If you read our SSD reviews on a regular basis you've heard about my six year old Lenovo T61p notebook. If not, then here's the story. The T61p has an amazing keyboard and a 1920x1200 pixel display that makes writing reviews on pleasant. The Core2 Quad processor is fast enough for video and picture editing and overkill for all of the tasks performed while writing reviews. The only area on this notebook that needs a performance boost is the storage system. The T61p shipped with a small mechanical hard drive and is limited to SATA 1.5, 150 MB/s speeds. With an SSD, the 150 MB/s throughput limit comes into play but with the high random access times on modern SSDs, you can't tell a difference between the T61p and a new Lenovo W530 in day to day use other than the lower resolution screen on the newer W530.
If a six year old notebook can feel as fast, if not faster than a brand new notebook just by installing a 100 Dollar SSD why would anyone want to spend 1200 Dollars on a new workstation class notebook? It seems we're not alone in this line of thinking. In a recent report by Jim Handy for Forbes online, Jim speculates that SSDs play a role in Intel's sagging processor sales.
In many corporate environments IT managers have found that they can postpone the costly process of refreshing the staff's PCs by a year or longer by simply replacing the hard drive (HDD) in employees' PCs with an SSD. Since the PC is between 2-3 years old at that point the HDD is usually pretty small (say 80GB) and an SSD of a similar capacity will cost around $100, which looks pretty good in comparison to a $600-1,000 price tag for a notebook PC.
What do you think? Are you ready to shell out for a new notebook or desktop build or does your SSD provide enough performance to prolong your upgrade cycle?