How much is SSD better than HDD in terms of CB performance

Hi All,

A 128gb SSD drive came with a PC which I bought second hand some time ago. A few months ago, when I was installed Cubase 7, there was not a lot of space left on it as it was littered with lots of unnecessary stuff, so I decided to install it on the much larger HDD that also came with the setup…

I now started wondering, whether I would benefit from clearing out the SSD and installing Cubase on it? Does anyone know whether there are any significant performance differences between Cubase loaded from SSD and HDD?

I am sorry this sounds like a dumb question, but I am not at all a computer expert…

Any comments will be appreciated.

Many thanks


assuming you’ve got a good drive with decent read/write speeds…

you’ll notice a speed improvement straight away in terms of using samples, jumping to different sections of your project [while audio is playing]

after a while you will get used to the speed and it will feel the norm, and certainly noticeable when you use a HDD system. thing that take 1 second feel like they take 3/4 on a non SSD system.


  1. be careful not to fill your SSD with lots of crap.
  2. try not to fill more than 75% of your drives capacity (95Gb ish…)
  3. be economical with what you put on your drive whilst working with it. [current cubase projects…etc]
  5. DONT tweak too many setting [disable fetch, disable indexing]

    ive been running C7 64bit on 64gb Kingston SSD with bare minimal plugins [NI massive, sylenth, few others] for about 3 months.

mine has been working well without a hitch…

hope this helps mate.

The thing your gaining from an SSD is Read and Write speed. Its far faster an ordinary disk based HD. Therefore you can do 2 things with it.

  1. Use as your system disk, (ie install Windows and Cubase on it) this will give you a much faster booting system and Cubase will start quicker.
  2. Use the SSD as an audio scratch disk this will increase the number of channels of audio you can happy play back from disk, however there is a problems with this, you’ll wear out the SSD (its only got so many read write operations). Also do you really need that many audio tracks a standard 72000 rpm disk is good enough for quite a number of tracks…

My preference, install Windows and Cubase on the SSD use the standard disk as the audio scratch disk, (exactly what my set up is at present) but make sure you standard drive is not a 56,000 rpm eco drive or something like that, your track count will suffer.

BTW if the standard disk is huge ie.1 tera, consider partitioning it use the first sector for audio as its nearer the spindle and stick samples and stuff on the rest of it.

Cheers Peter

I have SSD’s for Win 7 as the OS and a separate SSD for Cubase 7. My libraries are on a 2 TB high speed SATA connection to the motherboard as are the SSD’s Projects go to 2 different 500 GB drives. I have no benchmarks to compare things to but the first time Win 7 booted, I REALLY thought there was an actual noticeably decent difference. Within about 10 days of cycling and updates from adobe, java etc etc. and a host of other things I need to do, it does seem to have slowed a bit. That however has been the case with every new system I have ever had in the last 30 years. I honestly see no difference today many months later.

While there may be hard data you can find, MY INSTALL of Cubase runs very well either way. I don’t think IT starts any quicker and while it is up and running, I see it as the same.

BUT as mentioned, after a while you get used to it…I should go back a few steps and get a real surprise

if your only using the computer as a daw and not continually installing programs then the SSD will be a lot fast and will stay that way .Cubase 6 opens up lightening quick and it also cured the hanging on closing problem I had . :wink:
I have mine setup win win7-64 bit and three versions of Cubase (5,6,7) ,automap, studio one, wavelab and associated software with the uad cards and nothing else gets installed this drive at all so it’s life and speed will remain very good .
One thing I must add thou is make sure you check out the reviews on the latest decent SSD’s ( im sure you will anyway )as there are some crap ones out there ,just be choosy on the ones you use , I can recommend the Samsung 840pro ,very nice IMO


Wow, didn’t expect so many useful pieces of advice so quick! Thanks very much everyone; it looks like Steinberg has a really helpful community!

All your comments have given me a good indication, that it’s probably worth giving it a try and whacking Cubase onto the SSD (my OS is already on it).

I wonder if anyone happens to know a way of saving CB’s preferences, plugin directory and key shortcuts and transferring them onto a freshly installed Cubase? I would imagine that there would be some sort of file(s) with contain those pieces of information, but I haven’t got a clue which file it is, or where it is located…I’m on Windows 8 by the way (although I would imagine that there shouldn’t be much of a location difference between W7 & W8)

It would be great if anyone can share some light on this…

Thanks again


If your on Win 8 go to the main start window, right click, all apps, Ok in the humongous mess of a window Microsoft laughably call a start menu there is a shortcut to the Cubase preference folder.

Or If you cant find that its under C:\Users\YOUR USER NAME\AppData\Roaming\Steinberg\Cubase 7_64

This folder is generally hidden so you will need to change your folder properties to show hidden files and folders

Cheers Peter

Haaaa! “start menu” it is nothing but mess, I agree…

…Thanks very much for this mate! I know what to do now…



One more thing:

DO NOT DEFRAGMENT a SSD! It’s not a good thing to do as it shortens the drives’ life.
(One of many tech forums that say the same thing)

SSD’s are awsome drives. They’re fast, rugged and noise free. I’m getting a second 500GB SSD for my system next week. I’ll move all my Native Instruments user data there. Other than the noisy power supply (Which is also being replaced) My system is ultra-quiet.