DV Hardware review - Super Talent 200x USB Flash Drive

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Super Talent 200x USB Flash Drive





All tests were done on the following system:
  • Intel Core 2 Duo E6400 processor with BlueOrb FX cooler from ThermalTake.
  • Asus Commando motherboard
  • ASUS EN7300GS/HTD 256MB graphics card
  • 2GB Super Talent T1000UX2G5 memory
  • Seagate 320GB HDD
  • NZXT Zero case (with Noctua fans)
  • SilverStone 750W PSU
  • Dell 2407WFP LCD display
  • Operating system: Windows XP SP2
  • HD Tach Benchmark
    Now lets do some benchmarks to see how well the Super Talent 200x flash drive scores. The specifications promise a read speed of 200x, which equals 30MB/s. Lets use HD Tach's Quick Bench to see if the drive really scores that well:



    The results from the Super Talent 200x drive are amazing. The flash drive has an average read speed of 32.7MB/s with short bursts of up to 35MB/s. The 0.5ms random access times are also superb.

    But what about the read speed?

    ATTO Disk Benchmark
    I used ATTO to measure how fast the drive can read and write files. I set the program to transfer 8MB to the Super Talent 200x USB drive in data blocks from 1KB to 1MB:



    You can see that ATTO found that with larger file sizes the read speed rises to 32.7MB/s and the write speed averages 23.5MB/s. This is very fast, as far as I know these results indicate that the Super Talent 200x flash drive is one of the fastest drives you can find on the market.


    ReadyBoost
    As this flash drive is marketed to have support for the ReadyBoost feature in Windows Vista I'm going to do some tests to see how this flash drive influences the performance. If you want to learn more about what ReadyBoost is I suggest to read the part about ReadyBoost in the Kingston DataTraveler ReadyFlash review which I published two weeks ago.

    Since I haven't upgraded one of DV Hardware's test systems to Windows Vista yet, I had to use my girlfriend's Dell Inspiron 6400 laptop. This machine has a 2.16GHz Core 2 Duo, 2GB memory, a GeForce Go 7300 graphics card and a 120GB HDD.

    I couldn't do hours of testing so I decided to run PCMark05 twice. The first time without the drive and the second time with the drive. I configured Windows Vista's ReadyBoost to use a max of 1GB of this flash drive's capacity to cache files.

    PCMark05
    Test
    Inspiron 6400 Inspiron 6400 with Super Talent 200x ReadyBoost
    PCMark score
    3099 marks 3290 marks
    HDD XP startup
    4.31MB/s 5.63MB/s
    Physics and 3D
    99.9FPS 100.15FPS
    Transparent windows
    1874.67 windows/s 1588.19 windows/s
    3D pixel shader
    39.28FPS 39.27FPS
    Web page rendering
    1.14 pages/s 1.38 pages/s
    File decryption
    41.32MB/s 42.14MB/s
    Graphics Memory
    400.35FPS 402.94FPS
    HDD General usage
    2.78MB/s 3.94MB/s
    Audio compression
    1487.36KB/s 1524.66KB/s
    Video encoding
    247.19KB/s 259.24KB/s
    Text edit
    75.71 pages/s 84.66 pages/s
    Image decompression
    18.85 MPixels/s 19.8 Mpixels/s
    File compression
    3.24MB/s 3.53 MB/s
    File encryption
    18.94MB/s 18.35MB/s
    Virus scan
    17.36MB/s 18.65MB/s
    Random 16MB memory latency
    7.24 MAccesses/s 6.76 MAccess/s


    Without the Super Talent 200x USB drive the test system scored 3099 marks, with the flash drive we see that this increases to 3290 marks. That's an increase of 6.16% which isn't bad at all. However, just like with all other ReadyFlash drives that I've reviewed in the past not all the subtests showed an increase in performance. In some subtests the performance actually drops a bit.

    One important thing to note is that the Inspiron 6400 used in this test already had 2GB of memory, I believe the performance gains would be much higher if this system had less RAM memory.

    Another important thing is that while ReadyBoost can help you to get some more performance, I don't recommend that you buy a flash stick with the sole purpose of boosting the performance of your PC. A flash stick is useful if you mainly plan to use it to transfer data from one PC to another one. If you want to increase the performance of your computer it's a better idea to add more RAM memory to your rig.



    Conclusion
    I'm very impressed with this 200x flash drive from Super Talent. It has a very nice and sturdy design and the drive's performance is awesome. It has very high read and write speeds and its average access times are excellent. This is the fastest flash drive I've ever tested.

    The Good Stuff
    - Average read speeds of 32.7MB/s and write speeds of 23.5MB/s
    - Very good average access times
    - ReadyBoost support, can improve your system's performance a bit
    - Good build quality
    - Lifetime warranty

    The Bad Stuff
    - Availability.

    I give the Super Talent 200x flash drive a 9.5/10 and our Editor's Choice award for its great performance.





    Added: May 15th 2007
    Reviewer:
    Score: 9.5/10
    Related Link: Super Talent
    Page: 2/2



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