Plextor M3P 256GB SATA 3 SSD Review – Absolutely Marvell-ous Performance


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

If you are new to testing and considering benchmark software, this is the best you can get because the program goes well beyond the results of simulated testing as we have already done. In comparing SATA 2.0 SSDs, we have reached the bandwidth limit and the performance of most new SATA 2 SSDs is as high as it can get with typical high sequential access speeds in the area of 280MB/s read and 270MB/s write.  This observation can again be seen with drives of different manufacturers that utilize similar components within and have very similar specifications.

We needed a way to differentiate these drives and to find a method that can actually put one drive above another and this is exactly what Vantage testing does. Its tests combined can provide an accurate comparison between drives and its tests individually can assist a smart shopper in finding the best SSD for their needs. Next to actual true to life testing which can take an insurmountable length of time, PCMark Vantage is the only program that can compare any SSD, side by side, regardless of SATA interface or controller in use.


The Plextor did yield some impressive results in PCMark Vantage. The cumulative score of 73,408 is at the head of the class among all SATA III SSDs tested. The lowest individual score was 258MB/s for adding music to WMP while the highest score was achieved in the Windows Media Center trace at 411MB/s.

In examining the SATA 3 new generation SSDs we have tested to date, it becomes apparent that the Plextor has unseated the top ranking Intel 520 SSD.  Our Hierarchy Chard ranks SSDs solely on their PCMark Vantage Total Score.



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    The Plextor M3P has new Firmware 1.03.

    Why was this not used in your testing? I see version 1.00 was used.

    The M3S aka M3 also has new Firmware 1.04 or 1.03 depending on the drive size.

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      The M3P did very well and was reviewed as received… We will take a look at it with the new firmware and post back if any significant improvements are observed.

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        Christopher Ryan

        There are no observable performance differences between 1.00, 1.01, and 1.03.

        The benches do not reflect this, but the drive was upgraded and more tests were run.

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    with the 24nm process, shouldn’t it be 4x64gbit dies per package?

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    Makes one wonder if they could just get their hands on a regular M3 and update the firmware to the newest M3P version if they would get the same performance as the M3P?

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    nope won’t work its been tried

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    Valentin Ursache

    i would like to know a comparison between OWC Mercury Accelsior 480GB PCIe SSD and two plextor m3 pro in the same raid 0…i have to choose between this two for my machine, especialy to see the numbers of incompressible data if it’s higher for the 2 plextor in raid 0 than owc’ card

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      On Newegg in Canada, I read this comment about the Plextor M3P 256GB:

      Just received my 2nd Plextor M3 Pro 256GB for some Raid 0 action
      SMOKIN FAST, Installs flawlessly , no Faster sata III SSD on the market
      Everything you need but a SATA Cable comes with mounting plate , screws, software, broke 1004 Reads in CrystalDisk mark just google my nickname for more results. or AMD_Freak

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