Review of Mushkin Chronos Deluxe 120GB Solid State Drive – MKNSSDCR120GB-DX7

Today fore review I’ve got the Mushkin Chronos Deluxe SSD, which is 120gb in capacity and it features the SandForce controller. The Chronos Deluxe also features trim and wear leveling functionality and should give you speeds of up to 560mb/s read and 515mb/s write, so read on to see if they Chronos Deluxe lives up to those specs and see how it compares to other SSDs and HDDs I’ve got on hand.

The Mushkin Chronos Deluxe SSD comes in a plastic clamshell style package which thankfully isn’t sealed so it’s easy to open.

mush1 mush2

The Chronos is an SSD, it has a black metal housing on it with an ID label on the front. It’s thinner than your standard SSD at 7mm in thickness.

mush3

The bottom of the Chronos is solid black with screws to hold it all together.

mush4

It has an SATA connection on it, yes it’s SATA 3 even though it doesn’t look very special.

 mush5

 

Specifications:

Chronos deluxe 120GB Solid State Drive – MKNSSDCR120GB-DX

Optimal Data Flow
Optimized for dependable and reliable data flow

SandForce Driven
Approved by the elite SandForce Driven quality program

TRIM Support
TRIM Support when used with compatible operating system

Wear-leveling Functionality
Wear-leveling functionality optimizes writes for superior longevity and reliability

Specifications:
Capacity:    120GB
Dimensions: 100.2 x 70.0 x 9.3mm
Temp. Range: 0-70°C
Read Speed: up to 560MB/sec
Write Speed: up to 515MB/sec
Shock Tolerance: 1500G
Vibration:     20G Peak, 10-2kHz, 3 axis
MTBF: 2 million hours
Controller: SF-2281
Interface Type: SATA 3.0 (6Gb/s)
Warranty: 3 years limited
IOPS: 90,000 (4K random write, 4K aligned)

Price: $119.99  (from NewEgg at time of review)



So onto the testing!

Let’s start with the basic specs of my system:

Motherboard: Asus P8Z68-V Pro/Gen3
CPU: Intel Core i7 2600K
Video Card: HIS Radeon HD 7870
Ram: 8gb Kingston HyperX

The motherboard of course features SATA6 ports.

For comparison I have mechanical hard drives and SSDs of course, specifically I have the Seagate Barracuda XT 2tb SATA6, Samsung Spinpoint F4 HD322GJ 320gb SATA3, Seagate 7200.12 1tb SATA3 drive and the OCZ Vertex 3 SSD, Micron RealSSD P400e SSD and the Kingston HyperX 3K 240GB SSD.

I ran SiSoft Sandra, ATTO, ASSD and CrystalDiskMark to test the performance.

So let’s start with CrystalDiskMark in order of fastest to slowest according to the Read scores:

hyper33 hyper32 crystal mushkin hyper31 hyper30 hyper29 hyper28     

The Read speed is decent but the write seems low to me. I’ve ran the test at least 20 times now and I keep coming up with the same results.

The next test would be SiSoft Sandra, or two tests actually.

 

File Systems test from SiSoft Sandra 2011:

Benchmark mounted file systems (i.e. volumes).

This is not the raw disk performance that other benchmarks test – but the speed of the volume itself that depends on many more factors like file system, operating system cache, position on disk, etc. Thus this is the performance you get at the file system level.

Drive Score: is a composite figure representing an overall performance rating based on the average of the read, write, and seek tests, and file and cache size. It is intended to represent drive performance under typical use in a PC. A larger number means better performance. The weighting of the results is not equal it represents the distribution of different files sizes as used on these devices (obtained through field research).

 

mushfilesys

Here we see the Kingston HyperX 3K is the fastest of the bunch with the Chronos coming in fourth fastest.

 

Physical Disks test:

Benchmark hard disks (i.e. the disk itself, not the file system). As the test measures raw performance it is independent on the file system the disk uses and any volumes mounted off the disk.

Drive Score: is a composite figure representing an overall performance rating based on the highest read or write speed across the whole disk. Thus the higher the better.

Access Time: is the average time to read a random sector on the disk, analogous to latency response time. Thus the lower the better.

 

mushphysdisks

With this test things are switched around a bit, the Chronos is the fastest of the bunch in terms of raw performance.

 

The next test it ATTO Disk Benchmark, ordering is slowest to fastest.

hyper34 hyper35 hyper36 hyper37 hyper38 hyper39 atto QD10 mushkin

Yeah that’s a lot so how about a nice graph to make things easier to read?

 

attossdgraph

So as you can see, according to ATTO, the Chronos, HyperX and Vertex are very close really, especially the Chronos and HyperX drives. The Vertex read speed only leads by a small percentage really which I don’t think you’d even notice in the ‘real world’. The Chronos is actually faster in terms of write speed, but by only by a very small margin.

All in all I think all three drives are fairly evenly matched, I don’t think you would notice the differences in your everyday activities.

Specs for the drive are Read Speed: up to 560MB/sec and Write Speed: up to 515MB/sec. The Chronos Deluxe comes very close for the Read speed and it goes over the write speeds according to ATTO.

 

The last test I have is AS SSD and I ran the standard test, and then the Copy benchmark as well.

Here’s the results in MB/s:

hyper46hyper43asssd mushkin1hyper40

Then here’s the same results in IOPS:

hyper47 hyper44 asssd mushkin2 hyper41

As you can see the HyperX is the fastest by far according to this test. If you look though you’ll notice the Micron drive is faster at writes than both the Mushkin and the Vertex SSDs.

Here’s the copy test which again gives us a mixed bag of results.

hyper48 hyper45 hyper42 asssd mushkin3

The Micron is clearly the fastest for games, at least according to AS SSD. The ISO test really just shows fractions of a second between all of the drives from 2.73 up to 3.39, which isn’t even half a second really.

The program test really shows a difference going from 6.36 seconds all the way up to 9.93 seconds for the Mushkin SSD, or close to three seconds difference. Is three seconds that important to you? To me it’s not, I can wait an additional three seconds, nothing I’m doing is that time sensitive and I don’t think anything anyone else is doing is either really.

With all these different tests what do you go by for the results? Personally I prefer ATTO as it is pretty much the standard anymore, and going by that we see the Chronos Deluxe SSD performs very well.

 

mush1 mush2 mush3 mush4

 

Conclusion:
The Mushkin Chronos Deleuxe SSD uses the Sandforce controller which is very popular these days and something that is desirable to have in an SSD as it’s the best.

The drive performs very well overall, still it’s not quite the fastest but not the slowest either. These are benchmarks though and in the ‘real world’ I don’t think you’d notice the minimal speed difference there is between these drives.

In the ATTO Disk BenchMark the Chronos Deluxe performs above specs for the write test and comes very close for read speeds. The differences between the SSDs aren’t that great really. To be fair though, the specs do say ‘up to’ those speeds, so coming close and going over is a good thing.

The price of the Mushkin Chronos Delxue is right in line with the others of the same capacity, slightly higher by a few dollars. The thing is that the Chronos Deluxe is a 7mm drive which means it can fit in ultrabooks or other places where a slim drive is needed, the others are standard height. I guess you have to figure out if you need a slim or standard drive for your needs.

9recommended5

 

Pros:
+Decent performance
+Low price
+Thin profile
+Wear leveling and trim support

Cons:
-Slightly slower than other SSDs

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

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