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Crucial m4 256GB SATA 6G SSD Preview and Next Gen 2x0+ GB Shootout

By: Chris Ramseyer | SSDs in Storage | Posted: Mar 28, 2011 10:37 am
Manufacturer: Crucial



We would like to thank the following companies for supplying and supporting us with our test system hardware and equipment: AVADirect, GIGABYTE, Cooler Master, LSI, Corsair and Noctua.


You can read more about TweakTown's Storage Product Testing Workstation and the procedures followed to test products in this article.


To get the most out of your next generation SATA 6G drive you will need a motherboard based on Sandy Bridge. The P67 chipset has native SATA 6G capability, but only two ports. GIGABYTE set us up with the new GA-P67A-UD5 for our next generation SATA 6G testing and we've come to really like what this board has to offer. Intel also sent over their new Core i5 processor to accompany our other class leading products that make up the TweakTown Storage Product Review System.


Today we will focus on the Crucial m4 256GB SSD and compare it to both current and future products. SATA 6G is the future and will enable SSDs to really distance themselves from the traditional platter drives in both potential and real world performance.


ATTO Baseline Performance


Version and / or Patch Used: 2.34


ATTO is used by many disk manufacturers to determine the read and write speeds that will be presented to customers.




ATTO is globally recognized as the standard in which manufacturers determine their published drive speeds. Here we see that Crucial is really selling the m4 short and conservatively rating the drive at only 415MB/s read, when in fact the 256GB drive we tested delivered a solid 450MB/s. It isn't everyday that we see conservative ratings (especially with 25nm flash). If Crucial would rate the m4 at 450MB/s read I wouldn't object since this is how the rating is generally determined.


The same can be said for the write speed. Our sample produced 280MB/s write and Crucial rates their m4 at just 260MB/s. Our observed 4K writes were measured at nearly 190MB/s; that in conjunction with the increased 4K IOPS means the m4 will be a very fast drive for day to day, desktop performance.


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