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Crucial MX200 500GB SSD Review

Crucial MX200 500GB SSD Review
Crucial's newest SSD is slated to replace their best bang for the buck MX100. However, is the MX200 a worthy replacement?
By: Jon Coulter | SSDs in Storage | Posted: Apr 13, 2015 1:58 pm
TweakTown Rating: 92%Manufacturer: Crucial

Introduction

 

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Today, we've got Crucial's newest SSD on the bench. Crucial's MX200 is essentially a second-generation MX100. Crucial's MX100 was and is one of the best performing low-cost SSD's on the market. Right off the bat, we notice that the MX200 differs from the MX100 in that the MX200 has 8 flash packages as opposed to 16 flash packages that the MX100 sports. This means (we think) that the MX100's flash packages have four 64Gbit die per package and the MX200's flash packages have four 128Gbit die per flash package. The MX100 is outfitted with sixteen 32GB flash packages, and the MX200 eight 64GB flash packages. The MX100 employs zero over-provisioning; the MX200 utilizes a small amount of over-provisioning, resulting in a far greater endurance (Terabytes Written or TBW) rating.

 

That small amount of overprovisioning combined with high quality Micron NAND results in Crucial's MX200 delivering class leading endurance. The 500GB capacity point MX200 we are testing today has an endurance rating of 160 TBW. That's huge, in fact, that's even better than Samsung's 3D-NAND powered 850 EVO. As a point of comparison, the MX100 has a TBW rating of 72TB. Crucial's MX100 has blistering speeds at a 512GB capacity point, but lacks compelling write speed at the 250GB capacity point. Crucial has addressed this performance disparity by employing a proprietary SLC programed caching layer called Dynamic Write Acceleration (DWA). Another differentiator between the MX100 and the MX200 is that the MX200 is available in a 1TB capacity. The MX100's highest capacity point is 512GB.

 

Crucial addresses performance on the MX200 in comparison to certain competing solutions, in that the MX200 reads and writes compressed and uncompressed data at the same blistering speed. Compression slowdown is a real issue because almost all data is compressed in one form or another. Crucial's aforementioned proprietary DWA caching technology enhances performance: DWA differs from competing emulated SLC layer solutions, because it is dynamic in nature. Crucial's caching layer is self-adjusting, so it doesn't fill up resulting in a marked drop in write speed like we see from other emulated SLC layer solutions. DWA is exclusive to the MX200's 2.5" 250GB SSD, and both the 250GB and the 500GB mSATA and M.2 drives.

 

Crucial addresses data protection with a multi-pronged solution. The MX200 provides host power-loss protection with on-board capacitors that provide enough power to flush in-flight data to the drives non-volatile NAND array. Crucial's MX200 utilizes RAIN parity technology as well as host power-loss measures to insure data integrity is on a level rarely seen in consumer-class SSD's. These measures are just part of Crucial's exclusive 4-layer data defense scheme.

 

Crucial's MX200 is thermally protected by Crucial's Adaptive Thermal Protection technology. This technology dynamically adjusts storage component activity based on how the drive is being used, allowing your MX200 to stay nice and cool. To keep your data safe from unwanted intrusion and theft, the MX200 can be encrypted with AES 256-bit encryption. Crucial's MX200 meets or exceeds all industry encryption standards, including IEEE-1667 compliance, TCG Opal 2.0 and Microsoft eDrive.

 

With all these features, Crucial's MX200 is a well-rounded SSD. However, we are curious to see how a reduction in parallelism (going from 16 flash packages to 8) will affect performance, or if it will have any affect at all. Let's see, shall we?

 

 

Specifications

 

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Crucial's MX200 SATA III SSD is available in three capacity sizes: 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB. Sequential performance of the MX200 is listed at 555/500 read/write. Random read/write performance is listed at up to 100,000/87,000 IOPS at all capacity points. Of particular interest is the high endurance guarantee that the MX200 carries. The 250GB capacity MX200 comes with a TBW guarantee of 80TB, the 500GB capacity a TBW guarantee of 160TB and the 1TB model a guaranteed TBW of 320TB. This is class leading endurance and something virtually unseen from consumer based SSD's to this point.

 

Crucial's MX200 SATA III SSD comes in a 2.5" x 7mm Z-height form factor as well as an mSATA model and and (2) M.2 SATA interfaced form factors. The 2.5" SSD ships with a spacer should you need to increase the drives thickness to 9.5mm. Crucial includes an Acronis key as a value add. Crucial backs the MX200 with an industry standard three-year warranty or TBW allowed during the three-year warranty period, whichever comes first.

 

 

PRICING: You can find the Crucial MX200 500GB SATA 2.5 Inch Internal Solid State Drive for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link to see the very latest pricing for the best deal.

 

United States: The Crucial MX200 500GB SATA 2.5 Inch Internal Solid State Drive retails for $199.99 at Amazon.

 

Australia: The Crucial MX200 500GB SATA 2.5 Inch Internal Solid State Drive retails for $349 at PLE Computers.

 

Canada: The Crucial MX200 500GB SATA 2.5 Inch Internal Solid State Drive retails for CDN$258.83 at Amazon Canada.

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