Martin wants to put a solid state drive in his 27" iMac. Leo says that adding an SSD is a great thing to do, but it's not easy with an iMac. Leo had his engineers do it, because he needed a special suction cup to lift the glass screen off to take out the hard drive and replace it. It's doable, but it's not for the faint of heart. Leo recommends going to iFixIt.com and he can find a special step by step, along with the parts and tools required.
Todd just got a new iMac, and he says it takes a full minute to start up. Leo says that since he now has 8GB of RAM, it takes longer for the computer to test that RAM on startup. 1 minute is not an awful amount of time for a computer to boot up, and if he wants a faster start up time, he'd have to get a solid state drive.
Alan is wondering if his iPad 2 could wear out. Leo says only if he bangs it around to physically damage it. Alan says it doesn't work as fast as it used to, though. Leo says that the one flaw of solid state memory is that it gets slower over time. So it may be worthwhile to refresh it from time to time. It's the same advice with mobile devices as with computers. About once a year, it's a good idea to backup your data and then wipe and refresh the device. It won't get it back to 100% of the original speed, but it should get most of the way.
Roger has been working with developers on a social media platform through Drupal and he needs a new laptop to keep up with the workload. Roger says he needs something powerful. Leo says that processors have gotten so fast now, that pretty much any new laptop will be fast enough for just about anything he needs to do on the web. The issue is more about the storage, RAM, laptop size, battery life, quality of keyboard and trackpad, Windows or Mac, etc. If he gets a Core i5 processor, there's nothing on the web he can't run very fast.
Scott does music recording on his MacBook Pro, but some of his recordings are getting a "disk too slow" error. Leo says that has to do with how many tracks he's recording, and an SSD would definitely fix that. Scott should check out the Blackmagic Speed Disk Tester in the Mac App Store. It'll test the speed of his hard drive and it will tell him if his hard drive is fast enough for the recording he's doing.
Jim had one of the original iMacs and he heard a 'pop' and the display died. A Cinema display he had connected also went down. So he has to buy a new computer. He's wondering what the difference is between th i5 and i7 processor. Leo says about $300. They're very similar.
The i7 does multithreading, which is great for video editing. Multithreading allows each core to do two things at once. He can check out this site for more in depth comparisons - https://www.cpubenchmark.net/.
Dave upgraded his MacBook Pro with a Samsung SSD and it was running TRIM. But OS X Yosemite has a new security requirement called Kext Signing, and it only allows drivers that are approved by Apple. Leo says he can download TRIM Enabler, but he does have to disable kext signing to use it. And that's dangerous because it could open the door for malware. TRIM is built into Yosemite, but it only works with Apple Hardware.
Leo says since most MacBook Pros come with SSDs now, it's important to turn on drive encryption right away. If he doesn't encrypt the drive from day one, some data could end up unencrypted on that drive. Turn on encryption before putting private data on it. The Mac comes with something called File Vault for encryption, which he can access right from the Mac's System Preferences. He just has to turn it on, and he won't even know it's running. The only reason to do this is in the event that his computer was stolen.
Hybrid drives combine both Solid State Drives and Hard Disk Drives. Since SSDs cost more per gigabyte, it's expensive to buy an SSD big enough to hold everything. So the idea behind hybrid drives is that it would combine the speed benefit of SSD with the capacity benefits of the traditional, spinning drive. It puts both drives in one enclosure and uses smart software to determine what data should go on the SSD and what should go on the hard drive.
Since hard drives have become a mature technology, the differences between them are more trivial. However, there are several models that are best for certain tasks. Depending on what the drive will be used for, rotation speed, reliability, storage capacity, and power consumption, may be important factors. But the most dramatic differences are between Hard Disk Drives and the newer Solid State Drives.