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Home » Technology » Kingston KC3000 SSD test – breaks the ceiling

Kingston KC3000 SSD test – breaks the ceiling

Kingston KC3000 SSD test - breaks the ceiling

Solid, not intrusive, not even her name is sexy, but she’s capable of something we haven’t experienced before. They love to exaggerate and shout for a revolution in hardware development companies, but in reality, it is much rarer to have something really spectacularly better than its predecessor. The world of SSDs is a particularly difficult field in this respect because here we have already experienced a huge, breast-cutting breakthrough, which, even in retrospect, can be safely called a revolution. Kingston KC3000 SSD test – breaks the ceiling.

However, Solid State Drives didn’t stop where they were in the beginning, and after the manufacturers overcame most childhood illnesses, they immediately started increasing capacity, which at the time was still around 40-64-120 GB.

Today, 1-2TB SSDs aren’t unaffordable either, but speeds have stalled at the same level, with PCI Express replacing the outdated SATA standard for hard drives and NVMe replacing AHCI. Kingston has been fighting on the front lines from the start, so we weren’t surprised that something really new was among the first to appear in the latest SSD act as well. This is the KC3000 model.

The promise is a beautiful word

The name of the KC3000 SSD isn’t exactly catchy, but we have to admit that the blister packaging didn’t particularly interest us either. Whoever chooses an SSD on the outside will probably not take this off the shelf, as it doesn’t have a giant, gleaming-flashing heatsink with RGB LEDs, or at least some beast’s head. However, there is something on the packaging that made us immediately excited, and that is the inscription that we can cross the 7 GB / s limit with the KC3000. Of course, we’ve learned so much from promises over the past few years that we’ve learned not to believe them, only Kingston is the manufacturer who is very conservative with such statements, so if he writes that we can break that pace, we’ll step over it.

Notebook friendly SSD

At first, the KC3000 seems to have covered the charm of the SSD with a single sticker (meaning the chips), but it’s actually a metal plate that also contains graphite, making its heat dissipation excellent. Of course, it doesn’t compete with a normal, large heatsink, but most motherboards now offer one at the factory, and when it’s a notebook, it’s a distinct advantage that there aren’t any ribs built into the SSD at the factory.

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It’s a very widespread, next-generation SSD controller that is capable of a number of tricks to reach top speeds, and thanks to its advanced manufacturing technology, warming up isn’t a major concern. Kingston’s big draw is that, unlike most competitors, it has the latest Micron NAND flash chips, which are 176-layer and store TLC data (Triple Level Cell – 3 bit/cell). This results in a significantly better life, ie cell rewritability: the 2TB model is capable of 1600TWW, which should be sufficient for approx. 10-15 years minimum. The KC3000 is, of course, connected to PCIe 4.0 x4 and is compatible with the latest NVMe 1.4 standard.

Faster than anything

For the 7GB / s promised on the packaging, you’ll also need an Intel or AMD PCIe 4.0 platform, the latter of which we’ve chosen for the Gigabyte Aorus X570 Pro + AMD Ryzen 5 3600X. Before we get into the measurement results, we would definitely like to highlight our experience with the different M.2 sockets. This is because when we measured the SSD in a socket connected to the southbridge, we obtained demonstrably worse values. This was not the case for all tests, in fact only for synthetic measurements, but it is still clear that at this speed it is important to pay attention to

It also brought what we were looking forward to: we were able to go beyond the magical 7 GB / s tempo for sequential reading. This is already very close to the upper bandwidth limit of PCIe 4.0 x4, but the Kingston KC3000 has steadily delivered its excellent pace during multiple re-measurements. So the caption doesn’t lie, in fact, CrystalDiskMark showed even better results: the 7344 MB / s is terribly fast, breaking the record of our test lab so far.

IOPS values ​​did not show such an improvement over other PCIe 4.0 x4 SSDs. More importantly, it’s excellent for real-time performance at PCMark10 Storage or even game loading (Final Fantasy XIV: SB).  For both Anvil and CrystalDiskMark measurements, we measured a minimal reduction, which means that the data organization of the cache and controller works great even if you permanently skim your SSD with write cycles.

Verdict

Kingston has packaged the fastest Micron TLC chips available today and the most advanced Phison controller on the KC3000, which in itself is a guarantee of good results, but even a stable firmware that works well under continuous load. Cooling is more of a sheet, but not frivolous, as it distributes the heat generated by the controller well, making cooling easier.