Since the G-DRIVE Mini is targeted to the Mac folks, we did most of the testing on a 2.66GHz i7 MacBook Pro with a few benchmarks and also performed a few on our Windows test bench for comparison’s sake. First up is SpeedTools Test Suite from Intech Software where we ran the QuickBench 4.0 benchmark. It measures reads and writes, both sequential and random at various size intervals, similar to that of ATTO. We ran the test on both USB 2.0 and FireWire 800 to demonstrate the difference.
Benchmark Results: While the two charts look similar, have a look at the Y axis scale. Yeah, big difference. Where the USB read scores topped out at 43MB/s, the FireWire 800 reads hit over 54MB/s. The differences in writes were even more pronounced with the FireWire 800 hitting 40MB/s more at max. Clearly, using the FireWire 800 connection is the better way to go which most modern Macs have by default.
Next up is a free benchmark for OS X called XBench that also performs random and sequential reads/writes in 4K and 256K blocks.
Benchmark Results: In the sequential tests, the FireWire rates were double than USB rates in most instances with the randoms being much closer. Overall the read speed maxed out at 74.30MB/s and the writes at 79.94MB/s.
ATTO is one of the oldest drive benchmarks still being used today and is still very relevant in the SSD world. ATTO measures transfers across a specific volume length. It measures raw transfer rates for both reads and writes and places the data into graphs that can be very easily interpreted. The test was run with the default runs of 0.5kb through 8192kb transfer sizes with the total length being 256mb.
Benchmark Results: Clearly things are reads are maxing out at 35MB/s and writes at 27MB/s. We saw slightly better than that on the Mac USB 2.0 performance and it’s well below what the FireWire connection was able to muster. These speeds are fine for copying small files but if you are doing large scale backups etc, you’re going to pine for the faster FireWire connection.
CrystalDiskMark is a small benchmark utility for drives and enables rapid measurement of sequential and random read/write speeds. Note that CDM only supports Native Command Queuing (NCQ) with a queue depth of 32 (as noted) for the last listed benchmark score. This can skew some results in favor of controllers that also do not support NCQ.
Benchmark Results: No big surprise on the results as they roughly mirror what was seen on the ATTO benchmark. Obviously, the 4K sized tests are the forte of the drive.
We’ll wrap things up with our final thoughts…