Over the past year the SSD market has exploded with more companies producing these drives almost on a daily basis. In the past only a few names, which included Intel, Kingston and OCZ, were the only game in town if you wanted an SSD. Well times have changed and there are numerous brand choices.

Verbatim recently announced at this year’s CES the line of SSD products which include both SATA II and SATA III versions. Today we will be looking at the SATA II 2.5 inch SSD upgrade kit. It is designed to replace hard drives in it either notebook or desktop configurations. It includes preloaded cloning software making the transition from hard drive to SSD seamless.

The Verbatim SATA II 2.5" SSD Upgrade Kit comes in colored cardboard box with the drive pictured on the front. On the sides we see the system requirements, specifications, package contents and warranty info and a description of the product on the back.

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Opening the package we find the SATA II SSD, a 3.5” driver adapter plate, two USB cables, a 2.5” drive enclosure, mounting screws, users guide and Molex power cable.

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The Verbatim SSD is enclosed in a black metal housing with a green blue-and-white label indicating the drive capacity. It has an SATA II interface with advertised read speeds of 270MB/sec and 225MB/sec write speeds; a MTBF rating of one million hours means your PC/Mac, or Laptop will probably go before this drive will. In addition the SSD is SMART capable and offers TRIM support for Windows 7 and OS X Lion users.

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Verbatim ships the SSD drive preinstalled into the base of the 2.5” drive enclosure that features a USB 2.0 connection. This enclosure allows transferring the data to the SSD and then re-using your old 2.5” internal hard drive as an external one. Installed on the SSD is a copy of NTI Echo, which is a Windows, based cloning software making it easy to copy your data onto the new SSD.

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The enclosure secures the Verbatim SSD with three clips on each side. The mini USB to SATA connector slides out of the enclosure with the SSD drive; so theoretically you could transfer data to the SSD without installing it into the enclosure.

The top of the enclosure snaps down onto the base securely locking the drive within. The snap closures actually make it difficult to re-open the enclosure unlike the Kingston enclosure solution which simply slides on and off with a locking mechanism.

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For those wishing to install this SSD into their desktop machines a 3.5" drive adapter plate is also included.

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Overall Verbatim SATA II 2.5" SSD Upgrade Kit is pretty similar to most other SSD upgrade kits, nothing fancy just what’s required to get the job done.


Specifications:

Verbatim SATA II 2.5" SSD Upgrade Kit – 128GB

Rugged, fast and quiet, Verbatim’s SATA II Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) with Upgrade Kit provides the latest hard drive replacement storage solution for notebook and desktop PCs. Offering data read speeds up to 270MB/sec* Verbatim SATA II SSD drives are ideal for users that demand maximum performance in data storage and computer efficiency, while the do-it-yourself upgrade kit makes drive swapping a breeze. Verbatim’s SATA II Internal SSDs handle large amounts of data quickly and improve system responsiveness, extending notebook battery life and maximize computer performance. The internal SSD operates silently and provides faster system boot-up, application launch and shutdown times. Verbatim’s SATA II Internal SSD is S.M.A.R.T. capable and offers TRIM support for Windows 7, along with a 1500G Shock Rating The package includes preloaded NTI Echo cloning software, a 3.5” drive bay adapter plate and Molex power cable (for use in optional desktop installations), mounting screws, USB cable, and a 2.5” drive enclosure to allow reuse of the user’s original hard drive as a USB attached external storage device. All Verbatim Solid State Drives are backed by a 3-year limited warranty.

  • Includes preloaded Clone software, a 3.5” drive bay adapter plate and power cable, mounting screws, USB cable, and a 2.5” drive enclosure to reclaim and reuse original hard drive
  • Everything in one box for do-it-yourself notebook or desktop installation.
  • SATA II interface offers speeds up to 3GB/sec
  • Up to 270MB/sec. read speed and 225MB/sec write speeds
  • Reliable Solid-State design features 1500G shock rating
  • Low power consumption conserves laptop battery life
  • MTBF rating of 1 million hours
  • Backed by a 3-year limited warranty

Contents: Solid State SATA II, loaded Eco NTI cloning software, 3.5” drive adapter plate and Molex power cable (for use in desktop installations optional), mounting screws, 2 USB cable, 2.5” drive enclosure, users guide.



For testing the Verbatim SATA II 2.5" SSD Upgrade Kit was installed into the following system:

CPU: Intel Core i7 2600K

Motherboard: Asus P8P67 PRO

Memory: 8GB Mushkin DDR3 1300

Video Card: Galaxy 460GTX

Hard Drive: Western Digital 250GB 7200RPM, Samsung 1 TB 7200 RPM

PSU: Ultra X-Finity 1000 Watt Power Supply

Upon installation the Windows 7 64 system recognized the drive as model: SATA SSD 128 GB with a drive capacity of 120 GB. The firmware version was identified as S5FAM012.

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Using this information I tried to determine if this SSD was a rebranded model. Unfortunately my research on the web yielded little answer to that question. Speaking with my Verbatim contact I found out this SSD uses the Phison PS3105-S5 SSD controller which is found in the Torqx 2 SSD.

According to Benchmarkreviews.com this controller " supports 20/30/40nm MLC/SLC Large-Block Toggle Hi-Speed NAND flash memory with up to 32 chips, and features a build-in 28/32/48-bit hardware ECC circuit (BCH)." Verbatim saves the Sandforce controller for their SATA III SSDs.

For testing the Verbatim SSD was pitted up against an Intel X25-M SSD 80 GB with 250MB/s read and 70MB/s write speeds, a Kingston SSDNow V Series 30GB write speeds of 30 MB/s and read speeds of 180 MB/s and a Kingston Hyper X SSD 240 GB (SATA III) with write speeds of 510 MB/s and read speeds of 555 MB/s.

Benchmarking was performed with Anvil Storage Utilities Beta 11, ATTO Disk Benchmark and CrystalDiskMark 3.0.1 x64 and AS-SSD 1.6.4. One important thing to note is most companies use the ATTO benchmark to list their advertised speeds as these other benchmarking program tend to show results that are more “real world” like.

Thus starting with ATTO we see the Verbatim SSD hits their advertised speeds right on the nose with the other drives matching up to their specs pretty closely as well.

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Moving to Anvil Storage Utilities using the 4MB Sequential Speed test we see the Verbatim is once again close to its advertised speeds. Measuring the IOPS (Input/Output Operations Per Second) the Verbatim comes in at half the speed of the SATA III based HyperX SSD, as it rightfully should.

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Here are the results for Crystal Disk Mark and AS-SSD which run similar benchmarks.

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For those wishing to copy over their system to the Verbatim SATA II 2.5" SSD the NTI Echo is a straightforward cloning program. Select your source and destination and then grab a snack while the copy process occurs. Then swap your SSD for your hard drive and you should be set.

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Of course if you are going to use the Verbatim SATA II 2.5" SSD in a Mac you’ll need to copy the data using some other program like Carbon Copy Cloner. I decided to replace my sluggish 2008 MacBook Pro’s hard drive with the Verbatim SSD.

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Since I was running Snow Leopard which does not support TRIM on non Apple approved SSDs, I needed to activate the TRIM feature using TRIM Enabler.

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Benchmarking the MacBook Pro was done using AJA System Test which provided some disappointing results as the Read speeds were lower at 185 MB/s and the Writes were in the 50s. I did not Secure Erase the SSD before swapping it into the MacBook Pro which may be the issue. I will have do some further investigating although the MacBook Pro is still appreciably faster.

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Conclusion:

If you are looking to upgrade your PC or Mac to an SSD system then the Verbatim SATA II 2.5" SSD Upgrade Kit is not a bad way to get that job done. The Verbatim SSD is TRIM enabled helping it to function at peak performance while running a Windows 7 system.

Currently the Verbatim SSD 128 GB bundle can be found for less than $200 on the web which makes it priced in line with SSDs with similar specs.

The Verbatim SSD performs up to its advertised speeds out of the box and comes with cloning software for Windows users preinstalled on the drive itself. The kit has everything you’ll need to make a seamless transition to the solid-state drive world.

 

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Pros:
+Supports TRIM
+Kit allows desktop and laptop installation
+Can re-use old 2.5 Hard Drive with enclosure
+Silent operation
+Includes Windows cloning software

Cons:
-Not the fastest SATA II SSD in market

Grades:  
Overall score 8 10 thumb1 Review of Verbatim SATA II 2.5" 128gb SSD Upgrade Kit
Design score 8 10 thumb1 Review of Verbatim SATA II 2.5" 128gb SSD Upgrade Kit
Performance score 8 10 thumb1 Review of Verbatim SATA II 2.5" 128gb SSD Upgrade Kit

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