The SSD Review uses benchmark software called PCMark Vantage x64 HDD Suite to create testing scenarios that might be used in the typical user experience. There are eight tests in all and the tests performed record the speed of data movement in MB/s to which they are then given a numerical score after all of the tests are complete. The simulations are as follows:
- Windows Defender In Use
- Streaming Data from storage in games such as Alan Wake which allows for massive worlds and riveting non-stop action
- Importing digital photos into Windows Photo Gallery
- Starting the Vista Operating System
- Home Video editing with Movie Maker which can be very time consuming
- Media Center which can handle video recording, time shifting and streaming from Windows media center to an extender such as XBox
- Cataloging a music library
- Starting applications
OCZ ARC 100 SSD PCMARK VANTAGE RESULTS
The OCZ ARC 100 240GB SSD achieved a Total Score of 47,771 points with a high transfer speed of 424MB/s during the “Windows Media Center” benchmark. The “Windows Defender” benchmark results only seem to reach around 84MB/s mark. For a value oriented drive we weren’t expecting it to be a top performer, but the other benchmarks had me thinking to could be up there in score with most of the newer mainstream drives. In the end, PCMark Vantage seems to put the drive back into its place.
For our last benchmark, we have decided to use PCMark 8 Extended Storage Workload in order to determine steady state throughput of the OCZ ARC 100. This software is the longest in our battery of tests and takes just under 18 hours per SSD. As this is a specialized component of PCMark 8 Professional, its final result is void of any colorful graphs or charts typical of the normal online results and deciphering the resulting excel file into an easily understood result takes several more hours.
There are 18 phases of testing throughout the entire run, 8 runs of the Degradation Phase, 5 runs of the Steady State Phase and 5 runs of the Recovery Phase. In each phase, several performance tests are run of 10 different software programs; Adobe After Effects, Illustrator, InDesign, Photoshop Heavy and Photoshop Light, Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint and Word, as well as Battlefield 3 and World of Warcraft to cover the gaming element.
- PRECONDITIONING -The entire SSD is filled twice sequentially with random data of a 128KB file size. The second run accounts for overprovisioning that would have escaped the first;
- DEGRADATION PHASE – The SSD is hit with random writes of between 4KB and 1MB for 10 minutes and then a single pass performance test is done of each application. The cycle is repeated 8 times, and with each time, the duration of random writes increases by 5 minutes;
- STEADY STATE PHASE – The drive is hit with random writes of between 4KB and 1MB for 45 minutes before each application is put through a performance test. This process is repeated 5 times;
- RECOVERY PHASE – The SSD is allowed to idle for 5 minutes before and between performance tests of all applications. This is repeated 5 times which accounts for garbage collection; and
- CLEANUP – The entire SSD is written with zero data at a write size of 128KB
Straight away, we can see performance in our PCMark 8 testing is very consistent throughout the degrade and steady state sections. Speeds maintain above 100MB/s for all the tests, but seem to max out around 225MB/s, even in the recovery stages. As of this time, the Crucial MX100 and Samsung 840 EVO consistency results haven’t been posted, however, I have tested them and the OCZ ARC 100 does maintain degraded performance better than both overall.