Samsung SSD 960 EVO NVMe M.2 Review: Ultra Fast, Affordable Storage

Article Index

Test Setup, IOMeter 1.1, Compression Tests

Our Test Methodologies: Under each test condition, the Solid State Drives tested here were installed as secondary volumes in our testbed, with a separate drive used for the OS and benchmark installations. Out testbed's motherboard was updated with the latest BIOS available at the time of publication and AHCI (or RAID) mode was enabled.

The SSDs were secure erased prior to testing, and left blank without partitions for some tests, while others required them to be partitioned and formatted, as is the case with our ATTO, PCMark, SANDRA, and CrystalDiskMark benchmark tests. Windows firewall, automatic updates and screen savers were all disabled before testing. In all test runs, we rebooted the system, ensured all temp and prefetch data was purged, waited several minutes for drive activity to settle and for the system to reach an idle state before invoking a test.

HotHardware Test System
Intel Core i7 and SSD Powered

Processor -

Motherboard -


Video Card -

Memory -

Audio -

Storage -

 

Hardware Used:
Intel Core i7-6700K

Asus Z170 Deluxe
(Z170 Chipset, AHCI Enabled)

Intel HD 430

16GB Corsair DDR4-2666

Integrated on board

Corsair Force GT (OS Drive)
Intel SSD 750
Toshiba OCZ RD400 (1TB)
Samsung SSD 850 EVO M.2
Samsung SSD 950 PRO M.2 NVMe
Samsung SSD 960 PRO M.2 NVMe
Samsung SSD 960 EVO M.2 NVMe
Kingstin HyperX Predator

OS -
Chipset Drivers -
DirectX -

Video Drivers
 -


Relevant Software:
Windows 10 Pro x64
Intel 10.1.19, iRST 14.5.0.1081
DirectX 12

Intel HD 15.40.3.4248

Benchmarks Used:
IOMeter 1.1.0 RC
HD Tune v5.60
ATTO v3.05
AS SSD
CrystalDiskMark v5.0.2 x64
PCMark 7
SiSoftware Sandra 2015 SP3
IOMeter
I/O Subsystem Measurement Tool

As we've noted in previous SSD articles, though IOMeter is clearly a well-respected industry standard drive benchmark, we're not completely comfortable with it for testing SSDs. The fact of the matter is, though our actual results with IOMeter appear to scale properly, it is debatable whether or not certain access patterns, as they are presented to and measured on an SSD, actually provide a valid example of real-world performance and the access patterns we tested may not reflect your particular workload. That said, we do think IOMeter is a reliable gauge for relative available throughput within a given storage solution. In addition there are certain higher-end workloads you can place on a drive with IOMeter, that you can't with most other storage benchmark tools available currently.

In the following tables, we're showing two sets of access patterns; our custom Workstation pattern, with an 8K transfer size, 80% reads (20% writes) and 80% random (20% sequential) access and a 4K access pattern with a 4K transfer size, comprised of 67% reads (34% writes) and 100% random access.

io1


io2

The Samsung SSD 960 EVO 500GB drive we tested hung with Intel's SSD 750 drive at the lower queue depths with the 4K 100% random access pattern, but trailed once the queue depth was increased. Things were somewhat different with our 8K / 80 / 80 access pattern, however, where the Samsung SSD 960 EVO trailed the Intel drive, but still performed very well overall.

 
io4

IOMeter's overall bandwidth numbers reflect what we saw above -- the Samsung SSD 960 EVO drive performed very well, but it couldn't quite catch the Intel SSD 750 with the access patterns we used for testing.

AS SSD Compression Benchmark
Bring Your Translator: http://bit.ly/aRx11n

Next up we ran the Compression Benchmark built-into AS SSD, an SSD specific benchmark being developed by Alex Intelligent Software. This test is interesting because it uses a mix of compressible and non-compressible data and outputs both Read and Write throughput of the drive. We only graphed a small fraction of the data (1% compressible, 50% compressible, and 100% compressible), but the trend is representative of the benchmark’s complete results.

as1


as2

The Samsung SSD 960 EVO's performance isn't affected by the compressibility of the data being transferred across the drive, and overall, performance trails only the higher-end, more expensive PRO version of the drive.

Image gallery

Related content

Comments

Show comments blog comments powered by Disqus