Benchmarks: CrystalDiskMark, AS SSD, ATTO

For testing the Fusion Thunderbolt 3 we relied on the Razer Blade Stealth which is Thunderbolt 3 enabled. Sonnet says that some computers equipped with Thunderbolt 3, such as the Dell Precision 3510 and the Alienware 13 R2, use an implementation of Thunderbolt 3 technology that will result in performance numbers of up to 1400 MB/s. Presumably, the Blade Stealth features a similar implementation, as you are about to see.

First up we measured the sequential read and write performance using CrystalDiskMark. As suggested by Sonnet, some mobile devices do limit performance and we are seeing that here. Still a read bandwidth of 1.35GB/s is nothing to be ashamed of, nor is the 1.2GB/s write speed. This meant that the Fusion Thunderbolt 3 was roughly twice as fast as Plextor’s internal M6e SSD which was tested in our Core i7 rig. When compared to the Samsung T3, we found Sonnet’s drive to be at least 3x faster.

Out of interest, we included the random 512K results, and again we see that the Fusion Thunderbolt 3 is much faster than even Plextor’s M6e.

The AS SSD Benchmark shows a greater margin between the read and write speeds of the Sonnet Fusion Thunderbolt 3 when measuring sequential performance. That said, even with a write throughput of 880 MB/s it was twice as fast as the Samsung T3.

The Thunderbolt 3 interface does nothing to hurt access times as the Fusion Thunderbolt 3 delivers blistering fast read and write access times - well below 0.1 ms.

Perhaps the most useful test is the copy test from AS SSD Benchmark. This is more of a real-world test and here we see that the Fusion Thunderbolt 3 sustained a throughput of 763 MB/s for the ISO test and 419 MB/s for the program test. Those are extremely impressive results for an external storage device and remember this is an on-disk copy test. So copying to or from the drive will be even faster, providing your local storage can keep up.

Using ATTO Disk Benchmark we took a quick look at small read/write performance. When dealing with tiny files the Fusion Thunderbolt 3 wasn’t a great deal faster than the Samsung T3 and was considerably slower than the Plextor M6e.

Upping the file size to 16K sees the Fusion Thunderbolt 3 recover as it pulls well ahead of the Samsung T3. It is now able to deliver similar write performance to that of the Plextor M6e while the read performance lags behind slightly.

Now testing with 128K files the Fusion Thunderbolt 3 appears to hit full stride when paired with the Razer laptop. The read throughput reached 1.6 GB/s while the write performance maxed out at 935 MB/s.