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Discussion Starter #1
I want to move up to SATA. Drive noise and capacity are not really concerns of mine but performance is! I'm looking at:

Western Digital Raptor 36.7GB - $105
10,000 RPM
16MB cache
SATA 150

Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 250GB - $80
7200 RPM
16MB cache
SATA 3.0Gb/s

Does the Barracuda have faster bursts than the Raptor because of the SATA II interface? Is the Raptor noticeably faster?
 

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Raptor by a long shot. There is no real difference between SATAI and SATAII, since current hardware does not even get close to maximize the bandwidth of SATAI, let alone SATAII

And burst is not really an important factor, esp. compared with access times and sequential read. At those two last factors, the Raptor kills the Barracuda
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I also want to buy RAM but I can only afford to get one thing at a time. What's a good program to find out whether my 512mb memory is limiting me and how much I'm using? I'm trying to figure out what the bigger bottleneck is, RAM or HDD. I don't play any games from the last few years... yet. Mostly just general windows use and web browsing.
 

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Raptor by far seagate hasnt built so called durabilty they tend to overheat and die quite often atleast with my dealign with them WD has done a superb job on there raptor with quality and reliabity.
 

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Raptor > ALL

Go to http://www.download.com and search for the RAM monitors/ultilities that help you clean up your RAM. Those programs tell you how much you use and monitors it for you. Definitely need more RAM 512MB is insufficient for today's gaming.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I downloaded a RAM monitoring program called RamPage and even with way more programs open than I ever use, I still have at least 250MB of free memory. I don't think I'd see much of a performance boost just by having more available memory. Like I said, I don't have any games from the past few years. Looks like I'll be getting the Raptor first.

Edit- right now I'm browsing this page and listening to an mp3 on winamp and I have over 310MB of RAM free.
 

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Get both if you can... I have a pair of raptors raid0 and although benchies I've run don't show it, it is just plain fast - just something you feel. Even a single raptor boot and a bigger, slower drive for storage is a good start, you can add another raptor and reormat when you have the $.

And raptors usually come with a 5 year warranty - they gotta know what they're doing to offer that.

If you're after economy, you can buy 2 'Cuda 200's and Raid0 them for 400Gb space and faster speeds! Just don't expect them to survive as long and remember raid0 failure means unrecoverable loss of data.
 

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I would recomend the raptor for pure performance. But if you want you could get 2 Seagates 16MB Cache in raid0 for about $150. Which would beat the raptor and you will have much more storage space.
 

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Quote:


Originally Posted by OCZedd

I would recomend the raptor for pure performance. But if you want you could get 2 Seagates 16MB Cache in raid0 for about $150. Which would beat the raptor and you will have much more storage space.

I have one of those Baracudas 7200.10 250Gb and they're superb. As OCZedd said, buy 2 of them and put them in RAID0 and they'll be better than a single raptor. Must consider that a 75Gb raptor is 150$ and 2xBaracudas are also 150$ but for 500Gb of space.
Pure [email protected] 90$ obviously the raptor, but @150$ both performance and storage crowns go to the baracudas.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Is there a performance decrease or increase if you use the 8MB cache Barracudas? Does extra cache slow things down at all?
 

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Quote:


Originally Posted by indignation

I downloaded a RAM monitoring program called RamPage and even with way more programs open than I ever use, I still have at least 250MB of free memory. I don't think I'd see much of a performance boost just by having more available memory. Like I said, I don't have any games from the past few years. Looks like I'll be getting the Raptor first.

Edit- right now I'm browsing this page and listening to an mp3 on winamp and I have over 310MB of RAM free.

You WILL get a performance boost by going to a higher RAM amount you will boot faster, programs will start up faster, etc. It will probably have a bigger effect than a Raptor would.
 

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looking at your system specs you'll benefit more from more RAM then you will from a faster hard drive right now. the way windows works is you will almost always have some RAM free... but there are 2 things to keep in mind.
1. windows creates a page file... with only 512mb of RAM and todays programs your computer is using your page file a LOT! and your hard drive is extremely sloooow compared to RAM so adding more RAM will lessen your computer's page file usage.
2. adding more RAM will allow the programs you use to have access to more RAM, thus making them faster

and to answer your last question, yes the larger cache will help performance. if you have the option buy a drive with 16mb over 8mb (or less) cache
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks, soloz

If I'm not a big gamer, will there be a big difference in Windows between getting 2GB of RAM versus 1GB? RAM is expensive these days and I was thinking about getting 1GB...

Other question: How much of a performance hit is it to run in single channel mode? For example, if I bought a 1 GB stick and bought the second one later and had to run in single channel for a while.
 

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If you're not a big gamer, then unless you do online editing of video or multiple layer high-res photo editing documents, I don't believe you see any difference going over 1Gb of ram, and dual channel, well it does liven things up a bit: My bosses allendale lost a second on 1M superpi when we yanked a 512 from it's total 1Gb. 24 to 25 secs


Personally, I won't ever go back to single channel... the system just seems slow, you really have to be fussy to notice it however.

Soloz2 is on the money, 1Gb is a better tradeoff - get that & a bigger drive & you won't know yourself!
 
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