Mushkin Atlas 240GB MSATA SSD

Discussion in 'Hardware Components and Aftermarket Upgrades' started by Untamed, Jul 3, 2013.

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  1. Untamed

    Untamed Notebook Geek

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    Hello,

    Just curious if anyone know, but I just purchased the Mushkin Atlas MKNSSDAT240GB

    Mushkin MKNSSDAT240GB Atlas mSATA 240GB SSD Solid State Disk Flash Drive

    as I caught the tail end of a sale for $200 all in, but then I noticed this:

    Mushkin Atlas Deluxe mSATA SSD SATA 3 240GB Solid State Drive

    which is listed as the MKNSSDAT240GB-DX.


    I can't seem to find what the difference is as all the information I can fine seems to pertain to the deluxe version? Anyone have any idea? They are both clearly labeled differently on the photos, one having '-DX' appended to it.

    I opted to grab that over the MyDigitalLife BP4 or the Crucial M4 based on generally positive reviews and pricepoint, but I may have done that on inaccurate information related to what I just bought.


    Thanks!
     
  2. Bullrun

    Bullrun Notebook Deity

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    Apparently the difference is the regular Atlas uses Synchronus Nand and the Atlas deluxe uses Toshiba Toggle Nand.

    Taken from a Newegg review:
    "There wasn't any information on the difference between the Atlas and the Atlas Deluxe, aka the -DX version of the drive but with a bit of internet research I dicovered the difference is that this version uses synchronous memory and the DX uses toggle based memory."

    In reviews for the DX from Newegg there were complaints of not actually getting Toshiba Toggle Nand but Micron Asynchronus Nand.
     
  3. Untamed

    Untamed Notebook Geek

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    Thanks!

    Is that a major performance inhibitor, or does it negatively effect the lifespan? If the M4 is exceptionally better, would it be worth me returning it and spending the extra few bucks?

    I'm not sure real-life performance would be a supreme issue coming from a 5400rpm drive with a small SSD cache, that setup has its own strange issues. Also lifespan may not be a deal-breaker either due to the maybe 5 year span of most laptops and it's only going to be only OS, not storage and movement of large file quantities.

    :)

    EDIT:
    Yeah, I found this now:
    http://forum.notebookreview.com/sol...in-atlas-msata-ssds-coming-micron-memory.html

    And I can't even determine the manufacturer of the NAND on my drive, it is not stamped with any manufacturer logo. There's a number along the bottom, but all I found when I googled it was a post without response in Mushkin's own forum.

    Hmm....
     
  4. Bullrun

    Bullrun Notebook Deity

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    You're welcome.

    From the thread you added, a Mushkin rep. also saw the Newegg reviews mentioning the Asynchronous NAND. It was good that they responded to the writer here. Unfortunately, they didn't respond to the review on Newegg. But they did respond to other poor reviews there. Why not reply to this accusation?

    Does your Atlas have a serial number? I would contact Mushkin to find out exactly what you have, Asynchronous or Synchronous NAND. There is a big performance difference between the two. You will, at least, know what you paid for.

    HARDOCP - Introduction - NAND Flash Faces Off - Synchronous vs. Asynchronous

    SSD

    From the second link:

    "The bottom line:
    Asynchronous SSD = inferior performance but are cheaper
    Synchronous SSD = superior performance and more expensive
    Toggle SSD = superior performance and best value for money"

    Hopefully, you have Synchronous NAND. From the thread you linked the Mushkin rep said "...Atlas mSATA SSDs ... will be shipping with Micron NAND. However, the Micron NAND that is in use is Synchronous, and it is designed to the same specifications as the Toshiba Toggle (Sync) NAND"
    The Deluxe no longer has the Toggle Mode NAND, the best of both NAND. What makes it deluxe now if all Atlas mSATA have Micron Synchronus NAND? The specs between MKNSSDAT240GB - DX and MKNSSDAT240GB are the same on poweredbymushkin.com
    SSD not specifically mSATA SSD from Tom's Hardware SSD Hierarchy Chart:

    Tom's Hardware's SSD Hierarchy Chart - Best SSDs For The Money: March 2013

    Tier 1 240 GB second-gen SandForce SSDs with Toggle NAND (Original Chronos Deluxe)
    Tier 2 240 GB second-gen SandForce SSDs with Sync ONFi NAND (The new Chronos Deluxe)
    Tier 3 240 GB second-gen SandForce SSDs with Async ONFi NAND

    mushkin.com list one line of mSATA calling it the Atlas Deluxe:

    SSDs - Mushkin Enhanced

    While poweredbymushkin.com lists three models; Atlas Deluxe, Atlas Value and Atlas:

    Solid-State Drives

    Mushkin, how many mSATA lines are available? What's the difference between the lines that are available? What NAND is used in each line? If the NAND is all Synchronous, is the difference Firmware?
     
  5. HTWingNut

    HTWingNut Potato

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    Gah. Sounds like an OCZ scenario.
     
  6. Bullrun

    Bullrun Notebook Deity

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    The Chronos Deluxe SSD (with Toggle Mode) was a recurring best bang for buck winner at Tom's Hardware and Tweaktown. I would have considered buying it, or the mSATA, not now... unless, I can see it first.

    Bang for Your Buck: Best 256GB Class SSD's under $200 :: TweakTown

    From Tweaktown link:
    "Asynchronous flash isn't the only black mark to look for when shopping for an SSD."
    "Not to be confused with the asynchronous non-Deluxe model..."

    To your point HTWingNot: "With OCZ's troubles and the higher prices that appear to come with them, Mushkin's low prices are starting to draw attention. The Chronos DX has always been one of the lowest priced synchronous NAND flash SF-2281 drives, but with some of the competitors feeling the flash shortage, this product is really starting to stand out."

    A similar story. The Strontium Hawk
    AnandTech | Strontium Hawk (240GB) Review

    From the Anandtech link:
    "The other thing I'm not happy about is that Strontium changed the supplier earlier this year but kept the product name the same. It's normal for SSD OEMs to use multiple NAND suppliers and that's fine, but Strontium changed the whole SSD including the controller. The original Hawk was manufactured by SK Hynix and it was based on SandForce's SF-2281 controller and 26nm Hynix NAND... My sample, on the other hand, is made by Toshiba and it has a Toshiba-Marvell controller coupled with 19nm Toshiba NAND.
    Such a radical change should definitely require a change in the series name too since we are dealing with two very different SSDs...."
     
  7. Untamed

    Untamed Notebook Geek

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    Thanks for the thorough compilation of information!

    I think I'm not going to worry too deeply about it. I have cloned my OS installation and aside from a few oddities due to drive letter changes, it seems to be running swimmingly with a definitely noticeable speed increase. Does what it says on the tin.

    $200 is completely reasonable for what I got and it's a rather large improvement over the 5400rpm drive in either case.

    Thanks :)
     
  8. Bullrun

    Bullrun Notebook Deity

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    And, really, how you feel about it s the most important part. :thumbsup:
     
  9. Untamed

    Untamed Notebook Geek

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    LOL, bad at first but then it fades hahaha. In a few weeks I won't even remember that I spent a disproportionate amount of cash on something I didn't really need to begin with other than for the 'oooh shiny' factor. :)
     
  10. Bullrun

    Bullrun Notebook Deity

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    Tell me about it. I bought the M500 960GB without a machine to put it in. XD It's sitting in it's box waiting. It was a surprise, it was in stock that hour. :eek:
     
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