SanDisk Extreme 120GB Review
So what do we make of SanDisk's first serious foray into the world of Solid State Drives?
Actually quite a lot. Although the performance of the drive when using the smallest 4K block size was consistently slower than our other drives, it's worth remembering that we've only got the 120GB model on test here and a smaller SSD will always have lower performance than a larger capacity model, with 240/256GB being the sweet spot on this 2281 SandForce controller.
Write speeds are consistently good, and this is usually the area in which drives fall down. Not so with the SanDisk Extreme though, as the drive was great throughout our testing. The read speeds are even better, being over the 500MB/s mark more often than not. It certainly is fast enough that we consider it as good as any of the other drives we've put through their paces.
Of course there is the difference between benchmark speeds and real world usage. Whilst it might seem like 500MB/s against 550MB/s is a large reduction in performance, in actual use you'd struggle to notice much of a variation.
So it all comes down to pricing. The SanDisk Extreme, in the 120GB guise we have here, is around the £120 mark, which is not only down to £1 per GB but around the same price as a Crucial M4 or Corsair Force 3 of the same capacity. Considering that the performance will be nigh-on identical then the lack of a 2.5" to 3.5" adaptor goes from being a minor thing into about the only difference between this and other comparable drives.
You have the confidence of knowing that SanDisk are one of the biggest hitters in the memory marketplace, as well as a good looking, high performing drive. It's a fantastic drive only let down by the slightly lower performance with small data block sizes, and the missing adaptor. Unfortunately with the quality of SSDs these days on such small margins are things won and lost, and so we can only award the SanDisk Extreme our OC3D Silver Award.