Building a new gaming rig? Then you must of thought of what you are going to use as a hard drive. Now a days you have a lot of choices for storage. Most users seek performance and others storage. It is very hard to find a combination of both. Solid State Drives are always popular and they come with a hefty price tag. Today we are going to be taking a look at the newest SSD from Kingston, HyperX. A big thanks to Kingston for providing us with this unit. After spending few hours with HyperX 240GB, we strongly feel it has lots to offer and a very reasonable price. Let's take a closer look at HyperX 240GB to see its features and all that it has to offer.
About the Product
Following information is taken from the Kingston's website.
HyperX performance at an exceptional price.
Budget-minded gamers and enthusiasts will benefit from the lower price of Kingston’s new HyperX® 3K SSD. This solid-state drive combines premium 3000 program-erase cycle Toggle NAND with the second-generation SandForce® controller. Its lower price means more users can experience ultra-responsive gaming, multitasking and multimedia computing power. 3K loads games and applications faster, increases frames per second (FPS) for an improved gaming experience and allows for quick transfers and edits of large media files. HyperX 3K provides high-speed SATA Rev. 3.0 (6Gb/s) performance and blazing fast random and sequential read/write speeds. SandForce DuraClass™ technology provides the latest data integrity protection for ultimate endurance over the entire life of the drive. HyperX 3K SSD comes in a sleek, black and aluminum case design, accentuating the look of any power user’s system. For added peace of mind, HyperX 3K SSD is backed by a three-year warranty and legendary Kingston® reliability.
SandForce controller technology
High-speed SATA Rev 3.0 (6Gb/s) transfer speeds
Advanced Wear-Leveling Technology
User-Configurable Over Provisioning
Performance — incredible speeds for enhanced productivity
Reliable — much less likely to fail than a standard hard drive
Shock-Proof — dropping your notebook no longer means losing your data
Cool & Quiet — runs silent and with no moving mechanical parts to generate heat
Innovative — uses NAND Flash memory components
Supports TRIM — enhances device wear leveling by eliminating merge operation for all deleted data blocks
Supports S.M.A.R.T. (Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology)
Guaranteed — three-year Kingston® warranty, free tech support
Now that we got basic information out of the way, lets take a closer look at HyperX.
HyperX series has been designed for gamers which can utilise a great performance and exceptional price tag that comes with it. With recent floods in Thailand, hard drive manufactures got a big hit and the prices of hard drives jumped really high so by offering gamers a reasonable price and performance Kingston really had a good opportunity to get a head. Later in the review we will go over the price ranges for different models of HyperX. The packaging of HyperX is nothing more than breath taking. Right on the front of the box we can see the actual unit itself with basic information of the HyperX. We are reviewing a 240 GB version HyperX and this particular version has Read speed of up to 555 MB/s and up to 510 MB/s Read. These readings were done by ATTO and we will double check this later on in the review.
HyperX 3k 240GB
What makes HyperX valuable is all of the accessories which come with it. What you are looking at is basically an upgrade package which is designed to help you migrate/clone your existing hard drive to HyperX. HyperX comes with a stylish USB 2.0 enclosure and everything you need to install HyperX in to the computer. What is very valuable here is the Acronis Clone software which comes on a cd. Our experience with Acronis has been nothing more than great as they make some of the best cloning applications available.
Dimensions of HyperX is just like your standard 2.5 inch enclosure which is designed to not only fit in the big cases but also in to lap tops and notebooks. HyperX has a durable design which provides a shock proof feature to its users. So you can drop and slam your notebook and you wouldn't have to worry of losing data. At this point we would like to mention that HyperX is offered in 90, 120, 240 and 480 GB capacities. These models are priced as 148, 182, 378 and 762 US $.
SATA 6GB/s ready
HyperX offers a true SATA 3 connection with speeds up to 6GB/s. If you have a good controller then you should get a great throughput from this drive. We will look at technical data a little bit further in our review. Is SATA 2 and 1 compatible with HyperX? Absolutely however don't expect to achieve the same performance and speed as from SATA 3.
USB 2.0 Enclosure
USB 2.0 Enclosure
Let's take a look at the USB 2.0 enclosure which is included in the package. I was kind of disappointed that this enclosure is only USB 2.0 and not 3.0. If you are planning to migrate all of your data to HyperX and doing this over USB 2.0, you are in for a long cloning process as it would take a few hours to get a proper clone. Acronis is a great tool for this kind of thing but if the connection is limited to USB 2.0, this might take a while. What Kingston really should of done is to include a USB 3.0 capable enclosure with HyperX.
HyperX 3k Installed
However just looking at the accessories which are included with HyperX, they definitely make a complete package. I strongly thing that HyperX comes with a great value right out of the box. There is nothing you need to do to get HyperX in to the USB 2.0 shell, just a few pulls and the drive gently slides in to the its proper place. To keep everything secured there is a locking mechanism on the enclosure which makes sure the enclosure stays closed and secured while transport.
Ready to rock!
We did not had to install any drivers to get the enclosure running. Just plug and play device here. However I was anxious to see what speeds we can get out of this particular model of HyperX. Lets move on to testing.
GIGABYTE GA-X79-UD3 LGA 2011 Intel X79 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard
SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 7850 2GB GDDR5 Video Card OC Edition
OCZ Agility 3 AGT3-25SAT3-60G 2.5" 60GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)
G.SKILL Ripjaws Z Series 16GB (4 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory
Cooler Master 1200 Watts Modular Power Supply
At UMLan we are always trying to push technology to its limits. Today we are going to be using a newest LGA 2011 socket with Intel i7-3960X Extreme Edition Sandy Bridge chip. Our system is over clocked to a stable 4.5 GHz and I think this would do just fine with HyperX benchmarking.
Crystal Disk Mark 1k
Crystal Disk Mark 4k
Our first benchmark we have turned to was Crystal Disk Mark. We have been using Crystal Disk Mark for a while now and always gave us base understanding of what we should expect here. The purpose of this benchmark was to get speed as high as we could in 1K and 4K settings. In 1K benchmark we have gotten speeds up to 468 MB/s in Sequential Read and 331 in Sequential Write. Historically Write speeds are slower than Reading speeds. In 4K benchmark we got 487 MB/s in Seq Read and 326 in Seq Write. As these numbers are pretty high and close to 6GB/s speeds however we still haven't seen that 500MB/s mark as Kingston promises.
HD Tune Pro Read 6GB/s
HD Tune Pro Write 6GB/s
It is always good to double check your data with other benchmark application. Second benchmark we have ran was HD Tune Pro. There is where we got some great data! With HD Tune Pro we have established a stable average speed of 500 MB/s with minimum 494 MB/s and maximum of 516 MB/s. Write test went well as well however we were not as close to 500 MB/s mark here. Average speed we saw here was 458 MB/s. We also observed a maximum speed of 483MB/s and minimum of 438 MB/s. Any way you look at this, this is way faster than SATA 2 speeds. Access time for Read test was 0.069ms and in Write test access time was a bit slower, 0.155 ms. These differences are not noticeable in the real world experience but its sure nice to know.
HD Tune Pro Read USB 2.0
HD Tune Pro Write USB 2.0
Our next task was to take a look at the USB 2.0 enclosure which was provided with HyperX. We already knew that we are not going to get anything crazy here however we went with the HD Tune Pro once more. Here we can clearly see that the maximum speed of USB 2.0 was reached at 43.9 MB/s. I really would love to see a USB 3.0 connection here but beggars can't be choosers. What is very nice to see here is the access times which were fast, 0.129 ms in Read and 0.140 ms in Write tests. If you are planning to use HyperX in an enclosure similar to this, then you are going to enjoy these fast access times, however with USB 2.0 there is only so much you can achieve in terms of speed.
PC Mark Vantage HDD Suite
ATTO Disk Benchmark
To sample data from every day applications we turned to PC Mark Vantage. PC Mark Vantage has a HDD test suite which consists of 8 tests ranging from Windows Defender all the way up to Application Loading. What was interesting to see here is the HDD test suite number 2 which is closely tied with gaming. Here we saw an average of 276 MB/s. I mean lets face it, everything is about loading times and fast access to the game engine. When running latest games such Battlefield 3 or Skyrim you are only swapping files at about 150 to 200 MB/s and i think PC Mark Vantage has captured maximum speed of HyperX perfectly. Are we seeing 500+ MB/s here. I don't think so. For true speed of the drive we turned to ATTO Disk Benchmarks. This particular benchmark gives accurate test results in Direct IO format. Looking trough the test results after the benchmark we found that the maximum speed we have achieved with HyperX is 540.47 MB/s Write and 514.98 MB/s Read. Are we in 500s? Yes we are!
This is the hardest part. What we are looking at here is the latest and greatest in the technology world. But you really should ask, does it worth it? In order to base our final verdict we need to look at the areas of what HyperX has to offer to its users. HyperX has been completely redesigned and it uses SandForce second generation controller chip which makes it one of the fastest on the market. HyperX also offers up to 3000 program erase cycles which in users wouldn't necessary notice however they will experience constant performance out of this unit. Kingston also making 5k HyperX but this particular series is tightly oriented towards enterprise applications where failure/discrepancy is not an option. The difference between 3k and 5k HyperX is about 500 $ USD, so i wouldn't look in that direction unless you are looking for near line performance.
As we have mentioned in our review, HyperX 3k has been structured to be gammers best friend. While providing great performance and give you crazy fast access times HyperX has a lot to offer to a daily user or even developer. Pictures, Video and more could be used with HyperX 3k without any issues what's so ever. From price point perspective HyperX 3k is a budget friendly unit. The prices are bellow competitive prices and the HyperX 3k 240GB unit we have just reviewed could be purchased for 359 $ USD (Newegg.com). Does it seem pricey? I definitely think not. So bottom line is if you are looking for a performance SSD with great features and speed then HyperX 3k just might be a right choice for you! Buy it, you won't be disappointed!
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