Corsair 240GB Force GT RAID0 Review

Introduction and Technical Specifications

Corsair 240GB Force GT RAID0 Review


Storage speeds make a mockery of the famous Moore's Law.

It was relatively recently that we moved from IDE to SATA and the speed benefits that brought. Yet within a very short timespan we've gone from 1.5Gbp/s SATA through 3.0Gbp/s to the 'available on everything' SATA 6Gbp/s. Whereas not long ago the Velociraptors were considered the titans of the speed world, we quickly had Solid State Drives, and they utterly redefined what we think of as fast data transfer.

It didn't even stop there as the companies launched into an ever escalating arms race to bring us ever faster SSDs and we've recently seen some extraordinary performance from drives such as the Kingston Hyper X and Samsung 830. With the Sandforce controller appearing at the head of the pack in pure speed terms then combining that with a SATA 6Gbp/s interface we've seen drives that get very close to 500MB/s in certain situations, but still well north of 300MB/s in actual use.

Enter Corsair with the Force GT range of Solid State Drives. It has all the boxes ticked for some amazing speeds. It uses a Sandforce SF-2281 controller which has lots of tricks up its sleeve to compress the data and really bring that performance up to incredible levels. It's on a SATA 6Gbp/s interface, so bandwidth shouldn't be an issue. The models we have on test today are the 240GB variants, and larger capacity SSDs generally have better performance than the smaller versions. Finally the key word in that sentence was models. Plural.

We have two Force GT 240GB drives here, set up in RAID 0 to really see how fast it's possible to go. Three years ago SSDs appeared with promises of 90MB/s. This set up should give us 1GB/s. Let's find out.

Technical Specifications

Certainly the data sheet is everything one would expect. Sandforce SF-2281 doesn't require cache and the drive has 25nm MLC NAND. Every potential ounce of performance available from current technology is squeezed into the red case.

Unformatted Capacity 240GB
Read Performance (max) 555 MB/s
Write Performance (max) 525 MB/s
Random Write 4k (max)
85k IOPS (4k aligned)
Form Factor 2.5”
Interface Type SATA 3 6Gb/s
Onboard cache NA
Operating Temperature 0C to +70C
Storage Temperature -20C to +85C
Operating Humidity 10% to 90% RH (0° to +40° C)
Storage Humidity 5% to 90% RH (-10° to +60° C)
Maximum Operating Altitude 3,048 m (up to 10,000 ft.)
Maximum Non-Operating Altitude 12,192 m (up to 40,000 ft.)


For our testing today we're using a i7-2600K on a Z68 motherboard and putting the RAID 0 up against three of the fastest drives around. Can we get close to doubling the performance of a single drive?

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Most Recent Comments

04-01-2012, 12:33:30

That's some pretty sweet performance thereQuote

04-01-2012, 12:46:25


04-01-2012, 13:15:25

Correct me if im wrong, but last i checked you can't have both TRIM support and RAID enabled, its one or the other.

Though i know Intel is working on something to make it happen, but im yet to hear of it being available.Quote

04-01-2012, 13:28:22

Originally Posted by khorngor View Post

Correct me if im wrong, but last i checked you can't have both TRIM support and RAID enabled, its one or the other.

Though i know Intel is working on something to make it happen, but im yet to hear of it being available.
Thats what i thought might have changed now though Quote

04-01-2012, 13:29:27

This is exciting... I use a 1TB drive for the data on my PC, it's looking like a couple of years down the line with a small premium I'll be able to use SSD for boot *and* data, then relegate the mechanicals to backup duties.

Is this using the Intel RAID setup? Just intrigued as RAID-5 was appalling on my PC at work, whereas a straight stripe was miles better since there's no parity, but I always suspected that the driver-based RAID had some overheads even in RAID-0. It's an older board though (something MSI with an i7-850 on it, not sure what, it's an off-the-shelf HP.)Quote

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