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Unimpressive SSD Performance

Last response: in Storage
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April 18, 2011 1:43:09 PM

Hi Guys!

Well after a seeminly painless installation, a SSD is officially the boot drive in my new build. It is a 64GB Microcenter G2 version (ADATA S599 rabranded) which runs on the Sandforce 1222 controller.

My issue is that my results are hardly as impressive as people had mentioned they would be. This is one of the latest generation drives, and my boot is just as fast as if it were a 7200 RPM HDD and my AS SSD benchmarks consistently are in the 300's.

I have heard that AS SSD doesn't really work for sandforce, but regardless my boot time isn't as fast as I thought it would be once the "Windows Loading" screen pops up. I had heard that the little window animation doesn't even finish for some people.

The BIOS and Windows (I checked in the registry) are both set to AHCI, and TRIM commands are activated.

The rest of my Rig for reference:

AMD Phenom II X6 1055T 2.8GHz
MSI 890GXM-G65 Motherboard
8GB DDR3-1333MHz Microcenter RAM (I know, cheapy)
1 x 64 GB Microcenter G2 SSD
1 x Seagate Barracuda 1TB HDD
OCZ GameXStream 700W PSU
(No Video Card Yet)

You guys have any idea what could be going on? Any tweaks/optimizations I can do?
April 18, 2011 10:59:24 PM

I just did alot of the things mentioned in the article, most importantly disabling the recovery and indexing, but the performance is still sub-par.

Boot times for the OS are still not that great, and AS SDD is giving me 288. Even if it was due to a not secure erased SSD, that would effect write more than read, so I don't understand why my read times are so poor.

Someone mentioned that access times are betterin in IDE, but everyone says that AHCI is better, which is likewise confusing. Any other advice?
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April 18, 2011 11:30:11 PM

I just did a build with the Intel 320 120gb version and was also not impressed by the speed of which windows loaded (The logo screen) but as soon as that was done there was absolutely no waiting I could open up 10 programs at once and everything was snappy. So to me its still not quite worth the price, but for those of us wanting better performance this is the way to go.
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April 18, 2011 11:32:43 PM

SO all the stories about no load screen are basically just anecdotal?

Also, I just switched to the most recent AMD AHCI driver (since I have an AMD chipset) rather than the default MS one and performance in the Benchmark improved.

Does the new 11.3 Driver support TRIM? I am pretty sure the new ones do but i just want to make sure.
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a c 283 G Storage
April 18, 2011 11:46:30 PM

Have you done your motherboard firmware update and your ssd firmware update? Both are available and should be done to help improve performance.

I checked your ssd specifications. The Micro Center G2 64GB Solid State Drive is only SATA II (3 Gb/s) capable. Unlike your motherboard, your ssd is not SATA III (6 Gb/s) capable. That means:

Up to 280MB/s read speed
Up to 270MB/s write speed


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April 18, 2011 11:58:59 PM

Hey Johnny,

I Just updated the SSD firmware yesterday and I just installed the newest AHCI drivers for my chipset today. It did improve performance from the barebones MS one, but I am still nowhere near those numbers in the AS SSD benchmark.
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a c 283 G Storage
April 19, 2011 12:58:13 AM

I did a little more research. Here's what I found out about the AS ssd benchmarks and SandForce based ssd's:

"SANDFORCE Disclaimer: This benchmark uses non-compressible completely RANDOM data, so Sandforce drives won't produce "super-fast" numbers like they do in ATTO."

In addition I found out if you try to push the ssd with a lot of uncompressable data at once, then the ssd write capability it throttled down. The write number is reduced even further.

If you use a different ssd benchmark such as ATTO you will get much better numbers. Go ahead an give ATTO a try and let us know what happened.
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April 19, 2011 1:06:39 AM

I just did an ATTO benchmark and the results were much better, with the last set of bars being 258321 and 283591 (258 and 283 Mbps write:read).

I guess the drive is performing as expected, I just assumed there would be no boot time whatsoever. Like I mentioned I guess those stories were anecdotal at best.

I actually loaded a Civilization V match just to see, since on a normal HDD a new game takes AGES to load, and it loaded in a matter of seconds. If that's not telling, I don't know what is.

Thank you guys for your help though. I'm sure that the SSD would not be performing as well without your help and those links.

One last question: the latest AMD AHCI drivers DO support TRIM, right? I keep hearing yes and no all over the place, but I think the people who are saying no are referring to the old 10.x set of drivers.
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a c 283 G Storage
April 19, 2011 1:37:27 AM

Initially AMD did not support TRIM.

Eventually support for TRIM was added beginning with Catalyst 10.9 late last year. It was part of the updated ACHI driver. AMD Catalyst is up to version 11.1 now:

http://sites.amd.com/us/game/downloads/Pages/radeon_win...

Recent reports indicate AMD drivers and AMD support for TRIM works with SandForce based ssd's. Here is a link to one of the technical reports that included actual tesing:

http://www.behardware.com/news/11249/trim-with-amd-marv...
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