Real-World Software Performance
PCMark 8 Real-World Software Performance
For details on our real-world software performance testing, please click here.
All three drives deliver nearly identical single-application performance. This is common when we separate SATA and PCIe storage products.
Total Storage Bandwidth
The combined results, shown in throughput, demonstrate a wider gap between the three SSDs. Toshiba's XG3 trails the SM951-AHCI in many of the timed tests, which is reflected in the throughput results. The same drive in OEM form isn't far enough behind to be considered slow. Its performance is still quite a bit better than any SATA 6Gb/s competitor.
PCMark 8 Advanced Workload Performance
To learn how we test advanced workload performance, please click here.
Moving over to heavier workloads, where internal garbage collection and other wear-leveling schemes come into play, the XG3 fares well. This is basically what you'd see in write-heavy workloads and when the SSD is nearly full of data.
Access Time Test
The access times for all three low-capacity M.2 drives are greater than what we see from higher-capacity PCIe-based models. It's possible to get better latency with premium SATA SSDs like Samsung's 850 Pro and SanDisk's Extreme Pro. This is really the challenge facing low-capacity PCIe drives claiming premium performance. Nobody wants to pay big money for 128GB.
Latency is arguably more important than throughput on the desktop. You feel a drive's latency; it's what makes you think a computer is fast. There are only a few SATA SSDs that deliver lower latency than the XG3. But given today's pricing, you can find SSDs with twice as much capacity for the same amount of money.