It's been over a decade but we can finally declare solid state drives are not only mainstream, but they're a commodity. Fast storage will hopefully only get faster but today's best choices are only differentiated by how extreme you want to go and how willing you are to pay for the very best.
With solid state drives now fully mainstream and hard drives being more affordable than ever, there is a broad a mix of high-performance and high-capacity options to choose from in a range of form factors. Fortunately for you, we have spent dozens of hours testing storage, so we have a pretty clear idea about what devices are worth buying.
With dozens of hours testing storage devices under our belt in the last year alone, we have a pretty clear idea of what are the top devices you should buy right now, divided into six categories: Best performance SSD, best value SSD, best hard drives, best portable storage, best external storage device and best home/SMB NAS.
With dozens of hours testing storage devices under our belt in the last year alone, we have a pretty clear idea of what are the top devices you should buy right now, divided into five categories: Best performance SSD, best value SSD, best hard drives, best external storage device and best home/SMB NAS.
SSD technology grew stale after saturating the SATA 6Gb/s bus, bringing minor improvements and making up for it with price cuts. With new PCIe and M.2 drives presenting a high performance alternative, it's time for a roundup. We review fourteen of the best consumer-grade SSDs using the SATA, PCI Express or M.2 interfaces and tell you what to buy.
Crucial SSDs have been among the most reliable and best performing on the market, with last year's MX100 being their greatest hit. Its successor, the MX200 arrived only six months later and along with it Crucial also introduced the even more affordable BX100 series and a new SSD toolbox software. On today's menu is the beefy 1TB MX200 ($470) along with the 500GB BX100 ($190).
Crucial has become a trusted name when it comes to high-performance solid-state drives, and now they're taking another crack at producing a cost effective SSD with the MX100 series. Things look very promising thanks to an upgrade to the same Marvell chip used by the high-end M550 series.
Crucial announced worldwide availability of its next-gen SSD late last month. Known simply as the "m4," the company's latest entry is hailed as the successor to its award-winning RealSSD C300, promising to deliver more speed and higher capacities.
Considering its intended price point, we shouldn't expect the m4 to dethrone the OCZ Vertex 3 and perhaps not even Intel's SSD 510. Nonetheless, we could be in for a pleasant surprise if Crucial's newest contender delivers performance in excess of what the RealSSD C300 did in its heyday, so let's find out what the m4's made of.
The major issue with SSD adoption over the past few years has been price, the astronomically high price when you are counting in hundreds of gigabytes. In today's comparison review we are going to look at 8 popular SSDs that cost $100 or less and feature capacities of up to 128GB.
The contenders include the OCZ Vertex 4 128GB, Samsung 840 120GB and Crucial m4 128GB. The most affordable high-capacity SSD featured in our roundup is the Kingston SSDNow V+200 120GB, while the OCZ Vertex 4 64GB, Crucial m4 64GB and Samsung 830 64GB should all offer stellar performance for under $80.
Not only are SSDs faster than HDDs, but they also consume less power and generate less heat. They're quieter, more reliable and more compact than their spinning counterparts. Talking about compact...
We recently took notice when Crucial announced its m4 mSATA SSD in a 256GB capacity at under $1/GB. The mSATA drive is tiny compared to Crucial's standard 2.5" m4, and despite the size difference, both 256GB models feature the same read and write speeds of 500MB/s and 260MB/s -- an exciting prospect, indeed. Assuming there are no catches, Crucial's new mSATA offering could become the go-to solution for ultraportable upgrades...
By mid 2012, SSD prices fell through the floor, costing approximately half as much as last year. Granted, that's still nowhere near as economical as standard hard drives, so companies have continued to offer affordable solutions in addition to their high-end series to drive sale volumes.
Such is the case with OCZ and the Agility 4, a budget-minded counterpart to the Vertex 4 that employs cheaper NAND flash memory. In similar fashion we recently saw the arrival of the Crucial v4 series. With both the Agility 4 and Crucial's v4 priced at just under $200 for 256GB models, it seems we have the makings of a value-driven shootout...
Last January, Crucial announced the Adrenaline SSD series. Not meant to replace their existing and well regarded m4 drives, the Adrenaline is a cache solution meant to work along your existing disk drive, using a 50GB SSD to act as solid state flash-based cache for your larger primary hard drive.
The Adrenaline doesn't require any special drivers as it uses the SATA interface, it can be installed at any point and can therefore be fitted to any computer without the need to reinstall Windows.