Benchmark Results: I/O Performance
At queue depths above two, OCZ's Vertex 3s top our charts. Crucial's m4, based on a revised Marvell 6 Gb/s controller, outperforms the C300 at lower queue depths, but performance drops at queue depths higher than eight.
The third generation of Intel's mainstream drive, the SSD 320, performs much better than its X25-M (G2) predecessor. Performance characteristics are similar. As queue depths increase, IOPS remains fairly constant. However, as the ten-channel configuration becomes fully populated, we no longer see a performance penalty. At queue depths above 16, the IOPS of the SSD 320 starts to drop dramatically. As we approach an extremely high queue depth, the performance of Intel's X25-M and SSD 320 converge.
Notice that the performance of the (34 nm) Agility 2 is higher than both Vertex 2s. This isn't an anomaly. We started to see this trend after we upgraded to firmware 1.28. We continue to see this trend with firmware 1.32 throughout all of out tests. Unfortunately, we don't know how the newest (25 nm) Agility 2s compare in relation.
Our file server pattern is dominated by the Vertex 3 Pro and Vertex 3. Meanwhile, Intel’s SSD 320 trails Samsung's 470. Crucial's m4 shows similar performance to the C300, but it falls short at queue depths higher than four.
Intel’s X25-M, even after repeated tests, outright fails this test at queue depths above two.
OCZ's newest Vertex 2 suffers in our Web server workload, which reads a ton of small blocks to mimic the behavior of a Web server sending similarly-small files to client machines. Performance is better than the older JMicron-based G.Skill FM-25S2S, but OCZ's move to 25 nm still falls short of the performance seen with the 34 nm-based Agility 2 and Vertex 2. This is consistent with what we must come to expect from the Vertex 2 until OCZ rectifies the ECC-related overhead first discussed in The OCZ Vertex 2 Conspiracy: Lost Space, Lost Speed?
The performance of the SSD 320 comes close to the X25-M (G2), but it still falls slightly short at every queue depths. In comparison, Crucial's m4 looks far less attractive. Its performance falls just shy of OCZ's newest Vertex 2. This pales in comparison to the C300, which holds third place.
These tests are again dominated by OCZ’s Vertex 3s. Like our previous benchmarks, we see the (34 nm) Agility 2 outperform both Vertex 2s. The C300 closely follows the newest Vertex 2 at queue depths higher than eight. In comparison, Crucial's m4 outperforms the C300 at lower queue depths, but falls short when the drive’s maximum number of channels is populated.
The SSD 320 has performance similar to the X25-M, though there is some slight variation at very low and high queue depths.