
    molṑn labe'
    "I am a mortal enemy to arbitrary government and unlimited power. I am naturally very jealous for the rights and liberties of my country, and the least encroachment of those invaluable privileges is apt to make my blood boil."
--Ben Franklin

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