Since we used our benching PC with Windows installed on the 480 GB SSD and both 240 GB SSDs, but not installed on the 2TB SSHD or the 1.92 TB SSD, it is not possible to give exact comparisons. And benchmarking SSDs is not an exact science as there is some variability between runs, but together with the real world and synthetic tests, it will be possible to get a good idea of relative performance across all 5 drives.
First, we will will look at synthetic benchmarks to highlight the differences between our drives.
Futuremark is well-respected as a developer and publisher of PC benchmark applications for nearly two decades. Although PCMark are synthetic tests, they provide a good measure of system performance. PCMark 10 is Futuremark’s seventh major update to the PCMark series. PCMark 10 is developed for Windows 10 and it builds upon the PCMark 8 platform for a complete package of vendor-neutral and easy-to-use benchmarks for home or office environments.
In comparison to PC Mark 8, PC Mark 10 is missing key elements including detailed storage testing, and it is not possible to test attached drives as with the earlier suite. We hope that Futuremark updates 10 as they promised. We benchmark using the Extended settings.
The Team Group 480 GB SSD scores a respectable 8014.
Here is the same test validated online.
The 240 GB HyperX SSD (Brown) scores 8153 and here is the online validation.
The 240 GB HyperX SSD Blue was Kingston’s flagship HyperX SSD a few years ago by virtue of its faster memory, but it actually scores less than its less expensive cousin at 7959.
Here is the online verification
Neither the 2 TB SSHD nor the 1.92 SSD are set up with Windows installed so we default to a much better storage test in PC Mark 8.
PCMark 8 has an excellent storage test which actually uses real world timed benchmarks which include loading World of Warcraft and Battlefield 3 as well as timing how long it takes to load Adobe apps.
Here is the Team Group 480 GB SSD storage test with 4960 or 255.07 MB/s bandwidth.
Here is the TG 480 GB online storage test summarized, and most importantly for a gamer, it took 58.4 seconds to load World of Warcraft and 133.4 seconds for Battlefield 3to load.
Here is the SanDisk 1.92 GB SSD storage test scoring 4940 and 230.86 MB/s bandwidth.
Here is the 1.92 GB SanDisk SSD online storage test summarized, and most importantly for a gamer, it took 58.7 seconds to load World of Warcraft and 134.4 seconds for Battlefield 3 to load.
Here are the 240 GB HyperX (brown) SSD storage test scoring 4903 and 204.49 MB/s bandwidth.
Here are the HyperX online storage test results summarized, and most importantly for a gamer, it took 58.4 seconds to load World of Warcraft and 134.4 seconds for Battlefield 3 to load.
Here are the 240 GB HyperX SSD Blue storage test scoring 4902 and 204.51 MB/s bandwidth.
Here are the HyperX Blue online storage test results summarized, and most importantly for a gamer, it took 58.4 seconds to load World of Warcraft and 134.7 seconds for Battlefield 3 to load.
Here are the 2 TB SSHD storage test results scoring 3027 and 17.98 MB/s bandwidth.
Here are the 2TB FireCuda SSHD online storage test results summarized, and most importantly for a gamer, it took 99.7 seconds to load World of Warcraft and 254.5 seconds for Battlefield 3 to load.
Here is the comparative loading times chart for World of Warcraft and for Battlefield 3 which is also included in the main Game/Level Loading chart.
It’s clear that for loading games and apps, the SSD is significantly faster than any HDD or SSHD. A SSHD only takes advantage of repeated loading of levels or games and after 2 or 3 loads, it will set up more quickly, approaching SSD speeds.
Before we get to gaming, we want to see exactly where drive performance results differ, and there is no better tool than SiSoft’s Sandra 2017. SiSoftware Sandra (the System ANalyser, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant) is an complete information & diagnostic utility in one complete package. It is able to provide all the information about your hardware, software and other devices for diagnosis and for benchmarking. In addition, Sandra is derived from a Greek name that implies “defender” or “helper” – a PC Wonder Woman.
There are several versions of Sandra 2017, including a free version of Sandra Lite that anyone can download and use. It is highly recommended! SiSoft’s Sandra 2017 SP4 is the very latest version, and we are using the full engineer suite courtesy of SiSoft, with quite a few improvements over earlier versions of Sandra. It will benchmark and analyze all of the important PC subsystems and even rank your PC and make recommendations for improvements.
First we run the very latest full Sandra benchmark suite and then follow up with the 3 disk benchmarking tests. Here is the chart summarizing the results of our 5 drives
The Team Group 480 GB SSD performance sits close to the other SSDs, and it is solidly faster than any HDD or SSHD.
AS SSD is especially designed for Solid State Drives (SSD). This tool contains synthetic and practice tests. The synthetic tests determine the sequential and random read and write performance of the SSD without use of the operating system caches. In Seq-test the program measures how long it takes to read and write a 1 GB file.
In the 4K test, read and write performance for random 4K blocks are determined. The 4K-64-thrd test are similar to the 4K procedure except that the read and write operations on 64 threads are distributed as in the usual start of a program. In the copying test, two large ISO file folders are created, programs with many small files, and a games folder with small and large files. These three folders are copied by the OS copy command with the cache turned on. AS SSD gives an overall “score” after it runs the benchmarks.
First we display the Team Group 480 GB results – it exceeds its expected Read and Write speeds and it scores 1133.
The 1.92 TB SanDisk SSD manages a score of 875.
The older generation 240 GB HyperX SSD Brown manages 736.
The 240 GB HyperX SSD Blue only manages 706.
The 2TB SSHD can only score 49.
The SSHD or HDD tests appear to take forever with AS SSD and they score very low compared to any SSD. The older HyperX SSDs score lower in the Write tests than do the newer SSDs. On to HD Tach.
HD Tach is a low level hardware benchmark for random access read/write storage devices including for SSDs and HDDs. HD Tach uses custom device drivers and low level Windows interfaces to determine the physical performance of the device. It is no longer supported and needs to be run in compatibility mode for Windows 7.
The Team Group 480 TB SSD averages 394.9 MB/s Read.
The 1.92 GB SanDisk SSD averages 121.5 MB/s Read. It is an older synthetic test.
The 240 GB HyperX SSD Brown gets 372.3 MB/Sec Read.
The 240 GB HyperX SSD Blue scores 344.9 MB/sec.
The 2 TB SSHD manages 181.7 MB/second Read.
Enough of the synthetics! Let’s look at game and game level loading times.
The Game/Level Loading Time Results
Unfortunately, our results are very difficult to measure precisely but it is easy to see that generally SSDs perform similarly with regard to loading times and they are miles ahead of any HDD or even SSHD which requires loading the same level or program over and over to get quicker. The 240 GB HyperX SSD that we tested loading times on is the standard (brown) drive which sets up games and levels no slower than the Blue drive.
Playing Kingdom Come: Deliverance for over 12 hours the first day made us switch to a SSD which loaded levels much faster than from the SSHD. This game is a poster child for using a SSD over a HDD where the player is often saving 20 seconds every time they load a level or reload a saved game.
On the other hand, there are games like Grand Theft Auto V which load slowly and almost painfully, and occasionally the SSHD beats a SSD. Other games like Fallout 4 and Call of Duty WW II load pretty quickly from any kind of storage drive. However, generally games load significantly faster from a SSD than from a HDD and a SSHD only starts to show it’s strengths when the same game or level is reloaded several times.
Until devs start to target SSDs for game storage, or perhaps after consoles move away from hard disk drives, we will no longer see SSDs held back from achieving the game loading performance they are capable of. Until then, even the NVMe PCIe SSDs which are significantly faster than the SATA III SSDs, are not worth the price premium they command for gamers unless they are just looking to perhaps shave an additional second off of loading times.
It looks like our Team Group 480 GB SSD is a keeper! It exceeds Team Group’s published minimum Read and Write speeds and it is our fastest SSD. We will continue to use our pair as boot drives and to keep Windows Store games on. Games that take advantage of SSDs and load more quickly are mostly kept on the 1.92 TB San Disk SSD, and games like GTA V and FallOut 4 reside on the 2 TB SSHD for now.