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SandForce SF-1200: Does Lower Capacity Mean Lower Performance? (Page 8)

By Chris Ramseyer from Jun 21, 2010 @ 23:08 CDT
Manufacturer: My Digital Discount

PCMark Vantage - Hard Disk Tests

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.0.0
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PCMark Vantage is the first objective hardware performance benchmark for PCs running 32 and 64 bit versions of Microsoft Windows Vista. PCMark Vantage is perfectly suited for benchmarking any type of Microsoft Windows Vista PC from multimedia home entertainment systems and laptops to dedicated workstations and high-end gaming rigs. Regardless of whether the benchmarker is an artist or an IT Professional, PCMark Vantage shows the user where their system soars or falls flat, and how to get the most performance possible out of their hardware. PCMark Vantage is easy enough for even the most casual enthusiast to use yet supports in-depth, professional industry grade testing.

FutureMark has developed a good set of hard disk tests for their PCMark Vantage Suite. Windows users can count on Vantage to show them how a drive will perform in normal day to day usage scenarios. For most users these are the tests that matter since many of the old hat ways to measure performance have become ineffective to measure true Windows performance.


HDD1 - Windows Defender
HDD2 - Gaming
HDD3 - Windows Photo Gallery
HDD4 - Vista Startup
HDD5 - Windows Movie Maker
HDD6 - Windows Media Center
HDD7 - Windows Media Player
HDD8 - Application Loading

Every time I get to this point of a review or article I start to hear big bass drums pounding in the back of my mind. The moment of truth for most Windows desktop users for their day-to-day activities, the stuff everyone uses the most.

I am on the verge of calling this one inconclusive since the 100 and 120GB drives are running different firmware than the 60 and 240GB drives. We can still analyse the 60 and 240GB performance on their own since they are full retail products with retail firmware.

With that in mind, the only test that we saw a significant difference in was the Windows Media Center Test and it actually shows the 60GB model running the test a bit faster. Since we are talking about real world, inside of Windows with overhead numbers above 200 MB/s in some cases a 5% margin of error goes a long way. My determination is that in Windows while running day-to-day tasks that there is little to no performance decrease with a smaller capacity Vertex 2.

Staying at the bottom end of the chart, we see the smallest Vertex 2 outperforming the X25-M G2 80GB SSD in all tests, many by a significant margin. Now let's set the Intel aside and look at the VelociRaptor 600GB and how it compares with the 60GB Vertex 2.

Doubters of SSDs pull up a chair and take a look. My favourite test to look at in this series is the top, dark blue bar. This is application loading, like when you double click on an icon and the speed in which your drive is able to read all of those little files that need to be opened to get things going. The Vertex 2 E 60GB can do around 191MB/s due to its ability to rip through those small files like a fresh razor blade through paper. The dinosaur on the other hand takes a bit longer to do the same task; when I say a bit I mean more than 180MB/s difference. If that didn't send a picture through your head, then how about in black and white; 191 to 9. If you are a sports fan then try to link for clarification.

If I went on and on about it for 10 pages, it would still not even compare.

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