Plextor M5S 256GB SATA III SSD Review
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In our lab and on the bench for you today we have one of Plextor’s newest SSD’s the Plextor M5S 256GB SATA 6Gb/s. Plextor has brought this drive to market with the intention of offering a high quality low cost drive that handles any kind of data with ease.
Plextor isn’t exactly known for their low pricing. What Plextor is famous for is high quality products. Plextor rigorously tests their drives and claims to have the lowest failure rate in the industry. Plextor sees performance, and rightly so, as not just benchmarks but as a combination of performance and reliability.
Plextor’s M5S has at its heart Marvell’s 9174 FPU. The 9174 has been around for longer than any other 6Gb/s FPU. It has great performance, longevity and configurability that have been proven over the course of time as well as through endurance and reliability testing.
The M5S is designated as Plextor’s new value flagship drive supplanting their M3S. The M5S differs from the M3S in that it utilizes 25nm Synchronous Flash instead of more expensive 24nm Toggle Mode Flash. Will this be a performance downgrade? We think not because 25nm Synchronous Flash performs for the most part as well as 24nm Toggle not to mention that the M3S like the M5S has some of its performance restricted by firmware as part of Plextor’s value strategy so flash won’t be as tied to performance as it would be without firmware restrictions.
Plextor touts sustained performance and low failure rates as a hallmark of the SSD’s they sell so we will begin by taking a look at what Plextor has to say regarding their M5S:
Top performing controller
Fully supporting the latest generation of the SATAII / 6Gbps standard, with up to 510 MB/s transfer rate. The Marvel, 88SS9174 controller chip delivers extensive products life, data security, and stability, and also has excellent read-write performance with both compressible and non-compressible data making it the best choice on the SSD market.
Our exclusive, innovative firmware technology
Exclusive is our advanced firmware technology; innovations that ensure our SSD solutions continue to deliver maximum hardware performance. Instant Restore solves the customers' concern about SSDs, the read/write efficiency in Dirty State. By rearranging the data blocks, garbage collection, and optimization of unused space, the technology allows reading and writing large amounts of data at high speeds. The Global Wear Leveling distributes wear over time, which effectively extends the life of the SSD. At the same time, the Bad Block Management algorithm effectively ensures that data is stored on functional areas of the memory, minimizing the risk of errors.
High Plextor Quality : Stringent testing for every drive
Every Plextor SSD is built to exacting standards and thoroughly tested to ensure that it is manufactured to our impeccable quality demands. These include 20-hour High Temperature burn-in test and the rigors of the industry's premier-level FLEXSTAR testing machine to simulate the real working environment. Plextor SSD devices are of the highest quality, as borne out by the 0.5% average annual failure rate (AFR), the lowest in the industry.
Full Plextor Support : Immaculate service delivered instantaneously
Plextor's SSD range is fully supported by the company's customer service system. Additionally, customers can find product information, updates to the firmware driving True Speed's performance, and product manuals on our region-specific websites. Local forums and Facebook fan pages allow customers to communicate with the company and each other and exchange technical information, besides providing tips to maximize real-world performance.
We just finished up with Plextor’s Flagship Performance model the M5 Pro which is more expensive, completely next generation and a performance powerhouse so we are anxious to see how the M5S being the Value Flagship will compare to Performance Flagship.