This SSD from ADATA is based on the LSI controller and 25nm Intel-Micron NAND flash components. Its price is mid-range, and performance was about average for the 120GB class. ADATA rates max read and write speeds as 550MB/s and 530MB/s, respectively, and max 4K write IOPS up to 85K.
In addition to the 128GB model we tested, 64GB, 256GB, and 512GB versions are also available from ADATA, but the 128GB size is the current market mainstream.
The ADATA ASX900S3’s performance was average in its category; on the AS SSD Benchmark, read speeds were close to the manufacturer rating, but write speeds fell short. Its overall score was about average.
Crystal Disk Mark produced similar results to the AS SSD Benchmark. Read speeds were on the mark, while 1024K sequential write, 512K, 4K, and 4K QD32 speeds were lower but still within the normal range.
With HD TunePro, both read and write speeds showed fluctuations, with write speeds showing greater variances than read speeds. However, max speeds were closer to manufacturer ratings, at 402.7MB/s.
IOPS count77384.54. Surprisingly, ADATA ASX900S3 was the winner in the 128GB category for the IOMETER test, with a wide gap over the runner-up.
Overall, this SSD from ADATA shows average performance, but its IOPS score on IOMETER blows the competition out of the water.
Apacer SAFD25A-M 120G
Apacer provided its new SATA3 SSD for this review, which comes in two versions. The SAFD25A uses SLC-based NAND flash, while the SAFD25A-M, which we tested, uses SanDisk 19nm MLC-based NAND flash; making it the only SSD in the 128GB category that uses 19nm technology. The SAFD25A-M is based on the JM667 controller, and also comes at a more competitive price. Apacer rates read and write speeds at 475MB/s and 360MB/s, respectively, and IOPS at 50K.
The SAFD25A-M ran smoothly on the AS SSD Benchmark; read speeds saw mild fluctuations, but nothing too drastic. Read speeds were higher than Apacer’s specs, but write speeds were slightly lower. Overall score was 870, placing it second behind the OCZ Vertex 4.
As for the Crystal Disk Mark results, the SAFD25A-M’s sequential read speed exceeded manufacturer specs again, while write speeds approached Apacer’s figure. 4K and 4K QD32 speeds were satisfactory as well.
HD TunePro results were similar, good indication that the SAFD25A-M’s performance is consistent.
IOPS count 94028.70. Apacer’s SAFD25A-M came in second in the IOMETER test, behind ADATA.
As the only 19nm-based SSD in this review, the SAFD25A-M’s performance was not bad. Results were consistent across different benchmarks, and on par with Apacer’s ratings.
TeamGroup Ultra L2
TeamGroup’s Ultra L2 SSD is ultrathin at 7mm, enabling it to be used in both standard notebooks and ultrabooks. Both the Ultra L2’s controller and NAND flash are made by SanDisk. TeamGroup lists the Ultra L2’s max read and write speeds at 450MB/s and 350 MB/s, and 4K random read and write speeds at 530 IOPS and 9400 IOPS.
The Ultra L2’s As SSD Benchmark random read and write results were on par with manufacturer specs, but 4K and 4K-64Thrd performance was not as strong as expected, write speeds in particular, which led to an overall lower score.
Crystal Disk Mark results were similar to AS SSD figures. 1024K sequential read and write speeds were strong, while 4K and 4K QD32 results were significantly slower, most likely due to the controller.
The Ultra L2’s HD TunePro results were not as strong as on other tests, but still satisfactory. Read speeds were on par with the others, but write speeds saw some variation.
IOPS count29730.46. The Ultra L2’s IOMETER scores are in the top of its category.
TeamGroup’s Ultra L2 performs well in random read and write, but its Achilles’ heel lies in 4K and 4K QD32, bringing its overall score down.
Carry Apotop S3A
Carry Technology’s newest Apotop S3A differs from its predecessor, the S3B, in that it uses 6Gb/s STAT3, which improves transfer speeds. The S3A comes in four models: 60GB, 120GB, 240GB, and 480GB.
In this review we will take a look at both the 128GB and the 256GB models. Carry Technology rates max read and write speeds at 550MB/s and 520MB/s, and the SSDs support Windows 7 TRIM command. Controllers are LSI SandForce SF-2281, and NAND flash is from Intel.
The AS SSD Benchmark graph shows some fluctuation in read speed, while write speed shows an increasing curve. The Apotop S3A’s overall score is 530, barely passable with so much competition on the market; write speeds did not quite meet the manufacturer’s rating.
The Apotop S3A’s Crystal Disk Mark scores in the sequential, 512K, and 4K tests were satisfactory, but performance fell in the 4K QD32 test.
The HD TunePro benchmark gave read speeds between 280MB/s and 375MB/s,while write speeds were consistent in the 360MB/s to 400MB/s range.
IOPS count with impressive number 80121.66 Apotop S3A took third place in the IOMETER test.
Carry Technology’s Apotop S3A is a middle of the road SSD; its read and write performance is slightly lower than manufacturer ratings, but not by much.
The Crucial m4 is a very popular SSD; while the brand is not as well known as Intel or OCZ, with a reasonable price and decent performance, consumers have warmed to the product. The m4 comes in several sizes ranging from 64GB to 512GB.
In this review we tested the 128GB and 256GB models against the manufacturer’s rating of 500MB/s and 175MB/s max read and write speeds. The following data is for the 128GB version.
The AS SSD graph shows smooth performance, and read and write speeds are very close to the manufacturer specs. With an overall score of 786, the m4 is second only to the OCZ Vertex 4 in the 120GB category.
The m4’s sequential results on Crystal Disk Mark were strong, while the other results were within the standard range.
HD TunePro results show Crucial’s m4 read speeds are exceptionally consistent, both speed and access time. Write speeds were steady as well, but access time was slightly slow.
IOPS count as 134196.51. While the Crucial m4’s write speeds are not as strong as its read speeds, they still fall within the acceptable range, and its read speeds are very consistent.
OCZ Vertex 4
OCZ products have a solid reputation on the market, and its speeds are generally impressive. For this review OCZ provided two different SSDs, a consumer model and a corporate server model. The Vertex 4 is a very popular product, and OCZ already provides a SATA3 model.
OCZ rates the Vertex 4’s max read and write speeds at 560MB/s and 430MB/s, the highest specs in this review of 120GB and up products.
Although write speed shows numerous fluctuations, performance is strong; the fastest in its class.
The Vertex 4’s overall score is 1032, again the best in its class.
Crystal Disk Mark shows the Vertex 4 far outperforms its competitors in terms of write speeds.
The Vertex 4’s write speeds are consistent, access time was slightly long but still average. The write speed fluctuation is interesting – the drop at the end occurred both times the test was run.
IOPS count 49340.67, The OCZ Vertex 4’s performance is impressive. Although the reason for the discrepancy in the HD TunePro write speed is unknown, it has no effect on overall performance, and the Vertex 4 remains the best SSD in the 120GB category.