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 Post subject: Intel X25-M 80GB G2, to buy or not to buy?
PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 8:48 am 
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Noticed the Intel X25-M 80GB G2 is currently $215 from Newegg and I'm sorely tempted to get one. Should I bite or do you guys think prices will be significantly lower by the end of the year or perhaps even a few months from now?

I'm building a new mini workstation/light gaming box once Gigabyte releases their Mini-ITX H55 board. Right now, I'm a bit undecided whether I should use SSD or 2.5" 7200RPM HDD.


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PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 9:23 am 
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Not sure how this will affect prices or not, but Intel's planning on launching its 3rd generation SSDs this winter season. These should be significantly faster than the 2nd generation drives, particularly in sequential write performance (where Intel's 80MB/s looks very bad compared to Sandforce controllers). This is what I'm personally waiting for, since the performance jump should be very noticable.

That being said, the 2nd gen drives are very good nowadays and much better in terms of speed than mechanical hard drives (taking anecdotal evidence from Anandtech.com), so it wouldn't be terrible to get one now. But hopefully the 3rd gen drives are really fast and drive down the prices of the 2nd gen drives.


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PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 9:27 am 
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I would deffiantly go for a ssd over a 2.5" 7200rpm HDD. The noise of the 7200 rpm drive would definately be noticable. If you do not mind the smaller size and slightly lower sequential writes then you could get a intel X25-V 40GB for $120 at B&H photo and then get a 5200RPM 2.5" drive for storage with the money you save. It might be tight to get all your workstation programs and games on the 40GB Drive though. I enjoy my 40GB x25-v in my HTPC.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 10:51 am 
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m1st wrote:
But hopefully the 3rd gen drives are really fast and drive down the prices of the 2nd gen drives.

Yeah, that's what I was wondering about. If things go on schedule, we'll have 20nm SSDs by end of this year likely with prices at or lower than current options. Factor in growing competition and it all points to lower prices. However, that's all conjecture and SSD prices seem to fluctuate quite a bit especially given the demand.

I'm in the buy as needed camp and I'm going to need that SSD once Gigabyte releases the H55N-USB3. However, 6 months isn't really a terrible wait particularly if I can get lower $/GB.

*sigh* choices, choices...


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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2010 7:19 am 
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Keep in mind that the G3 Intel drives in Q4 will be a new product and probably go through the usual new-launch bugs and dramas before things settle down. The G2 is at least a known quantity today.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 7:42 pm 
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It seems like Intel has had less drama than other manufacturers. The only thing I remember "bad" was they "screwed" G1 owners out of TRIM.

I bought my Intel X-25M 80GB's back in March, and I'm certainly happy I didn't wait. Everything is fast now (except the Internet), and it's totally silent when it's actually being used like crazy (such as no Time Machine backup for a couple weeks--I have to check Activity Monitor to see that it's actually doing 284MB/sec of w/e). What's sad is that you get used to how fast it is, and then it doesn't feel fast anymore until you go back to a HDD machine... Then it's *GASP* :)

I guess if I was going to wait for something, the next Intel release would be interesting to see. But I wouldn't count on pricing going down unless the entire market goes down. Intel has kept their pricing despite the new products coming on board--and since I thought they had a superior overall product at their price/GB compared to the competition, I'm not surprised they have kept the price there.

And with respect to Intel's "slow" write performance--I don't have anything that can generate content at 80MB / sec, except for the SSDs themselves, and I'm not so lush with SSDs that I'm using them for backup :) I bought two 80GB's and striped them mostly because it was the cheapest / GB among Intel SSDS ... and just a little bit for awesomeness in random IO ... Read/random read was most important to me, and I am quite satisfied. ;)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 8:17 pm 
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edan wrote:
I guess if I was going to wait for something, the next Intel release would be interesting to see. But I wouldn't count on pricing going down unless the entire market goes down. Intel has kept their pricing despite the new products coming on board--and since I thought they had a superior overall product at their price/GB compared to the competition, I'm not surprised they have kept the price there.

Actually, when Intel initially introduced their G2 drives, I remember it was at lower price points than then-current G1 models. Unfortunately, price gouging due to the demand drove prices by up to $100 more.

Oh well, moot point since the prices have increased again. I think I'll just wait until I can actually do my build. So far, I already have the case (Silverstone SG05B), CPU (i7-860 $200, MicroCenter) and RAM. Just need the motherboard and SSD and I'm set.


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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2010 10:02 pm 
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The main X25-M drama was a firmware bug. This type of thing seems par for the course for new SSD launches.

The G2 was and is priced lower than the G1 due to the 34nm NAND compared to 50 nm for its predecessor. The G3 will use 25nm NAND so in theory will be more affordable again, though demand will be high to partly balance that out.


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