Toshiba Q300 Pro 512GB SSD Review
There’s still not too much going on in the world of SSD, well that’s the real world I’m talking about. Not the nm world or the NAND world or even the 3D NAND world, the real world i.e. how fast is that SSD and can I get into Game quicker!? But there is one other aspect of SSDs that is quite important and that’s the fact that SSD are now cheaper and have more capacity making them the perfect place for that Steam collection of Games.
We aso seem to focus on manufacturers such as Crucial, Corsair and HyperX but there are alternatives and they’re just as good (on paper). With that in mind today I’ll be taking a look at Toshiba’s latest SSD the Toshiba Q300 Pro 512GB. The Q300 Pro is available in a variety of sizes including (256MB, 512MB & 1024MB) and features a Read speed of 550MB/s and Write speed of 520MB/s and a maximum IOPS of 92,000 IOPS for the 512GB that we have here.
The Toshiba Q300 Pro arrived at pcG in a smart little box with a small image of the SSD on the front. Other than the brand, name and capacity and the fact that it’s a 2.5 inch SATA III / 7mm SSD Toshiba has also highlighted the SSD’s 2-bit per cell NAND Flash Technology. In addition to this Tisha also promotes the fact that the Q300 Pro is designed for Computing,. Graphics and Gaming! 😮
The side of the box goes on to further highlight the Q300 Pro’s Industry-leading performance, the included Data migration software and the drive’s high reliability and 5 warranty.
The back of the box shows us the drives main feature in every language other than English; the English version can be found on the other side of teh box – that I forgot to take a picture of! soz
I was quite impressed with the soft bubble style packaging that Toshiba used for the Q300 Pro (shown above), probably the best I’ve seen.
Rather unusually there was also far more in the box than one usually gets with an SSD. Other than the spacer we find a multilingual user guide, warranty guide and a couple of warranty forms specifically for other countries.
At the time of writing the Toshiba Q300 Pro 512GB (HDTSA51EZSTA) is retailing for approximately £180 on Ebuyer and comes with an impressive 5 year warranty.
courtesy of Toshiba
|Storage memory||2-bit-per-cell A15nm NAND Flash|
|Interface||SATA III (6.0 Gbit/s, backwards compatible with 3.0 Gbit/s and 1.5 Gbit/s)|
|Max. transfer rate||6.0 Gbit/s|
|Advance Speed Technology||Adaptive Size SLC Write Cache Technology|
|Native Command Queuing (NCQ)||yes|
|Read only mode||yes|
|TBW (Client endurance workload specified by JESD219A Solid-State Drive (SSD) Endurance Workloads)||320TB|
|Operating temperature||0° C – 65° C|
|Non-Operating temperature||-40° C – 85° C|
Active: 3.3 W typ.
Idle: 125 mW typ.
|Dimension||100 x 69.85 x 7 (mm)|
|Weight||53 – 54 g typ.|
|Utility tool software||Toshiba Storage Utilities Tool by download from http://www.toshiba.co.jp/p-media/wwsite/ssdkit/|
Solid State Drive – Q300 Pro
Spacer for 9.5mm applications
Quick Start Guide
|Performance – Sequential Read Speed (measured with Iometer)||Up to 550 MB/s|
|Performance – Sequential Write Speed (measured with Iometer)||Up to 520 MB/s|
|Performance – Random Read Speed(measured with CrystalDiskMark 4.1.0, 4kiB, QD32)||Up to 92,000 IOPS|
|Performance – Random Write Speed(measured with CrystalDiskMark 4.1.0, 4kiB, QD32)||Up to 63,000 IOPS|
|Error Correction Code (ECC)||QSBCTM (Quadruple Swing-By Code)|
|Deterministic Zeroing TRIM Support||yes and requires OS support|
|Cloning tool software||NTI Echo 3 (migration software) by download here|
As you can see from the image above the Toshiba Q300 Pro is not the best looking SSD on the market, but then I guess it’s not the worst either. But then again most of us don’t by an SSD for it’s looks…
The 7mm (9.5mm with spacer) thick drive casing itself is made from aluminium with the front of the drive featuring a large (somewhat dull) sticker that does noting to enhance the drives appeal. Down at the bottom right we also see a single screw covered by a warranty (VOID) sticker.
Connection wise everything is as per normal with the drive requiring a single SATA power connector and a single SATA connector. Of course to get the most out of this drive it should be connected to an SATA3 6GB/s port.
Our new Skylake Test Rig for this review (shown below) was treated to a fresh install of Windows 10 Home 64Bit with all associated Drivers installed. I also ensured that AHCI was set in the UEFI (although this is now the default settings for most modern Motherboards). The drive was connected to the Intel SATA3 (6GBs) port (SATA3_0) of the ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 Gaming K6 motherboard. No special or other BIOS/UEFI options are required…
|Case||Cooler Master HAF XB||Power Supply||Corsair AX760i 760W|
|Motherboard||ASRock Fatal1ty Z170 GAMING K6||CPU||Intel Core i5 6600K|
|CPU Cooler||Noctua NH-U12S||RAM||G Skill Ripjaws 4 16GB|
|Graphics Card||EVGA GeForce GTX 980Ti Classified||SSD||Toshiba Q300 Pro 512GB|
We use PCMark 8 to help ascertain Gaming performance. The test used measures the performance of the drive while loading real game data for both World of Warcraft and Battlefield 3. In addition to this we will also use ATTO Disk Benchmark to confirm the drives claimed performance levels.
- ATTO Disk Benchmark
Claimed performance speeds for the Toshiba are 550MB/s Raed and 520MB/s Write and the Q300 Pro posts a best read of 554 MB/s and best Write of 525 MB/s. Therefore we can see that the drive easily lives up to its claimed performance. What we can also see is a nice level of consistency once we pass 128KB which is always good too see and there’s also no strange (read/ write speed) anomalies along the way.
- PCMark 8 Storage Test
|Drive||Type||World of Warcraft (Load Time)||Battlefield 3 (Load Time)|
|Crucial MX200 250GB||SSD||57.8 s||132.8 s|
|Crucial MX100 256GB||SSD||57.8 s||132.9 s|
|Toshiba HG6 512GB||SSD||57.8 s||132.9 s|
|Toshiba Q300 Pro 512GB||SSD||58.2 s||133.5 s|
|Crucial MX300 750GB||SSD||58.5 s||133.6 s|
|Crucial BX100 250GB||SSD||58.5 s||133.6 s|
|Kingston M.2 120GB||M.2||58.5 s||134.0 s|
|Crucial BX200 480GB||SSD||59.1 s||134.5 s|
|HyperX Savage 240GB||SSD||58.8 s||134.5 s|
|Kingston Now 60GB||mSATA||58.9 s||136.2 s|
|HyperX Fury 120GB||SSD||58.8 s||136.4 s|
|ADATA SX300 64GB||mSATA||59.0 s||136.7 s|
|Kingston HyperX Na’Vi Limited Edition 240GB||SSD||59.2 s||137.6 s|
|Kingston 200V+ 60GB||SSD||59.8 s||138.2 s|
|Seagate 2TB SSHD||SSHD||99.2 s||260.5 s|
|Toshiba 1TB Hybrid||SSHD||91.6 s||285.0 s|
|Western Digital Black 1TB||HDD||123.6 s||303.9 s|
We use the PCMark 8 benchmark to test real world loading times for both World of Warcraft and Battlefield 3 this gives us some idea of how these SSDs are likely to perform when in Game. As you can see the Toshiba performs well placing in the top 4 in the grid. But it’s rather ironic that it’s still beaten (by nest to nothing) by its older brother the Toshiba HG6 512GB.
When looking at SSDs for Gaming and when concentrating on modern SATA based SSDs most of them have similar (500MB/s+) Read/Write speeds that result in very similar performance when looking at Game load times. The bottom line is that many of these drives are really just as good as one another and the important factor begins to become price per GB. So in our Final Thoughts we’ll take a look at what just might be the most important factor; how much does this new 512GB drive from Toshiba cost and how does that compare to the competition.
Once again Toshiba brings us an impressive SSD in the Toshiba Q300 Pro 512GB, it may not have the looks, but it’s certainly got it where it counts. But its high price tag (at the time of review) makes it look very expensive for the capacity and performance it offers.
The Toshiba Q300 Pro 512GB arrived pcG in a smart little box with the SSD well packaged and protected within, there’s not much in the box save for a spacer and some paper work. It’s not much of a looker either, but I guess most (but I know not all) of us buy and SSD for its capacity and performance above all else.
Luckily the performance of Toshiba Q300 Pro doesn’t disappoint with the drive beating its claimed Read/Write performance with figures of 554MB/s and 525MB/s respectively. There’s also good consistency too with no unusual anomalies to speak of. In PCMARK 8’s storage test the Q300 Pro also performed well managing to get the fourth best World of Warcraft Load time that we’ve seen. But rather ironically it didn’t beat it’s older brother the HG6 drive even with its new 2-bit-per-cell NAND Technology.
Performance wise and even design wise there’s very little to critique when looking at the Toshiba Q300 Pro, but when you look at the current asking price there’s concern. A modern day 500MB SSD can be bought for under £100 these days and as you can see from our charts very little differentiates the top ten drives. At £180 at the time of review the Toshiba would appear to be to expensive for its own good, which is a shame as the drive itself is very good.
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Many thanks to Toshiba for providing this sample for review