After assessing the test results in this review one thing is clear, there are benefits to be had by adding a card such as the Asus PCIe GEN2 SATA6G to your system. No matter which benchmark we ran, the results showed a 10-50% improvement in speeds when compared to the stock Intel ICH10R found on most Intel motherboards today.
Obviously, you will need more than just the card itself, a 6G compatible drive will also be needed if you want to take advantage of the latest technology which means further investment. These drives are available now for around the £240 mark and while there are no confirmed prices for the Asus card, the much hyped Asus U3S6 which DOES have USB3 was expected to retail around the $30 so I would expect this card to come in a little cheaper. Bargain? Well yes and no. Sure the card itself is cheap enough but when you consider the price of the drives needed to make full use of the card then it becomes a seriously expensive piece of kit. While this is not the fault of Asus, one has to consider the benefits SATA6G and a couple of 6G drives has over an SSD setup in raid. The only advantage I can see is capacity. SSD's will still be faster, way faster and until SSD's come in 6G format then the usefulness of this card for out and out speed freaks is lost unless you are wanting to add extremely large hard disks.
The speed of SSD's will not be seen until SSD manufacturers, or indeed the controllers used on the SSD's are enhanced to take advantage of this new technology as like the magnetic, mechanical counterparts, current SSD technology is limited by it's internal design and while I will stick my neck on the line and say SSD owners will see a boost by using this card, it won't be current owners with technology based on the SATAII format. While it is true that SATA6G will unlock the potential of SSD, it won't be until the new SSDs arrive with the controllers tweaked to take advantage of the additional bandwidth offered by SATA6G.
That said, if new technology is your bag and you simply cannot wait until motherboards support this feature then this card is right up your street. It works, plain and simple. The results speak for themselves when compared to the ICH10R controller. It is not just another gadget that will add bragging rights to your PC setup, the speed increases are there for all to see and if you are wanting to take early advantage of the new range of huge hard drives running at the speeds they were designed for, I cannot see any reason why you would not want to splash a relatively small amount of cash on this exceptional little expansion card.
- SATA6G support
- Exceptional Burst speed
- Easy setup
- Included cables (latch mechanism at last!)
- The price (estimated)
- Basic User Guide
- No USB 3.0 despite having space for it