A Solid State Drive or an SSD is an alternative to the traditional Hard Disk Drive (HDD). They differ from an HDD in that they don’t have any spinning disks or moving parts and are much faster all of which results in their being more expensive. They are based on NAND Flash Memory, the kind that is found in USB keys, memory cards and music players instead of the spinning magnetized platters found in HDDs. Several such dazzling technologies are implanted into the SSDs that make them worth the buy. Here are some factors that will help you make a better choice while buying an SSD.
v Compatibility: Standards SSDs have a form factor of 2.5 inches. While that makes it a good fit for a laptop, if you are using a desktop a form factor of 3.5 inches is required. Even for a laptop the Z-height or thickness of the SSD should be small enough to fit into the laptop. If you cannot mount it on your system, even the best SSD is of no use to you. Hence, you need to check the compatibility before you go ahead with your purchase.
v SSD Hardware Interface: An SSD with a SATA 1 interface can manage to transfer data at the speed of 1.5 GBPS, and that goes up to 3GBPS for a drive with a SATA 2 interface and up to 6GBPS for one with a SATA3 interface. If you want more speed then SATA 3 is your ideal choice, however, the motherboard of your computer should also be SATA 3 compatible, otherwise, it makes no sense.
v Drive Capacity: You need to pick an SSD with an appropriate drive capacity which depends on how you use your computer. But, with increasing drive capacity, the price also goes up, so you will need to figure out how much drive capacity you really need. If you only need it for installing the OS and a few programs, a 32GB capacity drive will do. If you want to install a few media and games as well, then you will need an SSD with a capacity of 64GB. If you also want to save your favourite gaming titles so that the game loads in a snap, you need to up the capacity to 128GB. However, if you want to add more media you may need to go up to a 240GB capacity drive or one with a capacity of 480+ GB for good speed.
v Brand Warranty and Support: SSDs are expensive. You need to buy one that comes from a reputed manufacturer like Samsung or Crucial or Sandisk. Although expensive, these are trusted brands and their SSDs come with extensive warranties which gives you peace of mind knowing that it will have a longer life and better performance.
SSDs have a finite life span of 5-7 years and have a limited number of writes. They operate quietly and are less subject to mechanical failure. They make computers boot up within seconds and launch programs almost in an instant. If budget is not a constraint and all you need is speed and better performance, SSDs are an ideal choice for you.