Solid State Drives Guide
PCMark 7 Results
PCMark 7 is the latest benchmarking suite from FutureMark that evaluates the performance of Windows 7 machines. It tests a wide range workloads and aspects of the system ranging from computation, image and video manipulation and storage.
And looking at the results here, our testbed with just the hard disk alone set a baseline score of 2822 3DMarks. With the SanDisk ReadyCache SSD, our setup’s performance improved considerably as it scored 3639 PCMarks. This translates to an improvement of around 28%, which is definitely a significant boost to performance.
When coupled with Intel’s Larson Creek kit, we managed 3807 PCMarks - 4% better than the score we achieved with SanDisk’s ReadyCache SSD. Looking at the score breakdown, we can see that with the Larson Creek kit, the system managed marginally better scores in almost all individual workloads when compared to the SanDisk ReadyCache SSD.
However, all this pales in comparison with a pure SSD setup, which garnered 4130 PCMarks. We also tried mating the SSD with the SanDisk ReadyCache SSD and that gave us 4077 PCMarks, which was slightly lower than what we achieved with a lone SSD. However, the difference is just a mere 2% so we can probably attribute this to random error.
Time-based Test Results
|Time to Start (seconds)||HDD (baseline)||HDD + SanDisk ReadyCache SSD||HDD + Larson Creek||SSD||SDD + SanDisk ReadyCache SSD|
|Adobe Photoshop CS6||15.0||7.4||5.4||3.8||4.3|
|S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat||74.1||55.6||59.9||62.1||57.5|
Looking at the timing results, it wasn’t surprising to find that the pure HDD setup scored the poorest timings. After installing the SanDisk ReadyCache SSD, we found that the timings took a significant dip. Cold start timings dropped a remarkable 14 seconds and it took only half the time needed for Adobe Photoshop CS6 to start. The time taken to load the S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat benchmark was also reduced dramatically. With the Larson Creek kit, the timings for our tests also dropped significantly too, and were quite comparable to the the timings achieved by the SanDisk ReadyCache SSD, if a little slower.
However, a pure SSD setup trumps all here. Booting from a cold start, a pure SSD setup recorded just under 40 seconds, a good two seconds faster than a hard disk and SanDisk ReadyCache SSD combo. Reboot timings were faster by over four seconds and a pure SSD setup took nearly just half the time (3.8 seconds) to get Adobe Photoshop CS6 up and running.
Looking at the results of the SSD and SanDisk ReadyCache SSD combo, we can see that the addition of the SanDisk ReadyCache SSD had no positive impact, in fact, it seemed to have slowed our system down a little. Apart from running the S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat benchmark, the SSD and SanDisk combo recorded marginally higher timings for most of our tests, showing that for the best performance, a pure SSD setup is the way to go.