|MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7 Solid State Drive|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Storage|
|Written by Olin Coles|
|Wednesday, 06 February 2013|
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Closer Look: MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7 Series
Solid state drive devices have gained quick popularity with performance-minded consumers because they work equally well in PC, Linux, or Apple computer systems. Likewise, these drives install quite easily into both desktop and notebook platforms without modification. The MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7-series SSD is best suited for performance-orientated users, giving personal computers a much faster response time and boosting productivity.
In this article Benchmark Reviews will test the MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7 solid state drive. The 240GB model we received (MDS7-BP4-240) is specified to reach 560 MB/s for sequential reads and 530 MB/s sequential writes. MyDigitalDiscount specifies 4K aligned read operations reaching 46,000 IOPS and 4K aligned write operations as high as 79,000 IOPS. MyDigitalDiscount sells the MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7-series solid state drive in bulk packaging, and includes a three-year product warranty.
MyDigitalDiscount offers the MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7-series in several capacities: 60, 120 GB, 240 GB, 480, and soon-to-be-announced 960 GB. All models share the same part numbers with a capacity designator: MDS7-BP4-240 represents the 240 GB model. Although the product specification advertise extremely fast performance ratings, MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7 solid state drives are designed with a focus on product reliability and value. As of February 2013 there are four capacities listed for sale: MDS7-BP4-60 $49.99, MDS7-BP4-120 $89.99, MDS7-BP4-240 $159.99, MDS7-BP4-480 $349.99.
The MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7-series features a 7mm thick chassis painted with black texturing. The BP4 SATA SSD measures approximately 3.95" (100mm) long, 2.75" (69.9mm) wide, and 0.275" (7mm) tall. MyDigitalDiscount utilizes a standard two-piece metal enclosure for their BP4-series SSDs, with a series branding label on the top panel and product information label on the bottom. Internal components are revealed by removing four small counter-sunk screws located at the bottom of this solid state drive.
Unlike fragile Hard Disk Drive (HDD) storage products, SSDs are not nearly as sensitive to impact damage and do not require (or benefit from) any kind of special vibration dampening or shock-proof enclosures. Once installed the SSD is usually hidden away from view, which explains why MyDigitalDiscount has maintained a conservative appearance on the BP4 Slim 7-series solid state drive.
Standard 2.5" drive bay mounting points are pre-drilled into the SSD chassis with fine screw threading, allowing this drive to fit directly into notebook computers that use SATA connections. The SSD mounting positions matched up to the drive bracket on my notebook computer, and after only a few minutes of upgrading I booted-up from a restored Windows 7 System Backup Image with ease. Optionally, by using a 3.5" to 2.5" tray adapter (not included) this SSD will also install directly into ATX desktop computers.
Central to the MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7 solid state drive is a Phison PS3108-S8-I controller. According to MyDigitalDiscount, the Phison S-Module III S8 controller is designed to operate at a maximum operating frequency of 300MHz with 40MHz external crystal. There are eight pieces of Toshiba TH58TEG7DCJTA20 19nm NLC Toggle NAND Flash fixed to each side of the PCB on this 240GB model, which includes 16GB over-provisioning capacity. Toggle-Mode NAND flash offers faster initial data speeds when compared to synchronous/asynchronous NAND counterparts. The DDR3 DRAM cache buffer is supplied by a single Powerchip Technology Corporation part, with markings: A3P4GF4BLF 230M6B06 XHY085C4G-M.
The Phison PS3108 is a SATA 6.0 GB/s controller that includes features such as Native Command Queuing (NCQ), S.M.A.R.T. health monitoring, and TRIM-based garbage collection. The BP4 Slim 7 SSD is backwards compatible with SATA 1.5 GB/s and 3.0 GB/s interfaces, and is designed to be compatible in RAID arrays.
In the next few sections Benchmark Reviews will test the MyDigitalSSD BP4 Slim 7-series, comparing this solid state drive to other high-performance retail products intended for notebook and desktop installations.