AnandTech Storage Bench - The Destroyer

The Destroyer is an extremely long test replicating the access patterns of very IO-intensive desktop usage. A detailed breakdown can be found in this article. Like real-world usage, the drives do get the occasional break that allows for some background garbage collection and flushing caches, but those idle times are limited to 25ms so that it doesn't take all week to run the test. These AnandTech Storage Bench (ATSB) tests do not involve running the actual applications that generated the workloads, so the scores are relatively insensitive to changes in CPU performance and RAM from our new testbed, but the jump to a newer version of Windows and the newer storage drivers can have an impact.

We quantify performance on this test by reporting the drive's average data throughput, the average latency of the I/O operations, and the total energy used by the drive over the course of the test.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Data Rate)

The 1TB Samsung 970 EVO Plus has a significantly higher average data rate on The Destroyer than its predecessor, or any other TLC-based SSD we've ever tested. It's about 15% slower overall than the Intel Optane SSD 900P that costs about four times as much per GB. The smallest 250GB 970 EVO Plus is little less than half as fast as the 1TB model, but that still puts it above the 1TB HP EX920 and anything else in the 250GB capacity class.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Latency)

The average and 99th percentile latency scores for the 970 EVO Plus are a clear improvement over its predecessors, but it doesn't come out ahead of all the competition. The Phison E12-based Corsair MP510 outperforms the 970 EVO Plus on both metrics, and the WD Black SN750 has better 99th percentile latency.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Read Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Write Latency)

The 970 EVO Plus has a faster average read latency on The Destroyer than any of its competition, but the Corsair MP510 still holds the top spot for average write latency thanks to its very fast write cache. Among the slightly different mix of smaller drives, the 250GB 970 EVO Plus has a much more commanding lead in average write latency than average read latency.

ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Read Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Write Latency)

The 1TB 970 EVO Plus has better 99th percentile read and write latency scores than its predecessor, but it can't entirely catch up to the best competitors we've seen in recent months. The smaller drives have vastly higher 99th percentile latencies, but the 250GB 970 EVO Plus comes out ahead among that group with a small write QoS lead and a larger read QoS lead.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Power)

The 1TB 970 EVO Plus uses slightly less energy to complete The Destroyer than its predecessor. However, both capacities are still very inefficient compared to the best drives in their capacity class. At 1TB there are options that are both very efficient and very fast, but the only particularly efficient small NVMe drive we've tested is the entry-level MyDigitalSSD SBX.

SLC Cache Sizes & SYSmark 2018 AnandTech Storage Bench - Heavy


View All Comments

  • kgardas - Friday, January 25, 2019 - link

    Thanks for explanation! Actually makes sense indeed. This would also mean that if your workflow is read dominated and you are sensitive on latency than RAID1 of SATA drives may be faster than NVMe. At least if SATA/SAS chip is not a crap. Reply
  • ikjadoon - Tuesday, January 22, 2019 - link

    Even a SATA SSD could pump 4 kB random read numbers up, but it'd require pricey SLC. MLC and TLC both have 2x to 4x slower page reads to register vs SLC.

    latency source:

    Still, TLC 4 kB random has improved, but not by "leaps and bounds" like 4K write has. The 970 EVO Plus has 53% faster random 4kB reads (sustained) than the MX 500. And even a 960 PRO has 76% faster 4kB reads (sustained) than the MX500.

    FWIW, random 4K read performance (both burst and sustained) doesn't benefit much of anything from parallelization. The 250 GB and 1 TB 960 EVO have identical 4K read performance, i.e. within 0.75%. Random 4K write and larger page sizes are about 2x faster on the 1 TB model, however.

    Can't vouch for accuracy, but this answer sounds right:
  • Alistair - Tuesday, January 22, 2019 - link

    The performance is amazing, and I've been buying the 1TB SX8200 for $180 USD before tax. Nothing beats that still. Reply
  • Dark_wizzie - Tuesday, January 22, 2019 - link

    1tb ex820 for $160 after tax and shipping beats it. Reply
  • palindrome - Tuesday, January 22, 2019 - link

    You mean EX920 and it has been as low as $153 recently (before tax). Reply
  • gglaw - Tuesday, January 22, 2019 - link

    Not too long ago it was $135 twice with the Ebay and Rakuten 15% coupons. $155 range seems almost every other week now and frequent enough I'd even consider it the typical selling price. (Very few people who follow tech would actually pay $180 for it). Can't beat this for consumer use with the small performance differences with current gen drives. When the EX950 and SX8200 Pro phase it out and drop to the same price points, they'll replace it as best consumer deals so I don't see the new Samsung or WD having a place in my line-up.

    If for some purpose I can find a use for something more expensive, it'd have to be the next gen 970 Pro (Plus?) if it's a major upgrade.
  • ** A - R ** - Wednesday, January 23, 2019 - link
    Billy, Specs in the official site mentions MLC, here I see it's TLC ! ?
    Could You please verify it.
  • olafgarten - Wednesday, January 23, 2019 - link

    It says 3 bit MLC, meaning TLC. Reply
  • mortenge - Wednesday, January 23, 2019 - link

    Why do you bring Optain into the mix and not the 970 PRO, when all we care about is EVO vs PRO? Reply
  • alfatekpt - Wednesday, January 23, 2019 - link

    The review should include 970 EVO 250GB numbers for comparison. Reply

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