8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars
Best upgrade I ever bought., 15 Sep 2011
I bought a 128GB Crucial M4 to help my ailing PC stay alive that bit longer...and I'm very glad I did.
For a long while I kept hoping the desktop PC would die so my justification for buying a new machine would come around, alas it didn't. I was getting more and more frustrated by the slow speed of the machine as a whole (Intel C2D @ 2.4Ghz, 6GB RAM, OS drive: 2x250GB WD drives @7200RPM in a striped RAID array and 2 x 1TB storage drives)...so I figured I'd try out these SSDs that people keep raving about.
I did some disk performance analysis before the upgrade. Crystal Disk Mark showed me getting sequential read speeds of 130MB/s and write speeds of 90MB/s - ish. This was on my RAID0 array on a SATAII connection.
I then put in the SSD and am getting 280MB/s read and 190MB/s writes! All still on the SATAII connection. It's made a massive difference to the PC speed as a whole, with the boot to a usable desktop from a cold start in under 30 seconds! Seek times are so low that opening any app is almost instantaneous.
I was so impressed with the performance that I ordered another one. This time to put into my 15" Macbook Pro (Early 2011, Core i7 @2Ghz). Installation was pretty daunting at first - but iFixit's guide was clear and concise and I was soon using the new SSD which I cloned from my existing drive. Given that the MBP has a SATAIII connection I knew it would be a bit quicker for read speeds...but I didn't realise it would almost double! I get 510MB/s sequential read speeds, write speeds are the same. Boot up is around 15-20 seconds and loading any apps etc. is very, very quick.
TRIM support needs to be manually enabled in Lion (Google for it) - since Apple are currently only supporting selected SSDs, but it's easy to get around.
NOTE: Please make sure you update to the latest Crucial firmware before installing anything (at the time of writing it's 009). It's easy to do, simply download the ISO image from their site and burn to a CD (or make a bootable USB device if you know how). Then disconnect all other SATA drives and boot from the CD/USB drive and follow the on-screen instructions.
I know they're not huge in terms of space, but I have a 4TB NAS box and plenty of little USB drives for that stuff. All I wanted was a fast machine (or two) and now I have them! A very worth purchase.