TODO alt text

Sandisk Extreme II 240GB review

The latest Sandisk SSD shows the top drives how it's done

Our Verdict

For

  • Five year warranty
  • Good all-round performance
  • Good price

Against

  • Not fastest in any metrics

Sandisk has joined the Marvell chipset club for its latest SSD, and the Extreme II 240GB is a rather tasty bit of silicon. But with so many drives using the same controller, are we not entering into the SandForce territory of days gone by, where all drive performance was relatively equal? Not really, and here's why.

The process for an SSD manufacturer used to be: Grab a controller chipset off the shelf, bung some memory chips onto a PCB, and you're in the SSD business. Well, that's what it felt like for a while, what with everyone jumping on the SandForce bandwagon, and the fact that SandForce controllers come with ready-cooked firmware and few options to stand out.

At least, that was true until Intel came along with its own take on SandForce SSDs, but even then, the performance profile was all very familiar. We suspect Intel's tweaks to the SandForce firmware focused on reliability.

These days, of course, the customer chipset of choice is none other than the Marvell 9187. The difference is, you have to bring your own firmware to the party - Marvell doesn't supply one.

That mainly means two things. For starters, the barriers to entry are that bit higher because you have to have enough nerds on the payroll to develop a full-on firmware. Secondly, it means there's a little more variation between SSDs based on ostensibly the same controller.

In the old days you saw SandForce on the spec sheet and you knew exactly what to expect. That's not the case with the Marvell controller.

Benchmarks

4K random read performance (incompressible)
AS SSD: Megabytes per second: Higher is better

A-Data XPG SX900 512GB: 23
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB: 23
Crucial M500 480GB: 21
Intel 520 480GB: 24
OCZ Vertex 450 256GB: 19
Samsung 840 Pro 512GB: 26
Sandisk Extreme II 240GB: 23
Seagate 600 480GB: 22
Transcend SSD720 512GB: 20
Toshiba Q Series 256GB: 18

Zip file decompression
ZIP: Seconds: Quicker is better

A-Data XPG SX900 512GB: 23
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB: 23
Crucial M500 480GB: 23
Intel 520 480GB: 24
OCZ Vertex 450 256GB: 23
Samsung 840 Pro 512GB: 24
Sandisk Extreme II 240GB: 23
Seagate 600 480GB: 23
Transcend SSD720 512GB: 24
Toshiba Q Series 256GB: 22

4K random write performance (incompressible)
AS SSD: Megabytes per second: Higher is better

A-Data XPG SX900 512GB: 18
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB: 50
Crucial M500 480GB: 54
Intel 520 480GB: 19
OCZ Vertex 450 256GB: 54
Samsung 840 Pro 512GB: 51
Sandisk Extreme II 240GB: 54
Seagate 600 480GB: 44
Transcend SSD720 512GB: 18
Toshiba Q Series 256GB: 45

Sequential read performance (incompressible)
AS SSD: Megabytes per second: Higher is better

A-Data XPG SX900 512GB: 505
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB: 503
Crucial M500 480GB: 492
Intel 520 480GB: 499
OCZ Vertex 450 256GB: 504
Samsung 840 Pro 512GB: 520
Sandisk Extreme II 240GB: 515
Seagate 600 480GB: 508
Transcend SSD720 512GB: 502
Toshiba Q Series 256GB: 514

Sequential read performance (compressible)
ATTO: Megabytes per second: Higher is better

A-Data XPG SX900 512GB: 551
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB: 556
Crucial M500 480GB: 539
Intel 520 480GB: 545
OCZ Vertex 450 256GB: 551
Samsung 840 Pro 512GB: 561
Sandisk Extreme II 240GB: 555
Seagate 600 480GB: 554
Transcend SSD720 512GB: 538
Toshiba Q Series 256GB: 552

Sequential write performance (incompressible)
AS SSD: Megabytes per second: Higher is better

A-Data XPG SX900 512GB: 298
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB: 470
Crucial M500 480GB: 414
Intel 520 480GB: 218
OCZ Vertex 450 256GB: 497
Samsung 840 Pro 512GB: 500
Sandisk Extreme II 240GB: 468
Seagate 600 480GB: 437
Transcend SSD720 512GB: 259
Toshiba Q Series 256GB: 469

Sequential write performance (compressible)
ATTO: Megabytes per second: Higher is better

A-Data XPG SX900 512GB: 519
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB: 506
Crucial M500 480GB: 432
Intel 520 480GB: 475
OCZ Vertex 450 256GB: 534
Samsung 840 Pro 512GB: 535
Sandisk Extreme II 240GB: 518
Seagate 600 480GB: 473
Transcend SSD720 512GB: 465
Toshiba Q Series 256GB: 519

Verdict

What sort of a fist has SanDisk made of the 9187 chipset in this latest Extreme II SSD, then? Pretty stellar, actually.

Direct comparisons with the other Marvell 9187 drive in this test, the Crucial M500, are tricky due to the gap in capacity. The number of memory chips per channel does influence performance. But there's little doubt SanDisk has done a great job.

There really are no weak points in the performance package. What's more, SanDisk serves up a meaty five-year warranty as standard, which should cover the vast majority of users very comfortably indeed.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSolid State Drive
Product FamilyExtreme
Drive InterfaceSATA
Drive Width2.5"
Drive Interface StandardSATA/600
Brand NameSanDisk
Drive TypeInternal
Storage Capacity240 GB
Maximum Read Transfer Rate550 MBps
Maximum Write Transfer Rate510 MBps
Height7.1 mm
Width69.9 mm
Depth100.6 mm
ManufacturerSanDisk Corporation
Product NameExtreme II Solid State Drive (SSD)
Product LineExtreme
Manufacturer Part NumberSDSSDXP-240G-G25
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sandisk.com
Marketing InformationUpgrade your PC with the durability, reliability, and extreme performance
of a SanDisk Extreme® II SSD.

Whether it's extending the battery life of your PC or improving your gameplay, the SanDisk
Extreme® II SSD is the reliable drive for you. Enjoy faster performance, providing next-level
speed for your graphic-intense games. Get faster load times and enhance your computing
experience from boot-up to shut-down and every moment in-between. The SanDisk Extreme II
SSD features no moving parts for quiet operation and is also backed by rigorous shock and
vibration testing. Get faster performance with SanDisk Extreme II SSD.
Limited Warranty5 Year
Weight (Approximate)54.4 g