Selecting an SSD drive for a new gaming PC is not rocket science but there are some factors that should be given some thought. You need to consider how much data you have today, how much you need for high performance applications, files, and backup.
In addition, here is a list of questions you should ask yourself when determining which and how many disk drives you should have for your new PC:
- How many M.2 NVMe slots does your motherboard have?
- Is your motherboard compatible with M.2 NVMe slots PCIe 3, 4, or 5?
- How many SATA connections can you have?
- Does your computer case have enough capacity to host multiple drives?
- How much data do you currently have?
- How much data do you think you will need over the next 5 years?
You also need to consider redundancy with RAID. RAID may keep your keep your PC running in the event of a hardware failure, but it also takes a hit on performance. RAID is not necessary for most consumer applications and desktop PC needs. The purpose of RAID is to keep redundancy and uptime of data availability.
Guessing data capacity requirements over the next five years is always a difficult exercise. Data will continue to grow due to a number of factors including 4k – 8k resolutions, applications becoming larger and more sophisticated, and operating systems expanding need for more resources. A good recommendation is to buy double the amount of capacity you currently need today.
Another good recommendation is to load the operating system and applications onto fast M.2 NVMe SSD drives, load files like pictures and video on a larger slower drive and back that up to a large slower drive.
For example, if you are currently storing 1TB of data today, you should buy a 2TB drive of slow hard disk drive (HDD) for data storage. Then you should buy another 2TB hard disk drive (HDD) for backup. Then you should buy fast disk M.2 NVMe SSD for the operating system and applications. If you plan on buying a new PC video game once a year, you should plan for that by adding 100GB of data capacity into your M.2 NVMe SSD per game.