How important are fast drives (sample libraries)

First I should point out that I am no “power user”. I do not use CB professionally so speed and workflow is not essential. Although, I do enjoy having a fast and nicely configured computer.

My Mobo has 2 - M.2 slots. One is being used as my OS and Programs drive. I have the ability to install another NVMe M.2 PCIe drive directly on my Mobo. I am debating whether to purchase one in order to assist with the loading of program libraries like Spitfire, VSL, Iconica etc (I’m still debating on which mfr to go with). Since some of these libraries can be 400 - 900gb I was considering the above configuration in order to help reduce loading times.

Ryzen 7 3700x
32 gig Ram
1 - M.2 NVMe 1tb OS
1 - SATA 1tb for documents, pics, downloads etc

I am also looking at possibly upping my ram to 64gb. Prices are dropping fast and the above upgrade (M.2 drive) seems like a no-brainer.

Except for the largest projects, moving to 64GB of RAM is unlikely to make a difference. Load your largest project to date and check (TaskManager) for how much RAM you still have left (if any?) before wasting money on more RAM.

About SSD however, like you said it’s a no-brainer… go for it! You won’t believe the speed difference from your SATA drive.
You don’t need however the crazy-fast ($$) models, I recommend any NVMe from Samsung, 1TB or 2TB.

Note also that having the libraries on SSD also makes less critical to have more RAM. But if the money is burning your pockets… then sure you can consider 64GB, but make sure you do it right so not to sacrifice your PC stability or speed - Read your mobo manual and don’t cheap out on no-name brands. (go for Samsung, Micron, Crucial, etc.)

Hi Easto, I can only tell you what worked for me. I have a Lenovo Y520 Laptop, about 4 years old. It had an M.2 C-drive, 128gb, and a SATA 1tb D-drive. It has one of the fastest Intel chips from four years ago. And I’ve upgraded the memory to 32GB (the max on this machine).

I replaced the C drive with an m.2 1TB drive. I bought the cheapest one I found, so I don’t know if it’s the fastest. I split it into a C drive of 256 GB and another drive partition (F) of 750GB.

I am running Spitfire BBC Orchestra Pro on this rig, with the samples on the F drive partition (inside my laptop). I also have an external SSD that is attached via USB C that contains all of my other sample libraries (Komplete, and the Cubase samples, among others).

It takes a while for all the samples to load into main memory, but for the stuff I’ve been doing, it works. If I could upgrade to 64GB ram, I would, but I can’t. Next machine will be at least 128!

My projects use a lot of instrument tracks from the Spitfire BBC SO library, but I do not layer other orchestral sample libraries in to fill out or supplement the BBC library (as I’ve seen that some film score composers do). I don’t think I could do that on this machine. But, I do have access to a full orchestra, and I’m pretty satisfied. And it’s a four-year-old laptop. I sometimes use 8Dio libraries to add solo instruments, as well as Kontakt instruments that I like (Grandeur, and others).

The machine also has a relatively fast graphics processor for the time from Nvidia. I don’t know if that really matters that much. It was a gaming spec laptop from four years ago.

Here’s a sample of what I could do with this rig:

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