Plextor M2S 128GB
The Plextor M2S is a Sata 3 model and includes a copy of Acronis True Image, but no additional hardware to speak of. Apparently fairly similar to the M4, in terms of controller at least, Plextor is also pinning high hopes on Marvell’s design. Those who purchase the M2S should be hoping for Plextor’s promised 480MB/s read and 330MB/s write performance. This 88SS9174-BKK2 based design from Plextor is expensive and comes with similarly lofty expectations, which, unfortunately it fails to deliver on. The M2S is capable of good sequential read and write, but comes at a price.
Reg Rating 70%
Price £140 (64GB), £249 (128GB), £489 (256GB)
More Info Plextor
Samsung 470 128GB
The 470 Series SSD came with a small card listing the features of Samsung’s SSD Magician software. While this software is provided free, alas there wasn’t a copy included with the review sample, but it will presumably be packaged with retail units. Unlike many other manufacturers who make use of an established tried-and-tested controller for their forays into the world of SSDs, Samsung has developed its own. Dubbed the S3C29RBB01-YK40, Samsung claims it is capable of achieving 250MB/s reads and 220MB/s writes in the 470 Series. Yet it seems Samsung may have too little faith in its design, as the 470 Series is quite capable of exceeding expectations all round. Here we have an SSD that can really make the most of your Sata 2 bus.
Reg Rating 90%
Price £113 (64GB) £215 (128GB), £420 (256GB)
More Info Samsung
Next page: Benchmark Tests
Drive size is important
Drive size is important whilst benchmarking as the lower capacity drives have less chips rather than smaller ones. This means you can have fewer active data paths and so the smaller drives are slower. 3 of the 7 drives in this test used larger drives and so they will show greater performance than you would have seen with all 128GB drives. So its not exactly a fair comparison.
UK site, prices qoted in GBP so why are the links to amazon.com not .co.uk?
Couple of tips...
I bought a 40GB SSDNow about 18 months ago, best/biggest I could afford without various TRIM and stuttering issues. Promptly installed Windows 7 on it and it really will transform your computer!
Bear in mind, by default, Windows will create a swap file and a hibernate file the same size as the RAM in your PC, in my case, it created 2x 8GB files, that is instantly 16GB of the 37GB available plus Windows itself. Add in Apple and Chrome creating all their data files on the C partition without asking and you will run out of space very, very fast!
I've made my swap file 512MB, switched off hibernate and system restore and used 'mklink' to create junction points to move things like Apples backups to the spinning disks. Happy enough at the moment but currently looking at drives around the 120GB mark. It's also worth noting that many controllers perform much worse with smaller drives so if you are comparing performance figures, it must be on the size of the drive you are considering.
Using these drives for backup is ridiculous. Use 2TB drives in RAID-1 instead.
These drives are performance enhancers, not volume storage.
At normal usage levels (ie not hammering them with 100GB of backup data per night) this current generation of SSDs should last about 10 years according to most recent studies on the subject.
Remember, mechanical drives fail too. Often well before 10 years if they are in regular use. The difference with an SSD is that the moment of failure is (usually) predictable and measurable.
In terms of power, SSDs generally use a little less than mechanical drives.
All current generation should have TRIM support, with some of the newer/newest ones not really even needing it as the controllers have started running their own garbage collection.
I think Tom's or Anand has much more info on the topic - and apologies in advance if I'm not exactly accurate with my comments above.