REPORT ANALYSIS AND FINAL THOUGHTS
When considering all form factors, the 2.5″ notebook SSD comprises the largest segment and should for some time, bar popularity of the M.2 in the next few years. Even then, there will still be a very large number of those holding on to SATA based machines where typical hard drives have been, or could be replaced by notebook SSDs. From there, many might even argue that the SATA 3 bandwidth has brought us to the point that an SSD is an SSD is an SSD, at least with respect to performance alone, bottlenecked in the low 550MB/s transfer speeds.
Understanding SSD performance, specifically as we see it in our report of the Corsair Neutron XT today, allows those that understand their broken down performance needs to find that product that fits them best. We might even suggest that the recognition of higher SATA performance at lower file sizes as we saw in ATTO, albeit while testing in compressible data, is as important as understanding low 4K performance as well as IOPS (again at the business level). Simply, this drive is amongst the best.
As with every third-party SSD manufacturer, the most important aspect in the success of a specific SSD is going to be their choice of controller, which in this case is the Phison PS3110-S10 32-Bit Quad Core eight channel controller. This controller displays great work by Phison. Even with all that we have written, we can still list off end-to-end data protection where data correction is tackled through enterprise features, as well as SmartFlush which minimizes the time data spends in cache to reduce data loss should there be a power loss, as additional features for the controller.
Corsair was once very smart to grab an exclusive contract when enlisting the LAMD controller in their original Neutron releases; we can’t help but wonder whether they did the same with Phison. Considering the quality of the PS3110-S10 controller from our testing, controller exclusivity would be an ingenious move on the part of Corsair. There are a few things we would like to see, however, the first being a bit more confidence in the product with a 5 year warranty (the standard these days), along with pricing and availability. Stay tuned!