We mainly know ADATA for their high performance memory, but over the past year they have really made a push into the solid state drive market and the Premier Pro SP920SS is a great entry for them. While the drive is essentially a rebrand of the Crucial M550 as it uses the same internal parts, it is good to see ADATA come out with an aggressively priced drive as the solid state drive war is just heating up.
Since this is the same drive as Crucial’s M550 it does have the same issues since it is using Micron’s newer 128 Gbit NAND flash. The lower capacity versions of the drive (128 GB & 256 GB) suffer from decreased NAND parallelism. NAND parallelism means that solid state drives can read and write to multiple NAND chips at the same time. So as long as the memory controller can handle the load having more NAND chips translates into better performance. So using higher density NAND chips on lower capacity drives means that you are not going to get the full performance of the memory controller. So this is why you see slower write performance on the lower capacity drives. While ADATA might market the SP920SS to have read and write speeds of 560 MB/s and 500 MB/s respectively, you are only going to see that performance on the 512 GB and 1 TB drives.
With that said this drive and the Marvell 88SS9189 controller really do perform great, especially when it comes to reads, they are solid across the board. This is very evident in our HDTune Pro tests. The 256 GB version of the drive that we tested today is rated for sequential read and write speeds of 560 MB/s and 360 MB/s respectively. It performed pretty much up to those speeds in all of our tests.
ADATA has also added some value to this drive by including not only a 2.5-inch to 3.5-inch drive adapter, but also a 7 mm to 9.5 mm drive adapter. You also get a free download of Acronis True Image HD, which will make it easy for users to migrate and backup files.
When it comes to pricing the 256 GB version that we reviewed today is selling at my favorite online retailer for around $185 at my favorite online retailer. While this is one of the less expensive 256 GB solid state drives out there, many have better write performance. ADATA also backs this drive up with a 3 year warranty. Overall ThinkComputers gives the ADATA Premier Pro SP920SS 256 GB Solid State Drive an 8 out of 10 score.
– Solid read speed
– 2 adapters included
– Backup software included
– Slower write speeds than other drives out there
– Marketing of the drive can be misleading