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WD, Intel, Corsair, Kingston, Plextor SSDs Collide

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the will-it-collide dept.

Data Storage 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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Hmm... (5, Funny)

the_one_wesp (1785252) | more than 4 years ago | (#31860974)

Westelsairkingxtor!

Re:Hmm... (4, Funny)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861076)

So I'm here, staring blankly at your comment thinking "w...t...f...what's...it'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.

Re:Hmm... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861158)

Err seriously?

WEStern digital, inTEL, corSAIR, KINGston, pleXTOR.

Was it really not instantly obvious?

Re:Hmm... (2)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#31869900)

It really frightens me, as far as future of humanity goes, that there are people who consider it likely I didn't notice it's such a simple abbreviation (those people don't frighten me themselves of course, more the causes, types of people they deal with). But the mere mechanism of creating it is not what prompted my comment above...

Re:Hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31870452)

The people I deal with are those from North America and yes, they scare me too with their stupidity.

Re:Hmm... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861202)

Wes[tern digital][In]tel[Cor]sair[|]king[ston][Plex]tor. Probably due to the fact that the summary says that all drives are good: it depend on which factors are more important for you.

And please turn in your geek card for not immediately recognizing this abbreviation.

Re:Hmm... (2)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#31869910)

More like somebody needs to turn in his humour card...

Re:Hmm... (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861620)

slashfarkoverload

Re:Hmm... (2, Funny)

Abstrackt (609015) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861712)

Westelsairkingxtor!

Hello new D&D character name!

Re:Hmm... (1)

nextekcarl (1402899) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861930)

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.

Re:Hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31863696)

Any relation to Mr. Eyjafjallajokull?

Good summary (5, Insightful)

amicusNYCL (1538833) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861036)

Thanks for taking the time to write a decent summary.

Re:Good summary (2, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861680)

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

Re:Good summary (1)

quercus.aeternam (1174283) | more than 4 years ago | (#31862610)

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.

Re:Good summary (1)

Kensai7 (1005287) | more than 4 years ago | (#31864990)

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

Re:Good summary (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 4 years ago | (#31872262)

"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.

Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (3, Interesting)

BadAnalogyGuy (945258) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861052)

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. Everything else is too variable to determine without a very broad review of multiple drives from a series of different batches.

Re:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861128)

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.

Re:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861168)

The only difference between one company's drives and another is the label on the outside of the case.

The benchmarks in TFA say otherwise.

Re:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (4, Interesting)

tilandal (1004811) | more than 4 years ago | (#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:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31866834)

Ooooh, a large roll? The kind with sesame seeds on it? I love those!

Re:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (2, Interesting)

billcopc (196330) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861440)

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 duct-taped a SATA bridge to a USB flash drive: high latency, short lifespan, writes 4 times slower than reads... It's all about the controller chip's performance, which all but a handful suck ass.

Re:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861880)

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

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

I'm not your friend, guy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31871210)

eom

Re:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (1)

EvilBudMan (588716) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861902)

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.

Re:Can we really trust comments on reviews? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#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'.

Re:Can we really trust comments on reviews? (1)

josath (460165) | more than 4 years ago | (#31864104)

Some of the Kingstons ARE rebadged Intel SSDs, but some are not. Depends on which model.

Re:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31862196)

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.

i've read several comparisons at at least 3 different websites and the SSDNow+ always had a *way* higher sustained write performance, and always a *way* lower random read/write performance then the intel G2.

so i very much doubt they are identical and i'm afraid you have to give a better source then "i know for a fact" for me to believe you.
++ c.

ssdnow no longer rebadged intel (1)

Chirs (87576) | more than 4 years ago | (#31862268)

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.

Re:Can we really trust reviews of SSDs? (1)

BikeHelmet (1437881) | more than 4 years ago | (#31866056)

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.

"Attractive Price"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861082)

I guess it's relative. Right now the best price I found for the Corsair Nova V128 is $329.99. That's about four times the cost of a standard HDD of similar size.

Re:"Attractive Price"? (3, Insightful)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861308)

True.. (That price seems to be from TigerDirect, BTW.. they're hit or miss in my experience, as far as order fulfillment, shipping times, and resale of defective items.) Still might be worthwhile to use as your "C:" or /boot & /bin drive, with the OS, games, apps, etc. I'm considering buying an SSD for this very purpose, although I may wait until prices are closer to the $300 mark for 500GB.. so 18 months or less, with any luck.

Content where access time and bandwidth isn't as critical to performance, can still go on much cheaper mechanical drives until SSD prices become competitive for size. Hard drives aren't the bottleneck for either downloading or playback of movies, which are limited by my internet connection and my desire to watch in real time, respectively.

Hopefully we'll see a congruence in prices between SSDs and magnetic storage in the near future, though we're clearly not there yet.

Re:"Attractive Price"? (4, Informative)

billcopc (196330) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861590)

They become attractive once you see the difference they make in a desktop PC. I bought my first SSD around 6 months ago, now I swear by them. If you're a heavy multitasker, a fast SSD can make a huge difference by eliminating seek times. I'm actually tempted to replace my boss' boot drive with an SSD, just to see if he notices - and by "notice" I mean "stop bitching about his gaming-grade PC being slow".

It is a sizeable chunk of change right now, considering a 500gb HDD can be bought for under $50, but you can liken it to a graphics card. Some people are fine with the onboard graphics, others need more horsepower and are willing to pay hundreds if not thousands of dollars on faster GPUs. SSDs are no different. There are things I do with my machine that would take hours on an HDD, due to the sheer number of files or DB transactions, that finish in mere minutes on an SSD.

Re:"Attractive Price"? (1)

WuphonsReach (684551) | more than 4 years ago | (#31867278)

They become attractive once you see the difference they make in a desktop PC. I bought my first SSD around 6 months ago, now I swear by them. If you're a heavy multitasker, a fast SSD can make a huge difference by eliminating seek times. I'm actually tempted to replace my boss' boot drive with an SSD, just to see if he notices - and by "notice" I mean "stop bitching about his gaming-grade PC being slow".

I need prices to drop another 2x to 3x before I'll use it on a desktop PC.

But yes, it makes a huge difference. I run a 10k RPM SATA on my home machine and it's been well worth it. It makes the other PCs feel sluggish. I'll definitely be upgrading to a SSD next year if the prices can drop enough.

We've also put a 128GB SSD ($350) into one of our user's laptops and the responsiveness of the laptop has gone up tremendously. Even for someone who isn't a real big multitasker, it makes boot-up much faster which matters for a laptop user. As our other users complain about their laptops, we'll probably install a few more SSDs.

SSD collision tests are totally bogus (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861166)

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

Re:SSD collision tests are totally bogus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31863724)

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

Is that the one made by Microsoft [funnyphotos.net.au] ?

Aha.. (5, Funny)

comm2k (961394) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861290)

I guess all measurements were done at the Large Harddisk Collider?

Re:Aha.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861548)

Yep... And no hardblackdiskholes... yet.

Better article on anandtech (5, Interesting)

CreamyG31337 (1084693) | more than 4 years ago | (#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.

http://www.anandtech.com/print/3656 [anandtech.com]

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

Re:Better article on anandtech (1)

quercus.aeternam (1174283) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861878)

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'.

Re:Better article on anandtech (1)

CreamyG31337 (1084693) | more than 4 years ago | (#31862444)

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 write some sensationalist headline to go with it. Anyways, we should give the article writer some credit for reviewing these so quickly, he only got the thing in the mail 2 days ago [anandtech.com] !

(*) usually

Re:Better article on anandtech (1)

davegravy (1019182) | more than 4 years ago | (#31863386)

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.

Re:Better article on anandtech (1)

quercus.aeternam (1174283) | more than 4 years ago | (#31864100)

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.

They ignored Intel's driver (4, Interesting)

amorsen (7485) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861476)

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

Re:They ignored Intel's driver (1)

quercus.aeternam (1174283) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861814)

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.

Re:They ignored Intel's driver (1)

quercus.aeternam (1174283) | more than 4 years ago | (#31861898)

Oh, and that quote was from TFA.

Re:They ignored Intel's driver (1)

MartinSchou (1360093) | more than 4 years ago | (#31866246)

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! (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31861520)

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).

Why no comparison with a baterry backed RAID? (2, Interesting)

iusty (104688) | more than 4 years ago | (#31862480)

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?

iustin

Re:Why no comparison with a baterry backed RAID? (2, Informative)

CreamyG31337 (1084693) | more than 4 years ago | (#31862948)

It's hard to find...
http://www.storagereview.com/western_digital_velociraptors_raid_ssd_alternative [storagereview.com]
http://www.pcper.com/article.php?aid=878&type=expert&pid=8 [pcper.com] (this website uses iometer on all the ssds they test i think so can just look at ssd reviews like this one to compare numbers)

Re:Why no comparison with a baterry backed RAID? (2, Informative)

CreamyG31337 (1084693) | more than 4 years ago | (#31863214)

Here's another one: http://it.anandtech.com/show/2739/7 [anandtech.com]

try searching for something like VelociRaptor "raid 5" iometer
velociraptor is a 10,000k drive so it should approximate performance of any high-end 1-2tb desktop drive even if the review is old

I should probably get back to work now :)

bad sectors (1)

waitwonder (1014869) | more than 4 years ago | (#31862770)

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

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31864972)

Does this mean the floppy isn't coming back? Dang it, I wanted to use my 144 pack.

price (1)

sixsixtysix (1110135) | more than 4 years ago | (#31865404)

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.

Re:price (1)

ZeroSumHappiness (1710320) | more than 4 years ago | (#31866332)

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.

SSD's collided (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31879994)

Where were they going to?

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