Budget Crucial v4 SSD targets 3Gbps SATA upgrades

Adding a solid-state drive is often the best way to boost the performance of an aging system, especially if it’s a laptop. Now, Crucial has a new model specifically for that purpose. The Crucial v4 SSD is designed for systems with older 3Gbps SATA ports, and it looks pretty affordable. The official press release quotes suggested retail prices of $50, $70, $100, and $190 for 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB versions of the drive, respectively. That’s less than a dollar per gig for the higher-capacity flavors.

Obviously, the v4 isn’t as fast as Crucial’s m4, which takes advantage of the extra bandwidth provided by 6Gbps SATA ports. The budget model is rated for maximum throughput of 230MB/s with 128KB sequential reads and 190MB/s with sequential writes. Its random I/O performance ratings top out at 10,000 IOps for random 4KB reads and 4,000 IOps for writes. To put those numbers into perspective, the m4’s sequential throughput is pegged at 500/260MB/s for reads and writes, with random I/O ratings of 45,000/50,000 IOps. Both SSDs are covered by three-year warranties.

Right now, the v4 is available only through Crucial’s online store. I suspect the drive will end up being even cheaper when sold through outlets like Newegg. That vendor currently has the 64GB, 128GB, and 256GB m4 drives priced at $70, $120, and $220, respectively. It’s worth paying the $20-30 premium for the m4 given the extra performance on tap, but we’d have no qualms about replacing an aging mechanical hard drive with the v4. Indeed, the SSD in my own notebook is an older 3Gbps model based on Indilinx’s original Barefoot controller.

Unfortunately, there’s no word on which controller lies at the heart of the v4 SSD. We suspect it’s the same Marvell chip that underpins the m4, but we’ve asked Crucial to confirm. Like the m4, the v4 is built using 25-nm MLC NAND.

Update: Crucial has confirmed that the v4 uses a Phison PS3105 controller with custom Micron firmware. The chip has eight channels, according to Phison’s site, but we haven’t heard much about it.

Comments closed
    • spuppy
    • 7 years ago

    The Phison PS3105 was used in the Patriot Torqx II SSD. For what to expect in performance, you can check out reviews of that drive (although it uses Toshiba toggle flash rather than the Micron MLC the Crucial drive will be using)

    Here’s one from last year, and includes the M4: [url<]http://www.hardcoreware.net/mid-range-ssd-comparison-2011/[/url<]

    • Rand
    • 7 years ago

    The price seems good but I’d like more capacity options on the high end, my board only has 3Gbps SATA but it’s otherwise perfectly adequate and upgrading just for that seems a waste.

    256GB is just a bit too small for me though, if they had an additional option of 360GB or so it’s be ideal. Or if they want to continue doubling for full access to all channels then 512GB would do.

      • l33t-g4m3r
      • 7 years ago

      just buy a cheap pci-e controller, no need to replace the board.
      [url<]http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005B0A6ZS/ref=olp_product_details?ie=UTF8&me=&seller=[/url<]

    • burntham77
    • 7 years ago

    This would be perfect for a budget gaming system. Thinking about putting one together for the wife so she can play EQII in all its glory.

    • l33t-g4m3r
    • 7 years ago

    I just bought a Chronos Deluxe 240 SSD @ $180 from newegg. Best drive for the price, really.
    [url<]http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/storage/display/mushkin-chronos-ssd_7.html#sect0[/url<] [quote<]32nm flash memory from Toshiba with Toggle Mode DDR interface[/quote<] [url<]http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820226226[/url<] [quote<]Performance Max Sequential ReadUp to 560MB/s Max Sequential WriteUp to 520MB/s 4KB Random Write Up to 90,000 IOPSSeek Time 0.1 ms MTBF 2,000,000 hours[/quote<] Price is still @ 180 (Save: $70.00), fluctuated to 185 the other day. Buy it now before sale ends.

      • BoBzeBuilder
      • 7 years ago

      467 11 11 call pizza pizza yea yea yea

        • burntham77
        • 7 years ago

        Was that a Little Ceasars reference?

          • BoBzeBuilder
          • 7 years ago

          no, it’s a pizza pizza commercial, accompanying l33t’s promotion.

            • l33t-g4m3r
            • 7 years ago

            I’m eating a stromboli right now. Suddenly felt the urge.

    • dragosmp
    • 7 years ago

    I bought an SSD this weekend for a friend and I saw this v4, but the 128GB it was more expensive than the Agility 3 120GB and features only SATAII.

    My point is even ig one has only SATA II (3GB/s) they might as well get a faster SATA 3 6GB/s drive and use it at full speed when they’d get a newer motherboard. The v4 should be cheaper than competition, which for now it isn’t.

    • superjawes
    • 7 years ago

    I don’t think I have 6 Gbps SATA ports on my motherboard, so this would be a nice upgrade for me and people in similar situations.

    However, I think think I will wait until I can get something closer to 500GB @ $200. That will (hopefully) line up with a good time to rebuild, and I’ll get to snag a 6 Gbps SSD and a motherboard to match it.

      • Ryhadar
      • 7 years ago

      It all depends on price really. Just remember: You can still use a SATA III/6 Gbps SSD on a SATA II/ 3Gbps controller.

        • superjawes
        • 7 years ago

        Oh I understand that. It’s just that I would prefer to get the performance boost, and the timing of a major system overhaul with SSD prices is looking very convenient.

        I’ll also add that if I was still using my 6 year old laptop, I might snag one of these 128 GB drives to pop in there, but the poor thing has probably been through too much already…

          • moose17145
          • 7 years ago

          Heck i threw a 128gb m4 into my core2 laptop and its only running sata 150. Even with that bottleneck it seriously gave the machine new life. It’s kind of funny actually because that laptop now boots and loads most programs faster than my desktop that is all sata II/300. When i have the money i will get a ssd for my desktop as well.

    • Hattig
    • 7 years ago

    Nicely priced for the 128GB upsell Crucial. Nobody would buy the 32GB and 64GB when the 128GB isn’t that much more.

    • OneArmedScissor
    • 7 years ago

    The 128GB m4 was $89 yesterday. Trying to create multiple price tiers at this point is too little, too late. Even if the v4 turns out to be $80 at retail, that’s just silly, but all too often, the prices end up the same, or just totally mixed up.

    Right now, you can get a 256GB OCZ Vertex 4, Agility 4, Octane 6gbps, Octane 3gbps, or Petrol for the same price!

      • ImSpartacus
      • 7 years ago

      The 128GB 830 was $85 yesterday.

      My folks have an old laptop that they want to replace. I suggested that they jump on that $85 deal, but they didn’t want to invest anymore money in that (admittedly) old machine. I didn’t even try to explain why they were wrong.

      • jpostel
      • 7 years ago

      I agree that the retail prices get all ganked up and muddy the waters, but I think Crucial is doing this to maintain a reasonable margin on a lower price drive rather than just discounting. From there perspective, if the market is forcing v4 and m4 drives toward the same price, why not make the v4 a cheaper drive so their margins are higher? We won’t buy them, because we understand the differentiation, but less savvy folks will see 128GB for $79 and $89 and pick the cheaper of the two.

    • ludi
    • 7 years ago

    Considering that I just upgraded an Acer 1810TZ with a Samsung 830 256GB for about $210 and am capped at 250MB/s sequential read and write by the controller interface, I think Crucial has the right idea but is priced just a little bit too high.

      • bthylafh
      • 7 years ago

      I was just thinking this would make a nice upgrade for my wife’s 1410. It’s still got the stock 160GB 5400rpm drive, so the 128GB unit would be perfect for only $100.

        • HisDivineOrder
        • 7 years ago

        Newegg has dropped the price of the Samsung 830 128gb down to $90 twice a month ago and $85 yesterday. I think I’d skip the Lite models and go for the real deal if I were you the next time they do it.

        And they seem to be doing it a lot.

          • ImSpartacus
          • 7 years ago

          And the 512GB m4 is $400 regularly, and $385 on a few occasion lately.

          If you’re on an older laptop that needs the storage space, that seems to be the way to go.

        • ludi
        • 7 years ago

        Note that the one thing I ran into is that the 1810 didn’t have an HDD caddy or anything, the drive was just sort of wedged into its slot. The SSD was slightly thinner and thus wanted to move around just a bit. I solved this by using a couple small pieces of self-adhesive weather stripping foam, so that the bottom cover compresses the drive into its assigned space.

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