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Samsung SSD 840 Evo 120GB, 500GB, 750GB, 1TB Review

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aLtikal 25th July 2013, 23:21 Quote
Up to double the performance of other drives, and still sell it for a really reasonable price? My god i love Samsung.
barrkel 26th July 2013, 02:24 Quote
I'm very skeptical about Rapid Mode, and dubious about the value of including it in the benchmarking. As far as I can make out, when using it, you've essentially got a RAM drive with lazy save to disk; but the whole reason for using persistent storage rather than RAM is that it's persistent, i.e. you don't lose data when your machine crashes or the power goes out.

Did you test resiliency when using Rapid Mode? What happens when you save a document and power off the machine shortly after? Is the window for data loss increased? What is the impact on free memory for other applications? How stable is the driver that it uses, have there been stability issues in the past with it? Compatibility across Windows versions?

Personally, I'd only use it for console-like machines used for gaming and other unimportant data.

The other question I have is why the Vertex 3 240GB is faster to boot, yet slower than the Samsung drives in every other benchmark. Clearly Windows is doing something that the Vertex 3 is better at, yet it hasn't been captured by any of the synthetic benchmarks. I find myself wondering what exactly that is?

(Current owner of a Samsung 830, and would-be purchaser of Samsung 840 if I were buying tomorrow; not trying to be overly skeptical.)
lysaer 26th July 2013, 03:31 Quote
Hmm might snag me a couple of those 1tb drives and raid them.

Yoyotech are relaunching since they were brought out and are offering some discounts on items for their launch. Info is on their Facebook page, looks like I'll be registering my launch offer on 2 of these bad boys

Sent from my GT-I9505 using Tapatalk 2
Corky42 26th July 2013, 06:02 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by barrkel
I'm very skeptical about Rapid Mode, and dubious about the value of including it in the benchmarking. <snip>

Did you test resiliency when using Rapid Mode? What happens when you save a document and power off the machine shortly after? Is the window for data loss increased? What is the impact on free memory for other applications? How stable is the driver that it uses, have there been stability issues in the past with it? Compatibility across Windows versions?

<snip>

The other question I have is why the Vertex 3 240GB is faster to boot, yet slower than the Samsung drives in every other benchmark. Clearly Windows is doing something that the Vertex 3 is better at, yet it hasn't been captured by any of the synthetic benchmarks. I find myself wondering what exactly that is?

I share your skepticism over Rapid Mode, What happens in the event of a power cut ? how much does faster RAM affect the benchmarks ?

I can answer "Compatibility across Windows versions?", afaik its only Windows 7&8
As for "What is the impact on free memory for other applications?" afaik it uses 1GB of system RAM.

I can only theorise why the Vertex 3 240GB is faster to boot, and i think it maybe due to the higher IOPS and possibly the lower latency.
Blackshark 26th July 2013, 06:27 Quote
Firslty, well done to Samsung. I have been spending 500 GBP on SSDs for some time, 256Gb C300, 500Gb M4, so a 1Tb 840 makes sense to me.

The Rapid Mode is exactly as described. It is a ram based caching system. However please keep in mind that almost all HDD and SSDs have some form of volatile cache built in to them anyway. This is just bigger :-) Rapid Mode is implemented as a windows driver that loads post boot, so no faster boot time. I am not sure how important it is to me to bring down my current <10s boot time from cold or 2-3s warm boot. However the performance upgrade with general use, is extremely impressive. Yes, if you are using the feature, it uses RAM so you have less for other apps.

In the event of a power cut, your PC dies unless you have a UPS. I don't know many PCs that live well with random power cuts, so I would suggest you use a UPS. Whether you choose to use Rapid Mode is up to each user and their use case. Either way, its a darn fast, cheap, well made SSD.

The hardest engineering issue with the new flash memory being used is its high latency. The way that Samsung have used some of the memory in SLC mode to offset this issue is not unique but has been implemented exceedingly well.
Xir 26th July 2013, 07:13 Quote
Quote:
the Samsung SSD 840 and Samsung SSD 840 Pro ranges caused something of a stir
well the 840 caused a run on the 830, that's for sure. :D

Also: pricing, the 840 EVO is 25% up compared to the 840, and nearly on par with the 840 Pro.

Though I suppose this will change.
Asouter 26th July 2013, 10:16 Quote
Hard to get excited about these SSD's. The technology is moving along with the release of nffg ssd's just around the corner.
Baz 26th July 2013, 10:23 Quote
I share your guys skepticism about RAPID mode, but it does have real-world impacts. Slicing 2 seconds off boot times and dramatically improving the very difficult PC Mark 7 results is testament to that, but the power loss concerns are certainly valid. Not one for those who like to hard reset or shutdown their PCs I think.

Just to clarify, I don't think we used the RAPID performance figures for the scoring - these are based on the standard drive performance.
Hamfunk 26th July 2013, 10:40 Quote
How's about a review or even a comparison between the Evo 1TB and the Crucial 960GB M500 that Ebuyer are doing for £450 at the mo???
Omnituens 26th July 2013, 16:58 Quote
I bought the 840 drive when then were doing the cashback... I'm still waiting my £40 back :(
phuzz 26th July 2013, 18:09 Quote
If the power goes when the SSD is still writing out to the flash, then you lose the data.
However, if you didn't have the cache, then the OS would still be writing to disk, and you'd still lose the data. If you were using and HDD you'd lose the data and possibly suffer a head crash.

Basically, if you want resiliency then you should be looking at some kind of battery backup.
If the cache speeds up the data write then it's reducing the time that you're vulnerable to power loss. That said, the disadvantage of the cache is that the OS will think that the write has succeeded which might cause even more problems.
Corky42 26th July 2013, 19:08 Quote
@phuzz, yes normal SSD&HDD can lose data in the event of a power failure, but most drives come with, what 8 to 64Mb ? when your dealing with what in essence is a 1GB ram drive the potential for data loss could be a lot greater.
Pookeyhead 28th July 2013, 08:34 Quote
Despite all the scepticism re: Rapid Mode... it still seems like a better choice of drive for performance over the 840 Pro, even without Rapid Mode.

Interesting drive... Definitely tempted.
fluxtatic 28th July 2013, 10:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corky42
@phuzz, yes normal SSD&HDD can lose data in the event of a power failure, but most drives come with, what 8 to 64Mb ? when your dealing with what in essence is a 1GB ram drive the potential for data loss could be a lot greater.

True, but I would take the greater day-to-day speed over the small chance of data loss any day. Aside from which, as others have pointed out, you should really be running on a UPS anyway. If you shelled out for a half-decent system, not spending the $50 on a UPS is insane.
SchizoFrog 28th July 2013, 17:32 Quote
Maybe Bit-Tech should do a group test on UPS items?
Corky42 28th July 2013, 17:54 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by SchizoFrog
Maybe Bit-Tech should do a group test on UPS items?

That would be nice ;), i never knew they had become something your average human could afford until fluxtatic said how cheap they are now. Going to show my age here :o but last time i looked at UPS's they where exclusively for servers, as they cost almost as much as your average desktop PC at the time.
John_T 29th July 2013, 20:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by SchizoFrog
Maybe Bit-Tech should do a group test on UPS items?

That'd be good. I've had mine since early 2005 and am thinking of an upgrade. Saved my PC again last night from a couple of brief dropouts - I have a terrible electricity supply where I am & would be lost with my UPS. (I bought it after a quick succession of spikes and dropouts killed half the components in my PC).

Corky, you mustn't half be going back a long way - I'm sure I paid less than £150 for it at the time, although they are cheaper still now.
faugusztin 29th July 2013, 20:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Corky42
but last time i looked at UPS's they where exclusively for servers, as they cost almost as much as your average desktop PC at the time.

Was that sometime in middle of last decade ? Because i bought a 700VA APC UPS sometime around 2008 for maybe 100 euros and i bought a newer one 1200VA Eaton UPS last year for 180 euros.
Corky42 29th July 2013, 23:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by faugusztin
Was that sometime in middle of last decade ?

Longer ago than that :'( it was in the mid 90's
SchizoFrog 1st August 2013, 05:05 Quote
I have a general question about SSD's and maybe about HDD's as well. If I format a new drive in to two partitions or even only format one partition but from half the disk, at some later point if I start to experience errors or data corruption, can I then start to use the other partition (or up until then unformatted space) and will that partition work as new or does a drive (either SSD or HDD) work that way?

I am asking because I am thinking of the practical benefits of buying a larger drive that is far cheaper cost/GB even though my system drive would never need that much space but then splitting it in half and in theory doubling the lifespan of the individual physical drive.
Corky42 1st August 2013, 07:00 Quote
HDD, yes the unformated space goes untouched afaik untill the day you format it with a file system and start using it. SSD, not so sure but i think the same holds true.
SchizoFrog 1st August 2013, 16:42 Quote
Cheers Corky. If that is true then it is much more practical and cost effective to get a single 840 EVO 250GB SSD and split it in to 2 for £150 rather than two individual 120GB drives for £100 each. Especially as SSD's have no moving parts to fail.
faugusztin 1st August 2013, 17:23 Quote
SSD simply removes the affected block from the use. Dividing it into partitions has no meaning for SSD, the flash blocks representing your partitions can change place anytime to any of them, depending on the wear leveling algorithm.

In short no, it makes no sense to divide the SSD in partitions in case a flash block fails, as the order is random and ever changing. Even your never changed files can move around the SSD if wear leveling needs it - that means that for example on of your blocks has 100 writes and the other with static file only 5 writes, then wear leveling algorigthm can decide to move out your static file to one of the more used blocks. Sure, that "wastes" one more write on both blocks, but it delays the failure of the first block by freeing up the less used block for more writes. And of course following this logic you can easily get 4kB of data from first partition followed by 4kB of data from 2nd partition, then again 1st, then again 2nd - on the same flash chip.
Corky42 1st August 2013, 18:11 Quote
So SSD wear leveling works at a drive level and not partition level ? good to learn something new :)
SchizoFrog 1st August 2013, 23:10 Quote
Indeed it is.
So use wise it would work out the same longevity wise to have have 2 individual 120GB drives as it would to have a 250GB if the usage was exactly the same (not going over 120-125GB of data whether formatted or not as to do so speeds up the deterioration in a relative comparison).

So the 250GB drive is the value and longevity sweet spot for me as a system drive as to use say a 1TB drive would last longer (with the same usage) but in theory by the time my 250GB drive burned out then future drives would be that much cheaper to replace any way. I can't see myself using SSD's for mass storage until the prices come way, way down.
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