Computers & Electronics

Acer ssd upgrade confusion

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[OP]
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Dec 20, 2009
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Acer ssd upgrade confusion

In early April I was forced to buy my son a laptop when his died, and pickings were very slim. The best I could find was the Costco Acer A515-52G-59TN for $699. Unfortunately, it only has a 128gb ssd. What appears to be easiest and most cost effective is to add a 500gb 7mm ssd in the empty hdd space. Or I could purchase a 500gb m.2 ssd to replace the 128gb ssd, but then I would not have to extra storage space unless I bought another 500gb ssd. I know the m.2 would be faster--the Acer has a 2gb GeForce® MX250 and he does light steam games--but would he even notice if he played them from the storage sata ssd?

If I do the m.2 route I see that via Acer Care on the laptop I can reinstall Windows without cloning software: Your text to link here...
Also, is it worth putting in another 8gb ram stick while I have it open, or is 8gb sufficient in this setup?

Actually, what worries me most is prying off the entire back of the computer to get to the parts. My previous computers had direct access to ram and hdd. I'm worried I will break a snap and void the warranty. Upgrading itself does not void it.
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Aug 22, 2006
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Philbert wrote: In early April I was forced to buy my son a laptop when his died, and pickings were very slim. The best I could find was the Costco Acer A515-52G-59TN for $699. Unfortunately, it only has a 128gb ssd. What appears to be easiest and most cost effective is to add a 500gb 7mm ssd in the empty hdd space. Or I could purchase a 500gb m.2 ssd to replace the 128gb ssd, but then I would not have to extra storage space unless I bought another 500gb ssd. I know the m.2 would be faster--the Acer has a 2gb GeForce® MX250 and he does light steam games--but would he even notice if he played them from the storage sata ssd?
I just did a A515-55-39VN for a buddy of mine.
Everything is pretty readily accessible.

You're not limited to a 500GB NVMe drive. You could stuff a 1TB drive in there. Or even a 2TB drive. But that's getting a hair expensive.

As for NVMe vs storage, based on the GPU alone, I don't think it'll make that much of a difference.
Besides.... loading fast is kind of overrated. All you do is wander around shooting things until everyone else with a hard drive finishes loading anyways.
If I do the m.2 route I see that via Acer Care on the laptop I can reinstall Windows without cloning software: Your text to link here...
Assuming your kid has nothing useful installed (or can't be reinstalled) you can just install fresh.
But you could just clone it and adjust the partition size.

Also, is it worth putting in another 8gb ram stick while I have it open, or is 8gb sufficient in this setup?
Sure. RAM is cheap. The cheapest way would be to pop it open and match the part number that's currently in there.
Actually, what worries me most is prying off the entire back of the computer to get to the parts. My previous computers had direct access to ram and hdd. I'm worried I will break a snap and void the warranty. Upgrading itself does not void it.
It was pretty easy. Go slow along the clips and you'll be fine.
Do you not have anything else to do rather than argue with strangers on the internet
Nope. That's why I'm on the internet arguing with strangers. If I had anything better to do I'd probably be doing it.
[OP]
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Dec 20, 2009
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death_hawk wrote: I just did a A515-55-39VN for a buddy of mine.
Everything is pretty readily accessible.

You're not limited to a 500GB NVMe drive. You could stuff a 1TB drive in there. Or even a 2TB drive. But that's getting a hair expensive.

As for NVMe vs storage, based on the GPU alone, I don't think it'll make that much of a difference.
Besides.... loading fast is kind of overrated. All you do is wander around shooting things until everyone else with a hard drive finishes loading anyways.


Assuming your kid has nothing useful installed (or can't be reinstalled) you can just install fresh.
But you could just clone it and adjust the partition size.



Sure. RAM is cheap. The cheapest way would be to pop it open and match the part number that's currently in there.



It was pretty easy. Go slow along the clips and you'll be fine.
I'm tempted simply to add the extra sata drive, as $100 is my limit for an ssd. He has nothing on the ssd except iTunes so a clean install is fine, but this is just an ok computer. It is sturdy and has a nice screen , but the keyboard is cramped and the fan is loud and frequent--not even close the my wife's Asus S15 efficiency. My son will go to university in 2 yrs and will probably want something better by then.
Why do I need to look at the ram part number? Won't any 8gb DDR4 2666 ram work?
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Aug 22, 2006
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Philbert wrote: I'm tempted simply to add the extra sata drive, as $100 is my limit for an ssd.
If he wants space, a hard drive is also an option. My friend wanted space over spending money so I put in a 2TB hard drive.
Why do I need to look at the ram part number? Won't any 8gb DDR4 2666 ram work?
I like matching.
It'd work okay if you don't though.
Do you not have anything else to do rather than argue with strangers on the internet
Nope. That's why I'm on the internet arguing with strangers. If I had anything better to do I'd probably be doing it.
[OP]
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Dec 20, 2009
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death_hawk wrote: If he wants space, a hard drive is also an option. My friend wanted space over spending money so I put in a 2TB hard drive.
I like matching.
It'd work okay if you don't though.
School is now on google docs. He only needs space for steam games, so 500 gb ssd should be sufficient.

I see your point, but doesn't that assume that you can locate the same brand/part as Acer? Would you not end up ordering it from Acer or Amazon at a premium?
Deal Expert
Feb 29, 2008
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I picked up a 500gb 860 Evo from Newegg last week. That would be an excellent choice. 94$ with coupon.

Before you clone, check the make and model of the nvme ssd already inside. If it's faster than your 2.5", just leave the OS where it is and use the new drive as additional storage.
[OP]
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Dec 20, 2009
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mr_raider wrote: I picked up a 500gb 860 Evo from Newegg last week. That would be an excellent choice. 94$ with coupon.

Before you clone, check the make and model of the nvme ssd already inside. If it's faster than your 2.5", just leave the OS where it is and use the new drive as additional storage.
This Samsung is now $99 at London Drugs so I would pick it up there, although since it is just for storage maybe the $69 Adata, $86 Crucial MX500, or $89 WD Blue from ME is fine. LD has an awesome return policy though.
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Aug 22, 2006
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Philbert wrote: I see your point, but doesn't that assume that you can locate the same brand/part as Acer? Would you not end up ordering it from Acer or Amazon at a premium?
I usually end up having to order it on eBay.
What's more likely for me is usually ordering a new 2 stick kit and ordering the matching stick. This way I can just keep "rotating" mismatched RAM.
But this isn't really practical for someone buying only one notebook.

8GB is probably fine for now anyways so it's not like you need to next day air a new stick.
It's also pretty easy to install so it's not like you have to wait for your RAM to do the SSD.
Do you not have anything else to do rather than argue with strangers on the internet
Nope. That's why I'm on the internet arguing with strangers. If I had anything better to do I'd probably be doing it.
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Not sure what games your kid likes to play but an old (7 y.o.) Acer Aspire (i5-3230 CPU) with its stock 8 GB RAM and integrated graphics runs Civ V and Civ VI almost as well as a (7 y.o.) Xeon workstation with 16 GB.
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death_hawk wrote: If he wants space, a hard drive is also an option. My friend wanted space over spending money so I put in a 2TB hard drive.
That sounds like me. Except I wouldn't buy an Acer and I wouldn't need you to do it :D .

People seem to be memorized by SSDs.
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Aug 22, 2006
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rabbit wrote: People seem to be memorized by SSDs.
Yeah I love SSDs as much as the next person but until they start selling 8+TB drives for $200 or less I'm not interested.
Besides... with enough hard drives I can beat the raw transfer speed of most SSDs. I still get murdered on IOPS though.
Do you not have anything else to do rather than argue with strangers on the internet
Nope. That's why I'm on the internet arguing with strangers. If I had anything better to do I'd probably be doing it.
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I just think that if you've already got an SSD in there, do you really need another one? (And I'm sure some people do, but for most cases ...)

And as for an NVMe in a notebook (versus M.2 SATA), I would worry about heat dissipation.

The best isn't always the best for all situations.
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I ordered an $89 Samsung Evo Sata 500gb from Staples. I will leave the ram alone for now. He’s playing games through a WD Elements, which is not very convenient or portable so the Samsung should do the trick. I will leave the 128gb m.2 as the operating system.
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Do I need to do anything to the ssd once installed if just for storage? Does it need to be formatted, and if so, which format?
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You have to partition it, format it, and assign it a drive letter. Win10 might prompt you to do all that automatically.

I would recommend NTFS, since it's pretty much only going to be used in a Windows environment.

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