ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB 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 SSDs partition is aligned. Windows XP is also
restricted to sector boundaries, while Windows 7 will use 4k boundaries if it
can. The ADATA SU800 256GB SSD 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.

Queue depth 1

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD (Queue depth 1)

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

The result is very good.

Queue depth 4

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD (Queue depth 4)

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

Again the result for the ADATA SU800 is
very good.

Queue depth 32

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD (Queue depth 32)

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

We can clearly see that the drive doesn’t
like high queue depths, but in general most of its use will be for much lower
queue depths from 1 to 4, but still I would like to see a better result .

4K random write queue depth profile

For this
test I used various queue depths from 1 – 32 to give you an idea how this SSD
performs at different queue depths. For a normal desktop user, with lightweight
multitasking, the queue depth will rarely rise above 2. For heavy multitasking,
the queue depth is unlikely to rise above a value of 8.

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

The performance of the ADATA SU800 256GB
SSD is right in the middle of the chart.


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.

Queue depth 1

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD (Queue depth 1)

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

Another very good result to start this part
of the test.

Queue depth 4

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD (Queue depth 4)

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

The ADATA SU800 gives a good result but a
slightly higher number would be welcomed.

Queue depth 32

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD (Queue depth 32)

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

Again we can clearly see that the ADATA
SU800 256GB SSD does not like high queue depths. The result is not good.

4K random read queue depth profile.     

This test
shows how the review drive scales with increasing queue depths.

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

The ADATA SU800 256GB SSD again is the
middle of the chart, and we can see that the drive doesn’t like the high queue
depths.


IOMeter 512KB write test with repeating data.

Sequential writing performance is also very
important, and in this test I will be measuring the sequential writing
performance of the drive.


ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD – 512K Sequential write with repeating data

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

The result is very good for a 256GB SSD.


IOMeter 512KB read test.

This test measures 512k sequential reading
performance.

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD – 512K sequential reading test

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

Sequential read data is the part of these
tests where the drive shines. 557.28MB/Sec is an excellent result.


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 Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review


ADATA SU800 256GB SSD – Workstation simulation

ADATA Ultimate SU800 256GB SSD review

The result is good for the ADATA SU800
256GB SSD.

Summary

The performance of the ADATA SU800 256GB
SSD is good with random data but as queue depths increase the performance stays
the same. The sequential results were both very good.

Now let’s head to the next page where we
will look at how the ADATA SU800 256GB SSD performs using Anvil’s Storage
utilities….