Testing Methodology, Performance and Conclusion
Test System Setup

We have switched our testbed over to a more dedicated, forward thinking machine.  We made some changes to help minimize test data scatter with higher bandwidth devices.  Sound is flat out disabled, with no additional card installed.  Video was *intentionally* shifted to a PCI unit to free up both PCIe-16 slots for testing tandem pairs of PCI Express cards (like ioDrivesDDRDrives, and high end RAID cards).  Spot checks against the previous rig showed a negligible change in test output.     

PC Perspective would like to thank ASUS, Corsair, and BFG for supplying some of the components of our test rig.     

Hard Drive Test System Setup
CPU Intel Core i7 920 @ 4 GHZ (HT disabled)
Motherboard Asus P6T
Memory Corsair Dominator 6GB DDR3-1600
Hard Drive G.Skill 32GB SLC SSD
Sound Card N/A
Video Card BFG Geforce 8400 GS 512MB PCI
Video Drivers Geforce 181.22
Power Supply Corsair CMPSU-650TX
DirectX Version DX9.0c
Operating System Windows XP X64 SP2   
Windows 7 X64 (for TRIM testing)

     
Performance

USB 3.0 external devices behave differently as compared to standard SATA / internal drives, so I’ve kept the test suite simple as to provide appropriate comparison to previously tested units. Ryan tested the OCZ Enyo using two different drivers – one was a ‘special’ driver provided by OCZ. I’ve included that data for comparison, but like Ryan, I don’t expect users to go installing special USB drivers for an external device. Kingston is not pushing such a driver, and I’m just fine with that.

Kingston HyperX Max 3.0 128GB USB 3 SSD (Toshiba HG2) Review - Storage 11

The Genesys Logic bridge tured in good burst speeds, even without any special driver in action.

Kingston HyperX Max 3.0 128GB USB 3 SSD (Toshiba HG2) Review - Storage 12

Sequential reads were comparable to all other units tested.

Kingston HyperX Max 3.0 128GB USB 3 SSD (Toshiba HG2) Review - Storage 13

The HyperX excels in sequential write speeds, offering close to 15% gain over the competition.

Kingston HyperX Max 3.0 128GB USB 3 SSD (Toshiba HG2) Review - Storage 14

Kingston HyperX Max 3.0 128GB USB 3 SSD (Toshiba HG2) Review - Storage 15

ATTO results show the HyperX Max to be dead-even with the OCZ Enyo using the base system driver.

Conclusion:

Pros:
  • Solid performance (even without a special driver).
  • Highest sequential write speeds seen to date.
  • Nicely constructed.
Cons:
  • Not as portable as a thumb drive.

Pricing and availability:

The HyperX Max 3.0 is expected to ship in early December, starting at $280 for the 128GB model. $2.19/GB is a very good price considering it’s a capable SSD wrapped in a durable and attractive enclosure. Here’s hoping the vendors stick to it at launch.

Final Thoughts:

The cast aluminum enclosure was very well made and does an excellent job of protecting the internals, as well as dissipating any heat generated by the Toshiba HG2 controller during sustained write operations. Fit and finish was excellent and the drive performed well in our testing. While the HG2 may not be the fastest SSD controller out there, it has proven to be a good match for this application. If pricing holds true once these hit the market, they will be among the most cost effective USB 3.0 SSD solutions out there.


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