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Kingston HyperX Fury 240GB SSD Review

AkG

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 24, 2007
Messages
5,283
Kingston’s new HyperX Fury SSDs are meant as a roundabout replacement for the outgoing V300 series, and not a moment too soon. While the V-series has a long history, the last generation was beset by bad press as Kingston decided to switch out the NAND originally used and replace it with modules which didn’t live up to performance expectations. This was all done without advising end users so it goes without saying that the latest HyperX entry has a lot riding on its shoulders.


Excluding the recent V300 drama from the equation, expanding the HyperX lineup does make perfect sense since now there’s a HyperX model in nearly every pricepoint. On the high-end of the mainstream market is the original HyperX, for upper entry level there’s the HyperX 3K, and now there’s a Fury series for entry level needs. As time progresses we fully expect to see Kingston EOL the older HyperX models, but not until they’re properly surpassed by upcoming models.

One thing which is particularly interesting here is the maximum capacity (so far) being offered. Instead of going for what would amount to be an expensive 480GB+ model, Kingston has instead decided to top the Fury series out at 240GB for the time being. This keeps quite well with this drive’s entry level focus but that’s not to say it won’t face a ton of competition. For example, Crucial’s excellent MX100 goes for nearly 10% less but then again, the Fury does have a significant edge in write performance.


To help drive home the idea that this is a new and different model the Hyper X Fury 240GB drive comes clad in a 7mm height, charcoal gray metal chassis instead of the V300’s 9.5mm form factor. 7mm has become the de-facto standard as it allows the drive to fit inside everything from Ultrabooks to Ultra Tower PC systems. Unfortunately, while Kingston does include a 2.5mm adapter bracket this new there isn’t a 2.5" to 3.5" adapter plate.


Even on just a cursory glance at the internal architecture we can see the new Fury series shares a lot in common with the older V300. Both models use the same controller, similar firmware, and make use of 16 NAND ICs. The only obvious change is the increased in factory testing the HyperX line receives over that of the Value series, improved write endurance, and the actual NAND used.

For a long while now SandForce’s SF2281 has been Kingston's controller of choice. This is because it offers a good blend of performance, price and flexibility that makes it suitable for a wide variety of market niches. Simply change the NAND and you change the entire characteristics of a drive. With this in mind it is not really surprising to see Kingston release a mid-2014 model that uses this rather old controller.

As most enthusiasts are well aware of now, the V300 started to use terribly inefficient (but extremely cheap to source) ONFi 1 NAND ICs instead of the ONFi 2 it was originally launched with. Since the supply of ONFi 2 NAND ICs available to third party companies (ie those not directly associated with their manufacturer) is quickly drying up, it comes as no surprise to see Kingston opt for a different solution.


In this case Kingston has opted for 128GBit ONFi 3 NAND ICs. This does neatly sidestep any possible issues raised over the Fury being nothing but a V300 with a higher price tag. By the same token, opting for 128GBit ONFi 3 NAND for the entire Fury lineup does bring a host of its own issues, the largest of which is lack of interleaving and the noticeable impact this has on a drive's real world performance.

Much like the Crucial MX100 and M500 series before it, the smaller HyperX Fury drives are going to be noticeably slower than their larger counterparts. Even if Kingston never releases a fully enabled, 480GB Fury the fact remains that the Fury 240GB model uses 16 single die NAND ICs which leads to 2-way interleaving on each of the SF2281's 8 channels. As a result the SF2281’s theoretical throughput can’t fully realized and the 240GB may be slower than it could be. Put simply 128GB ONFi 3 NAND ICs are slow on writes and really do require 4-way interleaving to overcome their massive block size.

It’s important to remember however that we’re dealing with the SandForce SF2281 controller which has a unique set of abilities that may help minimize the performance impact from having a lower interleaving factor. How much of a difference the SF2281 controller makes against Marvell’s own 89-series remains to be seen but Kingston’s on-paper specifications do point towards the Fury having a good lead in write-specific tasks.

With an average online asking price of $131, or 55 cents per GB, the HyperX Fury represents yet another SSD which is supposed to offer customers a reason to look beyond traditional hard drives. While capacity may still be a limiting factor (especially with many new games taking up 10GB or more), speed and enhanced system responsiveness are two key elements no one can take away from SSDs.
 
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AkG

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Joined
Oct 24, 2007
Messages
5,283
Test System & Testing Methodology

Testing Methodology


Testing a drive is not as simple as putting together a bunch of files, dragging them onto folder on the drive in Windows and using a stopwatch to time how long the transfer takes. Rather, there are factors such as read / write speed and data burst speed to take into account. There is also the SATA controller on your motherboard and how well it works with SSDs & HDDs to think about as well. For best results you really need a dedicated hardware RAID controller w/ dedicated RAM for drives to shine. Unfortunately, most people do not have the time, inclination or monetary funds to do this. For this reason our test-bed will be a more standard motherboard with no mods or high end gear added to it. This is to help replicate what you the end user’s experience will be like.

Even when the hardware issues are taken care of the software itself will have a negative or positive impact on the results. As with the hardware end of things, to obtain the absolute best results you do need to tweak your OS setup; however, just like with the hardware solution most people are not going to do this. For this reason our standard OS setup is used. However, except for the Windows 7 load test times we have done our best to eliminate this issue by having the drive tested as a secondary drive. With the main drive being an Intel DC S3700 800GB Solid State Drive.

For synthetic tests we used a combination of the ATTO Disk Benchmark, HDTach, HD Tune, Crystal Disk Benchmark, IOMeter, AS-SSD, Anvil Storage Utilities and PCMark 7.

For real world benchmarks we timed how long a single 10GB rar file took to copy to and then from the devices. We also used 10gb of small files (from 100kb to 200MB) with a total 12,000 files in 400 subfolders.

For all testing a Asus P8P67 Deluxe motherboard was used, running Windows 7 64bit Ultimate edition. All drives were tested using AHCI mode using Intel RST 10 drivers.

All tests were run 4 times and average results are represented.

In between each test suite runs (with the exception being IOMeter which was done after every run) the drives are cleaned with either HDDerase, SaniErase or OCZ SSDToolbox and then quick formatted to make sure that they were in optimum condition for the next test suite.

Processor: Core i5 2500
Motherboard: Asus P8P67 Deluxe
Memory: 8GB Corsair Vengeance LP “blue”
Graphics card: Asus 5550 passive
Hard Drive: Intel DC S3700 800GB, Intel 910 800GB
Power Supply: XFX 850

SSD FIRMWARE (unless otherwise noted):

OCZ Vertex 2 100GB
: 1.33
Intel 520: 400i
SanDisk Extreme 240GB: R211
Corsair Neutron GTX 240GB: M206
Intel 335 180GB: 335
SanDisk Extreme 2 240GB: R1311
Seagate Pro 600: B660
OCZ Vector 150 240GB: 1.2
Angelbird Adler 640GB: AA3.15
Vertex 460 240GB: 1.0
ADATA SP920 512GB: MU01
Intel 7230 240GB: L2010400
Samsung 840 Pro 256GB:DXM06B0Q
Crucial MX100 512GB: MU01
Crucial M550 512GB: MU01
Plextor M6e 256GB: 1.03
Plextor M6s 256GB: 1.03
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QFormat="true" Name="Subtle Reference"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="32" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" QFormat="true" Name="Intense Reference"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="33" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" QFormat="true" Name="Book Title"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="37" Name="Bibliography"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="39" QFormat="true" Name="TOC Heading"/> </w:LatentStyles> </xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]> <style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:15.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size:14.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";} </style> <![endif]-->

Samsung MDX controller:
Samsung 840 Pro 256GB- Custom firmware w/ 21nm Toggle Mode NAND

SandForce SF1200 controller:
OCZ Vertex 2 - ONFi 2 NAND

SandForce SF2281 controller:
Intel 520 - Custom firmware w/ ONFi 2 NAND
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font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";} </style> <![endif]-->Kingston HyperX Fury 240GB - Custom firmware w/ 128Gbit ONFi 3 NAND

LAMD controller:
Corsair Neutron GTX - Toggle Mode NAND
Seagate 600 Pro - Custom firmware w/ Toggle Mode NAND

Marvell 9183 controller:
Plextor M6e 256GB- Custom firmware w/ 21nm Toggle Mode NAND

Marvell 9188 controller:
Plextor M6s - Custom firmware w/ 21nm Toggle Mode NAND

Marvell 9187 controller:
Crucial M500 - Custom firmware w/ 128Gbit ONFi 3 NAND
SanDisk Extreme 2 - Custom firmware w/ 19nm eX2 ABL NAND

Marvell 9189 controller:
ADATA SP920 - Custom firmware w/ 128Gbit ONFi 3 NAND
Crucial M550 - Custom firmware w/ 128Gbit ONFi 3 NAND
Crucial MX100 - Custom firmware w/ 128Gbit ONFi 3 NAND

Barefoot 3 controller:
OCZ Vector 150 (M00) - 19nm Toggle Mode NAND
OCZ Vertex 460 (M10) - 19nm Toggle Mode NAND

Novachips NVS3600A controller:
Angelbird Adler - ONFi 2 NAND

Intel X25 G3 controller:
Intel 730 - Custom firmware w/ ONFi 2 NAND
 
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AkG

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Messages
5,283
Read Bandwidth / Write Performance

Read Bandwidth


<i>For this benchmark, HDTach was used. It shows the potential read speed which you are likely to experience with these hard drives. The long test was run to give a slightly more accurate picture. We don’t put much stock in Burst speed readings and thus we no longer included it. The most important number is the Average Speed number. This number will tell you what to expect from a given drive in normal, day to day operations. The higher the average the faster your entire system will seem.</i>


<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/read.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

Write Performance


<i>For this benchmark HD Tune Pro was used. To run the write benchmark on a drive, you must first remove all partitions from that drive and then and only then will it allow you to run this test. Unlike some other benchmarking utilities the HD Tune Pro writes across the full area of the drive, thus it easily shows any weakness a drive may have.</i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/write.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

These results are pretty much consistent with what you can expect from a 2014 budget SSD. The Fury does however either match or trail the MX100.
 
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AkG

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Oct 24, 2007
Messages
5,283
ATTO Disk Benchmark

ATTO Disk Benchmark


<i>The ATTO disk benchmark tests the drives read and write speeds using gradually larger size files. For these tests, the ATTO program was set to run from its smallest to largest value (.5KB to 8192KB) and the total length was set to 256MB. The test program then spits out an extrapolated performance figure in megabytes per second. </i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/atto_w.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/atto_r.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

Obviously the write performance of this drive is being severely handicapped by the lack of interleaving but it is able to maintain a lead over the MX100. On the positive side the read performance is more than adequate and can help make up for the less than optimal write curves.
 
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AkG

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Crystal DiskMark / PCMark 7

Crystal DiskMark


<i>Crystal DiskMark is designed to quickly test the performance of your hard drives. Currently, the program allows to measure sequential and random read/write speeds; and allows you to set the number of tests iterations to run. We left the number of tests at 5 and size at 100MB. </i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/cdm_w.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/cdm_r.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

PCMark 7


<i>While there are numerous suites of tests that make up PCMark 7, only one is pertinent: the HDD Suite. The HDD Suite consists of numerous tests that try and replicate real world drive usage. Everything from how long a simulated virus scan takes to complete, to MS Vista start up time to game load time is tested in these core tests; however we do not consider this anything other than just another suite of synthetic tests. For this reason, while each test is scored individually we have opted to include only the overall score.</i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/pcm7.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

Once again the lack of optimal interleaving noticeably impacts the overall performance of Kingston's Fury. By entry level, 2014 standards this drive is decent but certainly not showing us anything we would classify as 'above average'.
 
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AkG

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Messages
5,283
AS-SSD / Anvil Storage Utilities Pro

AS-SSD


<i>AS-SSD is designed to quickly test the performance of your drives. Currently, the program allows to measure sequential and small 4K read/write speeds as well as 4K file speed at a queue depth of 6. While its primary goal is to accurately test Solid State Drives, it does equally well on all storage mediums it just takes longer to run each test as each test reads or writes 1GB of data.</i>
<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/asd_w.jpg" border="0" alt="" />

<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/asd_r.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

Anvil Storage Utilities Pro


<i>Much like AS-SSD, Anvil Pro was created to quickly and easily – yet accurately – test your drives. While it is still in the Beta stages it is a versatile and powerful little program. Currently it can test numerous read / write scenarios but two in particular stand out for us: 4K queue depth of 4 and 4K queue depth of 16. A queue depth of four along with 4K sectors can be equated to what most users will experience in an OS scenario while 16 depth will be encountered only by power users and the like. We have also included the 4k queue depth 1 results to help put these two other numbers in their proper perspective. All settings were left in their default states and the test size was set to 1GB.</i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/anvil_w.jpg" border="0" alt="" />

<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/anvil_r.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

Poor interleaving, massive block size, and an aging controller presents a relatively large handicap here. Thankfully, for its class the Fury 240GB is actually a good performer.
 
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AkG

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IOMeter

IOMETER


<i>IOMeter is heavily weighted towards the server end of things, and since we here at HWC are more End User centric we will be setting and judging the results of IOMeter a little bit differently than most. To test each drive we ran 5 test runs per HDD (1,4,16,64,128 queue depth) each test having 8 parts, each part lasting 10 min w/ an additional 20 second ramp up. The 8 subparts were set to run 100% random, 80% read 20% write; testing 512b, 1k, 2k,4k,8k,16k,32k,64k size chunks of data. When each test is finished IOMeter spits out a report, in that reports each of the 8 subtests are given a score in I/Os per second. We then take these 8 numbers add them together and divide by 8. This gives us an average score for that particular queue depth that is heavily weighted for single user environments.</i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/iom.jpg" border="0" alt="" /></div>

Honestly, Kingston couldn’t have made a worse workstation performer if they had tried but then again, there's no way this drive should be used in professional environments anyways.
 
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AkG

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Windows 7 / Adobe CS5 Load Time

Windows 7 Start Up with Boot Time A/V Scan Performance


<i>When it comes to hard drive performance there is one area that even the most oblivious user notices: how long it takes to load the Operating System. Where Windows 7 has become nearly ubiquitous for solid state drive enthusiasts we have chosen Windows 7 64bit Ultimate as our Operating System. In previous load time tests we would use the Anti-Virus splash screen as our finish line; this however is no longer the case. We have not only added in a secondary Anti-Virus to load on startup, but also an anti-malware program. We have set Super Anti-Spyware to initiate a quick scan on Windows start-up and the completion of the quick scan will be our new finish line.</i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/boot.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>


Adobe CS5 Load Time


<i>Photoshop is a notoriously slow loading program under the best of circumstances, and while the latest version is actually pretty decent, when you add in a bunch of extra brushes and the such you get a really great torture test which can bring even the best of the best to their knees.</i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/adobe.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

There are two ways of looking at these results. Firstly, the real world benchmarks show the Fury is better than what the synthetic test results would lead you to believe. This is certainly a good thing but that's not to say the Fury is a quick SSD; it's more than adequate to bury some of the fastest HDDs around but still trails the pack from an overall performance perspective.
 
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AkG

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 24, 2007
Messages
5,283
Firefox Performance / Real World Data Transfers

Firefox Portable Offline Performance


<i>Firefox is notorious for being slow on loading tabs in offline mode once the number of pages to be opened grows larger than a dozen or so. We can think of fewer worse case scenarios than having 100 tabs set to reload in offline mode upon Firefox startup, but this is exactly what we have done here.

By having 100 pages open in Firefox portable, setting Firefox to reload the last session upon next session start and then setting it to offline mode, we are able to easily recreate a worse case scenario. Since we are using Firefox portable all files are easily positioned in one location, making it simple to repeat the test as necessary. In order to ensure repetition, before touching the Firefox portable files, we have backed them up into a .rar file and only extracted a copy of it to the test device.</i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/ff.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>


Real World Data Transfers


<i>No matter how good a synthetic benchmark like IOMeter or PCMark is, it can not really tell you how your hard drive will perform in “real world” situations. All of us here at Hardware Canucks strive to give you the best, most complete picture of a review item’s true capabilities and to this end we will be running timed data transfers to give you a general idea of how its performance relates to real life use. To help replicate worse case scenarios we will transfer a 10.00GB contiguous file and a folder containing 400 subfolders with a total 12,000 files varying in length from 200mb to 100kb (10.00 GB total).

Testing will include transfer to and transferring from the devices, using MS RichCopy and logging the performance of the drive. Here is what we found. </i>

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<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/copy_sm.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/copy_lg.jpg" border="0" alt="" />
</div>

For a budget level drive these results are once again pretty decent. By the same token they are not exactly great either. The fact of the matter is the andForce controller is getting long in the tooth and when paired with ONFi 3 NAND the end results are merely mediocre at lower queue depths and rather unimpressive at deeper queue depths.
 
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AkG

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 24, 2007
Messages
5,283
Partial and Full Drive Performance

Partial and Full Drive Performance


<i>While it is important to know how a drive will perform under optimal conditions, more realistic scenarios are just as important. Knowing if a solid state drive will behave differently when partially or even nearly full than when it is empty is very important information to know. To quickly and accurately show this crucial information we have first filled the drive to 50% capacity and re-tested using both synthetic and real world tests. After the completion of this we then re-test at 75% and 90% of full capacity. </i>

Synthetic Test Results

<i>For our synthetic testing we have opted for our standard PCMark 7 test.</i>

<div align="center">
<img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/data_pcm7.jpg" border="0" alt="" /></div>


Real World Results

<i>For a real world application we have opted for our standard Windows 7 Start Up with Boot Time A/V Scan Performance test.</i>

<div align="center"><img src="http://images.hardwarecanucks.com/image/akg/Storage/Fury/data_boot.jpg" border="0" alt="" /></div>

The Fury does indeed get slower than most drives as it gets filled to capacity, but this is likely due to the ONFi 3 NAND Kinston has used since it has less performance overhead to spare.
 
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