SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

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Pasha
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SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by Pasha » Mon May 13, 2013 6:03 pm

Still confused. So many Arstechnica reviews, Various Music Web sites and opinion in this forum.
My understanding so far is that SSD are very fast in reads, a little less fast in writes (depends on technology and other factors) and very good for semi-static material as Operating Systems (boot drive) Applications and huge Library (Samples). Because of the underlying technology (Ars Technica) SLC, MLC, TLC drives have different capabilities, from Pro (huge transactional databases in Enterprises) to Consumer (amateur usage) but due to that all suffer a lot what we call random writes. It's not that they cannot keep up with speed is that continuous random writes needs to be addressed by the controller to find fresh places where writes take place while garbage collection (trim or other strategies) takes place. In a nutshell frequent random writes, often followed by a deletion (Ctrl Z) of the latest recorded sample lower SSD lifetime at its roots.
Stop with boring theories now. Do you gurus and pros use SSD also for recording (aka temporary recording folder) or only to store the final projects?

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Pasha
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Live 9 Suite,Zebra 2.6,Guitar, Bass, VG99, JV1010 and some controllers
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DJ_Zombot
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by DJ_Zombot » Mon May 13, 2013 6:08 pm

I've heard that the recording sounds warmer on a traditional hard drive.

CancerRidden
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by CancerRidden » Mon May 13, 2013 6:32 pm

DJ_Zombot wrote:I've heard that the recording sounds warmer on a traditional hard drive.
lol

H20nly
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by H20nly » Mon May 13, 2013 6:57 pm

Pasha wrote:Because of the underlying technology (Ars Technica) SLC, MLC, TLC drives have different capabilities, from Pro (huge transactional databases in Enterprises) to Consumer (amateur usage) but due to that all suffer a lot what we call random writes. It's not that they cannot keep up with speed is that continuous random writes needs to be addressed by the controller to find fresh places where writes take place while garbage collection (trim or other strategies) takes place. In a nutshell frequent random writes, often followed by a deletion (Ctrl Z) of the latest recorded sample lower SSD lifetime at its roots.
i've argued this point before... (i mean, it's not like an audio waveform is a .gif file either in terms of volume on the drive)... but i was bashed for thinking that the [expensive] superior write speeds could come with a hitch.

my .02 is that it's too soon to tell... and it will get better not worse, but for now... i know what to expect from a platter based hard drive.
besides, if you take the cover off...they look like a record player. therefore they must be better for audio :idea:

Thirdbeat
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by Thirdbeat » Mon May 13, 2013 8:47 pm

Personally i use my ssd for win and ableton (plus some other stuffs), and i really enjoy it!
Why?
10 second boot, whats why.

But in all honesty. If you have a primary ssd, make sure to have one that is so big you can have your samples and stuff on it. The thing that most people forget is that if your main disk with your os+ableton is on a ssd is that all of your samples and your plugins needs to be on ssd aswell, if not you would have used money on speed for nothing.
If you dont have the room for all your stuff on one disk, go dual ssd (right now i have a 250 gb samsung pro and i still need another one for mah samples). The good thing about the pro series (by any ssd producer) is that in most cases comes with a 5 year limited warranty if im not mistaken. And with the technology nowdays it is pretty hard to "use up" your disk. and by that time you would already have bought a new disk (I know i would have).

H20nly
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by H20nly » Mon May 13, 2013 9:12 pm

a 250 GB drive is not as impressive today as it was a few years ago. that wouldn't even hold 'just the library' of many of the users on the forum. i know this because they are the ones complaining that Live 9 doesn't index fast enough. apparently a terabyte drive is something that should be instantly ready when you plug it in...

*shrugs*

Theo Void
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by Theo Void » Mon May 13, 2013 9:29 pm

I don't know, I think "real" producers and Dj's use traditional HDD's. Using SSD is like cheating because there's no skill involved. I only play music that comes from a spinning platter!

H20nly
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by H20nly » Mon May 13, 2013 10:44 pm

"put the needle on the record!"

"put the needle on the record!"

"put the needle on the record!"

Image

Pasha
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by Pasha » Tue May 14, 2013 6:37 am

Very good points everyone, thank you.
The cost per GByte of SSD drives constraints the space one could get...
and I like the comment about using your SSD for Music as whole otherwise
having weak links in the chain (Library, recording, programs, os.. could spoil the party.
Maybe the 7200 RPM drives are still good (they were for a decade).
I record one track (mono or stereo) at a time. Pretty old style... isn't it?
So for me also a 5400 RPM could do. However when you record 16 tracks or more at a time
you need lowest seek times. Live has split Project directory from Recording Directory so I can use
SSD for Projects & sample library (L9 instruments like Piano and Strings have big samples) and a traditional drive for recording. Being a preset junkie I do not create many samples outside standard Live Lib. I have many projects I work on at the same time instead.

I am planning a new computer :

Option 1

Internal 1TB 5400 RPM (Boot, Apps, Temp record, iPhoto, iTunes)
External USB 3 SSD drive for Projects & Live Libraries (8 + 9) - could be used for recording

I do not care about Boot time and /or Apps launch time, once it booted it stays up. Once Live starts, usually I do not need to rebounce it.

Option 2


Internal 1TB Fusion Drive (Boot, Apps, Temp record, iPhoto, iTunes)
External USB 3 SSD drive for Projects & Live Libraries (8 + 9) - could be used for recording

Option 3


Internal 256GB SSD (Boot, Apps, Live Library, Projects, Recording)
External 256GB SSD (Libraries (iPhoto, iTunes) - could be used for recording)

Options 2 and 3 have a very high cost due to Apple charging a lot for FD or internal SSD.
Option 1 is more cost savvy. I can mitigate the cost of Options 2 & 3 by adding an external USN 3 7200RPM or 5400RPM drive to the setup instead of an SSD.

What do you think?

Best
Pasha
Apple Desktop / Laptop
Live 9 Suite,Zebra 2.6,Guitar, Bass, VG99, JV1010 and some controllers
______________________________________
Music : http://alonetone.com/pasha

H20nly
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by H20nly » Tue May 14, 2013 6:50 am

with option 1:

why not get a 7200 rpm drive?
is it a laptop? did't see it mentioned...

how big is the "usb SSD drive"?

Pasha
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by Pasha » Tue May 14, 2013 8:42 am

H20nly wrote:with option 1:

why not get a 7200 rpm drive?
is it a laptop? did't see it mentioned...

how big is the "usb SSD drive"?
I was aiming at Mac Mini or iMac.
I not a BTO guy, do not like the way Apple supercharges, especially with the last breed of machines..
I got a MBP 13" last September to replace my 6 years old dying Black Macbook from 2006...
Now I am almost in the same situation with my 5 years old iMac from 2008.
MBP has a 5400 RPM drive and it's not that bad. Apps do not launch like thunder but more or less
is even faster than my current iMac..
Back to your question, 21.5 iMac and Mac Mini ship with 5400 RPM, Fusion (128 SSD + 5400 RPM) or 256GB SSD.
Sometimes I feel like spending more and say goodbye to external drives and the like by getting
the 27" iMac which has a 7200 RPM drive and would be great. I can make all the music I can dream of
today on my 5 years old iMac (2.66 Core Duo 2 with 7200 RPM Drive and 4GB RAM).
I have tried to stay clear from all moaning messages like 'You cannot upgrade your ram in 21.5 iMac' or
'5400 RPM is slow'. Looking at the facts: in 5 years I have never felt the need to have more than 4GB.
My 5 years old 320GB 7200 RPM drive in iMac gets 42 to 55 MBytes/sec speed... while the new iMac does 100 MB/sec
roughly... Those very dense 1TB 5400 RPM drives have a worse seek time but the density of data on platters
is so high that compensates for slower rotational speed. The USB SSD drive I was looking to is the Samsung 840 and it's 256GB.

Thanks for help
Best
Pasha
Apple Desktop / Laptop
Live 9 Suite,Zebra 2.6,Guitar, Bass, VG99, JV1010 and some controllers
______________________________________
Music : http://alonetone.com/pasha

H20nly
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by H20nly » Tue May 14, 2013 7:15 pm

ah... well a laptop, IMO, is the only time a 5400 rpm drive makes sense to me. i have a laptop with a 7200 but i get it that heat, not just sound, is the deciding factor. the mini setup is just trying to be cheap.

i have a 27" iMac with a 1TB 7200 rpm drive, 3.1 Ghz quad core and 20 GB of RAM. i can assure you, it's a beast.


256GB just seems like such a small drive for over $200 U.S. (these days anyway). i am not convinced that faster boot time is worth it when, in essence, most of the other actions will be roughly the same. don't get me wrong... a few seconds to boot is cool.

it's always hard to make these decisions and ultimately you have to decide what is best for you. there are no wrong answers or poor suggestions in this thread really... it's all a balancing act.
good luck Pasha.

Theo Void
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by Theo Void » Tue May 14, 2013 7:30 pm

I'm sticking w/ HDD until the SSD's come down (a lot!) in price!!
There's no way I'm paying that much for such a small drive! Fast boot time is cool and all and I'm sure it may be a little snappier in general but it's not worth it IMHO. WTF am I gonna w/ 256GB? My sample library is bigger than that!!

I'm not gonna lie, I would love nothing more than to have the fastest system possible and SSD's are definitely the future but I'm ok w/ my 1TB 5400. I got space for day nights and weekends!!

I don't really understand why SSD is so expensive. It's not exactly new and I remember years ago everyone was saying that they would drop dramatically in price. Hasn't happened yet, so I'm waiting.

Pasha
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by Pasha » Wed May 15, 2013 5:29 am

Theo Void wrote:I'm sticking w/ HDD until the SSD's come down (a lot!) in price!!
There's no way I'm paying that much for such a small drive! Fast boot time is cool and all and I'm sure it may be a little snappier in general but it's not worth it IMHO. WTF am I gonna w/ 256GB? My sample library is bigger than that!!

I'm not gonna lie, I would love nothing more than to have the fastest system possible and SSD's are definitely the future but I'm ok w/ my 1TB 5400. I got space for day nights and weekends!!

I don't really understand why SSD is so expensive. It's not exactly new and I remember years ago everyone was saying that they would drop dramatically in price. Hasn't happened yet, so I'm waiting.
So you have iMac or Mini with the stock drive right?
The tech behind Ssd is expensive but Apple is charging you more than it should...
In EU you can get the SSD for 283 euros... But on Amazon you get the 840 for 146...
With one Apple SSD I can almost buy two. The Apple tax they call it... And they are right.
Btw do you use some external drive alongside your 5400 to complete the setup?

Thx
Best
Pasha
Apple Desktop / Laptop
Live 9 Suite,Zebra 2.6,Guitar, Bass, VG99, JV1010 and some controllers
______________________________________
Music : http://alonetone.com/pasha

Pasha
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Re: SSD and recording. Good or Bad?

Post by Pasha » Wed May 15, 2013 5:34 am

H20nly wrote:ah... well a laptop, IMO, is the only time a 5400 rpm drive makes sense to me. i have a laptop with a 7200 but i get it that heat, not just sound, is the deciding factor. the mini setup is just trying to be cheap.

i have a 27" iMac with a 1TB 7200 rpm drive, 3.1 Ghz quad core and 20 GB of RAM. i can assure you, it's a beast.


256GB just seems like such a small drive for over $200 U.S. (these days anyway). i am not convinced that faster boot time is worth it when, in essence, most of the other actions will be roughly the same. don't get me wrong... a few seconds to boot is cool.

it's always hard to make these decisions and ultimately you have to decide what is best for you. there are no wrong answers or poor suggestions in this thread really... it's all a balancing act.
good luck Pasha.
Thanks for reply. I got your point. Is the 27 one of the 2012 models?
Do you find albeit initially a 27 too big to sit down and use for hours?
What is the best distance from the display and you? I have no experience with such big screens...

Best
Pasha
Apple Desktop / Laptop
Live 9 Suite,Zebra 2.6,Guitar, Bass, VG99, JV1010 and some controllers
______________________________________
Music : http://alonetone.com/pasha

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