ADATA S599 128GB SSD Review
While advances in magnetic recording have pushed HDD storage outward, it is a sad fact that hard drive speeds have failed to scale to their full potential. We now have large media files, games, and even documentation, yet we haven’t reached the point where multi-gigabyte photos open instantly and games move smoothly between layers. Or do we have?
We reviewed a 128GB version of ADATA’s SSD S599 drive, which is still at the top of the spectrum for an SSD. The drive has 40GB, 64GB, 100GB, 128GB, and 256GB capacity with all the other features being the same. The SSD boasts a maximum read speed of 280MB / s and a write speed of 270MB / s, which pushes the SATA II interface. It uses limits.
Being an SSD, and therefore without any complicated configuration of moving parts, the ADATA S599 is silent, and consumes less power than your normal hard disk drive. In addition, it’s lightweight – just 68 grams, lower than your average smartphone – and much more shockproof. All of this combined with the fact that it comes in a 2.5 ”form factor makes it quite a boon for laptop users. The ADATA S599 comes with a convenient 2.5 “to 3.5” bracket, so desktop users are not far behind.
It takes much less time than a traditional hard drive to access data from a random location on a SDD without a platter and to read data physically. The ADATA S599 gives us access to microseconds in contrast to the normal millisecond time of HDD.
Testing SSDs has been a challenge in itself, since our real-world testing involves the simple task of copying files from and to the drive. The other drive must be fast enough to test SSD. We decided to use a RAM drive, a virtual drive that uses your RAM as storage. Such a drive gives tremendous speed and should be unrivaled for some time.
The ADATA S599 performed quite well during our tests, giving write speeds up to 180 MB / s, but on average around 110 MB / s. Remember that with this kind of speed you can copy a complete DVD to your disc in one minute and a 50GB Blu-ray in 10 minutes! Of course with a capacity of 128GB, you probably won’t. Reading speeds were even more impressive, averaging about 180Mb / s and a maximum of 200Mb / s.
Is this speed impressive though? When comparing the two WD green versions of the HDD in RAID0 (stripping) with a desktop using a standard Intel controller integrated on the motherboard, we got an average higher write speed (~ 140 MB / s) and a slightly lower read speed on average (150). MB / s).
Where SSD is winning at a much faster random access time. It takes the same amount of time to call any data on the SSD regardless of where it is located and which part was read earlier. This makes fragmentation on SSD a non-issue and makes defragmenting an SSD drive almost meaningless, and is actually detrimental to the drive due to the limited number of entries.
The ADATA S599 SSD has a SandForce (SF-1222) controller. SandForce uses a number of innovative techniques and techniques in their controllers that manage to extend the life of the SSD. It manages to give SSD a 5-year lifespan, which may not bring it up to par with HDD, but at least makes it possible.
It speeds up launching applications and booting an OS. With Windows 7 installed on SSD, we’ve installed a number of common applications and here are some results:
- WinRAR 4.00 Beta: Installed before we can see any progress bar, the application launches immediately
- LibreOffice 3.3: Less than 2 minutes
- Microsoft Office 2010 Professional Plus: Completely installed in 5 minutes, most applications launch in one second
- Firefox 3.6: Install with only a brief glimpse of the progress bar launched in one second
Windows 7 itself takes just 21 seconds to reach the desktop from the boot menu. These speeds are impressive, and better than what can be claimed for systems with HDDs in RAID.
The ADATA SSD S599 is priced at Rs. 14,140 for 128GB SSD. So why would it cost about 10 times more for an SSD drive? Okay, if you’re tired of looking at the splash screen, if loading dialogs bothers you, and if you have extra money. Alternatively, you could go for two standard 1TB HDDs and put them on RAID0 to get almost as much performance and 8 times the power at almost half the price.
For laptop users, SSD is a great way to increase hard drive performance, as the RAID option is not generally available and laptop drives are slow to start. Desktop users will find that an SSD will give Windows a big performance boost, in booting and launching applications, which they can get from a cheap RAID0 solution.
Remember that although storage is usually a hindrance to the speed of your computer, it is only a hindrance. While a low-powered netbook can benefit from a lightweight, low-energy drive, it won’t suddenly force your netbook to run Photoshop or Crisis, nor will you be able to encode HD video at 200MB / s.
SSD technology is still in active development, and there are still flaws that make it unsuitable for those who use their disks too much. Ensures faster and more resilient SSDs in the future with SATAIII support. For now, it is still a technology for early adopters.
|SSD capacity (GB)||128GB|
|SSD controller||Sandforce SF-1222|
|SSD-specific features||TRIM, wear-leveling, RAISE|
|Accessories||2.5 “to 3.5” brackets|
|Drive Indicator, Read (MBps)||254.15MBPs|
|Access time, read (miss)||70µs|
|Drive indicator, write (MBps)||189.28MBPs|
|Access time, type (ms)||50µs|
Real world test
|Write a single file (MBps)||110.28|
|Write Test Assorted File (MBps)||105.75|
|Read test single file (MBps)||187.04|
|Read Test Assorted Files (MBps)||182.08|
|Photoshop CS2 (1 GB file, in seconds)||13.71|