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Zotac Sonix SSD Review

Zotac Sonix SSD Review

When SSDs first hit the market they showed promise however it wasn’t until the second of third generation that they really started to hit a performance, price and reliability level that would appeal to the mainstream consumer. Over time though the market very much stagnated as the limitations of SATA 3 took hold, limiting performance at a little over 500MB/s, regardless of the price range of the drive. Recently though things have become much more interesting with PCIe and M.2 models very much exploiting the performance of the latest NAND and controllers. Today we have a PCIe model on our test bench from a recent entrant to the storage market, welcome to our Zotac Sonix SSD Review

Zotac Sonix SSD Review – Packaging and Bundle

zotac-sonix-ssd-review-box zotac-sonix-ssd-review-bundle

Zotac send out their Sonix SSD in a fairly compact box which gives us some information on the key features along with providing a small image of the drive itself. Inside the SSD is protected by a bag and suspended in foam. Also in the box is some product documentation and an alternative PCIe bracket for those with half height cases.

Zotac Sonix SSD Review – The Drive

zotac-sonix-ssd-review-pcie zotac-sonix-ssd-review-480gb

The Sonix SSD is a half height drive (182mm x 69mm x 21mm) as we noted above and uses a black PCB with 4x PCI-Express connector. Attached to the PCB we have A Phison E7 controller, Toshiba MLC NAND and 512MB of DDR3 cache. This is a NVMe 1.2 compatible drive with rated speed of 2600MB/s read and 1300MB/s write. Power use is 0.5w when idle and 7.27w when writing.

The drive has a capacity of 446GB when formatted in Windows and a MTBF of 2million hours with support for static and dynamic wear leveling present. The TBW rating is 698TB and the drive supports bad block management and TRIM.


Zotac Sonix SSD Review – Performance

Key Test Specifications: Intel Core i7-5960X, ASRock X99 OC Formula, 4x4GB DDR4, Windows 8.1 64Bit. (mSATA testing via riser card, all drives use the highest capacity model available to us.)





Uncompressed HD Video Speed Test:


Real World File Copy Tests:


Game Load Time: zotac-sonix-review-load

Zotac Sonix SSD Review – Conclusion

Zotac may not be the first name that comes to mind when deciding to buy an SSD but the Sonix drive should change that for a lot of people. Their first foray into the SSD market was decent, a solid SATA based model but this is a whole different beast.

Starting with the build quality and design we have a good quality device, one which looks good and touches a little on the design of Zotacs graphics cards (e.g. the backplate). Zotac go with  Phison controller and Toshiba NAND on this product, known proven components and it is nice to see the option of running the drive in a half height system.

If there is one minor doubt in our minds over the product it is ongoing support, not that the warranty is an issue (its 3-years) but currently there is no indication on how easy it will be to update the firmware and there is no application available to monitor or maintain the drive, something the competition offer.

There are no issues with performance though. On that front the Sonix is very impressive. Occasionally another drive like the Intel 750 (also a PCIe, NVMe drive) will edge ahead but more often than not the Sonix leads the way. In fact it provided exceptional real world performance and caused us to have to edit our performance chart for Atto. We’ve never seen a drive go past 3000MB/s before!

Summary: Looks great, performs even better… a very impressive SSD from Zotac.

Performance Award

Review Date
Reviewed Item
Zotac Sonix SSD
Author Rating

About Author

Stuart Davidson

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