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Samsung 830 Series 128GB Solid State Drive Review

By: Chris Ramseyer | SSDs in Storage | Posted: Jan 24, 2012 6:13 am
TweakTown Rating: 84%Manufacturer: Samsung

Specifications, Pricing and Availability




Samsung is offering the new 830 in a few different configurations. For the consumer market we have the 830 Series, but the OEM market will get PM830. Both products should be identical, but there may be some firmware changes as the products evolve. Four capacity sizes are being offered at this time - 60GB, 120GB, 256GB and a massive 512GB.


The Samsung 830 Series performance varies by capacity. All four models claim a read speed of 520MB/s, but the write speed is dynamic. The two largest models, 512GB and 256GB, write at 400MB/s, the 120GB model we are looking at today has a claimed write speed of 320MB/s and the 60GB model dips down to 160MB/s. So far most of the reviews online have come from larger capacity sizes, but we wanted to start out with a slower model that maximizes the price / performance / capacity ratios.


IOPS performance also varies between capacity sizes. Once again the two largest sizes share the same specifications - 80K IOPS read and 36K IOPS write. The 120GB model rates in with 80K read, but dips down to 30K write. The 60GB takes the biggest hit, though - 75K read with just 16K write IOPS.


In 2012 we're going to see a really big push with the 7mm form factor. OEMs are pushing ultrabooks, very thin notebooks with the full speed notebook parts, but are thinner than many netbooks already on the market. Samsung isn't waiting around though, the 830 Series uses the 7mm design already. We've seen 7mm drives in the past and not had an issue installing them in notebooks or desktops with adapter brackets.

Speaking of adapter brackets, Samsung is delivering three 830 Series configurations. The first is a bare drive where you get the drive, documentation and a limited amount of goodies. There is also a desktop upgrade kit that ships with a desktop adapter bracket and the Notebook upgrade configuration that we are looking at today.


The final area of this section is of course price. Finding all three versions of each capacity proved to be a bit difficult. We managed to find the 512GB Desktop upgrade model for 849.99 at Newegg. The 256GB Desktop upgrade model was also at Newegg for 389.99, they also list the Notebook upgrade model in this capacity size as well, but have it listed incorrectly as a desktop kit, just look at the pictures to get the accessory package you want. The 128GB desktop kit that we are looking at today is listed at Newegg for 209.99 and the 60GB version ships for 129.99, all prices in US Dollars.


Samsung is shipping all of these models with a powerful software suite. Our sample shipped with Batman Arkham City, a limited time promotion. You also get Norton Ghost, an Acronis like software that quickly and easily clones an existing drive's data to your new SSD. An additional disk is also included and it holds manuals and Samsung's Magician Software. This software allows you to configure the spare area reserved for background functions. The drive is shipped with 7% reserved, the same as the GB to GiB conversion, but you can use the software to configure the drive how you like. In the future we'll examine this feature further, but today were testing with the default configuration.

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