One of the most vital inventions that has graced the world of computing is a solid-state drive, popularly known as an SSD. Thanks to these storage drives, people can enjoy lightweight and snappy computers.
If you purchased a portable computer anytime within the last few years, you’ll likely get and enjoy a laptop with an SSD as the primary boot drive. The boot devices you can find in prebuilt desktop computers mostly have SSDs now (the cheapest models, however, are an exception).
If you’re an on-the-go person looking for your next computer, you’ll want to go with an SSD laptop. Before you check out the laptop brands on the market, let’s look at what an SSD is, how it differs from the traditional hard disk drives or HDDs and how you could benefit from a laptop with an SSD in it.
What is an SSD?
An SSD is a new generation of storage devices present in recent computer models. Unlike a conventional mechanical hard disk, SSD laptops and computers use a memory chip called NAND flash memory.
Uses for Solid-State Drives
The adoption of SSDs began in high-performance tech areas, as well as in PC enthusiasts where the storage drives’ high throughput and low access times justified the higher expense. Recently, however, solid-state drives have become an accepted option (and sometimes even the default choice) in lower-cost mainstream desktop computers and laptops.
SSDs have uses in the following areas:
- Servers – Enterprise servers require solid-state drives to obtain quick reads and writes and serve their client computers properly.
- Gaming – Laptop and desktop gaming computers have pressed the limits of computing technology, justifying relatively costly equipment in exchange for stellar gaming performance and experience. This is applicable for storage media devices, as the modern games that PC users play write and load files constantly. If you’re going to use a laptop primarily for gaming purposes, you’ll want to make sure that the gaming laptop specs feature SSD.
- Business – Companies that are handling and processing large amounts of information, such as data analysis and programming environments, depend on SSDs to get the job done. These storage devices provide file-transfer speeds and access times needed by businesses.
Exploring the Various Types of SSDs
The SSD laptops you come across in computer stores may have different specs, as SSDs typically come in a few different sizes and shapes. These differences can affect a computer’s thermal output, speed and storage capabilities.
Here are a few common SSDs you’ll find in laptop and desktop computers:
- Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe) – A computer with this type of solid-state drive provides low latency and high bandwidth. PCIe SSDs, which people use to connect high-performance peripherals, like network and graphic cards, are suitable for users who require lightning-fast communication between the CPU and the SSD. The latest-generation PCIe 4.0 solid-state drives deliver write speeds of up to 4,400 megabytes per second (MBps) and read speeds of up to 5,000MBps.
- Serial Advanced Technology Attachment (SATA) III – Manufacturers designed this SSD specifically for storage. SATA solid-state drives can register speeds that reach 600MBps. Although the market is slowly phasing out this type of SSD in favor of better options, older computer models can still benefit from a SATA-based SSD upgrade. The drawback, however, is that this requires a SATA cable linking the motherboard to the drive — a potential clutter when you’re building a PC.
- M.2 – These small-sized SSDs are perfect for users looking to balance performance and space. These solid-state drives use a short pin collector and lay level with the PC’s motherboard. M.2 SSDs, however, can overheat quickly. This means that they need heat spreaders or heat sinks to remedy the issue and prevent damage.
- Non-Volatile Memory Express (NVMe) – What’s great about this solid-state drive is that it allows M.2 and PCIe SSDs to send and receive data to and from the host system. If you’re looking for a capable storage system, make this your top choice.
What are the Benefits of Buying a Laptop with an SSD?
Whether you’re browsing for a laptop in the mall or at the Facebook Marketplace, you’ll need an excellent storage device. As you boot up your PC, launch programs and switch between tasks, the CPU is waiting for data to load from the storage device. Even if your computer isn’t doing anything, your programs and operating system use virtual memory, also known as swap files, in the background.
The first storage device you should consider when shopping for a laptop is SSD.
Incredible Improvements in Computer Performance
Since a solid-state drive has zero moving parts, it can write and read data faster than a hard drive. The fast speed is noticeable when you power up your laptop or open an application. Instead of waiting for several seconds for Microsoft Word to launch, you only need to wait a couple of seconds. You don’t have to wait for the spinning blue circle and whisper “Let’s go, Windows. I don’t have all day.”
Durable Media Storage Device
Another benefit of a laptop with an SSD in it is the storage device’s durability. If you accidentally drop a notebook equipped with a traditional hard disk, you could damage the drive’s physical components.
On the other hand, the solid-state drive is unlikely to suffer any major damage if you drop your laptop carelessly. An SSD laptop, therefore, is a safer storage medium if you want to preserve important and valuable data.
Important Note: An SSD does not save you from not backing up your files to the cloud or a secondary storage device. You still need to back up your data if the other components of your laptop, such as the motherboard and the CPU, sustain damage and fail to work properly.
No Processing Noise
Hard drives will emit noise when they’re in use. They have mechanisms inside that make the read arm tick back and forth, as well as the drive platters spin. Faster hard drives tend to make more noise than their slower counterparts.
You won’t come across this problem when you choose an SSD for your next laptop. This storage device doesn’t have mechanical components.
If you see yourself carrying a computer wherever you go, you’ll benefit from an SSD laptop. Solid-state drives are lightweight compared to conventional hard disks. This development has enabled manufacturers to produce ultra-thin tablets and laptops and other mobile devices.
Low Failure Rates
Laptops with SSDs malfunction far less compared to those with hard-disk drives. Widespread material improvements, such as the error-correction code (ECC), contribute to the media device’s low failure rate.
Exploring the Laptop Brands with SSD
Take note, though, that an SSD alone doesn’t make the perfect computer. You also need to consider the brand for your PC.
To find the best SSD laptops on the market, check out these options:
Asus Zenbook Ultra-Slim
This nice, compact and lightweight personal computer comes with a 256GB solid-state drive. The Zenbook 13 features an 8th generation Intel i5 CPU, which complements the SSD. Unless you’re working with huge amounts of high-quality, this SSD laptop may be enough to fulfill your computer-related needs.
HP Spectre X360 15T
This fantastic computer is both a touchscreen tablet and a convertible SSD laptop. Apart from the 256GB to 2TB solid-state drive, you’ll enjoy the computer’s stellar features, including a 4K ultra-high-definition touchscreen display, 16GB of RAM, and an active stylus pen for writing and drawing.
Apple Macbook Pro
If you want to jump off the Microsoft bandwagon, you’ll want to take a look at the Apple Macbook Pro. This laptop offers a 256GB SSD along with other cool features, such as a Retina Display for a vivid viewing experience, a battery that lasts a whole day of work and lightweight components that you could easily carry anywhere.
Regardless of the SSD laptop you choose, you’ll definitely benefit from the lightning-fast computer performance to help you get your work done more efficiently (and play awesome games if the laptop has an excellent graphics card). So take the “solid-state plunge” by investing your hard-earned money in a computer with an SSD.