Review of Kingston SSDNow V200 128gb SSD Desktop Upgrade Kit

Kingston’s latest SSD release is the SSDNow V200 that is aimed at the cost-conscious, performance-minded user. Offered as a desktop or laptop bundle the SSDNow V200 includes cloning software and a DVD with step-by-step installation video.

The SSDNow V200 uses a JMicron 668 Controller with Toshiba 24nm 3K P/E Cycle MLC NAND. While not the acclaimed Sandforce controller, the JMicron 668 does help the SSDNow V200 run at advertised read speeds between 260 and 300 MB/s using SATA 3.0 and write speeds of 100 to 230 MB/s depending on the drive capacity. The larger SSDs seem to have the faster speeds.

Initially when this SSD hit the market a firmware issue hampered its performance. This has since been resolved with a firmware upgrade and now all seems well with the SSDNow V200 drives. In fact the random read and write IOPS performance have improved with the write IOPS increasing 136% and 129% for the 128GB while read IOPS increased 22% for the 64GB and 5% for the 128GB. Currently the most recent versions of these drives will already have the faster firmware preinstalled.

The SSDNow V200 Drive comes in a white cardboard package. Kingston offers this SSD in a laptop or desktop bundles with 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB capacities. For our review we will be looking at the 128 GB Desktop kit.

On the front of the box is an image of the 2.5” SSD with the drive capacity along with its read and writes speeds printed on the lower right. Like their other SSDs, Kingston offers a three-year warranty on this model. On the back is an image of the contents along with a description of the installation process. The bottom right has a QR code that takes you to the SSDNow V200 Drive webpage.

SSDNow01  SSDNow02

Opening the box we find the contents resting in a cardboard holder. These items include the 2.5” SSD, 3.5” mounting brackets with screws, installation DVD with hard drive cloning software, along with SATA power and data cables.

SSDNow03 SSDNow04

The SSDNow V200 Drive looks like prior Kingston SSDs with the Kingston head logo and drive capacity printed on the front. The bottom is slate grey with screw holes for mounting it to the included 3.5” brackets for desktop installation.

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SSDNow06 SSDNow07

On the rear of the SSD we see a standard SATA and power connector.

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Specifications:

SSDNow V200 Drive

Revive your computer and stretch your system without stretching your budget. Kingston’s SSDNow V200 makes it easy. Designed for notebook and desktop hard drive replacements and upgrades, it maximizes your computer investment while boosting the performance of the system and its applications. It’s available in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB capacities and in kits that make switching to an SSD easy and affordable. Kits include cables, brackets, cloning software and HDD enclosure and installation video — everything you need to get started. More reliable and more durable than a traditional hard drive, it also runs silent and cool while making computers more responsive than ever.

Features

Faster — boots system and applications faster

Reliable — with no moving parts, solid-state drives are less likely to fail than a standard hard drive

Convenient — all-in-one kits with all the components for easy installation

Multiple capacities — to fit your needs

Silent — runs silent and cool

Guaranteed — three-year warranty, free technical support and legendary Kingston reliability

Form factor: 2.5” drive available in both 7.0mm (64GB & 128GB only) & 9.5mm (256GB) to fit more systems

Interface: SATA Rev. 3.0 (6Gb/s) — with backwards compatibility to SATA Rev. 2.0

Capacities1: 64GB, 128GB, 256GB Sequential Reads2:

64GB — 260MB/s

128GB — 300 MB/s

256GB — 300MB/s Sequential Writes:

64GB —100MB/s

128GB — 190MB/s

256GB — 230MB/s Sustained Random 4k Read/Write3:

64GB — up to 39K/up to 3.3K IOPS

128GB — up to 38K/ up to 5.5K IOPS

256GB — up to 32K/ up to 3.5K IOPS

Power Consumption: 2.0 W (TYP) Idle / 4.8 W (TYP) Write Storage temperatures: -40 to 85°C

Operating temperatures: 0 to 70°C Dimensions:

64 and 128GB — 69.8mm x 100.1mm x 7mm

256GB — 69.8 mm x 100.1 mm x 9.5 mm

Weight:

64GB & 128GB — 88g

256GB — 105.2g Vibration operating: 2.17G Peak (7–800 Hz)

Vibration non-operating: 20G Peak (10–2000 Hz)

Life expectancy: 1 million hours MTBF

Total Bytes Written (TBW):

64GB: 18TB

128GB: 36TB

256GB: 36TB



Drive installation is straightforward and for those who are neophytes to upgrading their computers, an included DVD tutorial is provided. Kingston also provides a version of Acronis cloning software for making the transition from one’s old drive to the SSDNow seamless. Unfortunately this is only for Windows users, Mac folks will need to grab a copy of Carbon Copy Cloner or use the OS X Disk Utility to backup their systems onto the SSD.

SSDNow09 SSDNow10

If you have an older SSDNow V200 with the earlier firmware you will want to fix that. This update can be found here and the upgrade process is documented with this video. Just be aware that the firmware update is a DESTRUCTIVE process and will wipe the SSD’s contents.

From Kingston’s website –

If you have “E111008a” on your SSDNow and want to improve your drive performance, you should apply this firmware update.

For testing the SSDNow V200 Drive the following platform was used:

CPU: Intel Core i7 2600K

Motherboard: Asus P8P67 PRO

Memory: 8GB Mushkin DDR3 1300

Video Card: Galaxy 460GTX

Hard Drive: Western Digital 250GB 7200RPM, Samsung 1 TB 7200 RPM

PSU: Ultra X-Finity 1000 Watt Power Supply

For comparison the following drives were involved in the testing.

Kingston HyperX 3K 240 GB – 555MB/s read, 510MB/s write – SATA Rev 3.0 (6Gb/s)

Kingston HyperX 240 GB – 555MB/s read, 510MB/s write – SATA Rev 3.0 (6Gb/s)

Kingston SSDNow 200 V+120GB – 535MB/s read, 480MB/s write – SATA Rev 3.0 (6Gb/s)

Intel X25-M SSD 80 GB – 250MB/s read, 70MB/s write – SATA Rev 2.0 (3Gb/s)

Verbatim SATA II 128 GB – 270GB/s read, 225MB/s write – SATA Rev 2.0 (3Gb/s)

Benchmarking was performed using ATTO Disk Benchmark, Crystal Disk Mark, Anvil Storage Utilities and AS-SSD.

ATTO Disk Benchmark tests both the read/write speeds of the drives. While the SSDNow V200 did not come close to the Sandforce based SSDs in speeds, it held its own against the Intel and Verbatim based SSDs.

SSDNow11

SSDNow12

Comparing against the performance class HyperX 3K in Crystal Disk Mark, we see the the SSDNow V200 come in at around 60% read and 66% write speeds of the faster SSD.

SSDNow13 SSDNow14

Next up is the Anvil Storage Utilities, which shows the drives speed using MB/s and IOPS (Input/Output Operations Per Second)

SSDNow15 

SSDNow16

Finally in AS SSD the SSDNow V200 was compared against the non-Sandforce drives.

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With the SSDNow V200 as the Boot drive, time to log on was 10 seconds and time to desktop was 18 seconds. Not bad for a budget priced SSD and definitely faster than any platter based hard drive.

Using TeraCopy to copy a 4.32 GB ISO file and a folder containing 5.96 GB. The ISO copy took 53 seconds with a speed of 80 MB/s while the folder took 65 seconds at an average of 63 MB/s.



SSDNow01 SSDNow02 SSDNow04 SSDNow05

Conclusion:

The SSDNow V200 Drive Desktop Upgrade Kit is a great way to give your PC or Mac a boost in performance. Although the SSDNow V200 uses the Micron controller instead of the more desirable Sandforce one, the real world difference between the drives is a few seconds, which should not be an issue for the value and performance minded consumer. Most any SSD will be much faster than a standard platter based hard drive.

Currently the SSDNow V200 Drive Desktop Upgrade Kit can be found at Newegg at under $100, which is one of the best prices for a quality SSD that I have seen to date. If you are looking for an affordable way to add speed to your computer then look no farther than the Kingston SSDNow V200 Drive.

 

9

 

Pros:
+Good read/write speeds
+Budget priced
+Three year warranty

Cons:
-Not the fastest SSD
-Does not use Sandforce controller
-Firmware may need update

Grades:  
Overall score-9-10
Design score-9-10
Performance score-9-10

To learn more about our review policy please visit this page HERE.

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