Intel 335 Series 180GB SSD Review

Intel 335 180GB SSD
by Robert Tanner on March 18, 2013 in Storage

Looking for a mainstream SSD but need help deciding which to choose? Is that $10 difference really worth it? Who’s got the most reliable SandForce based-SSD around? Why does Intel have so many SandForce SSDs anyway? All these questions and more are answered within!

Real-World: Boot Times, Game Level Loading

For the boot test, we perform a cold boot with the stopwatch starting the moment the power button is pressed until the last systray icon has finished loading. A large number of factors can change how fast a computer starts; whether the motherboard uses a BIOS or the newer UEFI; if a RAID controller has to be initialized; to delay timers or other motherboard optimizations. In other words, individual results will vary depending on the system hardware.

Obviously, our P67 motherboard is the bottleneck at this point; it takes more than just fast storage to quick-boot a system! Regardless, there are no unexpected results to see here.

Game Level Loading

SSDs deliver some of the most benefits to games. Not only can the game load significantly faster so users can hurry up and wait to get through various advertisement screens, but they also boost level or map load times. For games where player immersion into the new world is important, the difference between 15 and 25 seconds can seem huge when waiting for the next part of the level or world to load.

For our new regimen we chose Portal 2 and Civilization V. Portal 2 is already a very well optimized game, but it’s immersive, so we time how long it takes to load the sp_a2.bts6 custscene. With Civilization V‘s recent overhaul to game storage files to help decrease load times, and the new option to disable the intro movie trailer, it becomes possible to time how long it takes to start the game.

Game level load times are good as well, although it’s safe to say any SSD will deliver significantly better map load and level transition times than a mechanical drive.

  • johndoe

    This is a decent drive but it comes with old 25nm Intel flash. The new revision of Vertex 3 comes with Intel 20nm MLC, which improves performance, reduces power consumption and increases reliability.

    • Kougar

      The only difference between the 335 and the 330 is in fact the NAND flash. The Intel 335 Series does use Intel’s 20nm MLC flash.

      • johndoe

        When you’re buying the drive off the shelf, you don’t know whether it’ll have 20nm or 25nm Intel ONFI MLC.

        It’s said that the drive comes with 20nm but that is NOT clear.

        You have absolutely no guarantee that ALL drives or YOUR drive will come with 20nm flash.

        That said, if you want a REALLY, really good SSD, then I got a Solidata X7 for sale.