HotHardware Holiday Gift Guide: PC Components

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Storage –


When it comes to storage technology innovation, though hard drive density has scaled exponentially as of late, the performance of SSDs has scaled even more amazingly.  To think only a couple of years ago we were limited by the average desktop hard drive at ~ 100MB/s of bandwidth.  Now top-of-the-line SSDs offer in excess of 500MB/s.  5X ain’t too shabby.  Of course if you consider PCI Express SSD cards hitting in excess of 1.4GB/s, over 10X is downright amazing.  Still, even through hell and high water (literally) hard drives offer the best value if you need bulk storage.  We suggest getting both of course.  Drop that OS on the SSD as a speedy boot drive and commission that 3TB bad boy spinning drive for the rest of your pack-rat needs.  OCZ, Samsung , WD and Seagate will keep you humming along well.  Here’s what we’d suggest.

Solid State Drives:
OCZ Vertex 3  - 120GB: $215, 240GB: $320
Samsung SSD 830 – 128GB:  $229, 256GB: $485
OCZ RevoDrive 3  and X2 PCIe SSD Card – 120GB - $399, 240GB - $575

Hard Drives:
Seagate Barracuda XT 3TB - $329
WD Caviar Black 750GB - $149


Power Supplies –


Shame on you!  You might make the naughty list if you didn’t think of robust, clean power for your build until now.  Rest easy though, we have suggestions that will redeem you.  This is an area where too much of a good thing can almost never hurt you.  You can go all out and budget enough power to afford you copious upgrade headroom or take the midline and just go for top quality power that meets your needs right now.  These days, we like what Corsair and OCZ have to offer at 750Watts to the light-dimming 1200Watt range.

Corsair Gold AX1200/1000/850/750 - $199 (750W) - $320 (1200W)
OCZ Silencer Mk II 750W - $149

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