When it comes to cheaper SSD devices, The Kingston SSDNow V series doesn’t need special introduction. As all other hardware components that are in the value class, these also have a solid ratio of price and quality. Although, as we know, favorable prices and SSD cards rarely go together.
Here we tested the SV300S37A/120G model, which in translation means that it belongs to the SSDNow V series and that it gives 120 GB of storage space to the user. There are also the SATA 3 interface with the support for SATA 2, and more importantly, the SandForce controller, that enables much better performances when it is used with compatible plates. By the looks of it, this model is not different from the other members of the SSDNow family. It is packed in a gray housing that is usual for 2,5 inch devices, which makes it suitable for an upgrade of the laptop computer. For the installation in the housing desktop an adapter is used in the form of special consoles. As it is common for this series, a housing with a USB cable that turns it in an external disc comes with this device. Getting this device will cost about a $100, and that is surely a good news.
When it comes to performances, the genealogy of the device told us not to expect to much out of it, but still, the presence of the SandForce controller bugged us, as well as the sticker on the packing that says that it can reach 450 MB/s. The testing involved synthetic tests with the programs PCMark Vantage SiSoftware Sandra, HDTune, ATTO Bench AS SSD and CrystalDiskMark.
Let us start with the praises. First of all, almost all programs showed that the SSDNow V300 can achieve speeds greater than 200 MB/s in a sequential approach. The maximum speed reaches even 250 MB/s on a plate with a Z68 chipset. Far from the promised 450 MB/s but still very solid.
PCMark Vantage gave the device a 38158 score for the Z68 chipset, while the P55 chipset had a score of 31773. That is also a pretty solid performance, and also an improvement in comparison to earlier devices from this series. But, as far as PCMark is concerned, the results are only slightly better than the 2.5-inch external drives. How come?
We looked for the answer in programs that simulate various kinds of strain on SSD devices. They are AS SSD and CrystalDiskMark. The results point to a fact that the speed of these devices drastically drops while working with smaller blocks of data. That is a property of all SSD devices, but the efficiency should increase through simultaneous demands for access (Overlapped I/O). In the case of the SSDNow V300 example that we tested, in the best case on the Z68 chipset, the maximum speed was 148 MB/s, while on the plate a weak 78 MB/s was barely extracted.
The overall impression that the Kingston SSDNow V300 made on us is relatively lukewarm. Although the SandForce controller gives a lot of performance, you shouldn’t expect miracles. It is still a device from the lowest class, which means a lot of compromises to secure a lower price. All in all, a real entry level SSD device and a solid choice for laptop upgrading, that traditionally contain slow 2,5 inch hard drives, and not with a big price.
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