Kingston Predator PCIe M.2 SSD Conclusion
IMPORTANT: Although the rating and final score mentioned in this conclusion are made to be as objective as possible, please be advised that every author perceives these factors differently at various points in time. While we each do our best to ensure that all aspects of the product are considered, there are often times unforeseen market conditions and manufacturer changes which occur after publication that could render our rating obsolete. Please do not base any purchase solely on our conclusion, as it represents our product rating specifically for the product tested which may differ from future versions. Benchmark Reviews begins our conclusion with a short summary for each of the areas that we rate.
Our first rating is performance, which compares how effective the 480GB Kingston HyperX Predator PCIe M.2 SSD performs in benchmark operations against competing PCI and SATA-based solid state drive storage solutions. For reference, Kingston specifications suggest 1400 MB/s maximum reads and 1000 MB/s write speeds from this model. In our storage benchmark tests the HyperX Predator solid state drive performed beyond this speed, producing results that surpassed the fastest SATA-based products previously tested. ATTO Disk Benchmark tests proved the 480GB HyperX Predator was good for delivering 1444/1024 MBps peak read/writes speeds. Linear testing with AIDA64 Disk Benchmark produced 1201/984 MBps. Sequential read/write speed tests with CrystalDiskMark produced 1316/1008 MBps.
The HyperX Predator solid state drive sent to us for testing is advertised to deliver up to 130,000 random 4KB read IOPS, and 118,000 random 4KB write IOPS from its Marvell 88SS9293 controller. Using Iometer operational performance tests configured to a queue depth of 32 outstanding I/O’s per target across 100% of the drive, our benchmarks produced 62,445 combined IOPS performance. Looking at 4K 32QD test results using AS-SSD and CrystalDiskMark, the HyperX Predator posted impressive results, but nothing nearly impressive as it’s transfer speeds would suggest. Performance for the 480GB Kingston HyperX Predator M.2 SSD is best summarized as incredibly fast, but less so with heavy I/O tasks.
HyperX Predator comes in two varieties: M.2 2280 or with a PCIe adapter. Either choice performs approximately identical to the other, but the HHHL adapter does give you a little something more to look at. Normally solid state drives are low-visibility products, seen just long enough to install and then they’re forgotten. The dark design of Predator helps this along, and the lack of distraction lets you get back to enjoying the product.
Construction is probably the strongest feature credited to the entire solid state product segment, allowing Kingston to stand behind the quality of their product with a three-year warranty. Solid State Drives are by nature immune to most abuses, but without a hard metal shell HyperX Predator exposes sensitive components. If there are ever any problems with a HyperX Predator SSD during the warranty period, end-users may visit Kingston Technical Support to email or chat with agents, or call them directly at 800-435-0640 during business hours.
As of April 2015, the Kingston HyperX Predator PCIe M.2 SSD 480GB model SHPM2280P2H/480G was available online for $474.99 (Amazon | Newegg). M.2 2280 is not the usual form factor enthusiasts ask for, but it’s how Kingston gets so much speed from Predator. There’s a premium for this added performance, which could make it worth the price of purchase for those who demand speed from their computer system.
When gamer’s build their performance computer systems, they usually opt for traditional SATA-based solid state drives. mSATA was a stepping stone, and allowed for small form factor systems to get their own performance boost, but mSATA is merely repackaged SATA, while M.2 allows the storage device to tap directly into the PCI-Express bus. SATA-based storage is limited by the board’s 6Gb/s interface, while M.2 can utilize four PCI-e 3.0 lanes for a theoretical limit of 31.5 Gb/s. Kingston’s HyperX Predator M.2 SSD takes advantage of the bandwidth, but it limited by the Marvell controller designed with SATA6G in mind. 1400 MB/s reads and 1000 MB/s writes are an excellent start, but I’m sure most enthusiasts would like to see IOPS performance scale up with speed. More advanced storage controllers will make this happen in good time, but until then gamers can take full advantage of HyperX Predator right now.
+ Incredible 1444/1024 MBps read/write speed with ATTO
+ Random 4K read/writes produced 62,445 IOPS
+ Compact M.2 2280 (M) SSD package
+ 3-Year Kingston product warranty support
+ Offered in 240/480GB storage capacities
+ Low power consumption may extend battery life
– Expensive enthusiast product
– AHCI SSD, not NVMe
– SATA-level IOPS
- Performance: 9.25
- Appearance: 8.50
- Construction: 9.00
- Functionality: 8.75
- Value: 8.25
Final Score: 8.75 out of 10.
Quality Recognition: Benchmark Reviews Silver Tachometer Award.
COMMENT QUESTION: Which brand of SSD do you trust most?