REPORT ANALYSIS AND FINAL THOUGHTS
The Crucial M500 SSD just raised the bar in the consumer SSD arena. There are just so many truly ‘game changing’ features that the hardest part of this report is trying to determine a start point for our final analysis.
We wish we could take a trip into the future to see where SSD pricing is going to sit 6 months from now. With the Crucial M500 coming in at under $600 for the 960GB version, sales are inevitable but with the 480GB already found at $380… the line in the sand just moved significantly. These two prices aren’t even opening day pricing, but rather, prices leaked before the embargo date by sellers who, as they always do, throw a premium on their SSDs as they are a new release and in demand. Crucial has seen fit to ensure Amazon worlwide released their distribution this morning right on at MSRP pricing.
Crucial even bettered their already rock bottom prices on the M4, which leads us to wonder if the M4 will soon be EOL. In addition, what will become of so many manufacturers who already have low prices for their 240GB SSD, yet are now experiencing the inevitable effect of M500 480GB prices that are equal or only slightly higher. We have already seen one or two third party manufacturers bow out of the SSD race recently, but with these prices, it is almost like Crucial is challenging Samsung to a low price duel, one that would shake up many manufacturers. He who owns the fab…
Going into this analysis, we didn’t think the M500 had a chance of competing with such monsters as the Samsung 840 Pro and OCZ Vector. After all, both have higher specifications and claim IOPS of 100,000 or more where the M500 claimed 85,000. Were we wrong!
Our first indication that something was up was the great IOPS result and Total Score we saw with AS SSD. It was only then that we pulled up both other reviews for comparison. What we saw next astonished us as all three AS SSD Copy Benchmark results were very close and now comprise our top three results to date. Anvil Tests then displayed the M500 just below the 840 Pro and above the Vector and then came Vantage Testing. Our initial Vantage result of the M500 wasn’t remarkable but the latter testing blew us away, so much so that we ran the same test over several times just to be sure. With 76569 Total Points in PCMark Vantage, the Crucial M500 is now ‘King of the Hill’ in Vantage testing. No flukes….bit by bit this SSD proved that it was in good company with both other SSDs.
ENTERPRISE FEATURES, WARRANTY AND NO TOOL KIT
The Crucial M500 SSD contains both power loss data protection and thermal protection, features that are typically reserved for enterprise SSDs. Considering that the success of the M500 wouldn’t be affected whatsoever without these features, Crucial deserves two thumbs up for their inclusion as it speaks clearly to Crucial/Micron’s commitment to quality. On the other hand, SSDs today are typically being marketed with five year warranties and some of the best include software that allows the user to configure the SSD to their own needs. The M500 come standard with a three year warranty and, unlike Intel and Samsung, does not include a ‘toolbox’. These are the only two knocks we could see with the M500.
The Micron/Crucial Team must have one day sat down and decided they were going to produce an SSD with the best of everything. They have exceeded expectations, not only in value that everybody expected but also, in performance, enterprise features as well as being the first to mass market a 1TB SSD at consumer level pricing. Editors Choice!