ADATA XPG SX300 128GB & Intel 525 Series 180GB mSATA SSDs

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Real World Performance

A Windows 7 image loaded with our test suite was cloned to a 50GB partition at the beginning of each drive after a complete format. Our entire test suite was run start to finish three times with a defragmentation (SSDs and hybrid drives excluded) and reboot between runs. Average times were collected for comparison.

The SX300 edged out the SX910 128GB and HyperX 3K 120GB by 0.1 and 0.2 seconds respectively to earn the win in our loading tests. The 525 finished more than two seconds slower, headlining a group of less impressive entrants, but overall the gap between fastest and slowest boot time is pretty inconsequential.

In our application tests, the SX300 was average, lagging 5.4% behind in the TrueCrypt test to larger capacity SandForce drives. The 525 had an even tougher time, finishing last overall some 11.5% behind the leaders.

In a reversal of fortune, the 525 found itself in the top three when copying files to itself while the SX300 lagged behind somewhat, but the difference between the two was just a second or so. Both drives were quite quick with small file batches but slower with larger file sets.

Difference in application tests were small overall, but SX300 led by a hair amongst the smaller SandForce drives in installation performance while the larger models and the Samsung 830 had a comfortable cushion installing PowerDVD. The Intel was marginallt behind.

To accurately represent the overall results of our real world performance tests, we gave each model a proportional score in each benchmark series (loading, application, file copy, and installation) with each benchmark set equally weighted. The scale has been adjusted so that among the drives compared, a perfectly average model would score 100 points.

Despite its average results in most of our tests, its excellent loading times pushed the SX300 into 3rd place, just slightly ahead of the Corsair Force GS 240GB while the 525's more lukewarm performance was good for 6th. It's important to note that the differences in scores are minute; in normal use, it would be exceedingly difficult to tell most of these drives apart unless you timed every task performed. There just isn't much difference between the various SandForce models.

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