Tag Archives: TLC NAND

The 512 GB GIGABYTE M.2 SSD Revealed!

GIGABYTE just revealed their 512 GB GIGABYTE M.2 SSD, an affordable solid state storage solution for the mainstream market. Learn more about GIGABYTE’s latest M.2 solid state drive!

 

The 512 GB GIGABYTE M.2 2280 SSD Revealed!

Based on the NVMe architecture, the 512 GB GIGABYTE M.2 SSD utilises PCIe Gen3 x2 lanes to deliver higher bandwidth and transfer speeds compared to the traditional SATA interface. Like the earlier 128 GB and 256 GB models, the 512 GB GIGABYTE M.2 SSD supports TRIM and S.M.A.R.T technologies.

The 512 GB GIGABYTE M.2 SSD is built around TLC flash memory, with Host Memory Buffer (HMB) to improve performance at a more affordable price point.

 

Why PCIe x2, Not PCIe x4?

With reduced SSD prices in recent years, many users have made the transition from SATA devices to M.2 devices. Despite the upgrade, storage performance from their M.2 SSDs is often bottlenecked by the utilization of SATA 6Gb/s lanes on their storage devices.

The SATA 6Gb/s interface cannot match the read/write speeds of the SSDs, holding back their storage devices. NVMe based storage devices that utilize PCIe Gen3 lanes circumvent this issue but these devices usually come with PCIe Gen3 x4 lanes which makes them significantly more expensive.

While users are looking for better performance, NVMe based PCIe Gen3 x4 solid state drives are expensive. GIGABYTE M.2 SSD is based on NVMe architecture but uses PCIe Gen3 x2 lanes to reduce cost, while using Host Buffer Memory (HMB) to maximise performance.

HMB technology uses system memory to cache and improve the SSD‘s performance. This eliminates the need for dedicated cache memory, allowing GIGABYTE to keep costs low.

 

GIGABYTE M.2 SSD Price + Availability

The GIGABYTE M.2 SSD series comes with a 3 year warranty, and three capacity sizes of 128GB, 256GB and the newly-announced 512GB. Here are some direct purchase links (with prices accurate as of 24 December 2018) :

[adrotate group=”2″]

United States

United Kingdom

Malaysia

 

Recommended Reading

Go Back To > Computer Hardware + Systems | Home

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!


The Plextor M8Se NVMe SSD Series Launched

Plextor just announced the debut of the Plextor M8Se series solid state drives (SSDs) that built around the ultra-high-speed NVMe interfaces. The drives also use the industry’s flagship TLC NAND and control chip components, and specialized heat sinks with streamlined aesthetic design.

 

The Plextor M8Se NVMe SSD Series

The Plextor M8Se series also caters to a variety of user requirements for SSD upgrades or system assembly, with both PCIe and M.2 2280 specifications. The PCIe version adopts lines drawn from fluid mechanics and a professional blue and black high-performance heat sink design. This presents dynamic ultra-fast speed aesthetics, along with more efficient thermal conductivity that can quickly eliminate the heat generated by M8Se’s high speed transmission and help the computer system maintain optimal operating efficiency.

The M8Se series has the most trustworthy service life and stability of any SSD. The Marvell control chip and Toshiba Super-High-Performance TLC NAND flash memory also allow the M8Se series to have outstanding performance, read/write service life, capacity, and stability, even better than the usual TLC SSD.

The M8Se series is powered by the latest generation NVMe PCIe Gen 3x 4 super high-speed transmission interface that delivers high bandwidth and low latency that allows sequential read/write access speeds of up to 2,450/1,000 MB/s and random read/write speeds of up to 210,000/175,000 IOPS. Whether it’s for work, fun, or multimedia applications, the M8Se is the perfect solution to speed up your system and provide the ultimate user experience.

Equipped with Plextor firmware technology and advanced LDCP debugging capability, the M8Se series has greatly enhanced read/write reliability. Its exclusive PlexNitro write cache technology can ensure the most reliable read/write performance, and its extended SSD service life guarantees peace of mind to long-term users.

 

[adrotate banner=”4″]

The Plextor M8Se Series Availability

The Plextor M8Se series is anticipated to officially reach the market in June 2017. In addition to providing the PCle expansion card and M.2 2280 specifications, capacities of 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB are also available to satisfy players’ diverse needs for system construction and expansion.

The M8Se series products have passed Plextor’s stringent quality tests, with a 1.5 million hour MTBF (mean time between failures) guarantee in addition to a 3-year warranty period.

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

The 1TB WD Blue SSD (WDS100T1B0A) Review

The new WD Blue and WD Green solid state drives are the first product of Western Digital’s acquisition of SanDisk in May 2016. However, it was not Western Digital’s first acquisition of a solid state manufacturer, or even their first solid state drive.

Western Digital acquired the SSD manufacturer, SiliconSystems and released the WD SiliconDrive family in 2009. However, the SiliconDrive family didn’t gain much traction. The SanDisk acquisition though was much larger and far more substantial. Western Digital not only gained access to a wide array of SSD and NAND intellectual property, they now have a substantial and stable NAND flash supply.

Today, we are going to take a look at their top-of-the-line solid state drive –  the 1TB WD Blue SSD (WDS100T1B0A), which features SanDisk’s second-generation 15 nm TLC NAND technology. Check it out!

 

The WD Blue SSD Family

The new WD Blue SSD family will offer 1 TB, 500 GB and 250 GB models, each available in either the 2.5″ or the M.2 form factor. Here is a specification comparison of the three main models :

Specifications1 TB WD Blue SSD500 GB WD Blue SSD250 GB WD Blue SSD
Model NumberWDS100T1B0A (2.5")
WDS100T1B0B (M.2)
WDS500G1B0A (2.5")
WDS500G1B0B (M.2)
WDS250G1B0A (2.5")
WDS250G1B0B (M.2)
Storage Capacity1024 GB (Total)
1000 GB (Effective)
512 GB (Total)
500 GB (Effective)
256 GB (Total)
250 GB (Effective)
Overprovisioning24 GB (2.4 %)12 GB (2.4 %)6 GB (2.4 %)
SSD ControllerMarvell 88SS1074-BSW2Marvell 88SS1074-BSW2Marvell 88SS1074-BSW2
NAND Flash Type15 nm SanDisk TLC NAND15 nm SanDisk TLC NAND15 nm SanDisk TLC NAND
SDRAM Cache1 GB DDR3L SDRAM
(Micron MT41K512M8RG-107 x 2)
1 GB DDR3L SDRAM
(Micron MT41K512M8RG-107 x 2)
512 MB DDR3L SDRAM
(Micron MT41K512M8RG-107)
InterfaceSATA 6 Gb/sSATA 6 Gb/sSATA 6 Gb/s
Peak Sequential Read545 MB/s545 MB/s540 MB/s
Peak Sequential Write525 MB/s525 MB/s500 MB/s
Random Read I/O100,000 IOPS100,000 IOPS97,000 IOPS
Random Write I/O80,000 IOPS80,000 IOPS79,000 IOPS
Write Endurance400 TB200 TB100 TB
Average Active Power70 mW70 mW70 mW
Max. Read Power2.85 W2.85 W2.35 W
Max. Write Power4.40 W4.00 W3.40 W
Slumber Power45-52 mW42-46 mW42-45 mW
DEVSLP Power6.0-9.7 mW6.0-7.7 mW4.9-6.0 mW
Mean Time To FailureUp to 1.75 million hoursUp to 1.75 million hoursUp to 1.75 million hours
Ambient Temperature Range0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
0°C to 70°C (Operating)
-55°C to 85°C (Non-Operating)
Vibration Range5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.0 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.0 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
5.0 gRMS, 10-2,000 Hz (Operating)
4.0 gRMS, 7-800 Hz (Non-Operating)
Shock1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine1,500 G @ 0.5 ms half sine
Warranty3 Years3 Years3 Years
Dimensions2.5" : 100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm
M.2 : 80 mm x 22 mm x 2.38 mm
2.5" : 100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm
M.2 : 80 mm x 22 mm x 2.23 mm
2.5" : 100.5 mm x 69.85 mm x 7.0 mm
M.2 : 80 mm x 22 mm x 2.23 mm
Weight2.5" : 59.7 g
M.2 : 7±1 g
2.5" : 37.4 g
M.2 : 7±1 g
2.5" : 37.4 g
M.2 : 7±1 g

 

Unboxing & Closer Look

The 1TB WD Blue SSD comes in a sleek cardboard box. The colour-coded box leaves no doubt that this is a WD Blue drive.

Now, let’s unbox the 1TB WD Blue SSD, and take a closer look.

Next Page > The 1TB WD Blue SSD, Interface, SSD Controller, Flash Memory, SDRAM Cache

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

The 1TB WD Blue SSD

The 1TB WD Blue SSD (WDS100T1B0A) looks like any other 2.5″ slim hard disk drive. It was, after all, built to conform to the 2.5″ form factor, allowing it to easily replace any 2.5″ hard disk drive with a height of 7 mm. But there’s no doubt about its solid state nature when you pick it up – it’s very light!

The label on the underside has a lot of important information, like the model and serial numbers in case you need to RMA it. The label also lists interesting details like the date and place of manufacture. This particular drive was manufactured in China on 9 September 2016.

As it only serves to protect the NAND chips, SSD controller and circuit board inside from static damage, the case is made from plastic. In fact, it will sound hollow when you tap on it because the SSD internally does not take up much space.

 

SATA 6 Gb/s Interface

The 1TB WD Blue SSD is a Serial ATA drive, with native support for SATA 6 Gb/s interface. It is backward-compatible, so you will have no problem using it with older SATA 3 Gb/s controllers. However, the faster SATA 6 Gb/s interface is necessary for optimal performance because this SSD is capable of a peak transfer rate of 545 MB/s.

Like all Serial ATA drives, it comes with the standard SATA data (left) and power (right) connectors, and is hot-pluggable. That means you can connect and disconnect this solid state drive while the PC is still running. There is no jumper block, because there’s really nothing for you to set. It’s just plug and play!

 

The Marvell 88SS1074 SSD Controller

The 1TB WD Blue SSD uses the Marvell 88SS1074 SSD controller, which boasts the following key features :

  • Supports up to 4 NAND channels, with up to 8 NAND chips per channel
  • Features Marvell’s third-generation NANDEdge low-density parity check (LDPC) technology
  • Supports SATA 3.2 (6.0 Gbps)
  • Toggle 2 and ONFI2 support at up to 400 MT/s
  • Integrated DEVSLP (Device Sleep) mode for low power support
  • Supports 256-bit AES hardware encryption
  • Built on 28 nm CMOS process

The Marvell NANDEdge LDPC technology allows for reliable on-the-fly error correction of the 3-bit TLC flash memory, with minimal impact on latency, performance and power consumption.

However, the Marvell 88SS1074 is likely to fall short in sustained throughput, because it only supports 4 NAND channels. Competing controllers like the Phison S10, for example, boast 8 NAND channels, allowing twice as many NAND chips to be accessed simultaneously.

 

The SanDisk TLC Flash Memory

To keep costs low, the 1TB WD Blue SSD uses TLC (Triple Level Cell) flash memory chips, where each cell holds 3-bits. These are SanDisk second-generation planar TLC chips, built on the 15 nm process. There are a total of eight of these TLC flash memory chips, each with a capacity of 128 GB.

 

The Micron DDR3L SDRAM Cache

The 1TB WD Blue SSD has a large 1 GB write combine cache, courtesy of two Micron MT41K512M8RG-107 chips. These are DDR3L SDRAM chips with an effective clock rate of 1866 MHz (DDR), a voltage of 1.35 V, and a storage capacity of 512 MB.

This large SDRAM cache allows the WD Blue SSD to mitigate the TLC flash memory’s inherently poor write performance. It also allows writes to the SSD to be combined, reducing wear on the flash memory cells and extending their lifespan.

Next Page > SSD Endurance & Maintenance

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

SSD Endurance

The 1TB WD Blue SSD is rated for a lifetime write lifespan of 400 TBW (Terabytes Written). That does not seem like a lot (equal to overwriting the drive just 400 times), but it is considered enterprise-grade endurance. Many consumer-grade SSDs of equivalent capacity are rated at around 75-100 TBW.

Based on a typical consumer DWPD (Drive Writes Per Day) of 20 GB per day, this 1TB WD Blue will last at least 54 years. Please note that this long lifespan is due to the large capacity. The 500 GB and 250 GB WD Blue SSDs are rated at 200 TBW and 100 TBW respectively. That corresponds to an estimated lifespan of 27 years and 13.5 years respectively.

Like all other current SSDs, the 1TB WD Blue SSD comes with certain features to help extend its lifespan :

Wear Levelling

Unlike hard disk drives, flash-based SSDs write and overwrite data in large blocks of 512 KB to 1 MB in size. Even if you only need to write one byte of data, it has to erase and overwrite an entire block. This causes a lot of wear on the memory cells and greatly reduces their lifespan.

To help extend the lifespan of the drive, SSDs perform wear levelling by spreading the writes, so that the flash memory cells have equal wear. The lifespan of the memory cells remain unchanged, but it prevents some of them from failing earlier due to excessive wear.

Write Combine Cache

SSDs also use a write buffer to temporarily store and combine the writes before they are actually written to the flash memory. This reduces the number of block erases required, and consequently, extends the lifespan of the flash memory cells.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD boasts a large 1 GB DDR3L memory cache, which should help to really extend the limited lifespan of the TLC flash memory. This allows the 1TB WD Blue to get away with a very small amount of “over-provisioned” space.

TRIM

Current SSDs support the TRIM command, otherwise known as the ATA8-ACS-2 DATA SET MANAGEMENT command. Operating systems that support TRIM (e.g. Microsoft Windows 7) will notify the SSD when data blocks are deleted in the file system. This allows the SSD to perform garbage collection in the background – internally erasing the affected blocks so that they are ready to be written to.

Without the TRIM command, the SSD will not know when a block of data has been deleted by the operating system. When new data is written to the same block of data, it will force the SSD to perform the time-consuming read-erase-modify-write cycle, which not only cripples performance but also increases wear on the affected memory cells.

Multi-Stream

This is a new SSD technology that was introduced in May 2015, as part of the T10 SCSI Standard. Multi-stream greatly improves performance and extends lifespan by reducing or even eliminating garbage collection.

It achieves this by marking data writes that are associated with one another, or have a similar lifetime, with a unique stream ID. This allows the SSD controller to pack all data writes with the same stream ID into the same block.

When the operating system deletes data, it is likely that they are all packed into the same block. If the block has not been written to the SSD, then this eliminates the pending write operation completely. If the block has been written to the SSD, then this would only require that single block to be erased, instead of multiple blocks (which would happen if the data was not all packed into the same block).

 

SSD Maintenance

First of all, you should never, ever defragment solid state drives. Spatial fragmentation of data on the SSD has no effect on its performance. Fragmented data are accessed as quickly as nicely-packed blocks, so it’s pointless to defragment the data blocks. Doing so will only reduce the lifespan of the flash memory cells by putting them under additional wear.

Remember – TLC flash memory will only last about 1,000 erase/write cycles. You will want to minimise the number of times each flash memory cell is erased.

[adrotate banner=”4″]

You should also use an operating system that supports the TRIM command. If you are using one of the following operating systems, then you have nothing to worry about :

  • Microsoft Windows 7, or better
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2, or better
  • Linux 2.6.33, or better
  • FreeBSD 8.2, or better
  • Mac OS X Snow Leopard, or better

If not, you should consider upgrading your operating system. Otherwise, you will need to perform manual garbage collection on a regular basis, either using a manufacturer utility, or newer defragmentation software that specifically supports solid state drives. Basically, these utilities will retrieve the list of free blocks from the operating system’s file system and pass it to the SSD in the form of TRIM commands, so that it will know which blocks to erase internally.

Western Digital does not provide such a utility for their WD Blue SSDs, so if you are using an older operating system, you will need to use a third-party SSD optimisation software. Note that those software are not necessary if you are using an operating system that supports TRIM.

Next Page > Testing The WD Blue SSD, Over-Provisioning & Usable Capacity, Transfer Rate Profile

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Testing The WD Blue SSD

Processors Intel Core i7-2600K
Motherboard Intel DP67BG
Memory Four Kingmax 2 GB DDR3-1333 modules
Graphics Card NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060
SSD & HDD Drives 4 TB Western Digital Re
1 TB + 120 GB WD Black²
1 TB WD Blue SSD
1 TB WD VelociRaptor
256 GB OCZ Vector
240 GB HyperX Savage
240 GB Intel 520 Series
160 GB Intel X25-M G2
120 GB OCZ Vertex 2 (E)
90 GB Corsair F90
Operating System Microsoft Windows 7 64-bit
Microsoft Windows Vista 32-bit

Testing Methodology

 

Over-Provisioning & Usable Capacity

This WD Blue SSD has a maximum storage capacity of 1,024 GB, courtesy of eight 128 GB Micron NAND chips. Of that, a mere 24 GB has been set aside for garbage collection, wear levelling and replacement of failing blocks.

Ordinarily, the limited 2.4% over-provisioning may impact long-term performance and lifespan. However, it appears that Western Digital has opted to mitigate that using a large 1 GB DDR3L SDRAM cache.

After it is formatted in NTFS, the actual formatted capacity is 1,000,202,039,296 bytes. This is slightly (202 MB) more than the official formatted capacity of 1,000 GB.

With about 124 MB of space allocated to the NTFS file system, the actual usable capacity is just above 1,000 GB.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Transfer Rate Profile

We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD to the 240GB HyperX Savage. As you can see, it delivered a sustained throughput of between 230 MB/s and 249 MB/s, with occasional bursts to 280 MB/s.

Next Page > WinBench Results, Transfer Rate Range

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Business Disk WinBench 99

The 1TB WD Blue SSD did quite well in this test, matching the performance of the 256 GB OCZ Vector and 240 GB HyperX Savage SSDs.

Drive Model Capacity Business Disk
WinMark 99
Difference Useful Links
Intel 520 Series 240 GB 77.7 MB/s + 25.3% Review Lowest $
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 120 GB 74.4 MB/s + 20.0% Review Lowest $
Corsair F90 90 GB 71.1 MB/s + 14.7% Review
Western Digital Black² 120 GB 63.1 MB/s + 1.8% Review Lowest $
OCZ Vector 256 GB 62.1 MB/s + 0.2% Review Lowest $
WD Blue SSD 1 TB 62.0 MB/s Baseline Lowest $
HyperX Savage 240 GB 61.9 MB/s – 0.2% Review Lowest $
Intel X25-M G2 160 GB 50.4 MB/s – 18.7% Review Lowest $
WD VelociRaptor 1 TB 29.8 MB/s – 51.9% Review Lowest $
WD Re 4 TB 20.4 MB/s – 67.1% Review Lowest $

 

High-End Disk WinBench 99

In the High-End test, the 1TB WD Blue SSD did not do so well, coming in the lower end of the chart, albeit significantly faster than the hard disk drives.

Drive Model Capacity Business Disk
WinMark 99
Difference Useful Links
Intel 520 Series 240 GB Beyond limit NA Review Lowest $
OCZ Vector 256 GB Beyond limit NA Review Lowest $
HyperX Savage 240 GB 262 MB/s + 19.1% Review Lowest $
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 120 GB 250 MB/s + 13.6% Review Lowest $
Western Digital Black² 120 GB 246 MB/s + 11.8% Review Lowest $
Corsair F90 90 GB 231 MB/s + 5.0% Review
WD Blue SSD 1 TB 220 MB/s Baseline Lowest $
Intel X25-M G2 160 GB 215 MB/s – 2.3% Review Lowest $
WD VelociRaptor 1 TB 172 MB/s – 21.8% Review Lowest $
WD Re 4 TB 138 MB/s – 37.3% Review Lowest $
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Transfer Rate Range

This chart shows you the range of memory cell-to-controller transfer rates for SSDs, or the range of platter-to-buffer transfer rates from the innermost track to the outermost track in HDDs.

Despite boasting an official peak transfer rate of 545 MB/s, our tests show that the sustained transfer rate of the 1TB WD Blue SSD is much slower – between 230 and 249 MB/s. This makes it significantly slower than the other SSDs in this comparison. It is important to note though that the 1TB WD Blue SSD remains much faster than even top-of-the-line hard disk drives like the 1TB WD VelociRaptor.

Next Page > IO Meter (Random & Sequential) Benchmark Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

IO Meter

We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD against the 240 GB HyperX Savage. If you wish to see how the WD Blue SSD compares to other solid state drives, take a look at our Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide, which we will be updating shortly.

 

Throughput (Random Access)

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 239.84 MB/s 371.76 MB/s – 35.5%
512 KB Write 257.09 MB/s 488.15 MB/s – 47.3%
4 KB Read 24.93 MB/s 27.57 MB/s – 9.6%
4 KB Write 53.31 MB/s 53.52 MB/s

The small random reads and writes are the most important tests for applications that make a lot of random accesses, so these would be key performance indicators for SSDs that are often used as boot drives.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD held up well in small reads and writes, matching the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD in writes, and coming in just 10% slower in reads. The large SDRAM cache seems to be doing its job very well.

However, it was much slower when it came to large reads and writes. This is due to the TLC the Phison S10 controller used in the HyperX Savage has twice the NAND channels of the WD Blue’s Marvell 88SS1074 controller.

 

Random Access Time

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 2.19 ms 1.41 ms – 35.6%
512 KB Write 2.04 ms 1.07 ms – 47.5%
4 KB Read 0.17 ms 0.15 ms – 11.8%
4 KB Write 0.08 ms 0.08 ms

The small random write access time of the 1TB WD Blue SSD was completely masked by the large SDRAM cache, allowing it to match the performance of the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD. The small random read access time was also very good, coming within 12% of the HyperX Savage. However, due to the lack of NAND channels, its large access times were almost twice as long.

 

Random CPU Utilization

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 7.16 % 1.62 % + 342.0%
512 KB Write 7.31 % 1.81 % + 303.9%
4 KB Read 9.94 % 4.27 % + 132.8%
4 KB Write 11.91 % 8.97 % + 32.8%

For some reason, the 1TB WD Blue SSD took up considerably more CPU time than the HyperX Savage SSD.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

IO Meter (Sequential Accesses)

We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD against the 240 GB HyperX SavageIf you wish to see how the WD Blue SSD compares to other solid state drives, take a look at our Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide, which we will be updating shortly.

 

Sequential Throughput

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 250.14 MB/s 521.02 MB/s – 52.0%
512 KB Write 255.54 MB/s 486.12 MB/s – 47.4%
4 KB Read 63.35 MB/s 24.89 MB/s + 154.5%
4 KB Write 59.15 MB/s 53.65 MB/s + 10.3%

The sequential read and write performance indicators determine how fast you can copy and move files. This is also important in determining how fast you can launch an application or game.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD did very well when the sequential reads and writes were small. It was particular good at small sequential reads. However, when it came to large sequential accesses, the WD Blue’s limited NAND channels came into play… giving it half the throughput of the HyperX Savage SSD.

 

Sequential Access Time

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 2.10 ms 1.01 ms – 51.9%
512 KB Write 2.05 ms 1.08 ms – 47.3%
4 KB Read 0.07 ms 0.16 ms + 128.6%
4 KB Write 0.07 ms 0.08 ms + 14.3%

 

Sequential CPU Utilization

Test 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
512 KB Read 8.69 % 1.74 % + 399.4%
512 KB Write 5.76 % 2.17 % + 165.4%
4 KB Read 15.93 % 3.71 % + 329.4%
4 KB Write 15.42 % 9.34 % + 65.1%

Again, the 1TB WD Blue SSD required a lot more CPU time than the HyperX Savage SSD.

Next Page > IOPS Scaling (Random) Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

IOPS Scaling (Random)

In these tests, we tested the drive’s ability to tackle multiple input/output operations. We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD to the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSD. For more performance comparisons, please take a look at the Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide.

Even though the 1TB WD Blue SSD is rated for enterprise-class endurance, its Marvell 88SS1074 controller is just not capable of handling too many simultaneous operations. It appears to handle up to 8 simultaneous transactions. Its limited NAND channels also held back its performance in large reads and writes.

 

4 KB Random Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 6,086 IOPS 6,729 IOPS – 9.6%
8 38,444 IOPS 42,254 IOPS – 9.0%
32 36,145 IOPS 58,728 IOPS – 38.4%

 

4 KB Random Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 13,015 IOPS 13,068 IOPS – 0.4%
8 39,066 IOPS 55,906 IOPS – 30.1%
32 39,115 IOPS 57,441 IOPS – 31.9%
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

512 KB Random Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 457 IOPS 709 IOPS – 35.5%
8 537 IOPS 1,072 IOPS – 49.9%
32 544 IOPS 1,076 IOPS – 49.4%

 

512 KB Random Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 490 IOPS 931 IOPS – 47.4%
8 522 IOPS 1,030 IOPS – 49.3%
32 522 IOPS 1,030 IOPS – 49.3%

Next Page > IOPS Scaling (Sequential) Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

IOPS Scaling (Sequential)

In these tests, we tested the drive’s ability to tackle multiple input/output operations. We compared the 1TB WD Blue SSD to the 240 GB HyperX Savage SSDFor more performance comparisons, please take a look at the Solid State Drive Performance Comparison Guide.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD did well in small sequential reads, but it remain limited to 8 simultaneous transactions. When it came to the larger accesses, it was limited by its 4-channel design.

 

4 KB Sequential Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 15,466 IOPS 6,077 IOPS + 154.5%
8 41,425 IOPS 27,982 IOPS + 48.0%
32 37,963 IOPS 58,825 IOPS – 35.5%

 

4 KB Sequential Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 14,440 IOPS 13,097 IOPS + 10.3%
8 38,840 IOPS 56,560 IOPS – 31.3%
32 39,188 IOPS 57,286 IOPS – 31.6%
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

512 KB Sequential Read

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 477 IOPS 994 IOPS – 52.0%
8 544 IOPS 1,073 IOPS – 49.3%
32 540 IOPS 1,076 IOPS – 49.8%

512 KB Sequential Write

Outstanding I/Os 1 TB WD Blue SSD 240 GB HyperX Savage Difference
1 487 IOPS 927 IOPS – 47.5%
8 521 IOPS 1,031 IOPS – 49.5%
32 521 IOPS 1,030 IOPS – 49.4%

Next Page > AS SSD Benchmark Results

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

AS SSD Benchmark

AS SSD Benchmark is a simple and easy-to-use SSD benchmark by Alex Intelligent Software. It not only tests the drive’s sequential transfer rates and access times, but also its performance at both single-threaded and multi-threaded 4K IOPS.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD did quite well in this test, especially in the multi-threaded 4K IOPS test. Its sequential transfer rate was, again, limited by its 4-channel design.

 

Sequential Transfers

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
HyperX Savage 516.0 MB/s + 98.3% Price, Review
OCZ Vector 500.3 MB/s + 92.3% Price, Review
Intel 520 Series 293.9 MB/s + 12.9% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 280.6 MB/s + 7.8% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 260.2 MB/s Baseline Price
Intel X25-M G2 179.0 MB/s – 31.2% Price, Review
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 172.3 MB/s – 33.8% Price, Review
Corsair F90 140.0 MB/s – 46.2% Review

 

Single-Threaded 4K IOPS Performance

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
Intel 520 Series 45.7 MB/s + 44.2% Price, Review
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 40.6 MB/s + 28.2% Price, Review
HyperX Savage 40.2 MB/s + 27.0% Price, Review
Corsair F90 39.9 MB/s + 25.8% Review
OCZ Vector 38.6 MB/s + 21.8% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 35.0 MB/s + 10.3% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 31.7 MB/s Baseline Price
Intel X25-M G2 30.7 MB/s – 3.1% Price, Review
[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Multi-Threaded 4K IOPS Performance

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
OCZ Vector 338.6 MB/s + 74.9% Price, Review
HyperX Savage 257.8 MB/s + 33.2% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 193.6 MB/s Baseline Price
Intel 520 Series 177.5 MB/s – 8.3% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 164.9 MB/s – 14.8% Price, Review
Intel X25-M G2 125.2 MB/s – 35.3% Price, Review
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 122.1 MB/s – 36.9% Price, Review
Corsair F90 118.1 MB/s – 39.0% Review

 

Access Time

Drive Model Read + Write Average Difference Quick Links
HyperX Savage 0.065 ms – 17.3% Price, Review
OCZ Vector 0.067 ms – 14.1% Price, Review
WD Blue SSD 0.078 ms Baseline Price
Intel X25-M G2 0.089 ms + 13.5% Price, Review
Western Digital Black² 0.119 ms + 51.9% Price, Review
OCZ Vertex 2 (E) 0.148 ms + 89.1% Price, Review
Corsair F90 0.159 ms + 103.8% Review
Intel 520 Series 0.162 ms + 107.1% Price, Review

Next Page > ATTO Disk Benchmark Results, Our Verdict

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

ATTO Disk Benchmark

ATTO Disk Benchmark is a free benchmark that allows you to compare the performance of solid state drives using a variety of transfer sizes. It also allows us to determine if the SSD performs data compression to improve performance, and extend lifespan.

 

I/O Comparison

Results Compressible Data Non-Compressible Data
Minimum Maximum Minimum Maximum
Read Speed 11.3 MB/s 246.8 MB/s 11.3 MB/s 249.7 MB/s
Write Speed 10.4 MB/s 269.5 MB/s 10.6 MB/s 269.5 MB/s

The Marvell 88SS1074 controller does not perform any data compression, which is why the performance results are the same for both compressible and non-compressible data. The 1TB WD Blue SSD reached its peak transfer rate with a block size of 1 MB.

 

Multiple I/O Comparison

Results Compressible Data Non-Compressible Data
Minimum Maximum Minimum Maximum
Read Speed 26.6 MB/s 286 2 MB/s 26.6 MB/s 285.6 MB/s
Write Speed 24.5 MB/s 273.9 MB/s 24.8 MB/s 274.5 MB/s

With just 8 simultaneous transactions, the 1TB WD Blue SSD reached its peak transfer rate with a block size of 64 KB.

 

Our Verdict

The 1TB WD Blue SSD offers extremely quick random access times like other modern solid state drives. But it is no race car. Due to its 4-channel design, it was half as fast as comparable SSDs at transferring large files. On the other hand, it offers a tremendous amount of space at an affordable price point, and boasts enterprise-class endurance levels. So what does this mean for you, the user?

 

If you are looking for the absolute fastest SSD in the market, then the 1TB WD Blue SSD is not for you. You can find much faster SSDs in the market, albeit at much higher price points.

[adrotate banner=”4″]

But if you are looking for a decent solid state drive with a large storage capacity, and don’t want to sell an arm and a leg for it, the 1TB WD Blue SSD is worth considering. More so if you want something that will last you for many years to come.

The 1TB WD Blue SSD works well as a boot drive, booting up the operating system and applications much faster than any hard disk drive can. It may be much slower than comparable SSDs in certain benchmarks but in real life, it will only mean the operating system and applications start up a bit slower. In fact, you are unlikely to notice any difference unless you compare two systems side-by-side.

The WD Blue SSD‘s large storage capacity is a great boon to laptop users who cannot add a second hard disk drive for more storage. It would obviate the need to use a portable hard disk drive for extra storage. It also allows for an intriguing possibility – install it into a USB enclosure and you have a spacious portable drive that is impervious to shock and vibration!

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participating in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donating to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Plextor M7V Series SSD Released

March 30, 2016, Taipei – Plextor announced the longest lifetime Plextor M7V series solid-state drive.

The M7V series is Plextor’s first TLC SSD product, combining top-class components and exclusive firmware, allowing the Plextor M7V to surpass the current TLC SSD’s key technical limits, reaching a P/E cycle of up to 2,000 times. The best P/E lifetime, speed, capacity and stability will stand to satisfy the consumer’s demands for the best cost performance, providing users with a new generation TLC SSD product to choose from.

The key to dramatically increasing Plextor M7V’s lifetime as a TLC SDD is through coupling the highest grade components from the industry with advanced firmware. The M7V series applies the new generation Marvell control chip, designed exclusively for TLC products, along with Toshiba’s latest 15 nm process TLC NAND flash memory.

It also applies multiple technologies developed exclusively by Plextor, including the tailor-made write acceleration technology PlexNitro, the Low Density Parity Check (LDPC) troubleshooting technology with three times the average rate, and PlexTurbo, a software that applies system memory to decrease the amount of reading and writing.

The result brings about the astonishing 2,000 times P/E cycle lifetime of the M7V series, 2 to 4 times as durable as a normal TLC SSD, providing the largest TBW (Total Bytes Written) for its users. Using the 512GB capacity version as an example, it has a TBW of 320TB. The M7V has set up a new milestone for TLC SSD products, marking a new page with its outstanding lifetime, P/E durability and stability, bringing forth an unforeseen top notch quality application.

Plextor’s superb firmware and software technology has always been the key to surpassing and receiving recognition above products of the same level. Looking at the firmware technology applied, the M7V series uses the exclusive PlexNitro technology that differs from other TLC SSD products, allowing the M7V to not require reserving hard drive space, increasing its writing capability while keeping the most complete SSD storage capacity for its users, giving the user’s the best return for their choice. Using the lowest capacity products of 128GB for example, when other TLC brands can only provide a true 120GB of storage space, Plextor can support a complete 128GB TLC SSD capacity.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

The widely recognized PlexTurbo software can apply the system’s DRAM to accelerate the SSD’s read and write efficiency, allowing the M7V that has a designed sequential read/write speed of 560/530 MB/s, random read/write speed of 98K/84K IOPS to increase its speed by 6 to 10 times. PlexTurbo can also reduce the frequency of data writing, greatly increasing the lifetime of the SSD, bringing advanced efficiency for the TLC SSD.

Apart from PlexTurbo, the M7V series can also use two other additional softwares, the PlexCompressor & PlexVault – PlexCompressor can compress files that have a low usage rate while not affecting the SSD’s efficiency, providing more available space for its user; PlexVault can set up an exclusive space for sensitive information by tapping on a few hot keys, providing utmost privacy and security to the data conveniently.

Operation Director of Plextor, Eva Lee, expressed, “Facing the market trend of TLC SSDs with high cost performance ratios, consumers have higher expectations for the product’s lifetime, efficiency and reliability. In response to this, Plextor has applied various advanced technologies and components, building the much more reliable M7V product series, providing the best data stability and security with various fast access-enhancing and troubleshooting technology while greatly increasing the SSD’s lifetime, guaranteeing users the highest cost-effectiveness and protection for their SSD. As we deliver the M7V series, we will also make the PlexTurbo, PlexCompressor and PlexVault available to all M6 series users, and we promise to continue to provide premium services for the users of Plextor.”

 

Plextor M7V Availability

The Plextor M7V Series Solid-State Drives will be delivered in April of 2016, providing two different standard specs – the 2.5 inch (PX-M7VC) and the M.2 2280 (PX-M7VG), with 128GB, 256GB and 512GB capacities to choose from, satisfying SSD system requirements from desktop computers to ultra-slim notebooks.

 

Support Tech ARP!

If you like our work, you can help support our work by visiting our sponsors, participate in the Tech ARP Forums, or even donate to our fund. Any help you can render is greatly appreciated!

Stacker NAND Technology TRIPLES Flash Capacity

Terrarium Labs announces the successful certification of their Stacker NAND technology which triples the capacity of existing flash memory technologies. As an IP R&D company based in the China West Technology Park, Terrarium Labs has been focused on developing compression technology to massively expand flash storage capacity.

 

Stacker NAND Technology

Unlike existing MLC and TLC NAND technologies, Stacker NAND works independently of NAND process technologies. In fact, it is applied to existing NAND flash technologies to triple their capacities.

The Stacker NAND technology uses two different compression methods to deliver TRIPLE the capacity of any existing NAND flash storage technology.

The first is a lossless data compression algorithm that compresses data before they are written to the NAND flash memory. Depending on the file type, this can almost double the amount of data that can be stored in a particular flash chip.

To further increase the storage capacity to 3X, they add a lossy compression technology which applies filters that reduces the randomness of the data. This allows the earlier lossless compression technology to be even more effective.

At the moment, Terrarium says 3X more storage is a good compromise between additional storage and loss of data. But if necessary, they can scale it up to 5X or even 6X.

 

Only For Photos & Videos

As you can tell, the Stacker NAND technology cannot be used for regular data. It is designed to be used only for photos and videos. Terrarium Labs was very explicit that their compression technology will change some data in return for much small file sizes when compressed. However, they see this as a small price to pay for much larger storage capacities at the same price.

According to Terrarium Labs, a 256 Gbit Stacker NAND module paired with a regular 256 Gbit NAND module will double the effective capacity for very little cost – 768 Gbit of lossy storage + 256 Gbit of lossless storage.

Below is a prototype M.2 SSD module they created out of one regular 256 Gbit NAND module and two 256 Gbit Stacker NAND modules for 2.33X the effective storage capacity – 1,792 Gbits of storage, instead of just 768 Gbits. That’s just over 1,000 Gbits of extra storage!

Although Terrarium Labs admits that their lossy compression algorithm will reduce image quality, they say that at 3X, this is minimal and will only be obvious if the pictures or videos are examined very closely. They also pointed out that some of the filters used will actually reduce noise, which enhances picture and video quality.

[adrotate banner=”5″]

 

Photo Comparison

Obviously, we found that hard to believe, so they invited us to send them some photo samples. We sent them a dozen photo samples from the ASUS ZenPad 7.0 and the recently-reviewed honor 5X smartphone. Take a look at the four comparisons of their lossy compression filters at work.

They are correct that the difference is subtle and only apparent up close. There is some loss of detail, but also less noise. But would you accept such changes?

 

Adaptable

[adrotate banner=”4″]

Terrarium partners can pair the Terrarium Stacker processor with any number of NAND modules, and choose either lossless or lossy compression, or both.

Terrarium is also offering the compression software to partners who prefer to do without the processor, but it may sap up to 30% of a quad-core processor’s cycles.

They claim they’re currently in talks with the top smartphone manufacturers from the United States, Korea and China to introduce the Stacker processor and/or software into the next-generation smartphones.

 

Fun Fact

Tech old-timers will remember Stacker, the disk compression utility for MS-DOS. It not only doubled the capacity of our puny 42 MB hard disk drives, it also sped up reads and writes by compressing data before they were written to the abysmally-slow hard disk drives of the day. However, Stac Electronics, the company that developed Stacker soon crumbled after Microsoft introduced their free DoubleSpace disk compression software.

Little known to many, Stac Electronics spun off a chip making company called Hifn, which makes encryption and compression processors. Some of Hifn’s key engineers are those who helped form Terrarium Labs. That’s why they named their first product – Stacker.

 

Feed Us!

If you don’t support us, who will? The last we checked, money still does not fall down from the heavens. Too bad we can’t live on sunshine and rainfall. We are not plants. In fact, we don’t even like eating our vegetables! We LOVE meat. So if you like our work, help us buy some meat… or send us some meat! Preferably with a nice bottle of red to go with it. 😀