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Mushkin Source SSD Review

By: Chris Ramseyer | SSDs in Storage | Posted: Jul 27, 2018 2:34 am

A Closer Look + Class Performance Testing

 

Product Comparison

 

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The Mushkin Source will go toe-to-toe with our standard 512GB class products in the comparison charts. We removed the Intel 545s to make room for the Inland Professional SATA III, another low-cost DRAMless SSD.

 

 

The Crucial MX500 and Samsung 860 EVO are the most popular SATA SSDs in this capacity and the SanDisk Ultra 3D / Western Digital Blue 3D also garner a lot of attention. The Plextor M8V, Corsair Neutron XTI, and Toshiba VX500 were also included.

 

Sequential Read Performance

 

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DRAMless SSDs perform well with large block size sequential data - movies, music, large photos and other similar files. The Source follows the rule and fits right in with the best SATA SSDs shipping today in this area of performance.

 

Sequential Write Performance

 

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The two DRAMless SSDs in the charts today both show lower sequential write performance. The Mushkin is slightly faster than the Inland Professional, but both drives are so close that you wouldn't notice writing large block size data.

 

Sustained Sequential Write Performance

 

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The Mushkin Source 500GB doesn't lose a lot of performance moving large amounts of data to the drive. In this test we write 128KB block data at queue depth (QD) 1 until the entire user-available space is full.

 

Random Read Performance

 

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Random read performance is one of the most important areas for Windows users. This is what makes your computer feel "fast" and "snappy". Every drive on these two charts are magnitudes faster than a hard disk drive, but the two DRAMless models are slower than most of the other SSDs.

 

Random Write Performance

 

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The large SLC buffer helps the 500GB Mushkin Source write random data at high speeds, at least for a short burst. Under desktop workloads, nearly all random writes are simple bursts and the modern SLC buffer architectures are strong enough to absorb the incoming data.

 

70% Read Sequential Performance

 

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The Mushkin trails the Inland Professional SATA III in our sequential mixed workload test with 70% reads. Both drives start out stronger than the SanDisk Ultra 3D, but all three drives trail many of the mainstream models in our test group by 100 MB/s or more at QD2.

 

70% Read Random Performance

 

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The 500GB Source didn't scale well as we increased the random mixed workload through queue depth. The drive hovered around 8,500 IOPS through the entire test.

 

Game Load Time

 

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The 500GB Source's strong sequential read performance allows the drive to load Final Fantasy: Stormblood quickly. The drive performed much better than we expected in a real application.

 

PCMark 8 Total Storage Bandwidth

 

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In general, applications that rely more on random read performance, the Mushkin Source falls a few spots. The 500GB drive sits between the Corsair Neutron XTI and Inland Professional SATA III with 217 MB/s, an average score based on results of ten daily use applications.

 

PCMark 8 Extended Storage Test

 

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Under an intensive workload, the Mushkin Source falls flat. This is common on DRAMless architectures as the workload is well beyond what most consumer SSD normally must live through. The 500GB Source does recover with idle time, as it should. The performance is still low and the recovery takes longer than many of the other SSDs.

 

SYSmark 2014 SE System Responsiveness and Power Tests

 

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The Mushkin Source 500GB is more responsive over a wide range of applications than the Inland Professional SATA III we tested last week. The drive we tested scored the same as the Corsair Neutron XTI, a premium SATA SSD released in July 2016.

 

Notebook Battery Life

 

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The 500GB Source SSD didn't perform well in our notebook battery life test. When DRAMless SSDs emerged the architecture was advertised as a power-saving feature that would reduce power consumption. At idle and in low power states that is true but without the buffer the drive takes longer to perform background activities such as garbage collection. That offsets the lower idle power savings.

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