If you haven’t heard of MX Technology, don’t worry you haven’t been living under a rock – they are a new startup company that has hit the consumer Solid State Drive market with guns blazing.
Their first product to hit our shelves is the Mach Extreme MX-DS Series 100GB SSD. Using Intel MLC NAND modules coupled with a mega-popular Sandforce controller, this drive promises big things. Indeed, on the packaging itself MX Technology claim up to 290MB/s read and 275Mb/s write speeds, which is no small feat.
Aside from what’s under the hood, the outside of this product is pretty unique too. MX Technology commissioned European graffiti artist “Does” to create some epic stylings for the Mach Extreme drives, and I have to admit that it is a nice change from the humdrum branding on most hard drives, even if it is a little illegible (the tag on the sticker says “Extreme” by the way).
Even the packaging follows suit with the graffiti style, which houses the drive in a slim and efficient padded surround. Also included in the box is a 3.5” adaptor plate for mounting the 2.5” drive into a standard hard drive bay.
The unit itself, apart from the funky sticker, is a fairly standard issue aluminium box, brushed smooth on the underside and matte on top, with the usual power and SATA II 3Gb/s data connectors on the back.
Now for the business end of things.
To test the Mach Extreme out I have put it up against a couple of other SSDs I have lying around, namely a 64GB Kingston SSDNow V+ and a 40GB Intel X25-V.
All three drives were tested using ATTO Disk Benchmark v2.46, with the results being taken from the 512B, 8KB and 8MB transfer speeds over a 1GB data block.
These file sizes represent a good spectrum of the demands usually placed on an SSD – the smaller 512B transfers reflect the work an operating system frequently performs on a hard drive, whilst the 8KB test will show small file transfer speeds.
Lastly, the 8MB test shows what you can generally expect to be the fastest attainable transfer speeds of the drives.
Starting at the bottom with the 512B results, the Mach Extreme has solid write performance – not quite as fast as the smaller Intel drive but a whopping 50% faster than the Kingston.
Read speeds aren’t quite as good, falling slightly behind the Kingston, and under half the speed of the Intel.
Next, in the 8KB transfer test, the MX-DS cranks things up a notch or two by burning the 8KB files at an impressive rate of 142MB/s. This again far outpaces the Kingston drive, and the poor Intel is left even further behind (to be fair though, this Intel drive is from their “Value” range and is known for its slower write speeds).
Looking at the read speeds, the Mach Extreme again lags behind the other two drives, with the Intel making up for its lacklustre write speed.
Finally, in the 8MB large file test, the MX-DS continues the trend of turbo write speeds clocking up a mammoth 247MB/s. The Kingston drive doesn’t quite crack 200MB/s and the Intel is bottlenecked way back at 42MB/s.
For read speeds, the Kingston drive just manages to beat the Mach Extreme by about 1%, while the Intel drive still manages a respectable pace for a budget drive.
At an RRP of $729, the 100GB Mach Extreme MX-DS certainly isn’t cheap, but if you’re after a slightly larger drive with high write speeds then it could be money well spent (there’s also a 50GB version for $459). The graffiti design is also quite cool if you’re after that point of difference in your PC components.
Above all, the Mach Extreme delivers the goods, and that should be at the top of anyone’s requirements.
Our thanks to Mighty Ape for providing the review sample.