Consumer SSD Battle: WD, Kingston, OCZ, Intel

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PERFORMANCE

A Windows 7 image loaded with our test suite was cloned to drive and our entire test suite was run start to finish 3 times with a reboot in between runs. Hard drives were defragmented after each run as well. The best times were collected for comparison.

Boot and loading times are were SSDs excel with all of the models tested posting significant gains over their hard drive brethren. Even performance hard drives like the newest WD VelociRaptor and Caviar Black fall short, especially in boot time. Among the SSDs, the differences were too small to be considered significant.

In our application tests, the SiliconEdge edge out the Vertex 2 and the Kingston in combined time to completion, notably excelling in the TrueCrypt test. The X25-V had an oddly disastrous showing, putting up an okay result in the ExactFile test but getting absolutely clobbered in TrueCrypt, posting a higher time than any other drive tested, including 5400 RPM laptop hard drives we left off the chart.

When copying files to itself, the WD and OCZ drives rose to the top, with the Kingston besting both with small files but lagging with large ones. The Intel fell behind considerably. The X25-V's rated sustained write speed is only 35 MB/s, very low even for a budget SSD and both the TrueCrypt and Large File copy tests involve writing big chunks of data.

Timed installs of PowerDVD and 3DMark06 saw the X25-V falling behind some mechanical hard drives once again, this time dragging the SiliconEdge along with it for the ride. The Kingston and Vertex 2 split top installation speed with the two applications.

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