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TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review

With an elegantly integrated heat sink, the TeamGroup T-Force Cardea M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD keeps temps in check and looks great doing it.

@JonCoulterSSD
Published Thu, Jul 13 2017 11:41 AM CDT   |   Updated Thu, Oct 15 2020 1:05 PM CDT
Rating: 93%Manufacturer: TeamGroup

Introduction, Drive Specifications, Pricing & Availability

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M.2 NVMe SSDs are all the rage these days. We expect that the M.2 form-factor will soon overtake 2.5" SATA SSDs as the most prevalent storage form factor in the near future. In fact, these days we rarely get 2.5" SATA-based SSDs in the lab for testing. Everyone loves the way a super-fast M.2 SSD just marries itself to the motherboard, with no cables to deal with.

The only draw-back to the M.2 form-factor is keeping the drive itself from heating up when running extended workloads. We've seen several manufacturers take an M.2 SSD and stick it on an AIC adapter with a massive heat sink. This approach is quite effective in terms of keeping thermals under control, but it also takes away from the whole idea of a tiny gum stick sized SSD that mounts directly on the motherboard, which is the most appealing thing about the M.2 form-factor. Additionally, with an AIC adapter, one of your precious PCIe slots must be sacrificed for storage.

TeamGroup's integrated M.2 thermal solution is not the first of its kind, but does appear that it is likely the most effective of its kind. What we've seen to this point are very thin thermal label type of heat sinks that while helpful, are clearly not able to dissipate heat as well as the integrated thick finned solid aluminum heat sink that makes the T-Force Cardea stand out from the crowd. Just how effective is the heat sink on the T-Force Cardea? We don't test thermals so we can't verify this, but here is what TeamGroup is claiming their patented heat sink does:

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Overall, TeamGroup is claiming that their unique heat sink increases thermal performance by 15%. This is plenty of cooling to keep the drives controller from reaching a point where it will throttle back to prevent overheating. This is important for sustained high performance, because when the drive throttles, performance takes a nosedive. The T-Force Cardea's heat sink is mated to the drives controller and IC's with a special thermally conductive adhesive material that according to TeamGroup possesses a higher thermal coefficient than ice.

At the heart of the T-Force Cardea is Phison's venerable E7 NVMe SSD controller. We are especially fond of this controller as it has powered some of our favorite SSDs. The Phison E7 is well known for blazing low-latency performance and the utmost in reliability. The Phison PS5007-E7 (or E7) is designed for high-performance computing applications. The E7 supports up to 8-channels in its NAND Flash interface, so it is very fast.

Multiple features are built into the Phison E7 controller to ensure stability and reliability. These features include SmartECC which reconstructs defective/faulty pages when regular ECC fails, SmartRefresh monitors block ECC health status and refreshes blocks periodically to improve data retention, and SmartFlush minimizes time data spends in cache to ensure data retention in the event of power loss. Fast and reliable is what Phison's E7 controller is all about.

The 240GB T-Force Cardea with its unique heat sink certainly looks like an appealing SSD to us, now let's take a quick look at the drive's specifications and then get this tiny beast on the bench.

Specifications

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The TeamGroup T-Force Cardea M.2 NVMe SSD is available in two capacities: 240GB and 480GB. The 240GB model we have on the bench today sports the following specifications:

  • Sequential Read: up to 2,600 MB/s
  • Sequential Write: up to 1,400 MB/s
  • Max 4K Random Read Speed: up to 180,000 IOPS
  • Max 4K Random Write Speed: up to 140,000 IOPS
  • Endurance: up to 335 TBW
  • MTBF: 2 Million Hours
  • Warranty: 3-Year Limited Warranty
  • SMART
  • TRIM
  • Garbage Collection

The 240GB TeamGroup T-Force Cardea is currently selling at Newegg for $129.99.

Drive Details

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD

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The drive ships in a colorful blister pack. The drive itself is visible through the clear portion of the blister pack. This side of the packaging advertises the drive's capacity, interface, cooling prowess, TRIM, and S.M.A.R.T features.

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The back of the packaging lists a bit of pertinent information and lets the buyer know that the drive is capable of more than 2500MB/s sequential read performance.

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This side of the PCB is covered by TeamGroup's exclusive patented heat sink. The heat sink is fastened in place by a metal bracket that covers the reverse side of the drive. We opted not to risk compromising the thermal integrity of the heat sink by removing it. We know what's under the heat sink, so we will tell you. Directly under the heat sink's thermal adhesive is the drive's Phison E7 controller and two of the drive's four 64GB 15nm Toshiba MLC planar flash packages. Also located under the heat sink is a 256MB Nanya DDR3 DRAM package.

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The backside of the drive is covered by a black metal bracket that clips onto the heat sink on the other side of the PCB. The metal bracket covers the remaining two 64GB 15nm Toshiba MLC planar flash packages. There is a manufacturer's label located on this side that advertises the drive's three-year warranty and other relevant information.

Test System Setup & Drive Properties

Jon's Consumer PCIe SSD Intel Review Test System Specifications

Jon's Consumer PCIe SSD AMD Ryzen Review Test System Specifications

We would like to thank ASRock, Crucial, Intel, Corsair, RamCity, IN WIN, and Seasonic for making our test system possible.

Drive Properties

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD OS Disk 75% Full (Intel)

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TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD OS Disk 75% Full (AMD Ryzen)

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The majority of our testing is performed with our test drive as our boot volume. Our boot volume is 75% full for all OS Disk "C" drive testing to replicate a typical consumer OS volume implementation. We feel that most of you will be utilizing your SSDs for your boot volume and that presenting you with results from an OS volume is more relevant than presenting you with empty secondary volume results.

System settings: Cstates and Speed stepping are both disabled in our systems BIOS. Windows High-Performance power plan is enabled. Windows write caching is enabled, and Windows buffer flushing is disabled. We are utilizing Windows 10 Pro 64-bit OS (Build 14393) for all of our testing except for our MOP (Maxed-Out Performance) benchmarks where we switch to Windows Server 2012 R2 64-bit (Intel Only). Empty Windows 10 benchmark screenshots will also be shown on our MOP page for both Intel and AMD Ryzen Platforms.

Please note: When comparing our results to those of other review sites, look at page 10 Maxed Out Performance-Windows 10 which is done with the disk empty.

Intel screenshots will be shown first followed by AMD Ryzen throughout the review.

Synthetic Benchmarks – ATTO & Anvil Storage Utilities

ATTO

Version and / or Patch Used: 3.05

ATTO is a timeless benchmark used to provide manufacturers with data used for marketing storage products. When evaluating ATTO performance, we focus on the drive's performance curve.

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As we typically see, our Intel platform delivers far better small-file performance than our Ryzen platform. In the unlikely event that you are working with compressible data, the Cardea, like all Phison E7 powered SSDs will deliver vastly superior write performance at 240GB.

Sequential Write

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Graphing the performance curve shows the 240GB Cardea giving the more powerful MDD BPX a run for the money. We give the 960 EVO the win on this one because it has the best small-file performance of the bunch.

Sequential Read

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The Cardea delivers excellent compressible read performance on both platforms. Unsurprisingly, the Cardea running on our Intel platform closely shadows the MDD BPX 480GB. The Cardea is delivering pretty good small-file performance, but not nearly as good as we are getting from the RD400, EVO, and 950 Pro.

Anvil Storage Utilities

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.1.0

Anvil's Storage Utilities is a storage benchmark designed to measure the storage performance of SSDs. The Standard Storage Benchmark performs a series of tests; you can run a full test or just the read or write test, or you can run a single test, i.e. 4k QD16. When evaluating performance with Anvils, we focus on total score. When evaluating NVMe SSDs, we are typically looking for a minimum total score of over 10K.

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Scoring

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The Cardea running on our Intel platform gives us our 10K and then some. Running on Ryzen, the Cardea like many others cannot give us the 10K minimum score we are looking for. The Cardea on our Intel platform delivers the goods better than most of the SSDs that comprise our test pool. It runs essentially even with OCZ's powerful RD400 256GB. The BPX and the EVO deliver better scores; the BPX because it has a capacity advantage, the EVO because of its superior random performance at high queue depths.

(Anvil) Read IOPS through Queue Depth Scale

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With our Intel platform, we are able to attain 193K random read IOPS at QD32. With our AMD Ryzen platform, we are able to attain 192K random read IOPS at QD32. Keep in mind that this is our OS disk and it is 75% full. Both platforms deliver random performance that is higher than factory specification.

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The Cardea performs similarly on both of our testing platforms. The Intel platform maintains a slight performance advantage at lower queue depths. The Cardea is able to best the Plextor M8Pe and Intel's 600p. The Cardea runs extremely well up to QD16 and falls off at higher queue depths. This is just fine by us because performance at queue depths of 1-4 is what matters most.

(Anvil) Write IOPS through Queue Scale

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With our Intel platform, we are able to attain 178K random write IOPS at QD32. With our AMD Ryzen platform, we are able to attain 173K random write IOPS at QD32. Keep in mind that this is our OS disk and it is 75% full. Both platforms deliver random performance that is higher than factory specification.

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The Cardea is bringing up the rear on both platforms at QD1-2. The Cardea running on our Intel platform does manage to overtake the RD400 at QD4-8 and the M8Pe at QD4-16. We would like to see better random performance from the Cardea at QD1-2.

Synthetic Benchmarks – CrystalDiskMark & AS SSD

CrystalDiskMark

Version and / or Patch Used: 3.0 Technical Preview

CrystalDiskMark is disk benchmark software that allows us to benchmark 4k and 4k queue depths with accuracy. Note: Crystal Disk Mark 3.0 Technical Preview was used for these tests since it offers the ability to measure native command queuing at QD4. When evaluating CDM results, we focus on 4K random performance at QD1 and QD4.

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Focusing in on QD1 and QD4 reveals the Cardea outperforming the M8Pe and the 600p. Other than that, the Cardea is outperformed by the rest of the SSDs that comprise our test pool. As we've seen, again and again, our Ryzen platform does not digest CDM's random data pattern well at QD32.

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The AMD Ryzen platform is at a real disadvantage in comparison with Intel when writing random data. Looking at our Intel platform results, we find the Cardea delivering good results at QD1 and excellent results at QD4.

AS SSD

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.8.5611.39791

AS SSD determines the performance of SSDs. The tool contains four synthetic as well as three practice tests. The synthetic tests are to determine the sequential and random read and write performance of the SSD. We evaluate AS SSD performance in terms of overall score. We are looking for a minimum score of 2,000 when evaluating NVMe SSDs

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AS SSD is a demanding test, and the T-Force Cardea exceeds our minimum standard of 2,000 on both platforms. With AS SSD we are seeing our Ryzen delivering a better score. AS SSD's data pattern agrees with our Ryzen platform when the thread count is very high. The 960 EVO owns this test due to its superior multi-threaded performance.

Benches- Vantage, PCMark 7, PCMark 8 & SYSmark 2014 SE

Moderate Workload Model

We categorize these tests as indicative of a moderate workload environment.

PCMark Vantage - Hard Disk Tests

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.2.0.0

The reason we like PCMark Vantage is because the recorded traces are played back without system stops. What we see is the raw performance of the drive. This allows us to see a marked difference between scoring that other trace-based benchmarks do not exhibit. An example of a marked difference in scoring on the same drive would be empty vs. filled vs. steady state.

We run Vantage three ways. The first run is with the OS drive 75% full to simulate a lightly used OS volume filled with data to an amount we feel is common for most users. The second run is with the OS volume written into a "Steady State" utilizing SNIA's consumer guidelines. Steady state testing simulates a drive's performance similar to that of a drive that been subjected to consumer workloads for extensive amounts of time. The third run is a Vantage HDD test with the test drive attached as an empty, lightly used secondary device.

OS Volume 75% Full - Lightly Used

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OS Volume 75% Full - Steady State

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Secondary Volume Empty - FOB

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There's a big difference between an empty drive, one that's 75% full/used, and one that's in a steady state.

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The important scores to pay attention to are "OS Volume Steady State" and "OS Volume 75% full." These two categories are most important because they are indicative of typical of consumer user states. When a drive is in a steady state, it means garbage collection is running at the same time it's reading/writing.

Focusing in on 75% full and steady state performance, we see that the Cardea running on our Intel platform is able to outperform our current favorite value drive; the MDD BPX. At 75% full, the Cardea is able to outperform the 960 EVO.

PCMark 7 - System Storage

Version and / or Patch Used: 1.4.0

We will look to Raw System Storage scoring for evaluation because it's done without system stops and, therefore, allows us to see significant scoring differences between drives. When evaluating NVMe SSDs, we are looking for a minimum score of 11,000

OS Volume 75% Full - Lightly Used

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The Cardea running on both platforms is able to meet and exceed our minimum score of 11K. This time the higher capacity E7 powered BPX beats the Cardea. Although the Cardea is outperformed by the three drives at the bottom of our chart, the Cardea is delivering better performance than the 960 EVO when running on our Intel platform.

PCMark 8 - Storage Bandwidth

Version and / or Patch Used: 2.4.304

We use PCMark 8 Storage benchmark to test the performance of SSDs, HDDs, and hybrid drives with traces recorded from Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft Office, and a selection of popular games. You can test the system drive or any other recognized storage device, including local external drives. Unlike synthetic storage tests, the PCMark 8 Storage benchmark highlights real-world performance differences between storage devices.

OS Volume 75% Full - Lightly Used

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PCMark 8 is the most intensive moderate workload simulation we run. With respect to moderate consumer type workloads, this test is what we consider the best indicator of a drive's performance. Once again, the Cardea is able to outperform the 960 EVO when running on our Intel platform. We expected to see a bit more bandwidth from the Cardea. As we see it, the Cardea should deliver bandwidth that is on par with the BPX. We believe that the main difference here is the firmware. The BPX runs on our favorite firmware version 2.1, and the Cardea is using new firmware that gives up random performance for sequential performance. Sequential performance is what the typical user thinks is important; random performance is what actually matters.

BAPCo SYSmark 2014 SE System Performance

Version and / or Patch Used: 2.0.0.70

SYSmark 2014 SE is considered the gold standard for testing system performance because it is an application based benchmark. This test gives us the ultimate in real-world results because it utilizes actual applications running on the system, instead of playing back recorded traces. If you want to know what kind of impact a particular SSD will have on your system's overall performance; this test will show you.

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Disk performance has the greatest impact on the Responsiveness Score, so that is what we will focus on.

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Our systems are much more powerful than the calibration system (1000-point baseline) used by BAPCo, so we ran an OCZ TL100 120GB SATA III SSD to establish a comparison point relative to our test systems. We will be running this test going forward, and we will add drives to our chart as we test them.

It is important to keep in mind that with SYSmark 2014 SE, a few points are a big deal when comparing one drive to another on the same platform.

It is important to remember that this score is not solely based on the storage device and therefore it isn't a totally accurate representation of how much more responsive one storage device is over another. To demonstrate this fact just compare the Cardea running on our Ryzen platform to the Cardea running on our Intel platform.

We don't have a lot of SSDs for comparison yet, but we can say that the Cardea delivers stellar system responsiveness. From day one, E7 controlled SSDs have delivered a snappiness that differentiates it from most of the competition, which is the reason we are particularly fond of E7 controlled SSDs.

AMD has in the past stated that SYSmark is optimized for Intel, but both BAPCo and Intel deny that there is any built-in preference for Intel-based systems. We don't know who is right, but it is easy to see that Intel has a major advantage over AMD when testing with SYSmark.

Benchmarks (Secondary) - IOPS, Response & Transfer Rate

Iometer – Maximum IOPS

Version and / or Patch Used: Iometer 2014

We use Iometer to measure high queue depth performance. (No Partition)

Max IOPS Read

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Max IOPS Write

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We test NVMe SSDs using eight threads at QD32, or QD256. We do this because we want to see what the drive can generate at its maximum attainable queue depth. Maximum random read performance is similar between the two platforms.

Iometer – Disk Response

Version and / or Patch Used: Iometer 2014

We use Iometer to measure disk response times. Disk response times are measured at an industry accepted standard of 4K QD1 for both write and read. Each test runs twice for 30 seconds consecutively, with a 5-second ramp-up before each test. We partition the drive/array as a secondary device for this testing.

Avg. Write Response

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Avg. Read Response

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Disk response is significantly better (lower) on our Intel platform.

DiskBench – Transfer Rate

Version and / or Patch Used: 2.6.2.0

We use DiskBench to time a 28.6GB block (9,882 files in 1,247 folders) composed primarily of incompressible sequential and random data as it's transferred from our Toshiba RD400 1TB NVME SSD to our test drive. We then read from a 6GB zip file that's part of our 28.6GB data block to determine the test drive's read transfer rate. Our system is restarted prior to the read test to clear any cached data, ensuring an accurate test result.

Write Transfer Rate

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Read Transfer Rate

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We recently upgraded our test system to Windows 10 build 14393. With that upgrade, write transfer rates almost doubled. The reason for this, as far as we know, is that CPU power switching modes have been relaxed on the latest version of Windows 10. We included the NVMe drives we've tested to date on this build of Windows 10. If you needed a good reason to upgrade to a newer version of Windows 10; this is a good reason.

The Cardea on our Intel platform trades blows with the E7 powered BPX. The Cardea delivers a significantly better read transfer rate and just gets edged out by the BPX's write transfer rate. Compared with Plextor's M8Pe, which is in the same capacity class, the Cardea is the clear winner.

Benchmarks (Secondary Volume) – PCMark 8 Extended

Futuremark PCMark 8 Extended

Heavy Workload Model

PCMark 8's consistency test simulates an extended duration heavy workload environment. PCMark 8 has built-in, command line executed storage testing. The PCMark 8 Consistency test measures the performance consistency and the degradation tendency of a storage system.

The Storage test workloads are repeated. Between each repetition, the storage system is bombarded with a usage that causes degraded drive performance. In the first part of the test, the cycle continues until a steady degraded level of performance has been reached. (Steady State)

In the second part, the recovery of the system is tested by allowing the system to idle and measuring the performance after 5-minute long intervals. (Internal drive maintenance: Garbage Collection (GC)) The test reports the performance level at the start, the degraded steady-state, and the recovered state, as well as the number of iterations required to reach the degraded state and the recovered state.

We feel Futuremark's Consistency Test is the best test ever devised to show the true performance of solid state storage in an extended duration heavy workload environment. This test takes on average 13 to 17 hours to complete and writes somewhere between 450GB and 14,000GB of test data depending on the drive. If you want to know what an SSDs steady state performance is going to look like during a heavy workload, this test will show you.

Here's a breakdown of Futuremark's Consistency Test:

Precondition phase:

1. Write to the drive sequentially through up to the reported capacity with random data.

2. Write the drive through a second time (to take care of overprovisioning).

Degradation phase:

1. Run writes of random size between 8*512 and 2048*512 bytes on random offsets for 10 minutes.

2. Run performance test (one pass only).

3. Repeat 1 and 2 for 8 times, and on each pass increase the duration of random writes by 5 minutes.

Steady state phase:

1. Run writes of random size between 8*512 and 2048*512 bytes on random offsets for 50 minutes.

2. Run performance test (one pass only).

3. Repeat 1 and 2 for 5 times.

Recovery phase:

1. Idle for 5 minutes.

2. Run performance test (one pass only).

3. Repeat 1 and 2 for 5 times.

Storage Bandwidth

PCMark 8's Consistency test provides a ton of data output that we use to judge a drive's performance.

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We consider steady state bandwidth (the blue bar) our test that carries the most weight in ranking a drive/arrays heavy workload performance. Performance after Garbage Collection (GC) (the orange and red bars) is what we consider the second most important consideration when ranking a drive's performance.

The Cardea easily outperforms the 960 EVO across the board on both platforms. We would like to see better steady-state performance, but the drive recovers well and delivers decent overall performance. Contrast that to the Plextor M8Pe which does not recover at all.

Storage Bandwidth Per Phase

We chart our test subject's storage bandwidth as reported at each of the test's 18 trace iterations. This gives us a good visual perspective of how our test subjects perform as testing progresses. This chart sheds more light on how the drives perform as they progress through the testing phases.

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Total Access Time (Latency)

We chart the total time the disk is accessed as reported at each of the test's 18 trace iterations. This helps shed some light on how the drive performs at each of the 18 phases of this test.

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Disk Busy Time

Disk Busy Time is how long the disk is busy working. We chart the total time the disk is working as reported at each of the tests 18 trace iterations.

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Data Written

We measure the total amount of random data that our test drive/array is capable of writing during the degradation phases of the consistency test. Pre-conditioning data is not included in the total. The total combined time that degradation data is written to the drive/array is 470 minutes. This can be very telling. The better a drive/array can process a continuous stream of random data; the more data will be written.

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Overprovisioning and write latency are the biggest factors that determine the outcome of this portion of the test. Like we saw from the phases above, the Cardea performs similarly on the Intel and Ryzen platforms. With this portion of the test, the Cardea really delivers the goods.

Benchmarks (Secondary Volume) – 70/30 Mixed Workload

70/30 Mixed Workload Test (Sledgehammer)

Version and / or Patch Used: Iometer 2014

Heavy Workload Model

This test hammers a drive so hard we've dubbed it "Sledgehammer." Our 70/30 Mixed Workload test is designed to simulate a heavy-duty enthusiast/workstation steady-state environment. We feel that a mix of 70% read/30% write, full random 4K transfers best represents this type of user environment. Our test allows us to see the drive enter into and reach a steady state as the test progresses.

Phase one of the test preconditions the drive for 1 hour with 128K sequential writes. Phase two of the test runs a 70% read/30% write, full random 4K transfer workload on the drive for 1 hour. We log and chart (phase two) IOPS data at 5-second intervals for 1 hour (720 data points). 60 data points = 5 minutes.

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What we like about this test is that it reflects reality. Everything lines up, as it should. Consumer drives don't outperform Enterprise-Class SSDs that were designed for enterprise workloads. Consumer drives based on old technology are not outperforming modern Performance-Class SSDs, etc.

The Cardea handles this brutal test quite well on both platforms. The Cardea outperforms all but the BPX and M8Pe.

Maxed-Out Performance (MOP)

Maxed-Out Performance

This testing is just to see what the drive is capable of in an FOB (Fresh Out of Box) state under optimal conditions. We are utilizing empty volumes of Windows 10 and Windows Server 2012 R2 64-bit for this testing.

Windows 10 MOP (Intel)

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD

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TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 69 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 70 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 71 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 72 | TweakTown.com

Windows 10 MOP (AMD)

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 73 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 74 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 75 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 76 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 77 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 78 | TweakTown.com

Windows Server 2012 R2 MOP (Intel only)

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 79 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 80 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 81 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 82 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 83 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 84 | TweakTown.com
TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 85 | TweakTown.com

Final Thoughts

TeamGroup T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD Review 86 | TweakTown.com

TeamGroup is well known for their innovative memory products, and they have a loyal following. This is their first NVMe SSD, and they are to be commended for taming the heat innovatively and attractively. The T-Force Cardea is just what the doctor ordered for desktops with limited airflow. The drives heat sink is large but well designed as to not interfere with your video card. The Cardea won't fit into any laptop that we know of, so if you are considering getting one for your laptop or a BRIX sized mini-PC, we would recommend against doing so.

Overall, we are well pleased with the performance we got from the Cardea on both our Intel and Ryzen platforms. The T-Force Cardea gave us what we wanted; excellent workload performance. E7 powered SSDs won us over long ago with their noticeably snappy performance, but Phison still hasn't given us what we know would make things even better - a dedicated NVMe driver.

In terms of pricing, we feel the T-Force Cardea is on-point at $129.99 especially in the midst of a NAND flash shortage. We often see lesser SSDs going for a lot more money. The Cardea's Toshiba MLC flash array is a cut above TLC flash of any flavor which is why it delivers better workload performance than the 250GB 960 EVO. The Cardea's heat sink is a really nice value-add in our opinion. Keeping temps in check adds longevity and reliability to any SSD. The Cardea has an excellent endurance rating and an MTBF of 2-million hours, which has us wondering why the Cardea only comes with a 3-year warranty. We would like to see a drive this robust have a 5-year warranty because we believe it will easily outlast its 3-year warranty.

Because TweakTown tests SSDs with the drive running as our system (OS) disk we are in a relatively unique position to comment on what matters most - user experience. In terms of user experience, the T-Force Cardea is a beast. Like we stated previously, E7 powered SSDs deliver a snappiness that few can match which translates to a tier-one user experience. You will understand this from the first time you boot your Cardea powered PC. Whatever you throw at the T-force Cardea, it will deliver blazing fast performance that will put a smile on your face which is why TeamGroup's T-Force Cardea 240GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD is TweakTown recommended.

Pros:

  • Moderate Workload Performance
  • Premium Components
  • Sleek Design

Cons:

  • No SSD Management Tool Box
  • Three-Year Warranty
TweakTown award
Performance95%
Quality95%
Features90%
Value91%
Overall93%

The Bottom Line: The T-Force Cardea is priced right, delivers excellent performance, and won't overheat.

PRICING: You can find products similar to this one for sale below.

USUnited States: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com

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AUAustralia: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.com.au

CACanada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon.ca

DEDeutschland: Finde andere Technik- und Computerprodukte wie dieses auf Amazon.de

Jon became a computer enthusiast when Windows XP launched. He was into water cooling and benching ATI video cards with modded drivers. Jon has been building computers for others for more than 10 years. Jon became a storage enthusiast the day he first booted an Intel X25-M G1 80GB SSD. Look for Jon to bring consumer SSD reviews into the spotlight.

We openly invite the companies who provide us with review samples / who are mentioned or discussed to express their opinion. If any company representative wishes to respond, we will publish the response here. Please contact us if you wish to respond.

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