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Quick Look: The Blazing Fast Crucial T700 PCIe Gen5 NVMe SSD

After multiple attempts, the fastest result was just over 4.5 GB/s, falling to just below 4.0 GB/s after about the 128 GB mark (the total file transfer was 173 GB, which was the total size of the folder of large 7-zip archives I was copying). I think the issue was the T700 in the M.2 slot on this Z690 board, even though I had it set to Gen5 and verified that it was, in fact, running at the correct link speed using HWiNFO. The top M.2 slot is supposed to be PCIe 5.0, but I had better results using a PCI-E 5.0 to M.2 adapter card in the top slot (I was using processor graphics and nothing else was on PCI Express except my boot drive on the bottom M.2 slot).

This could get wordy, but I had a number of issues in testing these Gen5 drives, probably all of which were related to my particular test platforms. For example, I normally present various charts with comparative sequential and random 4K results at various queue depths, but I could not produce consistent results with the T700 on my test platforms under custom workloads using CrystalDiskMark, and that was on both the AMD X670E board and the Intel Z690 board. Usually, I just set the benchmark to QD1, and then QD2, and so on, but these results were very inconsistent from run to run, and I saw a puzzling regression in performance at QD2 compared to QD1, among other things.

Many efforts were made to figure out the best way to test this Gen5 SSD, including moving from the AMD AM5 platform back to a 13th Gen Intel platform, moving from the Gen5 M.2 slot to a dedicated PCIe 5.0 to M.2 adapter card in the PCI-E 5.0 x16 slot (which helped), and even trying out the Micron storage driver in place of StorNVMe. Ultimately, the lack of consistent results when attempting custom benchmark runs at various queue depths and threads preventing me from producing meaningful numbers needed for an in-depth review. Thus, this is just a “quick look”. (I also failed to re-test the two T700 drives on AM5 using bifurcation for the dual M.2 to Gen5 PCIe adapter – unsupported on the Z690 board.)

Bottom line, storage is complex, and I miss Allyn.

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