Hardware 2.0: Best graphics cards, hard drives, and solid state drives list (2012 edition)

Hardware 2.0: Best graphics cards, hard drives, and solid state drives list (2012 edition)

Summary: Here is the second installment of the final "Hardware 2.0" Best Kit Lists for 2012, looking at GPUs, hard drives, and solid state drives in the extreme, mainstream, and budget price categories.

TOPICS: Hardware

 |  Image 10 of 11

  • Thumbnail 1
  • Thumbnail 2
  • Thumbnail 3
  • Thumbnail 4
  • Thumbnail 5
  • Thumbnail 6
  • Thumbnail 7
  • Thumbnail 8
  • Thumbnail 9
  • Thumbnail 10
  • Thumbnail 11
  • Extreme SSD: Samsung 840 Pro 512GB

    At the heart of any good drive is performance, reliability, and capacity. Samsung's 840 Pro ticks all these boxes. The Samsung flash memory can deliver up to 100,000 IOPS random read speed and 540MB/s sequential read speed, while the Specially-engineered wear-leveling and garbage collection algorithms ensure high reliability.

    The Samsung 840 Pro also features business-friendly features, including AES 256-bit full disk encryption.

    Price: $760.

    Image source: Samsung.

  • Mainstream SSD: Crucial M4 CT256M4SSD2 2.5-inch 256GB

    Want to kit out your PC with an SSD without breaking the bank? The Crucial M4 CT256M4SSD2 2.5-inch 256GB is the drive for you. It offers blazing-fast sequential read speeds of up to 500 MB/s for less than $1 per GB.  

    A great drive for desktop or notebook systems.

    Price: $200.

    Image source: Crucial.

  • Budget SSD: OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-120G 2.5-inch 120GB

    Mid-range performance and storage capacity at a budget price. The capacity and price makes it an ideal drive to install Windows onto to get fast boot-up speeds.

    Price: $110.

    Image source: OCZ.

Topic: Hardware

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Related Stories


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • Just Need More DVI Connectors

    I do not care about gaming speeds. I care only about the number of monitors I can connect to it and still have reasonable response. Ideally 4. What about these types of cards?
    • From the images above

      it looks like 3 on the nVidia card, 2 (plus an HDMI) on the top-line AMD, 1 (plus an HDMI) on the mainstream card, & 1 (plus an HDMI & a VGA output) on the budget card.