AnandTech Storage Bench - The Destroyer

The Destroyer is an extremely long test replicating the access patterns of very IO-intensive desktop usage. A detailed breakdown can be found in this article. Like real-world usage, the drives do get the occasional break that allows for some background garbage collection and flushing caches, but those idle times are limited to 25ms so that it doesn't take all week to run the test. These AnandTech Storage Bench (ATSB) tests do not involve running the actual applications that generated the workloads, so the scores are relatively insensitive to changes in CPU performance and RAM from our new testbed, but the jump to a newer version of Windows and the newer storage drivers can have an impact.

We quantify performance on this test by reporting the drive's average data throughput, the average latency of the I/O operations, and the total energy used by the drive over the course of the test.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Data Rate)

The ADATA XPG SX950 is the slowest MLC SSD in this group, going by its average data rate on The Destroyer, while the similarly-equipped Crucial BX300 is the second-fastest SATA drive in the half-TB capacity class.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Latency)

ADATA has a latency problem on The Destroyer. The SX950's average latency is much worse than any other MLC SSD, and the 99th percentile latency as bad as the TLC-based SU800, which was already an extreme outlier.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Read Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Write Latency)

Splitting the average latency up by read and write operations, it's clear that the SX950's troubles are mostly on the write side, though the average read latency is also more typical of a TLC SSD than one with 3D MLC.

ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Read Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Write Latency)

The 99th percentile read latency of the ADATA SX950 is not much worse than other 3D MLC SSDs, but the 99th percentile write latency on The Destroyer is unusually high at over 81ms. It appears that the SX950 is being quite aggressive with its SLC caching, leading to a serious backlog when it is finally forced to perform garbage collection. The BX300 avoids this by using relatively small fixed-size SLC caches.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Power)

Given the mediocre data rate and poor QoS indicating a lot of background work, it's not too surprising to see that the SX950's energy usage on The Destroyer is substantially higher than the Crucial BX300 and most other 3D NAND SSDs. The SX950 does shave 25% off the energy usage of the TLC-based ADATA SU800, but Crucial still does much better with the same controller.

Introduction AnandTech Storage Bench - Heavy
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  • Cliff34 - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    It is almost for almost all your needs, budget or performance, better stick with Samsung's SSDs.
  • Chaitanya - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    Sadly Adata has diarrhea when it comes to releasing SSDs. They drop too many SSDs on market too fast.
  • chrnochime - Tuesday, October 10, 2017 - link

    You!= everyone under the sun. And no not everyone wants to be stuck with a freakin TLC SSD, as much as you'd like to believe. How hard can that be to grasp? Wait rhetorical question LOL
  • Dr. Swag - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    Is ADATA out of their minds? This drive performs on the budget end of the spectrum yet they're pricing it above the 850 pro?!?
  • jardows2 - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    Before I read the article, I thought I knew the conclusion - It will perform under Samsung products, and be priced a bit too high for the comparative performance. I guess I was highly optimistic about this drive! What is up with that price?
  • Flunk - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    ADATA's pricing is truely perplexing. Maybe their market is "people who don't read SSD reviews", so they think they can write "premium" on the box and it justifies the price. Maybe they're pricing just so they can have it 50% off MSRP all the time. Regardless, I'd argue there isn't really such thing as a premium SATA SSD anymore because even budget NVMe drives throttle them.

    4x PCI-E 3.0 is 32Gbps, Fully 4 times the bandwidth of SATA 3. That's not a generational leap, it's a whole new ballgame, especially if you consider the reduction in overhead that comes with NVMe. SATA drives are now relegated to being upgrades for older desktops and notebooks, there is no "high-end" left.
  • ddriver - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    sata 3 is 6 gbits, IIRC 6 * 4 is 24

    Also, 4 times faster drive doesn't make a system 4 times faster. It is true that before SSDs, storage was pretty much the bottleneck, but if you look at real world benchmarks, the difference between a SATA and a NVME SSD is a few percents in 99% of the cases.
  • xeroshadow - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    I can attest to this. I went from an Intel 330 series to NVMe Samsung 960 and barely noticed any difference except in some launch speeds of certain programs. I was disappointed.
  • Samus - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    It's like CPU's. Programs just haven't caught up to their capability yet. Other than mass data transfer (between SSD's no less) you are likely to see any real-world performance boost from NVMe over SATA3. Decompressing is the only area I personally benefit from NVMe; it unRAR's files much faster than a SATA3 drive.

    But gaming, general usage, and even content creation I don't notice a difference.
  • saratoga4 - Monday, October 9, 2017 - link

    It's because while the transfer rate of high end NVMe drives is much higher, that really doesn't help you load a few dozen 10 MB files all that much faster. For lots of small to medium sized files, you need lower access latency, and NVME drives are little better than SATA, so until that improves the main place NVME will have an edge is copying files between NVME drives.

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