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Results: 4 KB Random Performance And Latency

Micron P420m SSD Review: 1.4 TB Of PCI Express-Attached Storage
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After the success of its P320h, Micron is following up with the P420m, an MLC-based PCI Express x8 add-in card aimed at more read-oriented enterprise customers. How does it compare to the company's SLC-based flagship? We benchmark ours thoroughly.

Even though the P320h has a slight edge on the datasheet, the P420m came away with a close win in random 4 KB read operations.  Both drives absolutely torched the competition. Even the best enterprise-oriented SATA SSDs only hit 90,000 IOPS. You would need eight of them on an efficient RAID controller to come close to the 760,000 IOPS we see from the P420m.

A thread you're going to see from here on out in this story is strange write behavior, both good and bad, from the P420m. When it comes to random 4 KB writes, we end up on the good side. Normally, you need a medium-sized command queue to get writes up to spec. Far fewer than the reads, but still 16-32. The P420m hits its specification at a queue depth of one, though. It didn't seem to matter how many more commands we threw at it; performance remained constant.

Also good is that we're consistently over 110,000 IOPS, blowing past Micron's 95,000 IOPS specification. Again, the P420m tops Intel's SSD 910, but falls short of the P320h and OCZ Z-Drive. Considering the NAND technology and pricing of each device, this is what we'd expect.

The average response times line up well with the random write performance we saw above. Once again, nothing can touch the P320h when it comes to performance consistency. We're a little more troubled by the maximum response time reported by the P420m, though. Normally, high response times are what make us question consistency. On the next page, we will take a closer look.

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  • 0 Hide
    merikafyeah , September 8, 2013 10:42 PM
    Seems like enterprise non-volatile storage is finally starting to approach the speeds of comsumer ram drives:
    http://www.thessdreview.com/our-reviews/romex-fancycache-review-ssd-performance-at-13gbs-and-765000-iops-in-60-seconds-flat/

    Considering that the cost/GB of RAM is about $7/GB, it may not be such a bad idea to use RAM storage + backup generators instead of traditional non-volatile flash nand.
  • 2 Hide
    BasslineJunkie , September 9, 2013 8:38 AM
    Take my money!
  • 2 Hide
    rezzahd , September 9, 2013 9:46 AM
    Maybe once the price drops I would pick one of these up, but I think we all know it will be a while before that happens.
  • 2 Hide
    BasslineJunkie , September 9, 2013 1:53 PM
    Quote:
    Maybe once the price drops I would pick one of these up, but I think we all know it will be a while before that happens.

    Same here. I love the concept but price/gb isn't where it should be. But i do have some extra pci express slots that need filled!
  • 0 Hide
    utomo , September 9, 2013 3:41 PM
    It is good to see good competition like now. keep comparing like this and hope soon we will get the good mature technology. now the SSD still have many improvement ideas. manufacturer need to work harder to win the market which is big.
  • 0 Hide
    ACTechy , September 9, 2013 8:50 PM
    Awesome. Later down the road, when the price falls, these are going to be the thing to have. Really like PCI based SSD.
  • -1 Hide
    urbanman2004 , September 12, 2013 11:07 PM
    TL;DR. I could benefit from something like this saving space on my system. It must have a hefty price
  • 0 Hide
    hakesterman , September 20, 2013 8:28 PM
    i Don't think paying around 600 Dollars for a storage card is feasible.