Samsung Goes 6 Gb/s: Is The 830-Series SSD King Of The Hill?

Benchmark Results: 128 KB Sequential Performance

SSD manufacturers often want to stress random performance because they clearly decimate conventional hard drives. Sequential performance is a little different, but still represents an important aspect of the performance picture.

But how pervasive is sequential performance for the average user? Take a look at the graph below; it shows the distribution of all the seek distances from one of our traces.

The first thing you'll notice is that there's a preponderance of activity zero sectors away, which means that our trace is made mostly of back-to-back requests, or sequential I/O. If the trace was 100% random, none of the accesses would be zero sectors away.

Intel's 250 GB SSD 510 leads the pack in reads, but the 256 GB 830 follows closely behind. Samsung's sequential write performance, though, is simply impressive. The company's latest SSD unseats the HyperX and Vertex 3 for top billing. Kingston and OCZ both employ SandForce's compression technology to reach that level of performance; Samsung doesn't enjoy the benefit of DuraWrite technology. Instead, the 830 relies on its improved controller and the Toggle-mode NAND that we already know yields the best throughput for its performance.

Don't be completely dissuaded by these lower performance results. They're not new-in-box numbers; they represent steady-state performance, which changes the behavior of the SSD. This is a particularly bad scenario because the testing happens after each drive is filled with incompressible data, but before idle garbage collection is able to help recover performance.

As most of you know, SandForce's architecture is most efficient when it's operating on compressible data. In the real world, that's actually a pretty realistic expectation of what it'd be working with most often, making these results, again, a worst-case situation for the SF-2200-based drives.

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    Top Comments
  • pbrigido
    With all of these fast SSDs coming to market, I can only hope that the competition starts to drive down prices soon.
    20
  • kikireeki
    When will we be seeing articles like: SSD price slashed 50%?
    20
  • Other Comments
  • pbrigido
    With all of these fast SSDs coming to market, I can only hope that the competition starts to drive down prices soon.
    20
  • Anonymous
    I still opt for the M4 in all the enthusiast builds I do!

    It boils down to reliability, not one hiccup on M4 yet (or any crucial drive Ive installed), 4/5 Sandforce drives I have installed have had some form of callback problem to resolve once deployed, mostly requiring firmware updates, but a few failed drives as well!

    Mind you, still better than the early Corsair force Series I used, every single one failed! Stopped using them quick!

    Am tempted by OCZ, once they have reliability on their side I will give them a go again!
    0
  • Anonymous
    Would love to see an article addressing Sandforce controller problems people have been experiencing.
    0
  • mark_hamill
    Would love to see an article addressing Sandforce controller problems people have been experiencing.
    6
  • JamesSneed
    Looks like a really nice SSD. Samsung has one of the best validation proceses along with Intel and Crucial so I really don't expect people to have issues like they do with OCZ drives. Now the real question how much will it be on the egg?

    I saw this quote below in the summary and laughed as nobody in there right mind would use a basic MLC drive in a database server. So Samsung tuned the drive for what it will be used in ,desktops, good.
    "Although we'd probably think twice before picking this as our first choice for a database server, it does just fine in an enthusiast's machine."
    3
  • kikireeki
    When will we be seeing articles like: SSD price slashed 50%?
    20
  • JohnnyLucky
    great review. now we just have to wait and see how the ssd will hold up over the long haul. If it is anything like the 470, then it should be problem free.
    -1
  • alikum
    Make it $1 per GB at least
    0
  • beenthere
    We'll see how this series of Samsung SSDs fair. The previous gen was a nightmare of problems so I don't think Samsung's validation process is any better that the rest of the SSD suppliers - which is sad when Samsung controls everything including NAND production. It's amazing that we still have SSDs NOT readt for Prime Time.
    -3
  • AppleBlowsDonkeyBalls
    beenthereWe'll see how this series of Samsung SSDs fair. The previous gen was a nightmare of problems so I don't think Samsung's validation process is any better that the rest of the SSD suppliers - which is sad when Samsung controls everything including NAND production. It's amazing that we still have SSDs NOT readt for Prime Time.


    Proof? I think you just pulled this out of your ass or from someone's that told you some story. The 470 series was VERY reliable.
    2
  • Kamab
    I've stuck with Intel and crucial drives on rigs that I had any decision on, but it's always nice to see a little competition. I expect prices will continue to drop pretty linearly over the next few years.
    0
  • David 617
    ahh, its always refreshing to see a newer and faster SSD.
    0
  • yurim
    What is the physical height of the drive, is it 7 or 9.5 mm? I want to know if it will fit in a ThinkPad x200.
    0
  • acku
    yurimWhat is the physical height of the drive, is it 7 or 9.5 mm? I want to know if it will fit in a ThinkPad x200.


    7mm but it comes with a spacer to fit 9.5mm
    0
  • belardo
    Performance matters, but reliability over-rules that.

    Even today, I would NOT use OCZ drives on any computer. Yeah, they are generally the fastest drives on the market, but I'd rather get an intel, even an M2-X25. The return rates for ALL drives, other than intel... are bad. Samsung is worst in performances and tools. But this new drive... we'll have to see over time.
    -2
  • cmartin011
    Another two years before we meet dollar 1gb range for high performance ssd
    0
  • ikyung
    belardoPerformance matters, but reliability over-rules that.Even today, I would NOT use OCZ drives on any computer. Yeah, they are generally the fastest drives on the market, but I'd rather get an intel, even an M2-X25. The return rates for ALL drives, other than intel... are bad. Samsung is worst in performances and tools. But this new drive... we'll have to see over time.

    Really? Hmm, this is the first time I heard something negative about the 470series SSD. Everytime I read a SSD article the 470series always had good reviews on solid reliability.
    0
  • JohnnyLucky
    belardoPerformance matters, but reliability over-rules that.Even today, I would NOT use OCZ drives on any computer. Yeah, they are generally the fastest drives on the market, but I'd rather get an intel, even an M2-X25. The return rates for ALL drives, other than intel... are bad. Samsung is worst in performances and tools. But this new drive... we'll have to see over time.



    I have googled every which way and cannot find any references to any major problems or issues with the 470 series that is similar to what other brands have been going through.
    0
  • boletus
    I'll be watching the customer feedback on objective forums wrt reliability (certainly not mfgr-reported failure rates, which Tom's, and reality, have demonstrated to be useless). If these new Sammys can approach Intel's level of customer satisfaction, it will be a great step forward for SSD technology. If not, well just another pipe dream for those that value reliability over speed.
    -2
  • beenthere
    All you need to do is read the actual owner reviews to know that Samsung a has had a ton of problems with their SSDs, similar to the other SSD suppliers. See Newegg, Samsung, etc. for user reports. I sure hope these folks finally invest the necessary effort to correct all of these SSD issues or I'm not buying their crap.
    -2