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Intel Optane SSD 900P Review (480GB) – Understanding Disruptive Technology

TSSDR TEST BENCH AND PROTOCOL

SSD testing at TSSDR differs slightly, depending on whether we are looking at consumer or enterprise SSDs. For our enthusiast testing today, our goal is to test in a system that has been optimized with our SSD Optimization Guide. To see the best performance possible, the CPU C states have been disabled, C1E support has been disabled, Enhanced Intel SpeedStep Technology (EIST) has been disabled. Benchmarks for consumer testing are also benchmarks with a fresh drive so, not only can we verify that manufacturer specifications are in line but also, so the consumer can replicate our tests to confirm that they have an SSD that is top-notch. We even provide links to most of the benchmarks used in the report.

TSSDR Test Bench

SYSTEM COMPONENTS

The components of this Test Bench are detailed below.  All hardware is linked for purchase and product sales may be reached by a simple click on the individual item. As well, the title is linked back to the individual build article where performance testing can be validated.

TSSDR ASUS Z270 APEX TEST BENCH  (link)

PC CHASSIS:Corsair Crystal Series 460X RGB
MOTHERBOARD:ASUS Z270 ROG Maximus IX Apex
CPU:Intel Kaby Lake I7-7700K
CPU COOLER:Corsair Hydro Series H110i GTX V.2
POWER SUPPLY:Corsair RM850x 80Plus
GRAPHICS:PNY GTX 1080 XLR8 Gaming OC
MEMORY:Corsair Dominator Pl 32GB 2800
STORAGE:Samsung 2TB 960 Pro M.2 SSD
KEYBOARD:Corsair Strafe RGB Silent Gaming
MOUSE:Corsair M65 Pro Gaming
OSMicrosoft Windows 10 Pro 64 Bit

BENCHMARK SOFTWARE

The software in use for today’s analysis is typical of many of our reviews and consists of Crystal Disk Info, ATTO Disk Benchmark, Crystal Disk Mark, AS SSD, Anvil’s Storage Utilities, PCMark Vantage, PCMark 8 as well real data transfer testing. Our selection of software allows each to build on the last and to provide validation to results already obtained.

CRYSTAL DISK INFO VER. 7.0.5

Crystal Disk Info is a great tool for displaying the characteristics and health of storage devices. It displays everything from temperatures, the number of hours the device has been powered, and even to the extent of informing you of the firmware of the device.

Intel Optane P900 480GB SSD Crystal Disk Info Intel Dvr

CDI validates that TRIM is not enabled as we spoke of earlier, but also, it is great to see a nice clean set of SMART attributes that make monitoring of the Intel Optane SSD 900P simple.

ATTO DISK BENCHMARK VER. 3.05

ATTO Disk Benchmark is perhaps one of the oldest benchmarks going and is definitely the main staple for manufacturer performance specifications. ATTO uses RAW or compressible data and, for our benchmarks, we use a set length of 256mb and test both the read and write performance of various transfer sizes ranging from 0.5 to 8192kb. Manufacturers prefer this method of testing as it deals with raw (compressible) data rather than random (includes incompressible data) which, although more realistic, results in lower performance results.

Intel Optane P900 480GB SSD ATTO Bench Intel Dvr

Listed specs are 2.5GB/s read and 2GB/s write whereas ATTO reaches 2.7GB/s read and 2.2GB/s write.  Both read and write performance at low 4k data transfer are above 500MB/s so all looks good.  We are used to this with NVMe SSDs.  Read on to see something that you never expected in SSD performance.

  • boogerlad

    How is the heatsink cover attached to the card? Is it possible to remove it without removing the heatsink from the pcb?

    • Yes it is simply clicked into place. It is very secure though.

  • hpvd

    awesome! many thanks for this analysis! Especially “REAL WORLD FILE TRANSFER COMPARISON” is great. Have seen this in no other place of optane reviews before. Only thing missing are some words reading boot speed in comparison to other fast but standard ssds (e.g. 960pro)

    • hpvd

      maybe you can also share some words on how does an optane drive feel in real life (workstation usage)?
      Are things faster? E.g. windows file search? looking for windows updates? Sorting folders with 1000 files by date/size/name? Generating previews of images in folders which has not been opened (=cached) before? Virus check?

    • Thank you for the comps. I haven’t had it as a boot drive just yet so cannot comment on startup or general system activity. Look forward to getting to this in the future though…maybe as a follow up.

  • Tyns

    “by marketing a new flash”
    No. It’s a new class of memory, not flash; those who have analysed it say it’s phase change memory (though Intel denies that).

    http://www.techinsights.com/about-techinsights/overview/blog/intel-3D-xpoint-memory-die-removed-from-intel-optane-pcm/

  • lorki

    any news on micron’s Quantx ?

  • Dave Wallace

    The Amazon link failed:

    Your search “intel optane ssd 900p” did not match any products.
    I’m in Oz.

  • Kos.Mos

    Something I haven’t seen on these yet, I know the original Optane Cache was only supported by a few Intel chipsets. Is the 900p compatible with AMD platforms? Not seeing any compatibility documentation anywhere…

    • Tyns

      It’s a regular NVME drive like any other as far as your system is concerned.

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