Sabrent has been on an absolute tear since late last year, and they have easily been the most innovative in the last six months. Sabrent has pushed the market forward significantly for those loving high capacity solutions, enough so large players like Samsung have started to, at least, paper launch their 8TB drives.
Rocket Q is its entry-level QLC based solution, aimed at casual users who want to move to NVMe as painless on their wallet as possible. The Rocket Q roams around in DRAMless territory when it comes to price, this 500GB solution carrying an MSRP of $69.99. That's a touch under 14c perGB on par with the likes of any current entry-level solution.
The Rocket Q is built on the E12S platform from Phison, with Micron QLC deployed across the lineup. Marketing performance offers 2000 MB/s read and 1000 MB/s write for the 500GB model in house, with a 120TBW. As with all Sabrent drives, the Rocket Q comes with a one-year warranty, easily upgraded to 5-years after registration. Sabrent has taken an almost luxury approach to its entire lineup of drives. The external solutions all come boxed in metal cases, and the internal solutions, like the Rocket Q above, get that same treatment. The capacity for this model is listed bottom right.
Removing the box, we have the metal case protecting the drive and capacity listed again on the sticker to the left.
Unboxing, the drive is tucked away in dense foam.
Looking at the Rocket Q, we see a single-sided design, two QLC NAND packages, controller above with the DRAM Cache.
CDM is a staple in performance testing; version 7 has seen some updates in the workloads used for testing. Marketing performance was nearly dead on with our sample hitting 2000 MB/s read and 998 MB/s write at half fill. 4KQ1 touches 56 read and 166 write.
ATTO is yet another popular benchmark for storage performance that breaks down performance based on file size. The Rocket Q offers solid read potential with consistent performance from 256K through 64M.
PCMark10 Quick System Drive put the Rocket Q near the bottom of our charts quite a distance behind our group of DRAMless solutions.
Price/Performance landed the Rocket Q upper middle of the charts right behind the P2 and in front of the DRAMless group, starting with the CN600.
Wrapping this up, the Rocket Q continues to enjoy the excellent build quality we have come to know over the past few months from Sabrent. The Phison E12S, a proven platform with broad NAND compatibility, has been deployed in mid-range NVMe solutions for years and is sure to make waves in the entry-level space when paired with "cheaper" QLC NAND.
Performance in my testing showed the 500GB Rocket Q was able to hit all the marks set by the team over at Sabrent, 2000 MB/s read 998 MB/s write without issue with similar results seen in ATTO. PCMark 10 carries a little more weight as it uses real-world traces from apps and everyday tasks to test the performance of the drive. Rocket Q didn't do the best in this scenario, squeaking out a score of 1315, nearly 200 points behind our pack of DRAMless solutions.
With all that said, the Rocket Q shouldn't be the drive you choose for demanding workloads or even your gaming PC. It's designed as an entry-level boot drive for a workstation or maybe a cost-effective cache drive for consumer NAS devices.
Tyler's Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: ASUS Crosshair VIII Formula X570 (buy from Amazon)
- CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600 (buy from Amazon)
- RAM: Corsair Vengeance 16GB 2x8GB DDR4 3600 (buy from Amazon)
- Cooler: Corsair Hydro H60 (buy from Amazon)
- Case: Corsair Carbide 275R (buy from Amazon)
- OS Storage: Corsair MP600 1TB (buy from Amazon)
- Power Supply: Corsair RM850x (buy from Amazon)
- OS: Microsoft Windows 10 (buy from Amazon)
The Bottom Line
While Rocket Q aims to compete with entry-level NVMe solutions, the 500GB model suffers from lack of cache due to its capacity.