ADATA Ultimate SU800 240GB SSD Review
When dealing with sub one hundred dollar storage devices expectations on the part of enthusiasts and even mainstream consumers should be lowered a certain amount. Basically, this class of solid state drive is meant for entry-level, budget constrained systems where the owner is in all likelihood transitioning from using hard disk drives.
Compared to any hard drive in existence the SU800 is going to offer a noticeable boost in performance. Another benefit is that it will do so without breaking the bank. As such, from this particular point of view, ADATA’s SU800 is a success – as it combines decent capacity with decent performance levels and at a decent price.
Unfortunately, no SSD exists in a bubble, and while the ADATA SU800 is a phenomenally good drive compared to any hard disk drive, things do tend to get quite less rosy when compared to similarly priced solid state drives. Basically, even though ADATA has worked a small miracle in offering the drive at such a rock bottom price, the SU800 is still not the cheapest nor the best performing drive in its class. That statement alone is a testament to exactly how hot the competition is right now in the entry-level side of the marketplace, and how many wonderful choices consumers now have to select from.
At the moment, Crucial’s MX300 series and Toshiba OCZ’s VX500 have created a virtual hammer and anvil upon which many otherwise excellent drives are being hammered into virtual oblivion. This is not all that unexpected as the NAND manufacturer-backed brands will always have the advantage in the price per GB arena. Even though ADATA has come close to competing with its rivals, there are relatively few scenarios where we can foresee this SM2258-based SSD being the most optimal choice.
Make no mistake, up until very recently this would have been a good drive at a great price. It’s just that in the past few quarters the very definition of ‘value’ has undergone a massive paradigm shift. Hopefully, ADATA can adjust to these new market realities and either lower the price down to 25 cents per GB, or switch gears completely and offer a new model with a higher performing controller. In either case, we do applaud ADATA for seeing the potential of 3D TLC NAND and trying to create a model that is entirely unique.