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

CRYSTAL DISK BENCHMARK VER. 3.0 X64

Crystal Disk Benchmark is used to measure read and write performance through sampling of random data which is, for the most part, incompressible. Performance is virtually identical, regardless of data sample so we have included only that using random data samples.

Patriot Ignite 480GB CDM Patriot Ignite 480GB CDM 0-fill

Crystal Disk Mark shows us some more interesting results. As you can see, when dealing with incompressible data the drive performs well, however, once we test with fully compressible data things start to get better. Similar to SandForce drives, the Phison controllers are able to deliver faster read performance when handling compressible data.

Sequential reads and writes max out at 546MB/s and 529MB/s respectively. 4K read reaches 26MB/s with incompressible random data, while it reaches 90MB/s with compressible which is a bit unusual as this is the highest 4K read speed we have ever seen, regardless of the data type used for transfer.  In fact, we had a call into Patriot to just confirm once again that the memory is, in fact, asynchronous as we have never seen asynchronous memory provide such high performance with incompressible data, as it does here.

AS SSD BENCHMARK VER 1.7

The toughest benchmark available for solid state drives is AS SSD as it relies solely on incompressible data samples when testing performance.  For the most part, AS SSD tests can be considered the ‘worst case scenario’ in obtaining data transfer speeds and many enthusiasts like AS SSD for their needs. Transfer speeds are displayed on the left with IOPS results on the right.

Patriot Ignite 480GB AS SSD Patriot Ignite 480GB AS SSD IOPS

Our AS SSD result provided a Total Score of 1147. The Ignite reaches a max of 524MB/s and 507MB/s for sequential read and write tests.  4K read and write reached 33MB/s and 71MB/s respectively. Again, 4K write is pretty low for a modern SSD. In the IOPS we see it reaches a max of 98K IOPS read and 79K IOPS write.

To complement this, the AS SSD Copy Bench presents us with transfer speeds for different file types. The SSD reached a high of 440MB/s for the ISO test.

Patriot Ignite 480GB AS SSD Copy

ANVIL STORAGE UTILITIES PROFESSIONAL

Anvil’s Storage Utilities (ASU) are the most complete test bed available for the solid state drive today.  The benchmark displays test results for, not only throughput but also, IOPS and Disk Access Times.  Not only does it have a preset SSD benchmark, but also, it has included such things as endurance testing and threaded I/O read, write and mixed tests, all of which are very simple to understand and use in our benchmark testing.

Patriot Ignite 480GB Anvil Patriot Ignite 480GB Anvil 0-Fill

In Anvil we tested both compressible and incompressible data. Performance follows a similar trend to Crystal Disk Mark. The max sequential read reaches 526MB/s and sequential write came in at 504MB/s. With compressible data the 4K read speeds increased from nearly 25MB/s to 85MB/s. In Anvil we were also able to see the drive was cable of reaching a max of 100K random IOPS read and 85K write! These numbers are well above both rated specifications! Very nice.

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

PCMark Vantage is the first benchmark where we first identified a bit of an ‘Achilles heel’ with the patriot ignite. In our review of the Corsair Neutron XT, it was able to achieve a Total Score of nearly 79,000, however the Patriot Ignite barely broke 52,000 points. This isn’t too much of a surprise as in the past when we reviewed other ‘asynchronous’ memory contained SSDs, to which they also performed slower compared to their counterparts with synchronous and toggle mode NAND. Repeated testing yielded similar results.  Among the testing phases, the highest transfer speed of 390MB/s was recorded during the “Windows Vista Startup” benchmark, while the lowest of 158MB/s was recorded during the “adding music to Windows Media Player” benchmark. Let’s continue on to our PCMark 8 Consistency testing to see how it performs there.

Patriot Ignite 480GB SSD PCMark Vantage

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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