Kingston KC600 review: an impressive package

Reviews, Storage

Buy from Amazon
from £48

The Kingston KC600 is a new budget-friendly SSD, designed to offer performance at the very limit of the SATA 3 interface from capacities that range from 256GB all the way up to 2TB. The drive is rated to deliver up 550MB/s sequential read speeds, regardless of capacity, with write speeds improving from 500MB/s to 520MB/s when moving from the 256GB drive to its bigger brothers.

So, what is that attractive price we mentioned earlier? Well, the KC600 costs just £40 for a 256GB model in the UK, with 512GB and 1TB models available at £65 and £146, respectively. Note that while a 2TB model is mentioned, pricing for this isn’t available in the UK at present.

For the larger capacities, the drives are also available as kits, which include the drive plus cloning software, a 2.5-inch SATA USB 3.0 enclosure, a 3.5-inch bracket (and screws), SATA power and data cables and a 7mm to 9.5mm adapter. That’s a pretty impressive package, containing everything you could possibly need to make use of this drive! The kits cost a little more, as you’d expect, coming in at £79 and £162 for the 512GB and 1TB models, respectively.

The KC600 sounds promising and we have a 1TB drive with kit to test, so let’s not make Dave keep reading any longer and get right to the good stuff.

Specs

Form Factor2.5″
InterfaceSATA Rev. 3.0 (6Gb/s)
backwards compatible w/ Rev 2.0 (3Gb/s)
Capacities256GB, 512GB, 1024GB, 2048GB
ControllerSM2259
NAND3D TLC
EncryptedXTS-AES 256-bit encryption
Sequential Read/Write256GB — up to 550/500MB/s
512GB–2048GB — up to 550/520MB/s
Maximum 4K Read/Writeup to 90,000/80,000 IOPS
Power Consumption0.06W idle / 0.2W avg
1.3W (MAX) read / 3.2W (MAX) write
Dimensions100.1mm x 69.85mm x 7mm
Weight40g
Operating temperature0°C~70°C
Storage temperature-40°C~85°C
Vibration operating2.17G Peak (7-800Hz)
Vibration non-operating20G Peak (10-2000Hz)
Life expectancy1 millions hours MTBF
Warranty/supportLimited 5-year warranty w/ free tech support
Total Bytes Written (TBW)256GB — 150TB
512GB — 300TB
1024GB — 600TB
2048GB — 1200TB

Features

  • Features the latest 3D TLC NAND technology
  • Supports a full security suite (TCG Opal, AES 256-bit, eDrive)
  • Read/write speeds of up to 550/520MB/s
  • Limited 5-year warranty

Design

The KC600 has a pretty cool design, with a giant face (presumably that of Mr. Kingston, or perhaps an ancient idol responsible for the firm’s continued growth) and the Kingston wordmark embossed on the top of the drive in silver, standing in stark relief to the matte black body. The other side includes the SATA data and power connectors, plus a small sticker with the capacity and other important numbers.

The rest of the kit also looks decent, with the USB enclosure feeling plasticky but solid enough in the hand (and sporting a lock!) and the steel 3.5-inch bracket looking the business. Given the relatively minor premium for the kit version, I’d say the depth of the extras here is remarkable.

Performance

Here’s how the KC600 1TB performed in our regular run of storage benchmarks, all tested on the XSR test rig – which is currently sporting a Ryzen 7 3700X, RTX 2080 and Aorus X570 Master motherboard.

CrystalDiskMark

CrystalDiskMark has been one of my favourite benchmarks for evaluating storage speeds for a while now, thanks to its varied incompressible workload and extremely readable results. We recently updated to version 6 of the benchmark, which unfortunately means that we have a limited pool of results to use here. Therefore, this test should show predominantly whether the drive lives up to its claims for sequential write performance, as well as providing some insight into the KC600’s random access capabilities.

CDM 6 ReadSeq4K Q8T84K Q32T14K Q1T1
Toshiba XG6 SSD3227128137751.2
Samsung 970 Evo3542147638949.4
Kingston KC600 SSD54823422341.8

 

CDM 6 WriteSeq4K Q8T84K Q32T14K Q1T1
Toshiba XG6 SSD30331186303134.2
Samsung 970 Evo24621744350156.1
Kingston KC600 SSD47619719587.7

The KC600 performs well below the NVMe drives we’ve tested in 2019, but manages to hit right up against the 550MB/s barrier for the SATA 3 interface it uses. That’s a good sign for sure, and the remaining read results are strong as well, with the relatively high queue depth result showing performance in the same order of magnitude as the NVMe drives in the chart. Write speeds are less exciting, with a 476MB/s sequential result that falls some way below the 520MB/s advertised.

By comparison, the fastest SATA SSD we tested in an earlier version of the benchmark – version 3 – recorded a sequential read speed of 522MB/s and a sequential write speed of 470MB/s, showing the KC600 is impressive in its read speeds and consistent with other top performing SATA drives when it comes to writes.

AS SSD

AS SSD is another benchmarking tool quite similar to CrystalDiskMark, which uses predominantly incompressible data across a range of workloads including sequential tests, random performance and access times. First three numbers are MB/s and access time is in ms. We’ve got much more points of reference here!

AS SSD ReadSeq4K4K QD64Acc. TimeScore
Kingston KC600 SSD516402240.043315
Toshiba Q300 SSD52239315N/A406
Toshiba A100 SSD48937319N/A405
Drevo X1 Pro SSD32527249N/A308
Toshiba P300 HDD1550.51.6N/A18
Toshiba H200 Hybrid731.81526.315
Toshiba Canvio Premium1130.50.623.02112
Samsung T334524320.10091
Sandisk Z410501111450.045206
Samsung 850 Evo M.2493403280.093417
Samsung 850 Evo516343820.059467
Samsung 840 Evo513323300.059413
Corsair Neutron GTX507253340.068N/A

 

AS SSD WriteSeq4K4K QD64Acc. TimeScore
Kingston KC600 SSD447791850.041309
Toshiba Q300 SSD42480960.053219
Toshiba A100 SSD430742880.209405
Drevo X1 Pro SSD258762470.046349
Toshiba P300 HDD1140.50.616.713
Toshiba H200 Hybrid4619518.239
Toshiba Canvio Premium1110.50.517.612
Samsung T336756710.055163
Sandisk Z410407782150.237333
Samsung 850 Evo M.2475952510.075393
Samsung 850 Evo497662990.051415
Samsung 840 Evo497692070.054326
Corsair Neutron GTX473622950.062N/A

The KC600 does pretty well, but in heavily-threaded scenarios it falls down compared to some drives in our tests, such as the Toshiba A100.

ATTO Disk Benchmark

Atto is always an interesting test because it shows the relationship between data set size and read and write speeds in considerable detail.

Atto Read1KB4KB64KB256KB1MB8MB
Kingston KC600 SSD44178530553553553
Toshiba Q300 SSD74294548551552553
Toshiba A100 SSD76286552548561561
Drevo X1 Pro SSD71232348347348348
Toshiba P300 HDD2785129123135190
Toshiba H200 Hybrid92026262626
Toshiba Canvio Premium933117117117118
Samsung T31867329371377404
Sandisk Z41078247518531536533
Samsung 850 Evo M.283286537553552553
Samsung 850 Evo80269538551558558
Samsung 840 Evo94280535551555555
Corsair Neutron GTX1561336452530540

 

Atto Write1KB4KB64KB256KB1MB8MB
Kingston KC600 SSD41158443470478480
Toshiba Q300 SSD54231487488490485
Toshiba A100 SSD53231524533534543
Drevo X1 Pro SSD68201270270267271
Toshiba P300 HDD1674120113123128
Toshiba H200 Hybrid32537555353
Toshiba Canvio Premium1041115115116116
Samsung T32071315365366388
Sandisk Z41069184419423426428
Samsung 850 Evo M.279251510526525525
Samsung 850 Evo83255519529534534
Samsung 840 Evo81260515527533534
Corsair Neutron GTX15142474470493498

Indeed, you can see that the KC600 is slower at small chunk sizes, representing random reads and writes, but speeds up considerably once chunk sizes reach around 256KB. The A100 remains faster, but the KC600 is still quite competitive.

HD Tune

We finish up with HD Tune Pro, a benchmark which produces three scores for average read speed, read access time, and burst read rate.

HD Tune Pro 5.50 ReadAverageAccess TimeBurst Rate
Kingston KC600 SSD411 MB/s0.0ms189.2MB/s
Toshiba Q300 SSD425 MB/s0.0ms69 MB/s
Toshiba A100 SSD330 MB/s0.042 ms99 MB/s
Drevo X1 Pro SSD356 MB/s0.042 ms248 MB/s
Toshiba P300 HDD126 MB/s14.6 ms294 MB/s
Toshiba H200 Hybrid90 MB/s16.9 ms87 MB/s
Toshiba Canvio Premium114 MB/s17.9 ms140 MB/s
Samsung T3269 MB/s0.090 ms171 MB/s
Sandisk Z410358 MB/s0.035 ms140 MB/s
Samsung 850 Evo M.2321 MB/s0.087 ms221 MB/s
Samsung 850 Evo370 MB/s0.044 ms250 MB/s
Samsung 840 Evo358 MB/s0.041 ms231 MB/s
Corsair Neutron GTX340 MB/s0.059 ms231 MB/s

The KC600 performs excellently in HD Tune, with one of the highest average speeds we’ve recorded and a solid burst rate as well.

Wrapping up

The Kingston KC600 is a medium to fast SATA SSD, offering strong sequential performance and middling speeds when it comes to random I/O. This makes it more than fast enough for most people, and makes a good choice if it’s competitive on price. The kit version is also worth considering, as it packs in useful extras like software and a drive enclosure at a very reasonable premium.

Buy from Amazon
from £48

Last modified: November 20, 2019

Previous Story

Buy from Kustom PCs
£42

Keyboards, Peripherals, Reviews

QPAD MK40 review: hybrid enervation

As mechanical keyboards have risen in popularity, we’ve seen a corresponding backlash from fans of...

Next Story

Buy from Amazon
£26

Mobile Accessories, Reviews

Poweradd 20000mah Power Delivery Portable Charger review

For the past few days I’ve been charging my smartphone, headphones and Switch with a single portable...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.