Patriot Ignite SSD Review (480GB) – Async Flash Takes On a Whole New Look

TSSDR TEST BENCH AND PROTOCOL

SSD testing at TSSDR differs slightly, depending on whether we are looking at consumer or enterprise SSDs.  For consumer SSDs, 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.

Sean Webster Test Bench Z97 Water 3.0

SYSTEM COMPONENTS

This Test Bench build was the result of some great relationships and purchase; our appreciation goes to those who jumped in specifically to help the cause.  Key contributors to this build are our friends at ASRock for the motherboard and CPU and be quiet! for the PSU and cooling fans. Also, a big thank you to Thermaltake for the case and Kingston for the RAM. We have detailed all components in the table below and they are all linked should you wish to make a duplicate of our system as so many seem to do, or check out the price of any single component.  As always, we appreciate your support in any purchase through our links!

PC CHASSIS: Thermaltake Urban T81
MOTHERBOARD: ASRock Z97 Extreme6
CPU: Intel Core i5-4670K
CPU COOLER: Thermaltake Water 3.0 Ultimate
POWER SUPPLY: be quiet! Dark Power Pro 10 850W
SYSTEM COOLING: be quiet! Silent Wings 2
GRAPHICS CARD: MSI GTX 660 Ti PE OC
MEMORY: Kingston HyperX Beast 2400Mhz
STORAGE: Samsung 850 Pro

BENCHMARK SOFTWARE

The software we will be using for today’s analysis is typical of many of our reviews and consists of ATTO Disk Benchmark, Crystal Disk Info, Crystal Disk Mark, AS SSD, Anvil’s Storage Utilities, PCMark 8, and PCMark Vantage. We prefer to test with easily accessible software that the consumer can obtain, and in many cases, we even provide links. Our selection of software allows each to build on the last and to provide validation to results already obtained.

CRYSTAL DISK INFO VER. 6.3.0

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

Patriot Ignite 480GB CDI

In Crystal Disk Info we can see that TRIM and NCQ are supported, but while it shows a temperature value here, it really does not work. Throughout testing the value stayed at 30C. Also, it lacks read and write counters many other SSDs have. As you can also see, the firmware rev. we are testing today is SAFM01.3.

ATTO DISK BENCHMARK VER. 2.47

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.

 Patriot Ignite 480GB ATTOOur first benchmark, ATTO, shows us that the drive is able to easily achieve rated sequential speeds. Reads max out at 563MB/s and writes hit 545MB/s as expected.  This result is an ideal example that we like to see as the speed progression is consistent, this being an excellent indicator of a solid SSD.

2 comments

  1. Good article, but I just noticed what I think is a typo from your spell checker.
    “Alas, the Ignite also contains many error correcting features along with
    end-to-end data path protection to aid in data reliability, and it does
    have AES 256-bit encryption to top that off, unlike many others.”
    From the context, I’d guess you meant “Also” instead of “Alas”. “Alas” implies regret, disappointment, sadness, and so on.

  2. I wouldn’t agree with the reviewer’s statements about async NAND causing the lower bandwidth in the PCMark recovery phases, as its latency didn’t rebound properly either.

    Async NAND normally has reduced peak read bandwidth vs sync, but in this case the Phison controller’s parallel channel operations or some form of interleaving along with those features avoid this as seen in the AS-SSD tests which can’t be fooled by the controller’s data compression acceleration.

    The reduced bandwidth and increased latency in the recovery stages is most likely either a marginal TRIM implementation or a very lazy one to avoid big stutters / latency from the drive doing garbage collection, which instead appears to cause longer-term performance degradation. Since we never seen those numbers properly settle like the other drives, how long the TRIM process takes to fully complete is unknown. TRIM is drive-controlled vs OS controlled–the OS simply passes the command (if supported) and then the drive is on its own to do the TRIM processing at its leisure. In this case it seems like the drive’s firmware performs TRIM very slowly as a background process, which affects both drive response and peak bandwidth (despite it being a quad core controller).

    Unfortunately Patriot is very bad for releasing SSD firmware updates in a timely matter (if at all). Despite the impressive ability of the Phison S10 controller to minimize the compromises of async vs sync flash, I’d buy this architecture from another manufacturer if another product comes along at a similar price until Patriot proves itself to be taking the SSD market seriously again. A classic example of Patriot’s behavior is that 3+ years later, the finally released firmware beyond the TRIM-broken 5.02 firmware (TRIM-fixed 5.04 was released and then pulled) for their Pyro Sandforce based drives a few months back. This is YEARS too late, and their site only provides a download for their Pyro drives; their other (higher end) Sandforce-based drives which should use the identical firmware release (Pyro SE and Wildfire) are no longer even listed in the downloads section. Apparently even spending a premium for Patriot’s higher end offerings means nothing to them, so I’ve basically blacklisted using them for any of my work until they prove themselves worthy of anything more than a plug-n-run-away install.

    Silicon Power produces drives with Phison controllers (albeit randomly interchanged with SF-based drives under the same product name), and they have a much better track record for supporting them with firmware updates. If they produced a similar S10-based drive, that would be my recommendation.

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