Some motherboards have a limit on the speed at which the USB ports can be accessed, and cap them at 25mb/s which is slower than the advertised speed of the ATV Turbo. We used the drive on several motherboards with a variety of past and present chipsets from various manufacturers and the speeds were all the same.
|Processor||AMD AM2 6000+ Dual Core|
|Motherboard||Biostar TA690G AM2|
|RAM||Corsair XMS2 6400 2GB (2x1GB)|
|HDD||Maxtor DiamondMax 20 80GB SATA|
|Power supply||Jeantech Storm 700w|
|Graphics card||Onboard – ATI Xpress 1250 series|
To test the USB drive we run several synthetic benchmarks in order to determine the speed of the drive in relation to others in the same environment. The tests that we run are easily repeatable by anyone. Each test is repeated three times and the average taken to ensure accuracy. If one of the tests is wildly different from the rest, all the results are scrapped and retaken. It should be noted that a fresh installation of Windows XP was used to carry out the testing.
First comes SiSoft Sandra Lite XIIc’s removable media test which determines the number of operations per second for varying file sizes, and also the endurance factor of the drive which gives an impression of how long the drive will last. HD Tach uses low level hardware drivers in order to bypass any software that may stand between getting the highest transfer speed. By design, this means that the figures shown by HD Tach can never be reached in a real world scenario but is useful when used in conjunction with other benchmarks.
Next is HD Tune which gives maximum, average and minimum read speeds of the drive, and also the CPU usage along with burst read speed and access speed.
The final test is a real-world test which gives you an example of how the drive performs with a standard file transfer. 900mb of 65 files of varying size is transferred to the drive, and then copied back; giving read and write speeds. This will always be slower than the advertised speed as smaller files take longer than bigger files to transfer, as each small file requires space to be allocated, the file to be transferred, then finished etc. The figure from this test is represented as mb/s by dividing 900 by the amount of time taken.
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The OCZ ATV Turbo survived not only the testing, but also being dunked in water and then frozen over night. Chucking the ice block on the floor to remove it from its freezing coffin caused the data stored no damage what so ever, and the drive works fine.
While it’s nice to be able to freeze the USB stick for this test, in the real world, when was the last time that you left your USB drive in the snow, or fridge? For most people, the fact that it’s waterproof will be enough.
|Name||512B||32KB||256KB||2MB||64MB||Combined index||Endurance factor|
|Lexar JumpDrive Secure II 4GB||6313||4964||1601||220||8||3939||81.5|
|ATP ToughDrive Mini 2GB||2381||13808||4491||680||22||9543||24.5|
|ATP Petito 2GB||16122||13346||4392||674||22||10527||22.4|
|OCZ ATV Turbo 4GB||16465||11377||4133||607||22||9272||22.2|
|Corsair Voyager GT 8GB||13813||10706||4090||611||22||8591||22.2|
The drive is advertised as being able to read at a maximum possible speed of 35mb/s although even with the synthetic read test traversing the whole drive, the read speed never peaked above 30.8mb/s while the average was lower at 30.3mb/s. 30mb/s is by no means slow, but the advertised rate is a little off.
When it came to the real-world test, the drive managed 22.1mb/s write, and 23.6mb/s read. This secures it as the third fastest drive we’ve tested, finishing behind the ATP drives. This is the speed that you’ll most likely see if you use this drive daily for transfers, providing the chipset and motherboard are all working as they should. Looking at the Sandra results, it still sits in third position.
The ATV managed an access time of 0.8ms which is getting dangerously close to the limit of 1ms for ReadyBoost. This is unlikely to affect your usage of the drive during transfers, although it will determine the speed at which new files are created.
Looking at the HD Tach results, the OCZ ATV Turbo manages to get the joint top sequential read speed at 32.8 mb/s but a fairly uninspiring 1ms access time which is on the borderline for ReadyBoost compatibility. It’s interesting to see that in this test the drive manages to come top for transfer speed, but is lower down on tests which have to traverse Windows software.
For CPU usage, if you are really worried about the difference between 4% and 7% when copying a file, you need to consider an upgrade soon. The figures are only included for your reference should such things interest.