Velocity Solo X2 review: Teach an aged PC brand-new SATA 6-gbps tricks

If the PC lacks a SATA 6-gigabits-per-second interface, we can’t receive top performance from some of the newest consumer-grade solid-state forces. Such forces bump up up against the 6-gbps limit of which bus, whilst the elder second-generation SATA interface maxes out at simply 3 gbps. Apricorn’s Velocity x2 must eliminate which roadblock for we.

My key program sports a circa-2009 Intel D58SO motherboard. It has a perfect feature set, nevertheless it predates third-generation, 6-gbps SATA. The just method to upgrade these a beast is through a PCIe adapter card with a SATA 6-gbps interface, of that the marketplace has plenty to select from. I tried installing 1 of those a couple of years ago, however it gave me blue screens. SSDs at which time weren’t almost because quick because they are now, thus I saw no real cause to upgrade. However with SSD performance today topping 600 MBps, it’s time.

Lo plus behold, Apricorn approached me regarding its Velocity Solo PCIe cards. These will likely not just add SATA 6-gbps capability to any program with an accessible PCIe slot, nevertheless they’ll furthermore serve because a caddy for a single SSD. Apricorn delivered 2 cards for me to evaluate: the $ 50 Velocity x1 as well as the $ 99 Velocity x2. I tried both, plus suggest 1.

Apricorn’s Velocity Solo x2 may endow a elder computer with 2 SATA 6-gbps interfaces. You are able to bolt 1 2.5- or 3.5-inch SSD appropriate to the card.

A Kingston HyperX 3K drive connected to my motherboard’s second-generation SATA interface, that is capable of delivering maximum performance of just 3 gbps, read information at 227 MBps plus wrote information at 236 MBps when running the artificial benchmark CrystalDiskMark 3. Surprisingly enough, a much quicker OCZ Vertex 4 SSD installed found on the Velocity x1 delivered slower performance: It read at just 203.3 MBps plus wrote at 196.5 MBps.

When I paired the Vertex 4 with Apricorn’s Velocity Solo x2 card, nevertheless, the SSD’s numbers jumped to 348.1 MBps reading plus 323.2 MBps writing—a significant improvement beyond what exactly is potential with all the second-generation SATA interface. Attaching the Kingston HyperX 3K to the Velocity Solo x2, meanwhile, improved its numbers to 322.1 MBps reading plus 239.6 MBps composing. That considerably quicker read performance prepared my program feel more sensitive.

The cause for the 2 cards’ performance disparity is the fact that the x1 utilizes just a single PCIe 2.0 lane, when the x2 uses 2 lanes (plus need to be installed inside at minimum a PCIe 2.0 x2 slot because a result). Because every PCIe 2.0 lane is capable of moving information at 500 megabytes per 2nd (or 3.9 gigabits per second) inside every way, 2 PCIe lanes are important to meet the specifications of the SATA 6-gbps interface. Both Velocity Solo cards are outfitted with a standard woman SATA connector for attaching a next drive, plus both cards are bundled with Apricorn’s EZ Gig software for cloning the existing difficult drive to the unique SSD.

I can’t suggest the Velocity Solo x1, because the SSDs I installed with it conducted more gradually than they did whenever associated to my motherboard’s second-generation SATA interface. The Velocity Solo x2, found on the alternative hand, delivered a dramatic improvement, both throughout testing plus subjectively. My just real qualm is the x2′s $ 99 price, that is steep compared with all the expense of certain SATA 6-gbps interface cards (including the Syba HyperDuo) which don’t have the handy mounting caddy. The lowest street cost you can discover because of December 18, 2012, was $ 95.

Note: Don’t miss the SSD roundup, where there are a detailed explanation of how SSDs function, and links to critiques of 7 hot models because of December 18, 2012.


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