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? append vs merge:  which is faster?

Question asked by KevinBellSLC on Sep 11, 2012
Latest reply on Sep 11, 2012 by csny490
Does anyone have any idea if it's faster to append vs merge? 

I have rasters that I'm converting to points and then sticking them into a fgdb.  Each raster is 1000 x 1000, so a million points.  The first append takes 5 minutes, but the time grows w/ each iteration.  Now on the 95th iteration each append is taking almost 20 minutes.  I stopped it, and did a compress, restarted, but no change in time.

I could rewrite the process to generate a fgdb for each million points, then merge later, but would that be faster? 

...maybe a long shot, but I figured I'd ask!