Solid State HD

Hi all,

Just want to share a little experience with Solid State hard-drives.
I’ve been running a fairly old DAW with two standard HDs for some time. However, for Christmas, I’ve jumped to a new OCZ Agility 3, 120Gb solid-state HD. Onto this I’ve loaded Windows 7 Professional, Cubase 6, HALion 4 and the Halion Symphonic Orchestra VST SIS. In total (with a few other programs), it comes to around 40Gb of HD space.

The OCZ Agility was a gamble as my mobo is SATA II compliant, and not the latest SATA III, but the HD said it was backwards compatible. Nonetheless, I was worried that this up-to-date drive would not work on a 5 year old mobo. Luckily it did. W7 loaded up very quickly, and after I got all of my Steinberg software onto it, it works very well. Possibly better than I expected, to be honest.

Cubase boots-up very quickly, and the time taken for the HALion samples to load up is very impressive compared to my old HD. Some big instruments could easily take up to 10 seconds. Now, they load inside 2 secs or less.

It was a great move and I recommend it, especially if you go for a 60Gb SSD for Windows and Progs, and then maybe have another 60Gb drive solely for Steinberg programs. :smiley:

Cheers, and I wish you all a Happy New Year!


You’d have been better served adding it as a second disk and just streaming samples from it.

Depends on the usage profile of the DAW and size of the sample libraries:

  • If your can fit your sample libraries to the same SSD as OS and apps, it’s reasonable to put them into one SSD.
  • If you use very few sample libraries and your audio/sample drive isn’t your bottleneck, it’s better to have SSD as your system/apps disk.
  • If you’re hitting max performance of your audio drive and/or you use huge sample libraries, it’s better to use SSD as audio and/or sample drive.

I’m not sure I agree with you there at all.
Putting your OS onto a SSD is the first step to take in my opinion. Your whole system comes alive, relative to an old, mechanical HD. If you can stream samples from an SSD too and you can afford your entire sample collection to be saved on SSDs then great, but the first step to take is to get your OS and DAW software running on a fast SSD.

There is also no need to seperate samples from OS, as was recommended with a mechanical drive years ago. The access time and read/write speeds are so much quicker, the drive and HD interface can handle it. Streaming samples from an SSD with the OS on poses no major draw backs from what I have seen so far, but I’ve had very limited experience of it in my system, so I guess there could be an issue with very large sized samples being streamed.

I’ll post back again if I see any issues.



There again, my ideal set-up would be to have a OCZ Vertex 3 as a System/Apps drive (240Gb maybe!!), and then one of these as my sample drive - 1Tb drive with super-fast SSD performance:

But at £395 / (~$600), it isn’t cheap!!

I use a 240GB SSD on my MacPro and it has about 80GB left with apps, OSX, and sample libraries. I love it. Boots super fast and the response to my Spectrasonics VSTi’s is stunning. I have NEVER had issues with HD’s for tracking, 7200’s work just fine, I have a couple Raptors 10k’s and I really never saw anything that made that much difference. I have tracked 28 minute projects with 100+ tracks with no issues ever.

Using the SSD as a boot drive is my preferred setup too.