VisionTek mSATA 480GB SSD Review – Trusted LSI SandForce Speeds with a High Capacity

REPORT ANALYSIS AND FINAL THOUGHTS

We decided to hold back on displaying the PCMark Vantage Performance Hierarchy as we thought it might be better served in our summary, both as a visual of how strong this SSD is and also to show how few high-capacity mSATA SSDs have been available for review.

Visiontek 480GB mSATA SSD Vantage Chart

The truth is that high-capacity have been, and still are in high demand.  It still amazes me that we can pull this much performance and capacity from an SSD this small.  I could also be wrong but I think the Samsung PM841 is the only to do it in a single PCB design which brings us back to the VisionTek mSATA 480GB SSD; it is incredibly thin and, so thin in fact, that we overlooked that it was a dual PCB design.  Great engineering VisionTek.

Closer Side View1

Performance is the next thing to tackle as the performance we saw in synthetic benchmarks didn’t match that of the two benchmarks meant to simulate true to form scenarios, these being AS SSD Copy benchmark and PCMark Vantage.  We could speak to the same party line we have followed for so long with SSDs using the LSI SandForce controller which is that this controller is proven to be one of the best for typical consumer use. Although this is evident in PCMark Vantage results, it isn’t so obvious in AS SSD Copy BenchMark where transfer speeds were equally strong regardless of the data type being transferred… and that’s a good thing.

Visiontek 480GB mSATA SSD Closer1

Getting back to the beginning, availability of VisionTek products is amazing and they can be found just about everywhere, including Dell as we have learned.  As far as pricing goes, the VisionTek comes in below the Mushkin Atlas and Edge Tech Boost Pro at  $527, yet above the Crucial M500 which can be found for as low as $411.  In case you are wondering about the Samsung PM841, it is not a retail item and we haven’t included it because of its seldom seen availability and lack of warranty.  That being said, demand is still high even without warranty.

Check Out VisionTek SSD Pricing at Amazon / FORUM DISCUSSION

TSSDR Silver Seal Opt

Review Overview

Product Build
Performance
Warranty
Pricing
Availability

High Capacity and Speeds!

The VisionTek 480GB mSATA SATA 3 SSD has excellent performance typical of LSI SandForce Driven SSDs, as well as a high capacity that is still not common in mSATA SSDs.

User Rating: 4.98 ( 1 votes)

6 comments

  1. Erm…..
    Don`t shout…
    But, is this an SSD that you use by plugging in in just like a Samsung Pro SSD, or do you need anything else? I ask because Linus on youtube said on a review for the Asus Z87 Maximus IV that a mSATA dongle would use the PCI-Express to run the data on an mSATA SSD device….
    ……………….. And I can only assume he means Windows 8.1 etcetera? Implying it would run quicker than a Samsung Pro SSD or Samsung Evo ??
    But who knows, as it all seems to be `inside information`.

    • This SSD is an mSATA and plugs in diferently than the 840 Pro and EVO. There may be motherboards with the proper host connector but one must ensure that the connector is a SATA 3 connector, and not SATA 2. Conversely, adapters can be purchased anywhere to plug this in through PCIe…still via SATA 3.

      • Ok; I am halfway there.

        Thank you for putting some detail there.

        N.B.

        1. I had confirmed the mSATA part.

        2. I confirmed Linus said a `dongle` (connection unit [PCI-e `3` to mSATA]) is included in a Z87 Maximus IV, which would connect to the PCI-e `3` on that Motherboard for an mSATA SSD.

        (A) I still dont know if you can run Windows 8.1 off it or if it is used for swop files or an extension of memory or a place to store games or files or film.

        (B) I still dont know if its any better (more reliable/faster) than a normal SSD.

        (C) I still don`t know why anyone would want it if they were to use it on an older motherboard with `only` a SATA 2 port (requiring connecting it via PCI-e), when a `known standard` SSD would be the preferred available option.

        *Franky it may be too difficult for the public to ever know for sure, and due to that it may not sell well.

        & finally;
        *The price doesn`t seem to be interesting enough to move people from the Samsung SSD Pro or Evo to that product, as things stand.

  2. I just bought a 960GB PCIe SSD (which formats down to 894GB available) from VisionTek (it is actually two PCIe SSDs in one package that default to a RAID0 configuration)… net price to my client, including tax, was barely over $1000! I put it in a Dell workstation where the user is doing NGS analysis, which is very I/O performance dependent. No real world experience yet, and after the previous Samsung 840 SSD crashed and burned after less than six months, I’m restricting it to functioning as a secondary drive (Windows 7 system), and telling the user to make sure his data is backed up to the external SSD and server (esp. since it is RAID0, and coming from a relatively unknown vendor). This plugs into the 4x PCIe slot.

    Still… the price… and they claim 100,000 IOPS (which I can believe, given that this is a PCIe SSD, not bottlenecked by the SAS/SATA controller)… my 2013 MBP with a 512GB 2x PCIe internal SSD (10GBps of actual bandwidth) nets out to 700MBps transfer rates per a benchmarking application.

    If this works, I’m seriously thinking about having one of my clients build a screaming VMware cluster using VSA or the equivalent. Think about it: ~2.7TB of 100,000 IOPS class storage performance for under 10k (3 cards each in three servers)… EMC will charge you $10,000 for a single shelf with six SAS disks in it, with total IOPS under 1000.

    I’m also pondering the idea of rolling my own flash based storage server, by sticking 8 of these in a server, and putting OpenFiler or somesuch on it.

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