Examining Intel's 525 Series mSATA Solid State Drive

PCMark 7 & CrystalDiskMark

Futuremark's PCMark 7 is the latest version of the PCMark suite, released last spring. It has updated application performance measurements targeted for a Windows 7 environment. It combines 25 individual workloads covering storage, computation, image and video manipulation, Web browsing, and gaming.

Futuremark PCMark 7
General Application and Multimedia Performance

Our NUC had trouble with the latest version of PCMark 7 (version 1.4.0) and refused to spit out a "Computation score," which played havoc with the overall score. In light of this, we decided to limit testing to the "System storage" portion of the test since we're focusing on SSD performance.

Things were pretty balanced with not much separation between the lowest performing drive (30GB, 4,790) and the highest performing drive (60GB, 5,146).

Synthetic File Transfer Tests

CrystalDiskMark is a synthetic benchmark that tests both sequential and random small and mid-sized file transfers using incompressible data. It provides a quick look at best and worst case scenarios with regard to SSD performance, best case being larger sequential transfers and worse case being small, random transfers.

 30GB Intel 525

 60GB Intel 525

120GB Intel 525

180GB Intel 525

 240GB Intel 525
What's interesting about our CrystalDiskMark testing is that sequential performance steadily improved each time we popped in a higher capacity SSD into the NUC. This was true for both read and write metrics. Things were a bit more even keel during the 4K portion of the test.

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