dg27
3 Zinc

Will installing a PCIe SATA III card improve SSD performance?

Hoping to settle a question that came up on another forum.

I have a Dell Studio XPS 9100. The basic specs appear below.

I am a user of Pro Tools 11.3, a professional-level  DAW.

Another Pro Tools user suggested that I should install a PCIe SATA III 6.0 GB card and connect my boot drive to that, to improve performance over the motherboard's SATA II.

Some of what I have read about this indicates that the performance improvement will be minimal at best and that speeds and performance could actually drop.

True or false?

I read this, from a StarTech technical support person:

Generally speaking, PCIe based controllers will always be a little slower as there is quite a bit more overhead required to run them and the data is passing through a different BUS. Also other devices like ‎PMVideo cards and sound cards and other controllers can slow down the PCIe Bus 6Gbps is a theoretical max. In reality the speed is quite a bit lower.

Again, true or false?

Thanks for any input anyone can provide.

*****

Operating System
    Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1
CPU
    Intel Core i7 960 @ 3.20GHz
  
RAM
    24.0GB Triple-Channel DDR3 @ 666MHz (9-9-9-24)
Motherboard
    Dell Inc. 05DN3X (CPU 1)
Graphics
    2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 (EVGA)  

Samsung SSD 840 PRO Series
    Used Transfer Mode    SATA II 3.0Gb/s
    Interface    SATA
    Capacity    476 GB

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6 Replies
dg27
3 Zinc

RE: Will installing a PCIe SATA III card improve SSD performance?

I'm really surprised that apparently no one ever encountered this issue.

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8 Krypton

RE: Will installing a PCIe SATA III card improve SSD performance?

It depends upon your boot device.  If it's a hard drive, you'll see absolutely no difference - no single spinning hard drive of any type can begin to deliver 3G/s (i.e., SATA 3G, your current system limit). 

If you're installing a SATA SSD, then upgrading to a PCIe 6G/s card will help - though be careful in buying, since not all of these will allow the drive to be used as a boot device.

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dg27
3 Zinc

RE: Will installing a PCIe SATA III card improve SSD performance?

As noted above, the boot device is already an SSD and has been for quite some time:

Samsung SSD 840 PRO Series
    Used Transfer Mode    SATA II 3.0Gb/s
    Interface    SATA
    Capacity    476 GB

I already have a StarTech PCI-E card installed https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00952N2DQ/ref=od_aui_detailpages00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

which has two internal and two external ports. I bought that strictly to connect desktop data drives (WD CB 4 TBs) that are in external cases. I wanted to use SATA rather than USB. On this card you can use a maximum of two ports (any combination of internal/external).

So the question is whether moving the SSD boot to one of the internal SATA III ports instead of the motherboard's SATA II would make much difference.

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Moderator
Moderator

RE: Will installing a PCIe SATA III card improve SSD performance?

dg27,

It may improve performance a bit for you. I cannot say if you will see a huge performance boost.

You can click the link below to read various opinions.

http://dell.to/2hZ26wZ


PCIe SATA III 6.0 INFO

http://dell.to/2hYSUsI.

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dg27
3 Zinc

RE: Will installing a PCIe SATA III card improve SSD performance?

Thanks for the reply, Jesse. I did in fact run similar searches (and saw some of these opinions previously). But at best it seems that the improvement might be marginal at best.


My system is very stable, which is why I tend not to want to rock the boat.

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Highlighted
xtchall
1 Nickel

RE: Will installing a PCIe SATA III card improve SSD performance?

I'm confused as to why you don't check it out for yourself?

Pull your SATA 3 SSD boot drive off your SATA 2 bus and plug it into your PCIe SATA 3 adapter.

Reason I ask, I'm considering purchase of PCIe SATA 3 adapter to do exactly the same.

Hope to hear from you.

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