Intel 520 Series 60GB SSD review
Intel's latest batch of SSDs, the 520 Series, offers a variety of different capacities, but the 60GB is the smallest on offer. That doesn't sound like much, but it's more than enough for an installation of Windows and some key applications, which makes a smaller drive is a route to the speed of an SSD without spending too much money.
At £81, the 60GB Intel 520 is relatively inexpensive, but its £1.35 price per gigabyte doesn’t represent good value. That puts the 520 Series into contention with a host of larger drives. The Crucial M4, for example, offers 128GB for £88, and the PNY Professional SSD provides 120GB for £95.
The 520 Series sounds like an affordable way to get SSD performance, but our benchmarks suggested it doesn’t give the best performance. In our large-file write test, for instance, it scored 284MB/s, which is fairly average. The situation didn't improve in the large file read benchmark, where the 520 Series scored 319.1MB/s, which is still average.
The Intel 520’s small file performance wasn’t particularly good, either. It scored 79.4MB/s in our small-file write test, for example, and read small files at a rate of just 59.4MB/s.
The combination of poor performance and middling value puts paid to the Intel 520 Series 60GB SSD's prospects. The Crucial M4 SSD 128GB is only £7 more expensive, but it offers more than twice the capacity and it's quicker. If you're looking for a budget SSD, that's the better option.
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