We reviewed the Kingston SSDNow V300 previously, now it’s the turn of its larger capacity sibling, the V310 — which has a few differences from its smaller cousin apart from capacity. For starters, there’s a different controller: where the V300 used an older LSI SandForce 2281, the V310 instead uses a much improved (although lesser known) Phison 3108-S8, which we’ve seen used in the Corsair Force LS series of SSDs. The type of NAND flash is also different; instead of the Toshiba Toggle, the V310 uses a 20nm Micron MLC NAND along with 1GB of DRAM cache.
The space on the drive is certainly appealing, and the speeds from the benchmark aren’t too bad either. The ATTO 8192Kb file size test scored 541MB/s read and 483MB/s write; which strangely enough beats the advertised speeds on the blurb that comes with the drive. A rare occurrence indeed.
The drive comes in a selection of different packages. There’s a stand-alone kit (drive only); a desktop upgrade kit, with a 3.5” bracket and mounting screws, SATA cable, cloning software and a handy installation DVD; a notebook upgrade kit offers a 2.5” enclosure, cloning software and the DVD; while the combined desktop and notebook upgrade kit comes with both sized mounting and enclosure kits, SATA cable, 7mm to 9.5mm adapter, cloning software and of course, the installation DVD.
The combination of the Phison controller and Micron l28Gbit MLC NAND make for a good price-to-performance ratio, and seems a wise move on the part of Kingston. This way the 960GB drive can perform well and keep on performing well thanks to the MTBF of one million hours and TBW (total bytes written) of 2728TB. Other features include 256-AES encryption, TRIM/RAID support, Bad Block Management, DEVSLP (Device Sleep) and Static and Dynamic Wear Levelling. In fact, components and technologies you would normally associate with a more enterprise product.
Mind you, all of this comes at a price of around $550 for the stand-alone model, with the price increasing slightly for the various upgrade kits. When you consider that longevity, though, the performance and the capacity, it looks much better value for money than the Intel DC S3500.
Kingston has produced some great quality SSDs of late. The aforementioned V300 version is one of the best overall that price range, which focused on speed over capacity. To be honest, it’s beginning to look that way for the V310 too. The only thing that’s really holding it back is the price; had it been just $100 cheaper, then it would have been a better choice.
So, if you don’t mind paying a little more than the average and want a drive that’s quick, has good capacity and a feature list as long as a reviewers arm, then the Kingston SSDNow V310 is certainly one to look out for.