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SSD is being widely used on notebook since last year 2007 as the capacity is getting higher and cost is cheaper. Many PC manufacturers have started to offer SSD for their notebooks as SSD has many great advantages over the traditional HDD. Today we will have a look of G.Skill 64GB SSD (MLC) which we would say is the minimum capacity required for a notebook especially for Vista OS.
"G. SKILL", established in 1989 by enthusiasts, is a leading memory Module Manufacturer based in Taipei, Taiwan. With traditional strengths, we have built excellent reputation by meeting market demand and fostering business competitiveness both locally and internationally with our dedications to: Competitive prices, On-Time Delivery, Assured Quality, Customer-Oriented Services & Various Products.
We are here to provide superior memory products and satisfactory services in order to keep pace with our customers' growing needs, and help our customers in adding value to their products. And we pledge we will continue to do so and enable both sides to obtain significant competitive advantages in the market segments.
Model Name: FM-25S2S-64GB
Form Factor: 2.5"
Interface Type: SATA II
Sequential Read Rate: 155MB/sec (MAXIMUM 170MB/sec in Vista)
Sequential Write Rat: 90MB/sec (MAXIMUM 100MB/sec in Vista)
Access Time: >0.2ms
Shock (operating): 1500G
Vibration (operating): 20G
Altitude (operating): 60000ft
Operating Temp.: 0oC ~ +70oC
Data Reliability: Built-in EDC/ECC function
Certifications: RoHS FCC and CE Compliant
Warranty: 2 year
In Microsoft Vista 64 bit system, the read/write speed would reach about 170/100 (MB/sec).
Package & Contents
G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD comes with a black rectangular box which is standard packaging box for G.Skill MLC SSD as SLC SSD will have silver packaging box. Some specifications of G.Skill SATA II MLC SSD are written at the back of the box such as read/write speed, MTBF, dimension and etc.
Inside the outer box, there is another soft case which is mostly made by sponge to protect G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD. The protection is very well and should be able to absorb all kind of vibrations during transportation and the SSD is packed within an ESD bag which is necessary for a PCB component. A simple user guide is included which is same with the specifications that are written in G.Skill website of this drive.
G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD
G.Skill has total four models for their SSD products; 32/64GB SLC and 64/128GB MLC. G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD comes with a black aluminum casing which is good for heat dissipation and its size is exactly same with traditional 2.5" HDD which have been standardized. How to differentia SLC or MLC SSD of G.Skill SSD? It is quite simple and thanks to G.Skill for standardized the casing color for them; black for MLC and silver for SLC.
G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD has sequential read/write rate around 155/90 MB/s and around 170/100MB/s for Vista OS. G.Skill SATA II MLC SSD is a SATA II HDD and having 3.0Gbps bandwidth which is doubled compare with SATA I HDD. For ideal case, SSD HDD has much lower power consumption compare with traditional HDD; approximately 80% which is good for power saving and green environment.
Let us talk about some history and basic knowledge of SSD drive. SSD stands for Solid state drive and it uses solid state memory (either SDRAM or DRAM) which is faster than ordinary HDD because it doesn't require mechanical data seeking which brings SSD has faster read and write speed. Multi level cell (MLC) SSD is a cheaper version of Single level (SLC) SSD as it is slower, less reliable and shorter life span as well. MLC SSD has around 1000 to 10000 write cycles while SLC is around 100000 life cycles.
Besides the SATA and power connectors of G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD, there is another connector which is mini 5pins USB connector. With this, user can hot plug this drive easily just with the USB cable without being installed on the notebook. This is good as other SSD brands do not come with such additional feature as far as we concern. However the 5pins USB cable is missing from the package bundle and hope G.Skill will include it during next revision because there shouldn't any cost concern to inclde such cheap USB cable for an expensive SSD.
Here is the comparison between ordinary 2.5" portable HDD with G.Skill MLC SSD. Basically nothing much different from the outlook but G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD is much lighter than ordinary HDD where its weight is around 5x lighter. G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD comes with two years warranty which is the minimum warranty period that we would say it is required because most of the traditional 2.5" HDD will have five years warranty.
Let us show you how simple of a SSD will mostly same with a USB drive. After opened up the G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD, you will able to see a green PCB with eight NAND flash chips on top and one controller chip. We believe G.Skill 128GB and 64GB SATA II MLC SSD are sharing the same PCB because at the back of the PCB, there are eight more ready NAND flash placement. With this, G.Skill will able to have some manufacturing cost saving but utilize production line and able to avoid raw material inventory aging of the lesser popularity or demanding product.
Look at the memory chips then you will find that they are from Samsung K9HCG08UIM and Samsung NAND flash chips are very popular for SSD and are being widely used by most of the SSD manufacturers as Samsung has mature process and technology to produce cheaper and better quality NAND chip. JMF602 is a single chip with SATA II and USB2.0 combo to NAND flash interface which provide high bandwidth for flash memory access which contribute to make G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD can be used as external HDD without additional external HDD casing.
Installation, Testing & Performance
G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD comes with unformatted partition so we have formatted it to single partition with NFTS format before we started our tests. HDD installation depends on your system and most of it should be simple if you are familiar with PC hardware else you may send it to computer shop and ask them fix for you. I doubt anyone will need it as those are purchasing such expensive drive will have basic knowledge of computer hardware.
Notebook : Dell Inspiron E1720
Processor : Intel Mobile Core 2 Duo T7500
Memory : 4GB Kingston HyperX 667MHz DDR2 Memory
Hard Drive : 120GB 2.5" 5400RPM 8MB Seagate
Graphic Card : Nvidia GeForce 8400M GS
Optical Drive : DVD RW
Operating System : Microsoft Window XP SP2
Benchmark Software: HD Tech 3.0, CrystalDiskMark2.2, Sisoftware Sandra Lite XII
Here are the testing comparison results between G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD and a traditional SATA HDD from Samsung 80GB. With these results, it is clearly stated that G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD has better performance than traditional HDD especially the average read and random access speed. The average read access is almost twice than the traditional HDD and the random access is much more faster because SSD doesn't have any physical mechanical seeking like traditional HDD.
Here are some snapshots for G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD for HD Tech3.0 and CrystalDiskMark22.
Besides we have tested G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD as an internal HDD of a notebook, we did test it as external HDD as well since it can be supported. The 5pins USB cable is not included for G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD but we have one from our other external HDD enclosure. Base on the result, the read and write performances are pretty good comparing with other traditional HDD with external HDD enclosure and USB flash drive too. Especially the random access speed which is less than 1ms for G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD and other tranditional HDD requires at least 15ms.
There is no doubt that G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD is much better than a conventional HDD in term of everything; read, random access and etc. Sooner or later SSD will replace existing HDD which depend on the maturity of the SSD manufacturing; higher yield will produce cheaper products which will generate more demand. Besides that G.Skill 64GB SATA II MLC SSD has extra feature that normal SSD brand doesn't have where it can be used as an external HDD without any external casing; this is good for data transferring. With its price around 200USD, not all the people will able to afford it but in case you are able then you should consider this SSD from G.Skill which will greatly enhance your system performance. If you are looking for higher capacity, G.Skill has 128GB version which will cost around 330USD to fulfill your hungriness of capacity demand.
* Great & fast performance
* Light weight
* Can work as external HDD without any additional HDD enclosure
* Shorter life span compare with SLC SSD or traditional HDD
Thanks to G.Skill for providing this sample for us to review.
Only registered users may post a comment.
|Administrator||Wed 26 Nov 08|
|Administrator||Wed 26 Nov 08|
|We're in the progress and updating the results. stay tuned.|
|GullLars (Guest)||4.0 / 5||Wed 26 Nov 08|
|Why did you not include random read and write info for it connected through SATA? The only sequential operation a disk does is copying. Everything regarding accelerating programs and OS with SSD can be considered as small packet random. To andy: what you are describing is condensator noise, you get that from all kinds of electrical devices. It may not be present in all products, and can be the result of a bad/low quality condensator.|
|Administrator||5.0 / 5||Sun 23 Nov 08|
|Hi Andy, are you using this SSD drive for your notebook? We have tested in our notebook and it is really no noise even we put our ear right besides the notebook HDD door. Furthermore SSD is something like flash drive, it has no mechanical movement so it shouldn't generate any noise at all.|
|Andy (Guest)||5.0 / 5||Sun 23 Nov 08|
|Hi, you say it is "noiseless" in the review, I have one and it makes a high-pitched whine, especially during r/w operations, can you try putting your ear within 1/2m of it and see if you hear anything? I may have a bad one .... thanks!|
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