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Adata XPG SX6000 Pro review: Cost effective, but could be faster

James Archer
24 Jan 2019
Expert Reviews Recommended Logo
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
106
inc VAT

This NVMe SSD shows the importance of keeping speeds up even when the price is, relatively speaking, low

Pros 
Affordable
Decent speeds for the price
Cons 
Faster drives available
No 128GB or 2TB models
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It’s hard to tell what’s so professional about the XPG SX6000 Pro. It’s one of the first NVMe SSDs to be based on Realtek’s latest RTS5763DL SSD controller, but otherwise the only significant differences between this and the existing SX6000 are modest read and write speed increases, up to 2,100MB/s and 1,500MB/s respectively.

Still, perhaps it’s a good thing that Adata isn’t exactly aiming squarely at the top-spec enterprise market. All three of the XPG SX6000 Pro’s capacity options are remarkably affordable by NVMe standards: the 512GB model we tested is the best value, working out to just 20.8p per gigabyte, while the smallest 256GB and largest 1TB models cost 22.4p and 25.8p per gigabyte.

By contrast, the 500GB Samsung 970 Evo, which is well over six months old, is 25.8p per gigabyte – nearly 25% more expensive.

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Adata XPG SX6000 Pro: Performance

Samsung would likely point out that the 970 Evo has the potential to go much faster, with a stated read speed of 3,500MB/s and a write speed of 2,500MB/s.

Sure enough, in CrystalDiskMark’s standard sequential test, the XPG SX6000 Pro produced a measured read speed of 2,128.1MB/s and a write speed of 1,541.1MB/s, so it’s nowhere near the 970 Evo, which produced a 3,568.4MB/s read speed and a 2,514.6MB/s write speed.

If these results represented overall performance for both SSDs, that 5p-per-gigabyte difference wouldn’t seem too bad, but in real life data is rarely lined up in neat sequential lines.

In CrystalDiskBench’s random 4K file test, the XPG SX6000 Pro beats the odds to come out on top, recording a read speed of 374.7MB/s and a write speed of 347.3MB/s. The 970 Evo suffered a far greater loss of pace, recording a 334.4MB/s read speed and just a 245.2MB/s write speed.

Samsung’s SSD proved faster in all of our own file transfer tests, although the XPG SX6000 Pro wasn’t that far behind. In the huge file test, the latter averaged a write speed of 1,040.6MB/s, which isn’t bad at all when the 970 Evo managed 1,115.6MB/s.

However, the huge read test was one of the instances where Adata’s drive seemed to stumble, averaging 882.5MB/s. We don’t expect SSDs to hit their peaks during this particular benchmark, but this still seems like an underperformance, especially as the 970 Evo averaged 1,073.1MB/s.

In the tougher large files test, the XPG SX6000 Pro average a read speed of 824.3MB/s and a write speed of 820.6MB/s, resulting in a clearer win for the 970 Evo, which averaged 995.3MB/s and 1,010.8MB/s respectively.

When it came to the small files test, however, the XPG SX6000 Pro had all but caught up, putting in an average read speed of 337.1MB/s and a write speed of 376.3MB/s. The 970 Evo may have stayed just ahead on read speed, with 373MB/s, but its 363.8MB/s write speed is a victory for Adata.

Adata XPG SX6000 Pro: Competition

Besides exhibiting performance that could best be described as plucky, the XPG SX6000 Pro aptly demonstrates the problems with making storage purchase decisions based on the advertised maximum speeds.

Judging from the numbers given for these two drives, you’d expect the 970 Evo to utterly crush the cheaper SSD, but the only conditions in which it does so are in the questionably realistic realm of a synthetic benchmark.

In more life-like file transfers, the XPG SX6000 Pro’s performance disadvantage isn’t even close to being proportional to the price difference. The two are also on equal terms for durability, both being rated at 150 terabytes written (TBW) for their 250GB/256GB models, 300TBW for their 500GB/512GB models and 600TBW for their 1TB models.

They even have the same warranty length of five years. It’s actually surprising, in hindsight, that Adata has chosen not to angle the XPG SX6000 Pro specifically as an NVMe SSD that generously balances speed and price; instead, it’s mainly concerned with the single-sided design (in that all the NAND blocks are on one side), making the drive thin enough for installation in ultra-slim laptops.

That’s a non-issue for PCs, and single-sided 80mm SSDs such as this aren’t uncommon: both the 970 Evo and the Kingston UV500, to name just a couple, are just as thin.

Adata XPG SX6000 Pro: Verdict

Frankly, even if this SSD was twice as fat, it would still make a fine main drive for mid-range PCs. Those with higher budgets might as well stick with the 970 Evo, or even the older 960 Evo, but anyone should be able to appreciate the XPG SX6000 Pro’s cost-effectiveness.

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