Corsair Force GT 240 GB SSD Review

We are reviewing the Corsair Force GT 240GB SSD. Corsair provides enthusiasts with both sides of the SSD controller coin by offering Marvell and SandForce controlled SSDs in its product lines. Today we will take a look at the SandForce option with its SandForce SF-2282 controller paired with high-performance IMFT synchronous NAND.

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Specifications

Corsair has a robust line of SSDs for every use. This includes the Marvell-powered Corsair Performance Pro that we previously have reviewed and also the LSI SandForce variants of its produce line, the Force Series.

The Force series consists of the Force Series 3 and the Force Series GT. The Force Series 3 SSDs are the entry level SSDs that are aimed squarely at the average user with its asynchronous NAND.

The Force Series GT is the premium SandForce product that sports the ultra-durable synchronous NAND. For those that aren't in the know, the synchronous NAND holds up much better to prolonged use, and reigns supreme for the enthusiast class SSDs. The NAND Flash Faces OFF - Synchronous v Asynchronous NAND article goes much further in depth on this issue.

Suffice it to say, the synchronous NAND is part of the equation to the enhanced performance of the Force Series GT SSDs. There is also another surprising element, and that is the LSI SandForce SF-2282 controller utilized with this SSD. There is only one other consumer SSD that jumps to mind that even sports this caliber of processor at this capacity point, and that is the OWC Mercury Extreme Pro SSD.

The major difference is the ability of this SSD to communicate with 32 NAND packages simultaneously, compared to the standard 16 packages that LSI SF-2281 processors handle. This provides a wider range of options when configuring the PCB for the SSD. One would expect for the greater amount of parallelism to add up to better sustained performance, and we will test this in our steady state testing regimens.

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Many consumers overlook the random write speed when comparing SSD models even though this can be one of the most important measurements of speed. When antivirus, email clients, browsers, and media players are all running, there is a lot of data for the operating system to keep track of. This leads the operating system to be constantly writing very small files, logging data, and doing system tasks in the background. This is where great random write speeds make a big difference in the "snappiness" of the SSD. If an SSD is bogged down with small random writes, the read speeds can suffer.

The Force GT sports a random 4K write speed of 85,000 IOPS, which is standard for LSI SandForce SSDs. The SSD also features a max sequential read speed of 555MB/s and 525 MB/s sequential write. It conforms to the standard 2.5 inch form factor, with a 9.5mm z-height. The warranty covers the SSD for three years, but we would always like to see all manufacturers stepping up to the plate with five year warranties.

Another interesting feature of LSI SandForce SSDs is that these do not have DRAM cache memory like many of the competitors. Even among the SSDs with DRAM cache, user data isn't always stored in the cache. Typically the cache is used for data tables and the SSD controller’s own purposes. This does expose the user to a higher potential for problems in the event of an unexpected power loss, which is a definite disadvantage of using cache.

PRICING

The Corsair Force GT comes in a wide variety of capacities that will allow any user to find their sweet spot. Many users are typically constrained by budget to the amount of capacity that they can purchase.

At the time of publication on Amazon the 60GB retails for $79.99, the 90GB for $110.99, the 120GB for $125.49, the 180GB for 179.49, the 240GB for $224.99, and the 480GB for $469.99.

There is a bit of a trade-off with the smaller capacity SSDs having slightly lower write specifications due to the architecture of all SSDs. The read speeds remain unchanged at 555MB/s for the entire series, but the write speeds are as follows;

  • 60GB--495MB/s

  • 90GB--505MB/s

  • 120GB--515MB/s

  • 180GB--520MB/s

  • 240GB--525MB/s

  • 480GB--490MB/s

Features

  • Warranty--Three years

  • SSD Unformatted Capacity--240 GB

  • Max Sequential R/W (ATTO)--555 MB/s sequential read آ— 525 MB/s sequential write

  • Max Random 4k Write (IOMeter 08)--85k IOPS (4k aligned)

  • Interface--SATA 6Gb/s

  • Form Factor--2.5 inch

  • DRAM Cache Memory--No

  • Weight--80g

  • Voltage5V آ±5%

  • Power Consumption (active)--4.6W

  • Max Power Consumption (idle/standby/sleep)--0.6W Max

  • S.M.A.R.T. Support--Yes

  • Shock--1500 G

  • MTBF--2,000,000 hours