When it comes to performance-oriented solutions in the SSD market, you need look no further than MTRON. Considering they have only been around for two years, this is an impressive feat. MTRON is focusing their engineering efforts entirely on Solid State Drives (SSD). We recently looked at the MTRON MSD-S25032 32GB 2.5" product which advertised maximum read speeds of 100 MB/sec, write speeds of 80 MB/sec, and burst speeds up to 150 MB/sec - all that combined with random access speeds of around 0.1ms. Those specifications far exceed any of the latest SanDisk and Samsung consumer SSD products; these boast 67MB/sec read speeds and 45MB/sec write speeds.

Even then, MTRON was already planning their next product with maximum read speeds of 120 MB/sec and write speeds of 90 MB/sec (and the continued random access speeds of around 0.1ms, of course). The new drives would include improved wear-leveling and bad block algorithms along with enhanced power management capabilities. Dubbed the MTRON SSD Pro, this series features the MSP 7000 lineup that targets the enterprise computing market. MTRON designed these products for the Enterprise sector, but they also make great drives for enthusiasts who "need" blinding speeds for their notebook or desktops, benchmarking activities, or other usage - provided they can live with limited capacities that currently top out at 64GB. This sounds similar to the path the Western Digital Raptor series took in the desktop market - albeit with prices that make the Raptor look downright economical.

Our expectations were set to high levels with the S25032 product, now known as the MSD 3000 family. We waited for the MSP 7000 series to arrive, and it finally did late last week. Not only did our good friends at the Neo Store send us a 32GB MSP 7000, they also delivered an extra one for multi-drive testing, and a 64GB drive should arrive soon. The performance differences between the 2.5" and 3.5" models are nil, so we elected to review the 2.5" drives in order to provide results on notebook and desktop systems along with RAID 0/1 numbers.

Our preview today is just that, and it is short. We just mentioned RAID, but testing of that is still in progress, so stay tuned. We are currently testing these drives on a variety of platforms, chipsets, and operating systems to provide you with an in-depth review of this technology in the near future. However, after receiving numerous requests for test results after featuring this drive in our Holiday Buyers' Guide, we decided to post a few early numbers.

One item of concern from our previous SSD reviews is the performance of the Intel ICH9 and ICH8 chipsets that cap sustained transfer rates at around 80 MB/sec. This performance limitation still holds true and Intel is working on a solution. This limitation greatly affects the synthetic programs like HD Tach and HD Tune, but in actual application benchmarks, we see less of a difference (1%~4%) in performance between the NVIDIA, AMD, and Intel chipsets. However, due to the current Intel bottleneck, we are using a test system that consists of an AMD Phenom 9600, Gigabyte GA-MA790FX-DQ6 with AMD 790FX/SB600 chipsets, 4GB of OCZ Reaper PC2-6400, and Windows Vista 64 Ultimate.

Now, let's take a quick look at this drive and see how it compares to the top performing desktop drive, the venerable Western Digital Raptor 150GB.

HD Tach / HD Tune
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  • k270kmh - Saturday, January 19, 2008 - link

    Hi everyone,

    I bought two Mtron MOBI3000 SSD and put them in RAID0 on my Asus Maximus Formula(X38), the PROBLEM is that the system BIOS needs 45seconds to recognize the Hds(DELAY/HANG). If I put in single mode IDE, it works without any problems or delay.

    I would like to know:
    1- Does the MOBI3000 work with ARECA1231ML? if yes I will buy the controller to end with the DELAY problem.
    2- Which is the fastest? X38 with ARECA1231ML MOBI3000 RAID0 or 780i MOBI3000 RAID0?
    3- Is there a DELAY or HANG with 780i and MOBI3000 or PROs? ? ?

    Thank you guys
    Reply
  • cheesefry - Wednesday, December 26, 2007 - link

    Does anyone know if Intel will have this cap issue sorted out in their x48 motherboards? I'm set on buying the Mtron SSD but I don't want to get an i680... Reply
  • Shadowmaster625 - Wednesday, December 05, 2007 - link

    Why cant I have something that performs like this but costs less... all I want is 8 gigs... just enough for XP, a 2 gig pagefile, and maybe one game. Though I guess just having a separate system drive with a fast swapfile is all that is really needed... Reply
  • aperson2437 - Wednesday, December 05, 2007 - link

    The whole computer industry will be thrilled when the hard drive becomes extinct like the dinosaur. Can't wait. Hopefully the last hard drives come out of factories within the next 3-5 years. People want ultra reliable, long lasting, superfast storage drives. Hopefully, companies like Mtron will bring them to market. People that manage PCs and servers all over the world will LOVE IT !! Reply
  • Zak - Tuesday, December 04, 2007 - link

    What I'm wondering is how much longer would a laptop run on batteries with one of these versus a regular drive? What would be the real life power savings?

    Z.
    Reply
  • gochichi - Tuesday, December 04, 2007 - link

    My main problem with Crysis isn't that i have to wait a bit for it to load, it's that once it loads it's a friggin slide show.

    I think that once prices become reasonable, for instance, $250 for 32GB it would be a very interesting upgrade for a lot of people. But until then, it's just not worth it. I'd rather get overkill on just about any other component before spending $1000+ on 32GB of hard drive.

    Particularly seeing as my main hard drive concern is not having enough space, and I have 820GB on my computer.

    I think that this is the kind of thing that I might buy "b/c waiting is so annoying" and then 5 days later, I'd be used to it and think, why the heck did I waste this kind of money? Hard drives may be slow, but they just don't seem to bottle neck all that much. That and/or everything is designed with this limitation in mind... so you get a nice load up screen etc.

    It's kind of like if you had a Civic Hybrid for $50,000 ... yeah fuel savings are great, but better to get a regular Civic b/c the break even point is 40 years down the road if ever.

    Before getting this, I'd get 8GB of RAM and a RAPTOR... and from my basement I'd grab my 15,000RPM SCSI hard drive.

    Reply
  • warezme - Tuesday, December 04, 2007 - link

    thats all I hear, plus some square thingy pictures..., until capacities reach at LEAST! 150GB and you don't have to mortgage your house to get it., Raptors and HD's have nothing to worry about..., the end. Reply
  • RyanVM - Monday, December 03, 2007 - link

    I'd love to see how this drive stacks up to the Raptor when compiling C++ code. That's a very disk-intensive activity. What do you guys say? Reply
  • DigitalFreak - Tuesday, December 04, 2007 - link

    Nope Reply
  • knowom - Monday, December 03, 2007 - link

    "That still comes out to $37.50 per GB of storage - about what you pay for current good DDR2-800 memory!"

    Ouch!!

    ....can buy 2GB DDR 667 for less than that shipping included
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...">http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N8...

    It's a damn shame gigabyte or someone else wouldn't make external sata-II enclosure that supports a ton of 2GB ddr2 dimms like anywhere from 16 to 32 dimms that just connected into a pci/pci-e card if the pci/pci-e slot itself it'd be heck of a lot faster and probably cheaper at the same time it's kinda pathetic.
    Reply

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