Articles: Storage

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Futuremark PCMark 8

Futuremark PCMark 8 contains a special disk subsystem benchmark. It is not a synthetic test but is based on real-life applications. This benchmark reproduces typical disk usage scenarios and measures how fast they are performed. Compared to PCMark 7, it features more scenarios based on Adobe and Microsoft applications as well as games. The result is calculated as the average speed across all of the subtests.

We run PCMark 8 on steady-state SSDs, just as they are going to be used in actual computers. Their performance in this case is affected not only by their controller or flash memory speed but also by the efficiency of their internal algorithms that fight performance degradation.

As opposed to synthetic benchmarks, PCMark 8 emulates real-life disk usage scenarios by running pre-recorded disk activity traces. PCMark 8 is thus indicative of what performance we can expect from SSDs in practice. Here, we can see that Samsung's drive with inexpensive TLC NAND flash memory is indeed capable of delivering top-class speed. The Samsung 840 EVO is only inferior to the Samsung 840 Pro but outperforms a lot of popular products such as the Plextor M5 Pro, SanDisk Extreme II and OCZ Vector 150. The Samsung 840 EVO benefits from its high random read speed and TurboWrite technology which can mask the drive’s low write speed.

The overall PCMark 8 results are the average of the individual subtests, so let’s check the latter out, too.

The Samsung 840 EVO is only relatively weak in the few applications that call for writing a lot of data, e.g. Adobe After Effects. In the majority of other cases, the Samsung 840 EVO is just a little slower than the leading Samsung 840 Pro.

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