ADATA S596 Turbo Review: JMicron 616

September 16, 2010 | 07:26

Tags: #128gb #128mb-cache #as-ssd #atto #benchmarks #iometer #load-times #performance #pics #pictures #price #quiet-computing #results #review #ssd #tests #usb

Companies: #adata

Performance Analysis

First off, ADATA says that this drive will be available in the UK soon, but in the States the drive costs $270 which places it against equivalent-sized SandForce drives, so we'll use these drives as our comparisons.

The S596 Turbo was way below SandForce speeds in when dealing with the compressible data of ATTO, with a read speed of 219MB/sec rather than 285MB/sec and a write speed of 173MB/sec rather than 274MB/sec. However, the S596 Turbo was faster than the SandForce drives when handling the incompressible data of AS SSD. We saw a mighty write speed of 178MB/sec while the SandForce drives struggled along at 123MB/sec.

*ADATA S596 Turbo Review: JMicron 616 S596 Turbo 128GB Performance Analysis and Conclusion
Click to enlarge

The S596 Turbo only lost out to amazing Crucial C300 64GB (tested over a SATA 6Gbps port) in the read test with 244MB/sec rather than the 208MB/sec of a SandForce drive. The Crucial hit a speed of 348MB/sec.

We also threw in an older Indilinx drive (OCZ Vertex) for good measure, as the two share the same type of controller structure with DDR2 cache. Compared to this drive, while the ADATA was faster in both the read and write results in AS SSD, it fell behind by a significant 30-50MB/s in ATTO.

We thought the extra speed in the AS SSD test would translate well to raw performance, but the S596 Turbo didn't fair well against the competition in Iometer. The read and write numbers are far behind the similarly priced SandForce SF-1200 drives, and even the older Indilinx drive outperformed the new S596 Turbo in Iometer's read performance. At least maximum latencies of the drive were pleasingly low whether reading or writing, which means that the S596 Turbo is a stutter-free drive.

*ADATA S596 Turbo Review: JMicron 616 S596 Turbo 128GB Performance Analysis and Conclusion
Click to enlarge

The S596 Turbo impressively shaved a second off the game load time versus the Indilinx, matching the faster Sandforce SSDs. However, the Crucial still boasts the fastest game load times, even if you do need to pair it with a fast SATA 6Gbps port.

Conclusion

We didn't expect the ADATA S596 Turbo to break any records, but it was surprisingly fast in the AS SSD tests, where SandForce's DuraWrite compression technology isn't a factor, even if the drive didn't handle the compressible data of ATTO especially well.

We're happy to report that JMicron has sorted out its performance issues and got TRIM working as well. It's just a shame that it's taken this long - the JMF616 controller a year ago would've made quite a splash against the Indilinx Barefoot controller.

This is an important observation however, as the world of SSDs has moved on from Indilinx and onto SandForce and the Crucial C300 range. While the S596 Turbo might be a solid alternative to an Indilinx-based SSD, it has to compete with these newer drives to be worth buying, especially as it's priced similarly.

The extras in the retail box, such as the 3.5in to 2.5in drive bay adapter are a nice addition, as is the mini-USB port should you need it, but given the level of performance, the S596 Turbo needs to be cheaper to be a more attractive purchase.

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