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Serial ATA performance — continued

iPEAK multitasking
We recently developed a series of disk-intensive multitasking tests to highlight the impact of command queuing on hard drive performance. You can get the low-down on these iPEAK-based tests here. The mean service time of each drive is reported in milliseconds, with lower values representing better performance.

We've seen iPEAK consistently favor command queuing with Maxtor and Seagate drives in the past, but that's not always the case with our test system's Western Digital Caviar RE2. The ICH8 does surprisingly well in our first wave of iPEAK tests, beating the NCQ-equipped ICH8R under multitasking loads that include file copy operations.

Despite a poorer showing in IOMeter, the nForce 570 SLI is consistently faster than the nForce4 SLI X16. In fact, the 570 SLI often beats the 975X and at least one of the P965 configurations.