Crucial M4 64GB: Solid-State on a Budget

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Synthetic Test Results

Though our timed benchmark tests do a fair job of simulating performance in real world situations, it doesn't tell the whole story. Synthetic tests like HD Tune and CrystalDiskMark help fill the gap. Note: on SSDs, a full format was conducted before running these tests.

HD Tune's main benchmark clearly illustrates the disproportionate read and write speeds. In sequential read performance, the M4 64GB came very close to the Kingston HyperX 240GB, the fastest SandForce drive we've tested. In sequential writes, its average speed was atrocious, well below 100 MB/s which is slower than current 7200 RPM hard drives. Access times were excellent though.

CrystalDiskMark uncovered more of the same. Using a block size of 512K and a random data set, its sequential and random read speeds were excellent, challenging the top SSDs compared. Writes speeds were behind by 40% to 65% depending on the drive.

Random read/writes with the smaller 4K block size gave us similar results as well. Good reads, poor writes.

Energy Efficiency

The energy efficiency of the Crucial M4 64GB was poor compared to other SSDs. Its power consumption was more typical of a 5400 RPM notebook hard drive. As a notebook upgrade, don't expect any noticeable battery life improvement.

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