By: Jonathan Kwan
December 31, 2021
I was having dinner with a friend at a sushi restaurant earlier this year after she broke up with her now ex-boyfriend. After eating, I asked her how she was doing. "Not that great," she began. "I feel like I still want to cry even just thinking about it." I looked around, scanning the busy establishment and leaned forward towards her. "We are in public, and really do not cry while we are here," I said. "Otherwise, people will think it was me or I did something to you." I told my girlfriend about this afterwards, and she was not exactly impressed, pointing out not everything is about me. Regardless of which, my friend thankfully did not end up crying, and public perception is reality, right? When it comes to public perception, Kingston has always maintained a no-gimmick and all-business image, where their products are perceived as high reliability, reasonably priced, no frills, but may not be cutting-edge when it comes to performance. The cutting-edge performance was reserved for their HyperX brand, which was sold to HP earlier this year. Kingston's performance brand is now Fury, which I find kind of funny considering they literally used to have products called Kingston HyperX Fury not too long ago, but I digress. Last year, I reviewed the Kingston KC2500 1TB, which, despite its all-business look and brand perception, was an exceptionally high performance PCIe 3.0-based SSD. The Kingston KC3000 1TB I am reviewing today is the company's latest flagship NVMe SSD. Despite its brand perception, will it also be an exceptionally high performance SSD for gamers and enthusiasts like the KC2500, except upgraded and supercharged with the PCIe 4.0 interface? We put one to the test to find out.
Our review unit of the Kingston KC3000 1TB arrived in a small brown corrugated cardboard shipping box from the company's American headquarters in Fountain Valley, California, USA. It has been a long time since I have reviewed anything from Kingston, so I am happy to get my hands on something from them again. Using FedEx Ground, the package arrived on our doorstep here in Calgary, Alberta, Canada in excellent condition for our review today.
If you are unfamiliar with Kingston's marketing efforts, the packaging for the KC3000 will tell you all you need to know. While the Fury brand is aimed at enthusiasts, any products sold with the Kingston name is all about business. As you can see in our photo above, the KC3000 1TB's retail packaging is quite serious, and should I say, professional and business-like. The background is a splash of red and grey with circuit traces, while the model name, performance highlight, and storage capacity are shown in the white colored section above. Kingston's logo is centered at the bottom next to a 5-year warranty badge. The KC3000 itself is placed behind a beveled plastic shell doubling as a window showing off the SSD. This is the same kind of packaging where you can hang it on a store shelf rail, but chances are that it will be locked up in the glass cabinet behind a counter, since they are quite easy to steal, haha.
Before we move on, let us take a look at the specifications of the Kingston KC3000 1TB, as obtained from the manufacturer's website:
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Interface: PCIe 4.0 NVMe
Controller: Phison E18
NAND: 3D TLC
Sequential read/write: 7,000/6,000MB/s
Random 4K read/write: up to 900,000/1,000,000 IOPS
Total Bytes Written (TBW): 1024GB – 800TBW
Power consumption: 5mW idle / 0.33W avg / 2.8W (MAX) read / 6.3W (MAX) write
Storage temperature: -40°C~85°C
Operating temperature: 0°C~70°C
Dimensions: 80mm x 22mm x 2.21mm
Vibration operating: 2.17G peak (7-800Hz)
Vibration non-operating: 20G Peak (20-1000Hz)
MTBF: 1,800,000 hours
Warranty/Support: Limited 5-year warranty with free technical support
Cutting open the thin cardboard, you will find almost nothing included from the factory. Clipped between two clear plastic tray pieces is the Kingston KC3000 1TB and an Acronis True Image HD key. This is it -- there is quite literally nothing else from the manufacturer. Even though this is a performance product, SSDs are a mainstream commodity in 2021, and let us be honest here, what else do you need?
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. A Closer Look, Test System
3. Benchmark: AIDA64 Disk Benchmark
4. Benchmark: ATTO Disk Benchmark
5. Benchmark: Crystal Disk Mark 8.0
6. Benchmark: HD Tune Pro 5.70
7. Benchmark: PassMark PerformanceTest 10
8. Benchmark: PCMark 10
9. Benchmark: 3DMark