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tbrinck 6 days ago

So far I've seen some say hdd drive vs SSD drive only results in a slower load time, others say it effects game play in certain video games. Is an SSD drive for just video games worth the price difference? Is it just waiting an extra minute or two for the game to load? I would be getting f a small m.2 for windows to operate on, so it's just the video games. Would be playing a mix of online games like Apex and open world games. Computer would have 16 gb 3200 ram. Most of the videos I've seen have little to no difference in fps.

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m52nickerson 1 Build 2 points 6 days ago

For the most part load times are the only difference for games run from an SSD as compared to a HDD. Now some games will run slightly smother from an SSD, meaning more consistent frame times, but even this can be hard to notice while playing the game. So if you can deal with the load times, little reason to get a larger SSD just for games.

For me, I did spend the money after later on an got a 500GB SSD to place some games on. Mostly those games with frequent loading screens, Skyrim, Fallout 4, ect. For most of my other games, they stay on the HDD.

tbrinck submitter 1 point 6 days ago

Makes sense.

GeorgeReorgeRartinMartin 1 point 6 days ago

TL:DR; Get a properly large SSD, they're cheaper than ever, you probably won't regret it.

I think there's lots of opinions about this. For people on impossibly small budgets, a SSD is a luxury. For people who don't care much about their user experience, are used to the performance HDDs provide, or don't use a PC/Laptop primarily SSDs don't matter much. Or at least the benefits SSD proponents cite don't amount to much to those people. For a lot of people storage is the part of the PC that doesn't really matter and has no value in their minds. I personally don't agree. But it all depends on your experience and where your values lay.

You don't really gain FPS in most scenarios as far as gaming is concerned, you don't gain computing power, or GPU power. But storage performance isn't a non-entity in overall system performance either.

And it's easy to say the only difference is a minute or two for a game to load, because that sounds inconsequential, who would pay extra for that? But the reality is you're not loading a game just once. Or only experiencing benefits while loading a game, or loading Windows. You're getting a benefit every time you access the disk. The seek times for data are much faster than HDDs and the bandwidth is much higher and you see that all the time. And the result is you have better overall system performance and a much better computing experience. But it's not something you appreciate until you've experienced it first hand, and then you have to care about such things anyway.

SSDs have gotten extremely cheap. You can get Intel's 660p 1TB NVMe SSD for less than half as much as I paid for a 240GB SATA SSD in 2013. My current system only has SSDs and I'm of the position I'm never going to buy a HDD again. And heck the way prices are still continuing to drop I might never buy a SATA drive again. I'm of the opinion more SSD equals more happiness.

I'd argue that you get a 500GB-1TB SSD at a minimum. It's not an insane amount of money to spend, there's some tangible benefits and you're going to end up there someday anyway. Today is just as a good a day as any to get there.

But if you do elect to stick with paying a pittance on a tiny SSD, you may come to realize that was a mistake and SSDs do provide some value you're willing to pay for. A lot of people only realize this through experience. And I would have to say most people suscribing to the small SSD + large HDD strategy are only doing it for traditional reasons, not rational reasons. We did it back in the day because large SATA SSDs cost hundreds of dollars and now 1TB NVMe SSDs can be had for less than $200 and if you can find the right deal for even less than $100. So it makes continuing that practice seem a little silly and out dated for me. But to be fair I've been sold on the value and utility of SSD's for quite a few years now, I'm sure not everyone agrees.

yawumpus 1 point 4 days ago

You buy a HDD because you want/need the storage. Checking current US prices (sorting by cheapest due to only 2-3 HDD manufacturers. DON'T try this with SSDs): 1 TB (7200rpm) $42 2 TB (7200rpm) $53 3 TB (7200rpm) $54 4 TB (7200rpm) $78 5 TB (7200rpm) $125 8 TB (7200rpm) $200

As you can see, the "sweet spot" is ~3TB or so, so I'd recommend going there (or 4TB if you want the extra storage). Past that, you are probably constructing a RAID or something.

You might also want to look up "tiering" which helps eliminate the pain of sloshing data back and forth from HDD to SDD. AMD includes "StoreMI" with their 400-series motherboards (which as a 256GB SSD restriction, which might be a problem). Note that the basic problem with all these tiering ideas is that the prices of SSDs are falling fast enough that simply spending the money on a bigger SSD instead of fancy software is likely to make the problem go away with less things to fail.

If you need the storage (as in multiple TB) you need the HDD (and I can't recommend less than 3TB), but if you don't then SSDs make a lot more sense. SSD+HDD still makes sense, but SSD is starting to more popular for people who don't need TBs (or sometimes even 1TB) of space.

GeorgeReorgeRartinMartin 1 point 2 days ago

You buy a HDD because you want/need the storage.

If you want/need cheap storage and the performance of that storage doesn't matter yes, I agree. I was very careful after all to qualify it depends on the user's values.

DON'T try this with SSDs

At the moment I'm running 4.5TB of SSD. Everyone will be running multi-TB SSDs within the next ten years. Someone has to be an early adopter =p

As you can see, the "sweet spot" is ~3TB or so,

That's very subjective based on a laundry list of variables that are not universal among users. For me the sweet spot is no HDDs.

Rin_Itoh 1 point 6 days ago

GeorgeReorgeRartinMartin covered it pretty well.

Windows is constantly running background processes that take bandwidth from other applications. On a HDD having processes constantly running can be killer. This is not really a problem on SSDs due to the increased speed and access times.

The drive will have little to no impact on FPS in game. It will affect load times though. If you have a game like Skyrim where you have to load every time you walk through a door you will start to feel the drag of the increased load times. If you have an open world game like GTA 5 where you pretty much load once and then you don't load again for a while you won't notice it as much.

If you are on a strict budget then you can get a combo like a Kingston A400 120 GB SSD for about $20 USD and a 1 TB HDD for about $40 USD. I ran that exact setup for years and it worked wonderfully. I put Windows and some heavy programs on the SSD and everything else on the HDD.

If you have the budget then go completely SSD. It will make a world of difference.


This shows you what you can expect in terms of Windows load times. If you have processes set to launch at start it will be exponentially worse for the HDD. In game is going to be a similar story as far as load times.