Closer Look: Premier SP550 SSD
Solid state storage devices have gained popularity with performance-minded consumers because they work equally well in PC, Linux, or Mac computer systems. Likewise, these drives install quite easily into both desktop and notebook platforms without any modification necessary. In this article Benchmark Reviews tests the 240GB ADATA Premier SP550 solid state drive.
ADATA has a broad range of SSD solutions available in 2.5″, m.2, and mSATA form factors. The drive we’re reviewing today is the 240MB version of their Premier SP550 series, a value line of drives available in 120GB, 240GB, and 480GB capacities.
The SP550 240GB drive comes with a 2.5mm spacer for those installations requiring a 9.5mm thickness, and a quick start guide. On the back of the retail box is a QR code the buyer can scan to get a free copy of the Acronis True Image backup utility, which also allows users to easily migrate their systems to the new drive.
The ADATA Premier SP550 SSD is enclosed in a plain black metal chassis with a metallic sticker denoting the model and capacity.
Standard 2.5″ mounting holes are tapped into the sides of the chassis, and a metallized security label obscures one of the screws you’d need to remove to take the drive apart. This drive is only 7mm thick, and you may need to use the included 2.5mm plastic spacer for some applications.
Opening the drive reveals a 3/4-size PCB with 8 Hynix 16nm TLC NAND memory chips (four per side), a Silicon Motion SM2256K controller, and a Samsung 256MB DDR3L RAM chip for caching. Space for 8 more NAND chips means this is probably the same PCB used for the 480GB model.
The reverse side of the board contains four more Hynix flash memory chips.
You can download ADATA’s SSD Toolbox for free from their web site. It offers a simple set of tools for basic SSD management tasks.
ADATA specs this drive at 560MB/s read and 510MB/s write on the ATTO benchmark, and up to 75K iOPs. As you’d expect on any modern drive, TRIM and S.M.A.R.T. are fully supported, and BCH error-correcting code can handle up to 66 bit errors per kilobyte.
In the next few sections we’ll test the ADATA Premier SP550 SSD, and compare this solid state drive to other retail storage products intended for notebook and desktop installations.