ASRock Ultra Quad M.2 Card Review – 4 x M.2 SSD RAID at 10GB/s and 932K IOPS

PCMARK VANTAGE X64 HDD SUITE

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

PCMARK VANTAGE RESULTS

If we were to compare this result to the HighPoint SSD7101A, that device wasn’t able to even complete this test… most probably because of the PLX switch.  The overall score for the ASRock Ultra Quad M.2 card is a healthy 290054 with a high transfer speed of 2557MB/s and 6 of 8 tests exceeding 1GB/s.

REPORT ANALYSIS AND FINAL THOUGHTS

To say this is an early peak at the ASRock Ultra Quad M.2 Card is an understatement, considering word of this was only known to the world just over two weeks ago.  This card is a RAID card that can accommodate up to four M.2 NVME PCIe 3 x 4 SSDs in a RAID format and can be bootable if those SSDs are Intel NVMe SSDs through VROC, otherwise a softRAID can be accomplished through the OS as we did here.  This card is not boot capable when using pass-through to configure in the OS, and that was the same with our previous review of the HighPoint 7101A.  As for VROC, we have requested four SSDs from Intel and a separate update report will be published should these arrive.

As for product build, kudos to ASRock for taking the time to make this device properly.  Many might have cut the additional power source, fan or even the incorporation of the case as a heatsink.  The build of this card is solid.  Performance is great, considering that we were able to exceed 10GB/s throughput and get very close to the million IOPS mark with the Samsung NVMe driver, exceeding that with the standard NVMe driver.  Where this card absolutely SMOKES the HighPoint SSD7101A is pricing if ASRock sticks to the predicted MSRP of $79US.  The HighPoint SSD7101A is available on Amazon for a bit more… at $399. The glaring difference between the two of course is the fact that it has just a bit more compatibility with that PLEX PCIe chip.

FINAL THOUGHTS

So at the end of the day, we have a great card that can be set up as a bootable RAID drive using four Intel NVMe M.2 SSDs, the newest Intel 760P coming in as cheap as $400 total for a 1TB RAID… bootable.  That would be one of the fastest boot drives you can get for under $500 at days end.  That is nothing to complain about.  Hopefully, Intel will send along those drives and we can do a subsequent report using four Intel NVMe 760P SSDs.  If worst comes to worst…who knows, maybe we will just buy them on release to prove this amazing boot drive can be had for under $500.

Watch here for the ASRock Ultra Quad M.2 Card at Amazon!

Great job ASRock and we are awarding it our Gold Seal.

ASRock Ultra Quad M.2 Card Review

Product Build
Ease of Installation
Performance
MSRP Pricing

10GB/s and 1 Mil IOPS!

The ASRock Ultra Quad M.2 Card could prove to be a VERY smart bootable RAID solution on release.. Initial MSRP is said to be around $79, making a bootable VROC RAID possible for under $500.

User Rating: 5 ( 1 votes)

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Tyler V
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Tyler V

Does this support Raid 0 with trim?

Les@TheSSDReview
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RAID 0 no TRIM.

Tyler V
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Tyler V

That’s kind of disappointing thanks for answering though

Les@TheSSDReview
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Not sure why it is disappointing when one considers the efficiency of GC and less importance of TRIM these days. The drive was made for Intel drives and VROC first and foremost…that is its ideal answer where there is no trim concerns whatsoever….and it is bootable

Tyler V
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Tyler V

I was considering using some NVME (Toshiba, Samsung or maybe the new 700 drives from Intel) in raid as a scratch disk. I’ve been using Sata SSD’s in raid with trim and they perform really well but I’m only writing about 80MB/s and do a lot of write/erase even during the writing as it is. I’d be writing double if I decided to get M.2 drives.. unfortunately Sata SSD prices are increasing in price due to flash prices and maybe losing “popularity” compared to other options available now

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