SSD RAID: Do You Want A Cheap Array Or One Larger Drive?

Benchmark Results: Throughput, IOMeter Streaming, CrystalDiskMark

Enthusiasts are probably most interested in this chart. While a single Kingston SSDNow V 30 GB delivers between 218 MB/s and 57 MB/s, an array with two of these drives maintains 400-359 MB/s and four of the Kingston SSDs will give you 699-610 MB/s. We’re looking at a 3.2x improvement for maximum sequential reads and a 10.7x increase for minimum transfer rates. This means that the four-drive RAID array can actually sustain much better minimum performance.

Zalman’s N-series SSD reaches read throughput that is typical for a SandForce drive. You get great performance, but the drive doesn’t break records.

In the write performance test, the four-drive RAID array is the only one to reach 300+ MB/s maximum write throughput. However, the average (and especially the minimum performance) is even below of what you get from the Zalman N-series or other SandForce-based SSDs. Also note that a two-drive Kingston SSDNow V 30 GB array or even the individual drive suffers from slower write performance numbers.

The streaming reads and writes tests by Iometer confirm our h2benchw findings; the same applies to the write tests.

Results: CrystalDiskMark Sequential Reads/Writes

The CrystalDiskMark shows slightly better results for the RAID array. Keep in mind that these results are always only maximum results. Performance drops, which may occur, are not reflected.