ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

I/O Performance

There is little point of having an SSD
drive that has blazing sustained reading and writing speeds, if the drive can’t
handle reading and writing of small random files. If you intend to use your new
SSD drive to store and run your operating system, then the drive must be able
to cope with the many small random files that Windows will write to the drive
continually. So I feel it is very important to test how many of these random
files that a drive can handle in one second. I believe that anything over 1,000
I/O’s per second would be enough for most users running a consumer grade
mainstream PC, and should provide a smooth running system. But obviously, the
more I/O’s that a drive can handle, the faster the drive will feel and leave
more headroom for those huge multitasking sessions that users sometimes engage
in.

The things that I will look at are the
total I/O per second and total MB/s.

Partition alignment and sector boundaries

Windows 7 and Vista will automatically
align a partition to 4k boundaries during partition creation, Windows XP won’t.
It is imperative that an SSD’s partition is aligned. Windows XP is also
restricted to sector boundaries, while Windows 7 will use 4k boundaries if it
can. The Intel 510 is 4k boundary aware, and will use these boundaries if
possible. Of course it will also remap LBAs for compatibility with the sector
boundaries so that the drive can be used with Windows XP.

IOMeter allows us to set the sector
boundaries for conducting the tests, and I have therefore set the sector
boundaries at 4K, which means the IOMeter tests are valid for Windows 7 and
Windows Vista users. XP users will not be able to obtain such results.

I will provide a screenshot of the tests on
the review drive for those of you who like to see the actual test result. All
the comparison drive results are represented in the form of graphs.

If any of you would like to see a
screenshot from any IOMeter test on a particular drive, please feel free to
request one, and I’ll post the screenshot in the forum thread.

All the IOMeter tests create a 10GB data
set on the target drive, and each test is run for a duration of 3 minutes.


IOMeter 4K random write test with repeating data.

The first test involves creating continual
4KB random files on the target drive with IOMeter. I use a 4KB file size, as it
is believed that Windows will create and modify many of this size of file
constantly in the background during a typical Windows session. It is said that
most 4K random writes take place at a queue depth of only one, and I have been requested
to include this test in my reviews.

Queue depth 1

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 128GB SSD – 4K random write (QD1)

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

The ADATA SP900 128GB SSD shows some impressive
performance, 68.49 MB/Sec.

Queue depth 4

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 128GB SSD (Queue depth 4)

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

The ADATA SP900 in this test gives a really
impressive performance. It’s the second fastest drive we tested, reaching
264.07MB/s.

Queue depth 32

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 128GB SSD (Queue depth 32)

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

Again in this test, the ADATA SP900 was the
second fastest drive tested.


IOMeter 4K random read test.

If there are many 4k files created, then
that must also mean that many 4k files need to be read. This test measures 4k
reading performance.

It is said that most 4K random reads take
place at a queue depth of only one, and readers have requested that I include
this test in my reviews.

Queue depth 1

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 128GB SSD (Queue depth 1)

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

The ADATA SP900 shows poor performance in this
test. It reaches a speed of 22.49 MB/Sec.

Queue depth 4

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 128GB SSD (Queue depth 4)

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

The ADATA SP900 SSD is showing a poor
performance in this test.

Queue depth 32

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 GB SSD (Queue depth 32)

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

Again the performance of the ADATA SP900 is
only acceptable.


IOMeter 512KB write test with repeating data.

Sequential writing performance is also very
important; in this test sequential writing performance is measured.

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 128GB SSD 512K Sequential write with repeating data

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

500.56 MB/s is a very impressive result for
the ADATA SP900 SSD.


IOMeter 512KB read test.

This test measures 512k sequential reading
performance.

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 128GB SSD – 512K sequential reading test

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

Again the ADATA SP900 was able to demonstrate
a great result with sequential reading.


IOMeter Workstation simulation (outstanding I/Os = 64).

When running applications you will find
that there is a mixture of small random files and larger sequential files,
being created and read. Not only that, it isn’t just one file at a time. In
this test I measure a simulated workstation pattern, with a queue depth of 64
(threaded).

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review
ADATA SP900 128GB SSD – Workstation simulation

ADATA SP900 128GB SSD Review

The ADATA SP900 SSD is in the middle, and
it achieves speeds of 139.18MB/s.

Summary

The ADATA SP900 gives some very impressive
results when it comes to sequential data, however it struggles with random data.
 The overall performance of the ADATA SP900 is good.

 

Now let’s head to the next page where we
will look at how the ADATA SP900 SSD performs using a brand new benchmarking
application….