Internals, Testing Methodology and System Setup


Opening the standard Intel housing we find the guts.

A thermal pad seems out of place, but it’s necessary as the SandForce controller draws ~5x the power as compared to the super-efficient Intel controllers. Even with the added power draw, it remains lower than spinning disks. Intel claims a 5-10 minute difference in battery depletion time on a typical 15" notebook.

Blowing up the controller side of the PCB we see Intel has went with their own PCB design.

At the rear we see another set of 8 TSOP’s.

Comparing with the 320 Series (left) and 510 Series (right), the only thing common to these models is the Synchronous IMFT flash memory and the Intel label.

Testing Methodology

Our tests are a good mix of synthetic and real-world benchmarks. PCMark, IOMeter, HDTach, HDTune, Yapt and our custom File Copy test round out the selection to cover just about all bases. If you have any questions about our tests just drop into the Storage Forum and we’ll help you out! 

Test System Setup

We’re breaking in a new Sandy Bridge test bed. Necessary for properly testing these new drives, even with the known issues. To get around this, we are using only the Intel SATA 6Gb/sec ports, which are known to not exhibit the inconsistent performance / connectivity issues. 

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

Hard Drive Test System Setup
CPU Intel Core i5-2500K
Motherboard Asus P8Z68-V Pro
Memory Kingston HyperX 4GB DDR3-2133 CL9
Hard Drive G.Skill 32GB SLC SSD
Sound Card N/A
Video Card Intel® HD Graphics 3000
Video Drivers Intel
Power Supply Corsair CMPSU-650TX
DirectX Version DX9.0c
Operating System Windows 7 X64
  • PCMark05
  • Yapt
  • IOMeter
  • HDTach
  • HDTune
  • PCPer File Copy Test
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