Go Back   Hardware Canucks > NEWS & REVIEWS > Member Reviews

    
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old March 5, 2010, 09:21 PM
Hall Of Fame
F@H
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 1,227

My System Specs

Default Kingston (Gen 2) SNV425-S2BN/128GB + Dell Inspiron 1420

This is the first time I ever owned an SSD, and it is my first ever attempt at reviewing a product in detail, so if you notice something horribly wrong, I welcome any feedback. As such, I also cannot guarantee any of my results will apply to your experience - YMMV - Wiktionary

** I am still working on optimizing the SSD, so I will post more quantitative test results as they come along. I am currently trying to re-align the partitions to see if I can improve my startup time, which at the moment is ON PAR or WORSE than my old 5400RPM hard disk.

Quick Verdict
PROS
- Dramatically reduced loading times for hungry applications (OpenOffice, GIMP)
- Reduced loading times for virtual machines, although still not instant
- I don't have to fear head crashes if I have to pick up my laptop while it is operating (I sometimes do this when leaving class)
- Included USB 2.0 enclosure performs faster than cheap ones, and is very easy to open
- No apparent stutter - my laptop's CPU was the bottleneck in the torture test I tried.
CONS
- Included Acronis package if using automatic settings will give you a misaligned primary partition
- Questionable method of inserting and mounting the HDD in enclosure

Link to manufacturer: Kingston Technology Company - Solid State Drives - SSD<em>Now</em> V Series Drive

Intro

I have to admit that my first jump into the land of SSDs (for my personal computers) was a $270+taxes gamble. (at the time of purchase) The Kingston V-Series at 128GB cost around $80 to $100 less than any other 120-128GB drive. I needed more space than the 80 GB of the Intel SSD, so I opted for this drive. Note that I am upgrading from a 320 GB WD Scorpio Blue (5400 RPM), of which I was using ~60 GB on.

The purpose for this SSD (other than simply wanting to try them out) was to hopefully get better launch times for the virtual machines I use more and more frequently on my laptop. I need Windows XP mode for a research project, since my embedded systems IDE is still not 64-bit compliant, and I also use a Linux VM for school work that specifically wants Linux apps, since a VM is much more convenient than setting up and maintaining a dual boot system. Additionally, native Linux has never liked my laptop's wireless adaptor when I was using WPA2.

Note that I am reviewing this as a KIT, so I also comment on the accessories. I also do not have the time an resources to run a comprehensive suite of artificial benchmarks. Here is the link to a review that convinced me to try out this drive, in which they do bench it artificially:
PC Perspective - Kingston SSDNow V Series (2nd Gen) 128GB SSD Review - JMicron JMF618 Makes an Appearance!

Unpacking the drive, physical appearance / build
The Kingston SNV425-S2BN/128GB "Notebook Upgrade Kit" comes very tidy box. With the exception of the shrink-wrap and plastic bags, it is quite easy to place everything back into the box. (unlike the headphones and USB key I recently purchased, which required me to hack at a plastic shell with a knife to rescue the product).




The included accessories are a ~35 cm long USB a to Mini-B cable (measured over the length of the wire portion, not including the connectors), a CD-ROM containing Acronis True Image HD, a 2.5" USB 2.0 enclosure, and of course, the drive itself. Instructions are kept in PDF form on the CD-ROM.

Inside the anti-static bag is the star of the show, the SSD itself. It is very plain, with only the label of the stone carving-ish bearded head on the top of the drive to deter from the dark grey metallic housing. I suppose it still looks better than say, the artwork on the Sapphire Radeon x1950... Note that it also lacks a jumper. We'll see what one will have to do to upgrade firmware in the future, since I can't find a downloads page for the drive on Kingston's web site (Mar 5, 2010).

__________________
"The computer programmer says they should drive the car around the block and see if the tire fixes itself." [src]
Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
Old March 5, 2010, 09:22 PM
Hall Of Fame
F@H
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 1,227

My System Specs

Default

RESERVED: USB 2.0 Enclosure Benchmarking
So far, this has proven rather interesting: Different quality of USB cables?

I'll post the rest of the HD Tune screens when I can, but the Kingston enclosure seems to beat my cheapo and my outdated enclosure by ~2 MB / sec.
__________________
"The computer programmer says they should drive the car around the block and see if the tire fixes itself." [src]
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old March 5, 2010, 09:26 PM
Hall Of Fame
F@H
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Ottawa, ON
Posts: 1,227

My System Specs

Default

RESERVED: Performance as an OS drive

I'll refrain from doing any artificial benchmarks, since I don't know how to use them properly to begin with...
Without the realignment (which I'm trying now), the SSD easily beats my Scorpio Blue in loading applications / virtual machines and copy-large-file-to-self. However, loading times into Windows 7 did not see ANY improvement, and running CHKDSK was downright painful.

Since the partition was misaligned, I'll try again before posting any times.
__________________
"The computer programmer says they should drive the car around the block and see if the tire fixes itself." [src]
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
My dell inspiron needs a video card. Suggestions appreciated. kir_b Video Cards 24 June 4, 2010 05:44 PM
[SOLVED] 2 gen my second gen customize computer is not working [now its ALIVEEEE!!!!] CTA Troubleshooting 37 August 31, 2008 07:50 AM
FS: Dell Inspiron 1300 Laptop / 15.4" Wide CMetaphor Buy/Sell & Trade 20 July 9, 2008 06:42 PM
Dell Inspiron 1501 CPU Upgrade BALISTX Mobile Computing 9 March 13, 2008 01:02 PM