Specifications, Availability and Pricing
Today we are looking at the lowest cost PCIe drive available which also happens to have the lowest capacity. Filled with four 32GB G-Monster V3 solid state drives and a PROMISE SATA / SAS RAID controller that has 256MB cache built in, everything is wrapped in a sleek package that looks more like a recent NVIDIA graphics card than anything from a storage company.
The claimed specifications for all four capacity models is pretty much the same, a generic 1000 MB/s read and write speed are what PhotoFast has labeled the G-Monster PCIe line with. I would think that each array would perform a bit differently, but this is the information we are presented with. The G-Monster V3 series of drives have a claimed 230MB/s read speed and 160MB/s write speed and use Indilinx Barefoot controllers. These numbers give us serious doubt about the claimed 1000MB/s read and write speed of the PCIe drive, but PhotoFast could have given the drives a little boost since there has been several firmware updates for the Barefoot drives since they were released and the claimed numbers were generated.
Many months ago we tested the Fusion-io ioDrive and to this date we have still not be able to boot from the drive. The PhotoFast PCIe drive is bootable, so you can run your operating system off of this high speed product.
DVNation, our one stop shop from Texas carries the G-Monster - PROMISE PCIe SSD. They list the 128GB model that we are testing here today at 1399.00 USD. This is actually a pretty decent price once you figure out everything you are getting; four SSDs and a RAID controller. We will have to look at the performance numbers to see if the combination put together by PhotoFast gives us performance that is on par with the high cost. There is some value here, though; certainly you wouldn't be able to go out and buy four V3 class solid state drives and a RAID controller of this caliber for 1400 Dollars. PhotoFast also manufactures a 256, 512 and 1TB version of the PCIe SSD.