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Benchmark Results: 4 KB And 512 KB Random Writes

Crucial m4 And Intel SSD 320: The Other SSD Competitors

Remember that our benchmark tends to give more weight to burst performance. By default, the Vertex 3s push IOPS above 50 000 thanks to its compression technology. In comparison, the m4 performs slightly above 60 000 IOPS, a marked improvement from the C300.

Interestingly, the X25-M again chokes at queue depths in excess of eight. Intel corrects this problem in the SSD 320. We no longer see a performance penalty at higher queue depths.

Low queue depths are not necessarily ideal for SSDs, which depend on many pending requests in order to saturate their parallelized architectures. In this scenario, the m4 starts off more competitive. At a queue depth of one, it already outperforms the earlier C300. Once we reach a queue depth of 32, Crucial's newest drive even outperforms OCZ's Vertex 3 Pro. 

Intel's SSD 320 performs close to the X25-M at lower queue depths. As we scale up to 32, we see close to a 10% improvement in throughput.

This is a major turnaround for the SSD 510. Intel's only SATA 6Gb/s drive is clearly optimized for moving larger files. Though it struggles with 4 KB transfers, 512 KB transfers excel, and the SSD 510 turns a last-place finish into a first-place finish, even trumping the Vertex 3 drives.

Crucial's m4 takes a more even-handed approach. It performs well in 4 KB and 512 KB transfers. More impressive, it consistently outperforms the beta sample of OCZ's Vertex 3 Pro. The SSD 320 also turns in much better performance. This time, it shows a 50% improvement over the X25-M.

If you own an older SSD, notice how far behind the first-generation of OCZ's SandForce drives fall.

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