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Data Storage Hardware

WD, Intel, Corsair, Kingston, Plextor SSDs Collide 56

J. Dzhugashvili writes "New SSDs just keep coming out from all corners of the market, and keeping track of all of them isn't the easiest job in the world. Good thing SSD roundups pop up every once in a while. This time, Western Digital's recently launched SiliconEdge Blue solid-state drive has been compared against new entrants from Corsair, Kingston, and Plextor. The newcomers faced off against not just each other, but also Intel's famous X25-M G2, WD's new VelociRaptor VR200M mechanical hard drive, and a plain-old WD Caviar Black 2TB thrown in for good measure. Who came out on top? Priced at about the same level, the WD and Plextor drives each seem to have deal-breaking performance weaknesses. The Kingston drive is more affordable than the rest, but it yielded poor IOMeter results. In the end, the winner appeared to be Corsair's Nova V128, which had similar all-around performance as Intel's 160GB X25-M G2 but with a slightly lower capacity and a more attractive price." Thanks to that summary, you might not need to wade through all 10 of the pages into which the linked article's been split.
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WD, Intel, Corsair, Kingston, Plextor SSDs Collide

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  • Hmm... (Score:5, Funny)

    by the_one_wesp ( 1785252 ) on Thursday April 15, 2010 @02:26PM (#31860974)
    • Re:Hmm... (Score:5, Funny)

      by sznupi ( 719324 ) on Thursday April 15, 2010 @02:35PM (#31861076) Homepage

      So I'm here, staring blankly at your comment thinking "w...t...f...what''s..." for some time now; I can't be alone, seeing as it's almost 10 minutes since the story which always attracts debate showed up on /. and, well, no other comments here.

      Don't do that to us again.

    • by blair1q ( 305137 )


    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Abstrackt ( 609015 )


      Hello new D&D character name!

      • I think that's the name of the new nemesis for Superman. He has to get him to say his name backwards to be rid of him. He's the son of Mr. Mxyzptlk I think.

  • Good summary (Score:5, Insightful)

    by amicusNYCL ( 1538833 ) on Thursday April 15, 2010 @02:32PM (#31861036)

    Thanks for taking the time to write a decent summary.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mcgrew ( 92797 ) *

      Yes, especially the part warning us about the useless FA.

      • TFA isn't useless, simply long.

        Well, I guess it's useless if you just want a general statement of worth. If you actually care about details, then that's something else entirely.

        That's kind of like describing the first good ssd articles as saying: don't buy ssds with jmicron controllers, buy ssds with indilinux or intel controllers. It is factually correct, but not particularly interesting.

        • There is a problem with these Indilinx Barefoot controllers. They have this eerie UFO [] drawn on the chip. Any guesses what the hell is that supposed to mean?!

        • by mcgrew ( 92797 ) *

          "Spread over ten ad-laden pages" makes it useless no matter how detailed, because if I know that in advance I'm not going to click. I don't like funding greedy idiots.

  • These drives are all built in Taiwan and China. The same factory may produce drives for multiple vendors. The only difference between one company's drives and another is the label on the outside of the case.

    Add to that that the drives are manufactured in batches, so the quality differs from batch to batch. Also, a single vendor may use multiple factories, so drive quality may differ due to that as well.

    I wouldn't put any faith in any review. The only thing you need to know is the price and return policy. Ev

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Not exactly. The testers open the cases up and look at the manufacturers of the chips, at least. There was quite a bit of variety there, so I imagine that has a considerable effect on performance. We can relatively safely assume that SSD x.1 from batch y has at least similar components as SSD x.2 from batch z. Surely, the chips themselves may be made similarly in the same factory somewhere, but that seems to go against the differences the tester discovered.

    • by tilandal ( 1004811 ) on Thursday April 15, 2010 @02:56PM (#31861328)

      SSD's are not commodity products where one manufacturer simply slaps a label on an OEM product. There is actually a large amount of complexity in these drives with different storage controllers, caches and memory playing a large roll in performance and reliability.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by billcopc ( 196330 )

      Actually, after reading the summary and skimming through TFA, I'm inclined to say that whole review is bunk. I know for a fact that Kingston's SSDnow series are rebadged Intels, so they should perform identically. The main difference is Kingston's versions tend to be priced more aggressively.

      For my money, it's either OCZ Vertex, Intel X25 (or Kingston), or nothing at all. Having tried many of the off-brand ones and been burned, I stick to what I know works. A lot of the cheaper SSDs act like someone duc

      • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 15, 2010 @03:32PM (#31861880)

        I know for a fact that Kingston's SSDnow series are rebadged Intels, so they should perform identically.

        You are referring to this [], the kingston SSD of TFA is a SSDNow V+ series. That's not the same drive, my friend.

      • No not really. It only seems like Intel can be trusted here. AND what is not mentioned really is the elimination of latency when sorting big bunches of small files. Intel excels in real world perfomance.

      • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 15, 2010 @03:42PM (#31862072)

        Not in your case. Perhaps if you had more than skimmed through TFA you would have seen this on page two in TFC:

        Kingston Controller : Toshiba T6UG1XBG

        I know for a fact that the Intel SSD's do NOT use the Toshiba controller, that they in fact use their own Intel controller. My fact trumps your so-called 'fact' that you think is a fact and is not in fact a fact. Thus the Kingston drive should not perform identically to the Intel drive and in fact it does not.

        Next time read the details of TFA and then make an intelligent comment...oh wait, this is slashdot. Sorry.

        In my opinion The Tech Report does some of the best storage device performance reviews and this review is hardly 'bunk'.

        • by josath ( 460165 )
          Some of the Kingstons ARE rebadged Intel SSDs, but some are not. Depends on which model.
      • According to various sites out there (do your own digging) the SSDnow drives started out as rebadged Intel drives but they're now doing their own development.

      • I know for a fact that Kingston's SSDnow series are rebadged Intels, so they should perform identically.

        There are three separate generations of SSDnow SSDs. The originals used JMicron controllers - the next ones used Intel controllers (but with less lanes going to the NAND, or something), and the new ones are Toshiba controllers + Toshiba NAND, I believe.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 15, 2010 @02:42PM (#31861166)

    How many SSDs crash head-on? The real tests should be the side-impact and low-speed tests that replicate the real word.

  • Aha.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by comm2k ( 961394 ) on Thursday April 15, 2010 @02:52PM (#31861290)
    I guess all measurements were done at the Large Harddisk Collider?
  • by CreamyG31337 ( 1084693 ) on Thursday April 15, 2010 @03:02PM (#31861446)

    Better because it examines the performance of a new controller series from SandForce which beats the performance of these ones by using lossless compression to write less data. []

    (printed view has no ads and no margins and is one big long page...)

    • I'd be interested in anyone who is successfully using /lossy/ compression in this sort of application.

      Also, considering that it just reviews a completely different controller (which is interesting, no doubt about it), I might classify the article as 'different, but related' rather than 'better'.

      • I tried typing a more descriptive title but it doesn't allow very many characters.
        I figured most people here are interested in high performance rather than best value, and this article shows these new drives have better performance(*) than the Intel and Corsair Nova drives highly rated by the original article...
        So when I say it's a better article because it's reviewing things with better performance, maybe I'm not being fair. But I don't think many people would have a chance to read this article if I didn't

      • I'd be interested in anyone who is successfully using /lossy/ compression in this sort of application.

        I think we all would be, because it's impossible*

        *It would theoretically work if the drive could somehow identify, for example, files of type bmp, wav, and then apply the appropriate lossy compression algorithms to only that data. I doubt this would result in a speed increase however and would be expensive to implement in a controller. For most types of data, lossy compression doesn't work because if you lose information that turns out to be part of an exe, dll, txt file, it is generally catastrophic.

        • Agreed. I would not buy a lossy drive. I mean, where would the extra bits go?

          Hmm... it would probably go to the same place as the freed bits from the ram. You know, when you free memory or power cycle your computer, the bits have to go somewhere. That's why my case ends up with crazy nasty hairs and dust.

          I think the dust comes from the bus, and the hairs come from the ram, but I could be wrong.

          - Oh, and sorry about the troll. I forgot to include some indication of humor.

  • by amorsen ( 7485 ) <> on Thursday April 15, 2010 @03:04PM (#31861476)

    And still the Intel drive did reasonably well. Including being 4 times as fast in the 512b random write test...

    • Unfortunately, Intel still hasn't resolved the performance scaling issue we found in its latest storage controller drivers for the P55 chipset. As a result, The Twins are still running the Microsoft AHCI driver built into Windows 7.

      I'm not sure I would call that 'ignoring' the Intel driver.

      Overall, it seems that they have done a fairly thorough review - though my reading was by no means terribly in depth, as I'm not in the market right now.

    • Well, far as I can tell (and I've love to be corrected) Intel's drivers aren't for the SSD itself but for the chipset.

      That means that if you're using a non-Intel system, you'd be stuck with Microsoft's drivers anyway, and not see the performance posted in the review.

  • Far from complete! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    The review omitted perhaps the most exciting SSD available to date:

    Crucial C300 (6 Gbps SATA III) in capacities of 128GB and 256GB, at very competitive prices ($700/256GB on amazon).

  • So I see these benchmarks between expensive SSDs and cheaper harddrives, but I'm yet to see a benchmark between some more appropriate price configurations: SDDs versus mechanical harddrives in RAID with battery-backed NVRAM, where the random write penalty is much much lower. Does anyone know of any?


  • At least this collision won't result in bad sectors or bad motor.

  • I remember the price of these things go up ridiculously at some point(can someone explain the what & why), and its still no where near where it was? get it to 256gigs $100 and then we'll be on the right track.
    • My guess, after reading the article, is that because controller X can accommodate x memory chips you need controller Y to accommodate y > x chips, but controller Y probably costs a crap-ton more than controller X.

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