Crucial M550 512GB SSD Review

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Test System & Comparison Drives

All tests were performed on a fresh and up-to-date install of Windows 8 Pro x64 with no other applications running while using AHCI mode set through the BIOS. Synthetic Benchmarks were run with the OS loaded on a 120GB Corsair Force SSD. In between every test, the test drive was secure erased using an instance of Parted Magic. As such, all results should be indicative of optimal performance. All components were set to their default speeds and are listed below.

Z77 Test Bench

LR Bench

Intel LGA 1155 Test Platform
Component Brand/Model Live Pricing

Processor

Core i5 2500k

Motherboard

ASUS Maximus V Gene Z77

Memory

Kingston HyperX KHX16C9B1RK28 8GB

OS Drive

Corsair Force 120GB (FW 2.4)

Power Supply

Antec Basiq BP550W Plus-EC

Operating System

Windows 8 Pro 64-Bit

Comparison Drives And Other Models We Have Tested

Since there are so many SSDs out there now with different controllers, we started a reference table of which controllers are used by each drive to help you compare results. Different controllers definitely perform differently and each has various strengths and weaknesses. Like CPU’s, even identical drives will have variations in performance and part of that variance may be attributable to the NAND flash used. Since the tests of the drives listed have spanned different test benches and represent different interfaces, we have listed the most recent ones for easy reference.

SSD MODEL CONTROLLER Interface
OCZ Vertex 460 240GB Indilinx Barefoot 3 M10 SATA III
VisionTek PCIe 240GB SSD SandForce SF-2200 (SF-2281) x2 PCIe
WD Black² Dual-Drive 120GB SSD + 1TB HDD JMicron JMF667H SATA III
OCZ Vector 150 240GB Indilinx Barefoot 3 M00 SATA III
Corsair Force LS 240GB Phison PS3108 SATA III
Samsung Evo 500GB MEX S4LN045X01 SATA III
Seagate 600 240GB LAMD LM87800 SATA III
OCZ Vertex 450 256GB Indilinx Barefoot 3 M10 SATA III
Crucial M500 480GB Marvell 88SS9187 SATA III
OCZ Vertex 3.20 240GB SandForce SF-2200 (SF-2281) SATA III
Samsung 840 Pro 240GB Samsung MDX SATA III
Sandisk Ultra Plus 256GB Marvell 88SS9175 SATA III
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB LAMD LM87800 SATA III
Intel 520 Series 240GB SandForce SF-2200 (SF-2281) SATA III
OCZ Vector 256GB Indilinx Barefoot 3 M00 SATA III
Kingston SSDNow V300 120GB SandForce SF-2200 (SF-2281) SATA III
Samsung 830 Series 256GB Samsung S4LJ204X01-Y040 SATA III

CrystalDiskInfo 6.0.4 Readout:

For the Crucial M550 512GB drive, the readout on CrystalDiskInfo 5.2.0 shows that both NCQ and S.M.A.R.T. are enabled, as well as TRIM and the interface is confirmed at SATA III (6Gbps). This is a great free tool to see lots of detailed information about the drive such as the firmware version for which we are running the latest available at the time of testing – MU01, which is also printed on the back of the drive if you look closely.

Crucial M550 512GB CrystalDiskInfo

Let’s have a look at the performance with some synthetic benchmarks followed up by some real world tests.

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  • basroil

    Hardly ground breaking performance, but for the price it’s going to be giving samsung a run for their money!

    • Nathan Kirsch

      You’ll have to wait for NVMe drives or other PCI Express solutions to hit the market before you’ll see ground breaking performance again!

      • basroil

        Meant more on the line of 4k performance, but even that is largely limited by SATA interface. Sequential performance in SATA disks is no longer really a test, any good company already maxes out the interface (though reliability tests still are good)

        Once NVMe drives come out into the open market all hell will break loose though, we might see some ridiculous (ly expensive) drives come.