SSD Installations | Memory Upgrades

PC or Laptop Running Slow? A Solid State Drive and a RAM upgrade will boost performance by up to 70%. The difference between SSD Drive and traditional HDD’s (Hard Disk Drives) is that there are no moving parts. Instead of the internal spinning disk in HDD’s, Solid State storage use integrated circuits collectively acting as memory.  We can offer you a sameday  upgrade service for Apple Macs or PC at a fraction of what most computers shops normally charge.

Advantages of upgrading to an SSD.

  • Computer will appear to run up to 10 times faster.

  • Longer battery life in laptops due to low energy consumption.

  • They are resistant to physical shock/damage from accidental falls.

  • Faster boot up speeds.  Apps or programs launch faster.

  • Lightweight parts and solid construction suited for mobility.

  • Prices don’t Really burn your pocket. Cost of the has fallen.

  • Your file transfer, copy, and duplication speeds will be blazing fast.

  • Sameday service. Takes about 2 hour (Data transfer opertaions can take longer)


Laptop Performance Test

What will investing in a Solid State drive for your notebook actually give you in terms of performance improvement? We decided to do a field test and grabbed an aging MacBook Pro that our graphics designer uses to do work when he’s on the road. We used four scenarios to find out how much a RAM upgrade or a new SSD drive improves the system operating speed. We were really impressed by the results.

Our test system: “late 2008” MacBook Pro

The MacBook Pro (15 inch, late 2008) has been in use since 2008, and is ideal for an authentic real-life test, because we want to see how an upgrade affects a cloned system. Most speed tests we found use a fresh system. Many users, however, shy away from completely reinstalling their system software. So we wanted to see how much these users benefit from the upgrades.

The technical specifications for the test system:

  • 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
  • NVIDIA GeForce 9400M
  • 2GB 1066MHz DDR3 SDRAM
  • 250GB 5400 rpm HDD
  • Mac OS X 10.6.8 Snow Leopard

The 250GB HDD is 78% full. There are about 250,000 folders and 933,000 files on the drive.

The test setup

We compare four scenarios:

  • Status quo: the existing system unchanged (HDD and 2GB of RAM).
  • RAM upgrade: the system after upgrading the RAM to 8GB (keeping the 250GB HDD).
  • HDD to Solid State upgrade: the system with its original 2GB memory and a Samsung 840 Pro, 256GB, replacing the original 250GB HDD.
  • Full-on tuning: RAM upgrade to 8GB and installing a Samsung 840 Pro, 256GB.

In each scenario we measure performance through

  • booting the system
  • opening Photoshop CS5 Extended
  • opening a 1GB Photoshop image file (3,508 x 4,961 pixels, 300 dpi) containing 174 layers

What is a Solid State Drive in Simple Words?

A solid-state drive is a new, more modern device for storing information compared to mechanical (HDDs) counterparts. The term “Solid State” actually refers to using solid material to carry electrical signals between transistors instead of a passageway based on vacuum tubes, as was done in the past.

An SSD is a static device with no movable parts instead it is built with ICs (integrated circuits) to store the information inside an SSD. These storage devices are significantly faster than Hard Drives as your OS would boot it swiftly and load programs quicker.

In technical terms, SSD is a read-only memory device of a computer based on non-volatile memory chips controlled by a unique controller, totally dispensing with mechanical systems for its operation. As a result, units of this type end up being more economical in energy consumption; after all, they do not need to power supply/motors or similar components.

Also, SSDs are different in shape, and their internal components, but it works the same functions as our Hard drives. But if SSD and HDD have the same function, what’s the big difference between them? Let me show you:

SSD Components

To have a clearer view of ​​the device, for a start, let’s take a look at what components a solid-state drive consists of:

Components inside the SSD
  • Printed circuit board.
  • Flash memory is responsible for storing data (a type of non-volatile memory NAND is widely used).
  • The controller is a special microprocessor that connects the flash memory with the main computer bus, performs read/write operations (the operating speed depends on the firmware version).
  • The cache is used for the temporary storage of data while working with flash memory.
  • Connection interfaces a physical connector and the interface itself for the interaction of the SSD controller with the main system (SATA, PCI-Express).

How is an SSD Different from an HDD?

These are the metrics that differentiate an HDD from SSD:

  • Read/Write Data

The HDD has a mechanical arm to read and write data, and its operation takes place magnetically by using magnetic systems (a technology similar to those used in CDs and DVDs).

In contrast, the SSD is built around a semiconductor integrated circuit, is responsible for storage, and has flash memory (a technology similar to those used in memory cards and USB sticks). This makes SSDs essentially different from HDDs. This circuit also assists in caching, cleaning, storing, and restoring data.

  • Build:

The main difference from SSDs to HDDs is that the SSD has no moving parts, making it anti-vibrating and shock-proof, while conventional Hard Disk uses a magnetic disk that runs a certain amount of times per minute. This makes writing to these devices slower and more likely to damage as many fragile components wear out over time.

Because SSD works electrically, it can make reading and writing function faster and quieter, increasing the useful life of flash memory and managing the cache for reading and writing files.

  • Heat Resistance:

SSDs are more heat-resistant prevents happening overheating of computer/CPU than HDDs because of the components on HDD that heat quickly.

  • Processing Speed:

Since SSDs have no moving parts and in addition to making them more resistant than HDs, access to files and operations are done through electricity, representing a noteworthy decrease in the operating time of these functions compared to Hard Disk, (However there are some effective ways to speed up your hard drive such as defragmentation of hard disk).

That’s why solid-state drives can speed up the file transfer from 10x to 20x faster than HDD. The processing speed for SSD can go up to 3500 Mbps, while HDDs only limited up to 160 Mbps.

  • Weight:

SSDs are lightweight while HDDs are a bit heavier.

5 Types of SSDs (Solid State Drives) with Connectors

Now that you know what SSD is and how it differs from a hard drive, it’s time to know the types and formats of Solid State Drives. Today, there are five most common SSD form factors used in the commercial segment.

Let’s see what interfaces, connectors, form factors, and functionalities exist for SSDs in today’s market.

1. SATA SSD (SATA I, II, III)

SATA is the acronym for ‘Serial Advanced Technology Attachment’. Speaking of SSD types, SATA-type SSD is the most popular today and also one of the first SSD models to hit the market. It has a dimension of 2.5 inches, the same size as the conventional HD, and the same connector type.

SATA SSD

As a connection interface, SSD uses SATA (Serial ATA) to communicate data with the system. If you own a SATA SSD, I can almost guarantee that it can be used with any desktop or laptop you have now, even if that computer is ten years old.

SATA-based SSDs are also more suitable for older computers that lack newer SSD connector types and only have SATA connections. A great way to speed up an older laptop or desktop is by replacing the old spinning hard drive with the new solid drive, increasing the computer’s ability to read/write data, possibly five times.

SATA is a model that has been constantly changed and has reached three main versions: SATA I, SATA II, and SATA III. The transfer rate of all three versions is given below:

  • SATA 1.0: 5 Gb/s, 150 MB/s
  • SATA 2.0: 3 Gb/s, 300 MB/s
  • SATA 3.0: 6 Gb/s, 600 MB/s

For installing the SATA SSD (I, II, III) on your laptop or desktop, you need a 2.5 Inches Drive Bay and a SATA Cable.

SATA SSD and SATA cable connector

2. M.2 SATA SSD

The M.2 type of SSD is newer, and its format is lighter and smaller than the SATA type SSD. M.2 SSDs consist of a small printed circuit board with chips, somewhat reminiscent of a RAM bar shape.

M.2 SATA SSD

Most M.2 drives are 22mm in width and 80mm in length with NAND chips on both sides. M.2 SATA drives are simply more convenient, as they are installed in a slot on the motherboard and do not require wires, but on the motherboard of the PC or laptop must have an appropriate M.2 slot

Another advantage of the M.2 is its format flexibility, making this drive used on small laptops and desktops. These devices are very similar to small plaques, 22 mm wide but with different lengths: 22 mmx60 mm, 22 mmx80 mm, and 22 mmx110 mm. Thus, M.2 SSDs are specified as 2230, 2242, 2260, 2280, and 22110.

Here is a summary of the various most common M.2 formats and their respective sizes:

M.2 22110 : 110 x 22 mm
M.2 2280 : 80 x 22 mm (perhaps the most common)
M.2 2260 : 60 x 22 mm
M.2 2242 : 42 x 22 mm

Different sizes of M.2 SATA SSDs

And the speed of the M.2 SATA SSD is the same as the regular SATA SSD has, i.e. up to 600 MB/s.

Important Note: The M.2 slot on some motherboards of Desktops and laptops can accept either the SATA bus or the PCI-E bus, i.e. such devices have either M.2 SATA slot or M.2 PCI-E slot. But on separate motherboards, M.2 slots can serve only one of them; either M.2 SATA mode or M.2 PCI-E mode. That’s is why you need to find out; is your computer is compatible or not for M.2 SATA SSDs.

And, accordingly, you can connect either M.2 SATA drives or M.2 PCI-E drives to such motherboards.

The connectivity of M.2 type SSDs is more complicated, but it can be done in 3 ways, depending on the type of socket on the motherboard.

The M.2 interface can have three key variations:

  • Switch B
  • Switch M
  • Switch B&M

If you purchase an M.2 SATA (B&M) SSD and the motherboard supports M.2 PCI-Express (B&M), the SSD will not work! The M.2 slot keys on the motherboard and laptop must match the M.2 SATA slot as well as the size of the drive.