Samsung M9T 2TB (2.5-inch) & Seagate SSHD 2TB

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Real World Performance

Our real world performance testing begins with a Windows 7 image, loaded with our test suite, being cloned to a 50GB partition at the beginning of each drive. The suite is run start to finish three times with a defragmentation (except for SSDs and hybrid drives) and reboot between runs. Average times were collected for comparison. For hybrid drives, we perform six runs with only the last three averaged to give it some time to learn and cache frequently used files.

The SSHD is noticeably faster in our loading tests than the rest of the field, but the boot time is still quite slow compared to a real SSD (most complete this task in about 10 seconds). The M9T, as expected, places last, with particularly long delays during boot and loading Far Cry 2.

Along with the other 7200 RPM models, the SSHD excells at our application tests. The M9T has a decent showing in TrueCrypt, but it bogs down substantially during the ExactFile test, putting it at the bottom of the pack once again.

Both drives deliver middling performance in the file copy test, but for a notebook drive, the M9T acquits itself nicely, putting a considerable distance between itself and the other 2.5 inch models compared.

Our installation tests are usually characterized by very tight results, often with margins of fractions of a second. This time the standings are more decisive as both drives take a few seconds longer than average to get PowerDVD installed.

To get a sense of the overall performance of the drives, we've given each model a proportional score in each real world benchmark series (loading, application, file copying, and installation), with each set and each individual test within, equally weighted. The scale has been adjusted with the Seagate Enterprise Class v4, the fastest 7200 RPM drive we've tested, as our reference point at 100 points. SSDs are depicted in purple, 3.5 inch drives in blue, and 2.5 inch drives in green.

Buoyed by strong loading times, the SSHD 2TB scored 86.1 points putting it smack dab between the Barracuda 3TB (essentially an older 3TB version of the same drive without NAND), and the WD Se 4TB, an expensive Enterprise model. However, the slowest SSD on this chart is more than 50 points ahead, so while the NAND Flash certainly helps, there's only so much it can do. The M9T 2TB scores 67.2 which is about what you would expect from a 2.5 inch 5400 RPM mode. Incidentally, it finishes one place ahead of the Momentus XT 500GB, Seagate's first hybrid style drive.

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