This G.Skill SSD is fairly hefty as SSD storage goes, clocking in at a reasonable 128GB – more than enough for a operating system and plenty of game installs, immediately overcoming the storage capacity concerns we had with previous generation SSDs that topped out at a meagre 64GB.
Like all the drives we’re looking to today the G.Skill comes in the smaller 2.5” drive size so you’ll need a 3.5” drive adapter if you plan on installing it into your system. The exterior is pretty plain, with a matt black finish and the obligatory manufacturer sticker the only thing to identify it.
Cracking the drive open reveals the PCB fitted with sixteen Samsung 840, 8GB MLC NAND flash memory modules, linked to a J-Micron JMF 602 storage controller chip. This controller has quickly become the standard for cheaper SSDs, although its performance in the previous generation left a lot to be desired especially in regards to write performance, which doesn’t bode too well.
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Elsewhere the PCB design appears very clean with components mounted on both sides of the drive and there’s a great little addition of a mini-USB port alongside the SATA data and power connections, allowing the drive to operate as an external drive powered by USB and connected by E-SATA as well as an internal drive.
Speed-wise, G.Skill claims the drive is capable of maximum read speeds of 170MB/sec and write speeds of up 90MB/s, although is a little more realistic with its claims of sustained performance of 155MB/sec read and 90MB/sec write.
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However, the real show stopping feature of the G.Skill drive is its price – at just $270 in the USA (around £210) it’s a remarkably affordable entry into the SSD market and is just £20 more expensive than Western Digital’s 300GB 10,000 RPM VelociRaptor HDD.
One minor let down though is the rather stingy two year warranty which seems very brief for a product without any moving parts. We’ve gotten used to generous warranties of five or more years from hard drive manufacturers and the reduced warranty here is a bit of a shame.