In April of this year, we had the pleasure of testing the ES flash drive from MX-Technology, a drive that was built on the SLC NAND flash platform, offering tremendous durability, and the price reflected this. Fast forward to the present and we now have the LX, a drive that aims to offer the best in terms of performance, at a price point that fits the average consumer's budget.
This new MX-LX is currently available in capacities ranging from the standard 8GB, 16GB and 32GB flavours with additional models ranging from 64GB to 256GB. Marketing specifications for the 64GB model we have in house call for 190 MB/s read, followed by 85 MB/s write. All capacities maintain compatibility with current Windows operating systems and come with a two-year warranty.
The LX follows a lot of the design queues we saw with the ES back in April. The simple metal exterior carries a bit of durability and a flashy blue paint job.
The backside of the drive has the MX-Technology website painted in grey.
As did the ES, the LX uses a capped design helping the drive retain its small footprint.
The USB port, colored blue appropriately noting its gen three compatibility.
Internally, the LX uses two NAND packages both 32GB for a dual channel configuration. The NAND flash used here is 8K Synchronous MLC from Intel. The controller used is the Innostor IS903.
One of the lesser-known features of running Microsoft's new operating system Windows 8 is the native capability of USB Attached SCSI or UASP. In benchmarking flash drives, we utilize ATTO Disk Benchmark followed by DiskBench and our custom set of real-world data, and is by far the most important comparison when looking for a flash drive for everyday use.
Recently we have added our very own Price/Performance charts to aid your purchase decision, for these charts we take the average sequential performance over five runs and divide it by the price per GB. All pricing information is updated before a new drive is added and is taken from certified channel retailers such as Newegg or Amazon. Additionally, we have added the Macintosh based benchmark Disk Speed Test by Black Magic Design, which is run on OS X 10.8.4.
The MX-LX is factory formatted with the NTFS file system. The usable capacity after formatting is 61.6GB.
In ATTO, we were able to exceed marketing specifications slightly at 212 MB/s read and 96 MB/s write.
Our real-world testing had the LX right in the middle of the pack, with the same performance show through each set of data.
Price/Performance landed the LX right where MX-Technology was aiming, a direct shot in my book.
For those of you wishing to purchase this drive for use on a Mac, a simple format to the journaled file system allowed us to test the drive. Here you can see the drive was able to touch 198 MB/s read and close to 82 MB/s write.
I must say that MX-Technology has done quite a job designing the LX. In keeping the same overall concept as the ES and swapping out the SLC NAND for the cost effective MLC, they were able to create a drive that offers plenty of performance at a price that simply cannot be beat. If we glance over our Price/Performance charts, you will quickly see this, and note that it beats out the SanDisk Extreme as well, thanks to its solid 78 cents per GB price point.
Performance of the MX-LX was quite exceptional. We were able to touch 212 MB/s read, which is no small feat even in the USB 3.0 age, a feat that takes the right combination of NAND configuration and controller and has been done quite well in the LX.
Pricing of the drive at the time of writing is set at $49.99 for the 64GB capacity in house today. However, at this point, availability is limited to Europe, but we should start seeing these drives in the United States soon.
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