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Performance in Intel IOMeter

Sequential Read & Write Patterns

We’ll start out with the synthetic IOMeter benchmark. This pattern measures the sequential read and write speeds on data blocks of different size (from 0.5 to 1024KB) for each card in the different card-readers.

The USB card-readers deliver similar results with the Ultra II card. The Extreme FireWire is considerably faster than the USB models while the older FireWire reader is inferior to the others. The abrupt ending of the latter model’s graph is due to its inability to process data blocks larger than 128KB – you’ll see this in other tests as well.

The Extreme III behaves differently. It delivers its maximum performance when working in the Extreme USB reader. It is here that it surpasses the Ultra II card. Strangely enough, it does worse in the Extreme FireWire, somewhat better on small data blocks than in the ImageMate USB reader. The old model of the FireWire-interfaced reader is the slowest of all and still cannot process large data blocks.

The new Extreme IV card shows its best in the Extreme FireWire. This pair achieved the declared speed of 40MB/s on large data blocks and leaves no chance to any other card/reader pair. In the other readers this card behaves normally, yet its downright poor performance in the ImageMate FireWire is somewhat surprising.

This sequential writing test is perhaps the most important of all synthetic benchmarks for memory cards.

The Ultra II card delivers almost the same speed irrespective of the reader, except for the sluggish ImageMate FireWire. This must be the maximum write speed of this card and you cannot expect any improvements from changing the reader.

The Extreme III behaves as oddly as in the read test: it has its best result, about 50% better than the result of the Ultra II, in the Extreme USB reader. It performs slower in the Extreme FireWire and the ImageMate. The ImageMate FireWire is the slowest of the readers again.

The Extreme IV card feels at ease in the Extreme FireWire at both reading and writing, reaching a speed of 33.5MB/s on large data blocks. This is an excellent result, even though lower than specified. In the other readers the write speed of this card equals its read speed.

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