Monday , 1 September 2014
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Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe PCIe SSD Review (480GB) – Wicked 2GB/s Performance at a Great Price

Imagine that you could simply plug a PCIe SSD into your PC and immediately realize performance of over 2GB/s data transfer speeds.  For the average PC user that may not seem like much, but for the media professional, or even enthusiast, being able to manipulate and move large amounts of media in seconds can save both time and money, as well as providing some pretty decent bragging rights. Our last PCIe SSD review saw the KingSpec 1TB MultiCore PCIe SSD transfer 29 HD video files in 36 seconds which is just over a second per.

3PCIE Pic

Today, we’re bringing you an exclusive look at the Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe ‘LSI SandForce Driven’ PCIe SSD and not only are we going to stand it beside the KingSpec for comparison, but also, we’ve thrown in our all time favorite OCZ Revo 3×2 PCIe SSD just for kicks.  Hows this picture of all three PCIe SSDs running simultaneously look?  Here’s a bit of confirmation from the OS itself…

Test Bench Directory Structure

The reality of the PCIe world, at least at the enthusiast to small business level, is that finding an affordable, reliable and easily installed solution was next to impossible.  For the most part, the OCZ Revo 3×2 has done very well with little to know competition, it’s recent EOL designation perhaps an indication that the OCZ Vector PCIe is just about ready for prime time.  Even preliminary vector specs, however, don’t touch what the Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe is claiming today.  More than ever though, pricing is going to be a key factor as the PCIe SSD contingent grows.

MUSHKIN SCORPION DELUXE PCIE SSD

The Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe is a PCI Express x8 SSD that is available in capacities of 240, 480, 960, and 1920GB.  Sold with a three year limited warranty, performance specifications are listed at 2160MB/s read and 1960MB/s write with up to 107K IOPS at 4k aligned write disk access.  To our knowledge, these specs make this SSD the fastest single form factor SSD that can be purchased from e-tailers such as Amazon, NCIX and…that other popular internet hardware outlet.

Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe PCIe SSD Package Closer

The operating temperature is listed as being from 0-70DegC and we measured the outer casing at just over 60DegC when we were testing at steady state 4K access.  As we received an e-mail from an ecstatic new Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe owner just prior to publishing, availability should be ramping up at most major e-tailers soon enough.  Pricing could be found at $559 (240GB). $794 (480GB) and $1276 (960GB) but we couldn’t find a suggested price for the 2TB capacity.

Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe PCIe SSD Package FrontMushkin Scorpion Deluxe PCIe SSD Package BackExamination of the outer packaging reveals that the Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe is powered by quad SandForce SF-2281 processors and this is the first time we have seen this from an SSD.  Stay tuned though as we might just be digging up a similar solution for review with ‘dual quad (8) of these processors at its heart.

Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe PCIe SSD Package Disassembled

Here is a closer look at the card without its protective shell which is also a key element in heat dissipation from the LSI RAID controller.  If you check out the picture on your left, you will notice the thick aluminum piece of metal.  I small patch of thermally conductive rubber goes on top of that and it is pressed against the  controller to channel the heat to the exterior metal shell where it is dissipated.

Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe PCIe Thermal Dissipation

About Les Tokar

is a technology nut and Founder of The SSD Review. His early work includes the first consumer SSD review along with MS Vista, Win 7 and SSD Optimization Guides. Les is fortunate to, not only evaluate and provide opinion on consumer and enterprise solid state storage but also, travel the world in search of new technologies and great friendships. Google+
  • Todd

    Were your steady state tests with incompressible data, or fully compressible data which is essentially writing zeros to the drive?

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      Incompressible for an hour….

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      We tried to explain individual test makeup in steady state paras and it also varies, depending on server needs.

      • Todd

        When you are testing with incompressible data, what actual data type are you picking in Iometer, is it Psuedo Random?

      • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

        Testing in steady state was done and reported in incompressible. The test methodology was explained Thanks ahead.

  • MikeGR7

    Thank you Les! That was one of the best reviews!
    Only one thing is missing. Add a second 840 Pro in RAID and let’s see the
    battle of the year. Almost same price, same capacity but what about performance?
    I’m not expecting two 840pro to Surpass that 2GB/s seq read but what about low 4k write?
    I’m sure existing owners of high end ssds like 840p, vector etc. Whould LOVE to know
    which is the best upgrade path for their OS drive> one of this beasts or Raid their Drives?

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      Mike, check the results for this drive once again in steady state. I wasn’t comfortable with such low steady state numbers so the tests were conducted once again with better results that are posted. These results are high sequentials in a 100% random environment.

      • MikeGR7

        Thank you for the effort and constant improvement.
        Whitelisted the site in adblock btw.

  • Christian Schröder

    I ordered the 240GB version of the Scorpion DeLuxe earlier this week. This review made me even more excited! :)

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      Great to hear. Similarly just before posting, another e-mailed stating he had just received his and was ecstatic at the performance. Make sure you follow the instructions because this SSD requires a power cable connection.

  • Gary Byatt

    I’m using an OCZ Revodrive 3 x2. I waited to buy until OCZ patched its firmware problem with the SandForce controller that apparently caused a BSOD. Not had a problem with it and it still super fast. I am not quite ready for an upgrade because it is still so quick, but I am glad to see some competition at last for enthusiast SSDs. Maybe it will force the pace a little for when I am ready to upgrade.

  • Tucker

    Funny,you test with all compressible data. no wonder its so fast.

  • gadgety

    Having read your review of the Adaptec 72405 I think the 7805 8-ssd controller with two 1tb disks would make for a very price and performance competitive alternative to the 1920GB Mushkin PCI-e, and it would be scaleable. Based on what you know what’s your take on advantages/disadvantages between the two?

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      The disadvantage of course might be the caliber of 1TB SSDs that you are putting in there, in accordance to your needs. I don’t think you are price matching any enterprise level SSDs with this. As well, although IOPS might be similar (or even a bit better), you won’t be reaching the throughput of the Scorpion.

  • Jonathan93

    when this hits $200, it’s mine!

  • Eric

    I wonder what Mushkin could have achieved by utilizing 4x M.2 sticks on this card.
    I’ll bet the SATA3 interface of the current sticks is holding back some performance.

  • JacktheSleeper

    Hello Les, its just the average gamer and Windows user, do you think this ssd will make a good system drive for Windows lets say or for storage of games, music, etc? Thanks very much

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      Yes. This drive has been installed as just that on one of our main systems in fact.

  • BoonDoggie

    Soooo, why no simple user tests, like loading game levels or file transfers? Also, it appears this card is internally raided, but what happens to benchmarks if it was externally (motherboard or software) raided?

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      No File Transfers? Read the review please. Thanks ahead.

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      See ‘Real World File Transfer Testing’ In Report

  • ??????

    ??? ???? ?????????? ??????? ? ?????????????, ???????? ?? ??? ????????? ? ?????????? ?????? ??? ??????? ?????? ? ????????????? ? ???????? ?? ????? ????? (SSD PCI-E) ????????????.))) ??? ??????? ?????? ?????, ??? ??? ?????? ????? ? ??????????????? OCZ, ???????? ? ???? ?????? ?? ?????????. ??????? ??? ??? ??? ?? ??????.

  • Pinkar

    Exciting drive!

    I’d like to see OS boot time comparisons, and how well it does creating a system image to itself and other media like a SATA 3 connected SSD. Does Windows need a clean install, or can you image the Scorpion from another SSD of the same capacity or smaller? For me, money wise, this drive is a big leap, and I hope it would not have issues in day to day use as the main drive.

  • Sicofante

    I’d like to see 4×256 Samsung 840 Pro in RAID 0 competing with this. I don’t think it would make much sense to pay for the 1TB version of the Scorpion.

    • Perpetual Void

      Would you be using onboard raid? Because the only thing that could come close to these numbers would be a PCIE 8x LSI Raid card….. And then it’s the same thing really just takes up more space.

      • Sicofante

        RAID 0 doesn’t even need an onboard RAID. Software RAID 0 is as good as the most expensive hardware RAID card. Hardware RAID is only useful for parity RAID (5 or 6).

        Necroposting to waste other people’s time is not nice.

      • Perpetual Void

        Uh No
        http://augmentedtrader.wordpress.com/2012/05/13/10-things-raid/

        https://www.adaptec.com/nr/rdonlyres/14b2fd84-f7a0-4ac5-a07a-214123ea3dd6/0/4423_sw_hwraid_10.pdf

        Not only that but the logic is flawed. How pray tell could a combined work load be better than a dedicated load. Now your processor has to work a little harder and those resources are now taken up by software raid. Dedicated cards free up those resources to better be used elsewhere. Now I’m not saying that it doesn’t work, but in mission critical environments there are too many downsides to a software raid. And, to me mission critical includes workstations and gaming hardware. Not only that but so long as you use a single gpu solution you have all of these pci express lanes dedicated to the raid card. Which is a lot better than having to go through a southbridge. Lets not forget either that RAID 0 has the biggest impact on sequential reads and writes. So unless you are a workstation or a highend gamers recording video, real world performance isn’t going to be as noticable beyond boot times. Which still baffles me as to why boot times are a poor mans benchmark……

        For low cost software raid is the way to go, but defiantly not for workstations or servers. So low cost sure. But if you are looking for performance then I’ve made my point.

      • Sicofante

        Well, if “to you”, mission critical includes gaming hardware, I’ll leave you with your nonsense right here.

      • Perpetual Void

        Big words you think of them all by yourself? Should I even defend myself against such stupidity? Guess I just did. Server’s, Firewalls and Routers went without saying. How about thinking before you make an ass of yourself and assume? Oxygen thief.

      • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

        Thanks both and I believe both points have been stated. We are not in favor of removing posts, yet at the same time, don’t condone lack of respect for opinion.

      • Perpetual Void

        Fair enough. Great site by they way.

      • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

        Thank you…appreciated.

  • Aaron Underwood

    Holy shiz, 2GB/s read/write…

  • alan1476

    I am assuming you can boot from this SSD?

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      Of course and I believe we mentioned in the review that it has a very quick boot compared to others.

  • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

    We elected to trade that for real life transfer and enterprise testing.

  • Russel

    Will This Support my Asus Rampage III Extreme Motherboard? the motherboard has 4 x PCIe 2.0 x16 (dual x16 or x16, x8, x8 or quad x8). Also Can i install Windows 7 on it and boot from it? Please help me out. Thanks in advance.

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      Yes, yes and yes.

    • Ian

      I think RAIDR Express will suit your motherboard better

      • Russel

        You think so? Asus RaidR express read and write speed is slower. And this one seems faster. I dont mind spending the money for the 480gb Mushkin Scorpion. Will it run fine on my Windows 7 desktop. I want my pc to be super fast. Please let me know. Thanks in advance.

      • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

        My friend i have this VERY card as our boot drive on the system displayed in this review…which is my main system and I love it…Boots fine but I prefer sleep where starting back up is like a second or two.

      • Russel

        After reading your reviews, I want this card so bad. I just don’t want a problem installing this card and later see that my motherboard doesn’t recognize the card in bios setup when installing windows. I usually don’t put my computer to sleep. Its just start and shutdown after using it and restart if i need to.

      • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

        We have looked at 3 cards now that are the newer ‘plug and play’ type of cards and not had any difficulties whatsoever with installation.

      • Russel

        Perfect. So the Mushkin scorpion plug and play. Then i wont have any problem. Thank you for replying so fast. I really appreciate your help.

  • James

    Just picked up one of these. With Crystalmark I seem to get slightly better results than you on everything bar 4K write which is ~80MB/s. Any idea why that would be?

  • Patrick

    Amazing !
    I really want it, but it seems impossible to find it around the web, no availability at all.
    Where to buy suggestion??
    I really want to upgrade my mac pro definitely.
    Thanks in advance!

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      I might contact Mushkin….?

      • Patrick

        I already did, but thanks

  • Jason

    I would hold off on buying this card. I just talked to the “God” of enterprise reviews and he says this drive is no bueno. Wait till a real enterprise reviewer runs his testing.

  • flotus1

    Do you happen to know if the Scorpion Deluxe can be used under Linux OpenSuse?
    The Manufacturer lists drivers for some Linux distributions, but OpenSuse is not listed explicitly.

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      I’m sorry no. Have you tried to contact Mushnin?

      • flotus1

        I tried to, but they are “currently experiencing technical issues with their phone and support ticket system”…
        Too bad, I cant wait to get one of these. Some nice benchmarks by the way, its a pity that manufacturers dont present the performance of their product in detail.

      • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

        I have the test unit in this main system still; I enjoy it.

      • flotus1

        Still no feedback at all from Mushkin support and sales
        I am beginning to wonder if this is the right kind of company to buy a 2000$ piece of hardware from, no matter how outstanding the performance is apparently.

  • Greg

    Have you tested this card in a pci-e 3.0 x4 slot? Is there a difference in performance. I’m using a Z87 motherboard but with two graphics cards (this is a production computer and the duel Nvidia cards are used for CUDA calculations)…with all 3 pci-e 3.0 slots populated the speeds are x8 x4 x4…I would keep the main graphics card in x8, so the Scorpian would be relegated to x4 (but pci-e 3.0…not 2.0).

    Anyway, any thoughts on how performance would be compromised?

    thanks, and GREAT site you have here.

    -Greg

    • Perpetual Void

      PCI 3.0 in 4x is roughly equivalent to pciE 2.0 8x within a 1% margin. SSD are really the only component that can flood the PCIE lanes and this will definitely do it. Keep in mind that there are other things running on it as well. Intel chipsets like yours have some dedicated lanes to VGA so it should only impact the other things like LAN, SATA, USB, FIREWIRE, Peripherals really. Might I suggest if you are worried about performance impact maybe upgrading to an X79 chipset since it is a production computer.

  • John

    Does it work with mac os x?

  • Dirk

    Any idea how this drive does running Win8 productivity software? i.e. PCMark 7 or Sysmark?

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      No, I am sorry but we don’t use PCMark 7 in our testing as it is very confusing for the reader and SYSMark is not a fair evaluation system in our opinion as the exact same system configuration must be present to provide comparable results. Our results may be consistent in our system but would never mean anything to the reader as their system makeup always differs significantly. Our ideal is to provide benchmarks that can be copied and similar results attained.

      • Dirk

        Hi, Les. That’s a good point about PCMark7/Sysmark. I think many people who would be interested in running this for a desktop/workstation (non-server) would still like to know how fast it will run on win7/8 applications.
        How about PCMark Vantage HDD? I’ve seen you run this on other SSD’s, and you wrote that the XP941 was the current champ at 140k. Do you think the Scorpion deluxe would be faster? Or is it optimized more for server loads? Thanks! BTW, love your site.

      • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

        It is more optimized for server loads which is why we curbed our testing for that direction. Thanks for the comps by the way!

  • Gregory

    Hackintosh compatible??

  • Sundiata

    Looking for any other reviews of this device aside from this one. This seems to be the only review that I can find :(

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      You would be absolutely correct on that. Is there something else you are looking for? Does the review not answer a particular question?

      • Sundiata

        No, it’s just that I like to get multiple points of view before dishing out large sums of money.

      • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

        Definitely see your point there!

  • elumbral104

    Do you know if this suport uefi bios

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      The SSD boots before the UEFI bios into its own bios.

  • dude

    what they don’t tell you is that it increases 30 seconds more to boot time. Just got one and am very disappointed.

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      You might want to check your installation as it definitely does not addd 30 seconds to boot time. It adds 10 seconds very top while the initial bios boots, something we have mentioned in several PCIe reports.

      Thanks for the input and hollar if we can help.

  • ??????

    ?????? ?????! ?? ???????? ?? ?????? ????? ???? ?????? ?????????? Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe PCIe ? ????? ? ??? ???????????

    • http://thessdreview.com Les@TheSSDReview

      Each SSD contains four modules of Toshiba Toggle Mode MLC NAND flash memory that is not so easily identifiable as normal branding is not present on the face of the SSD. Each package is 32GB in size for a total of 128GB RAW capacity.

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