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Toshiba HK3R2 960GB Enterprise SSD Review

By: Paul Alcorn | SSDs in IT/Datacenter | Posted: Jan 6, 2015 6:40 pm
TweakTown Rating: 94%Manufacturer: Toshiba

4k Random Read/Write




We precondition the 960GB Toshiba HK3R2 THNSNJ960PCSZ for 9,000 seconds, or two and a half hours, receiving performance reports every second. We plot this data to illustrate the drive's descent into steady state.


This dual-axis chart consists of 18,000 data points, with the IOPS on the left, and the latency on the right. The blue dots signify IOPS, and the grey dots are latency measurements during the test. We place latency data in a logarithmic scale to bring it into comparison range. The lines through the data scatter are the average during the test. This type of testing presents standard deviation and maximum/minimum I/O in a visual manner.


Note that the IOPS and latency figures are nearly mirror images of each other. This illustrates high-granularity testing can give our readers a good feel for latency distribution by viewing IOPS at one-second intervals. This should be in mind when viewing our test results below. This downward slope of performance only occurs during the first few hours of use, and we present precondition results only to confirm steady state convergence.




Each level tested includes 300 data points (five minutes of one second reports) to illustrate performance variability. The line for each OIO depth represents the average speed reported during the five-minute interval. In some charts, we include a smaller embedded chart that lists performance at the highest load for easy interpretation.


4k random speed measurements are an important metric when comparing drive performance, as the hardest type of file access for any storage solution to master is small-file random. 4k random performance is a heavily marketed figure, and is one of the most sought-after performance specifications.


The Toshiba HK3R2 comes out swinging with an average of 85,042 IOPS at 256, second only to the Samsung 845DC EVO, which delivers 85,155 IOPS at 256 OIO (Outstanding I/O). Matching the 845DC EVO in random read speed is impressive, and providing significantly more endurance tailors the Toshiba well for more strenuous activities. The Micron M500DC averages 56,259 IOPS, and the Intel DC S3500 averages 57,769 IOPS.






Our Latency v IOPS charts compare the amount of performance attained from each solution at specific latency measurements. Many applications have specific latency requirements. These charts present relevant metrics in an easy-to-read manner for readers who are familiar with their application requirements.


The HK3R2 joins the 845DC EVO with impressive latency, while delivering tremendous speed. The HK3R2 provides 85,000 IOPS at .1ms (similar to the 845DC EVO), the DC S3700 provides 57,000 IOPS, and the M500 DC provides 56,000 IOPS.




Garbage collection routines are more pronounced in heavy write workloads, leading to performance variability.


The HK3R2 delivers a healthy increase in random write speed along with improved consistency in comparison to its predecessor; it averages 21,583 IOPS at 256 OIO. The Micron M500DC leads the test pool in 4k random write workloads with 39,089 IOPS at 256 OIO.






The Micron M500DC has the lowest overall latency in the write workload, with the HK3R2 taking second place.




Our write percentage testing illustrates the varying performance of each solution with mixed workloads. The 100% column to the right is a pure 4k write workload, and 0% represents a pure 4k read workload.


The mixed workload performance exhibits the tight competition among many competitors in this class. The HK3R2 is very competitive in this test, and features the highest peak speeds, albeit with more variability. The Micron M500DC leads in all but the pure random read workload, and the gap widens from 80-100%.




We record power consumption measurements during our precondition run. We calculate the stated average results after the device has settled into steady state during the last five minutes of the test.


User-addressable capacity should be taken into consideration when viewing power metrics. The HK3R2 has the highest addressable capacity of the test pool, yet still manages to provide impressively low power draw. The HK3R2 averages 3.57 watts, the 845DC EVO averages 3.55 watts, the M500DC averages 4.09 watts, and the DC S3500 averages 3.8 watts during the measurement window.




IOPS-to-watts measurements are generated from data recorded during our precondition run, and the stated average is from the last five minutes of the test.


The HK3R2's IOPS-per-watt is listed at 16,600 IOPS, which is likely measured with read activity. Our measurements focus on write workloads. The HK3R2 averages 6,390 IOPS-per-watt, the 845DC EVO averages 3,973 IOPS-per-watt, and the M500DC takes the lead with 9,545 IOPS-per-watt due to its outstanding write performance. The DC S3500 averages 3,125 IOPS-per-watt.

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