XPG Atom 30 250GB/1TB Kit Review (Page 2 of 10)

Page 2 - A Closer Look, Test System

In terms of appearance, the XPG Atom 30 1TB NVMe SSD looks like pretty similar to the Atom 50 1TB, especially with the heatsink installed. The low profile heatsink comes separate so users can install it if you so desire. Otherwise, from here, you can see all of the NAND chips and the controller on this front side. From a physical perspective, the XPG Atom 30 1TB NVMe SSD is an M.2 2280 SSD. The "2280" physical standard refers to its physical size of 22mm by 80mm. The components are located on the black printed circuit board, which we will take a closer look at soon.

The XPG Atom 30 1TB NVMe SSD works on the NVMe 1.3 logical device interface and plugs into compatible motherboards directly. Electrically, this M.2 NVMe drive interfaces with PCIe 3.0. The Atom 30 1TB uses up to four lanes for a theoretical maximum of 4000MB/s bandwidth in each direction. The specified weight is 9g. Just for your information, the Atom 30 is also available separately in 500GB and 1TB capacities, but the Atom 30 Kit only comes in one configuration with the 1TB drive included.

Flipping the XPG Atom 30 1TB around, there are no components of interest. Instead, a label is found here and it carries miscellaneous information such as its model name, serial number, and regulatory certifications. Like other ADATA XPG products we have reviewed in the past, this SSD is made in Taiwan.

Going back to the primary side of the XPG Atom 30, there are two sets of components to take note of. The first is the Realtek controller of the drive, labeled RTS5766DL. This is a NVMe solution on the M.2 socket to overcome traditional SATA bottlenecks. There is no memory found on the drive itself, but rather the memory for the controller is located within the controller. This is a bit of a disadvantage to have no DRAM, as this can affect prolonged read and write performance. To alleviate this, some SSDs without DRAM may utilize HMB, or host memory buffer, and allocate some of the system's memory as a buffer location for faster access compared to flash NAND access. The Atom 30 1TB does in fact take advantage of this, so we will see the effects of this during our tests.

The larger black chip, the Atom 30's flash NAND memory, is a Micron 3D triple-level cells chip labeled as ADATA 60079045. There is a total of four of these NAND chips. Its total rated write endurance is 600TBW, which equates to about 329GB per day for five years. This is pretty good for a consumer drive. 24GB out of the 1024GB total capacity -- just under 3% -- is provisioned for the drive controller for overhead, so the actual usable space is 1TB, as advertised. You will see 931.5GB in Windows available for use. Specified at 2500MB/s read, 2000MB/s write, up to 180K IOPS read, and up to 200K IOPS write over NVMe 1.3 on PCIe 3.0 x4, these figures fit squarely in budget territory.

As for our 2.5" SU670 Ultimate 250GB, this is a pretty simple design. The ADATA logo is up top with the model’s name in the middle. The enclosure is made out of a black plastic shell, which is actually the first drive that I have seen made with a plastic enclosure. This makes the whole unit quite light for its size at 47.5g, although this is still heavier than the Atom 30. The drive measures 69.85mm in length, 100.2mm in width, and 7mm in height, which is all standard for a SATA SSD.

The backside of the ADATA SU670 Ultimate 250GB is also pretty bland with some more model numbers, warranty codes, and regulatory certifications. Once again, this drive is made in Taiwan.

Taking apart the ADATA SU670 Ultimate is a matter of releasing all of the sides of the plastic clips. I probably would not do this if this were my own drive, especially as these plastic clips are a bit fragile and can easily break. There are no user serviceable parts in here, so you probably will not need to open it up. Diving into the actual SSD, we can see a small green printed circuit board. You will also notice the board does not actually fill up the entire plastic enclosure.

The controller here is a Realtek RTS5735DLQ. This is yet another DRAM-less controller. I was unable to find a whole lot more about this controller, but there has been other drives that have paired this with QLC NAND chips. ADATA has mentioned this drive should operate at 0 to 70 degrees Celsius. The maximum read speed is rated at 520MB/s, while the maximum write transfer speed is 450MB/s. In addition, we have max IOPS of 30K and 65K read and write, respectively.

On the flip side of this printed circuit board, we have two more NAND chips, which are branded as ADATA 60078919. I was unable to determine the exact model of this chip, but after talking to our representative from ADATA, he confirmed these are triple-level cell chips. This being said, ADATA only provides a mean time before failure of 50TB, which equates to about 27.4GB per day for five years. While most consumers will not hit this write usage daily, it is still quite a bit lower than other TLC-based drives, so you should keep this in mind. 6GB out of the 256GB total capacity -- just under 3% -- is provisioned for the drive controller for overhead, so the actual usable space is 250GB, as advertised. In Windows, you will see 232.87GB available for use.

To see how it translates to numbers in our benchmarks, we will pit these two drives against their respective competition. The Atom 30 1TB will be compared with other PCI Express based-SSDs, while the SU670 250GB will be compared with other SATA based SSDs, all from popular manufacturers like ADATA, Crucial, Gigabyte, Kingston, Patriot, and Western Digital in the next seven pages or so.

Our test configuration is as follows:

CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-U12A chromax.black
Motherboard: ASUS Prime X470-Pro
RAM: Patriot Viper RGB DDR4-3600 2x16GB
Graphics: EVGA GeForce RTX 3070 Ti XC3 Ultra
Chassis: Thermaltake Core P6 TG Snow
Storage: Western Digital Blue SN500 NVMe SSD 500GB, OCZ ARC 100 240GB, Patriot P200 512GB
Power: FSP Hydro PTM Pro 1200W
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro

XPG Atom 30 Compared Hardware:
- XPG Atom 30 1TB
- ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro 512GB
- Crucial P1 1TB
- Crucial P2 500GB
- Crucial P5 500GB
- Kingston KC2500 1TB
- Patriot P300 512GB
- Patriot Viper VPN100 512GB
- Seagate FireCuda 510 1TB
- Western Digital Black SN750 NVMe SSD 1TB
- Western Digital Blue SN550 NVMe SSD 1TB
- Western Digital Blue SN570 NVMe SSD 1TB

ADATA SU670 Ultimate Compared Hardware:
- ADATA SU670 Ultimate 250GB
- Crucial BX500 480GB
- Crucial BX500 960GB
- Crucial MX500 500GB
- Gigabyte UD PRO 256GB
- Kingston UV500 240GB
- Lexar NQ100 480GB
- Patriot P200 512GB

Page Index
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
10. Conclusion