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Conclusion

Our tests show that Intel Smart Response technology delivers impressive results. Moreover, the performance of our hybrid disk subsystems didn't depend on the capacity of the caching SSD under the conditions of our tests. This may be the reason why Intel focused on speed rather than capacity in their Smart Response-optimized Larson Creek SSD (but we don’t understand why they didn’t use SATA 6 Gb/s which brings about considerable benefits for SSDs compared to SATA 3 Gb/s).

Of course, a larger caching SSD is going to provide certain advantages if your frequently used applications and data are larger than the cache size. However, this scenario seems rather unlikely for the majority of users, so we guess that purchasing a 40GB SSD would be the optimal solution.

The HighPoint RocketHybrid 1220 controller supports SATA 6 Gb/s and hybrid drives, just like the Intel Z68 chipset, but the option of manually selecting data to be cached seems to be an obvious advantage in comparison with Smart Response. Besides, the first launch of a previously unused application is performed faster on the HighPoint controller than with Smart Response even in automatic caching mode. The downside is the poor repeatability of the controller's results and its overall lower speed compared to Intel's technology when applications and data are retrieved from the cache.

On the other hand, the benefits of a HyperDuo disk created on a HighPoint RocketHybrid 1220 controller over a conventional HDD are obvious. You may want to buy that controller to accelerate your disk subsystem and make your computer more responsive without having to switch to the Intel Z68 chipset (it is the only chipset as yet to support Smart Response) or to replace your conventional HDD with a large-capacity and expensive SSD.

 
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