Corsair was one of the early companies that managed to bring solid state technology to the desktop at affordable prices. As much as I respect Corsair and what they have done for consumer SSDs, I have to say the 512GB capacity size Force LX is kind of a loser.
We have a number of drives in with the Silicon Motion SM2246 controller and have yet to run into performance issues outside running enthusiast class tests and getting value class performance. Looking back at the specifications, Corsair states 256MB of DRAM and that doesn't seem as aggressive as it should be. Most SSDs will use 512MB of DRAM for a 512GB SSD, some even go a step further and use 1024MB.
Most companies making value based SSDs don't publish a lot of data about the components used, since the build of materials seems to be (sometimes) dynamic. Some drives initially sold with Silicon Motion controllers don't even guarantee what controller is under the lid. Without a lot of published data, it's difficult to determine if other 512GB Silicon Motion SM2246EN drives use 256MB or 512MB of DRAM.
This is the first time we've linked a DRAM buffer to low performance. We do know the buffer plays a large role in write latency though, the SandForce 480GB drives are DRAM-less, but the 480GB capacity size models wrote random data much slower than the 240GB models. The larger the SSD, the more map data there is. Not all of the data can fit in the DRAM buffer, so the controller has to go back and read from the flash, which is slower than reading from the DRAM. It also increases latency, and that is why we think the latency issues observed in this review can be pinned on the buffer.
If you are looking for a low cost, high capacity size SSD, there are better products on the market. Some offer higher performance, others offer better accessory packages. The Crucial MX100 512GB is a better buy for performance and the ADATA SP610 offers a full accessory package.
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