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Solid state disks or SSDs are finally hitting their stride. Prices are coming down across the board, helped by the decision to use multi-level cell (MLC) memory instead of the more expensive single-level cell (SLC) option. Although storage capacity is nowhere close to traditional hard drive products, we're starting to see larger drives sold at prices within reach of mainstream consumers.
Like other memory makers, Patriot has been active in the volatile SSD scene. They recently released a new line using the Indilinx controller that's getting a lot of attention from review sites. Today, we have the Torqx 128GB, 64MB cache SSD that boasts up to 260 MB/s read and 180 MB/s write speeds. In addition, the drive conveniently comes with a 2.5" to 3.5" bracket and an amazing 10 year warranty. Is this the SSD you've been looking for? Find out as HardwareLogic throws the Torqx on our test bench to see just how fast it really is.
|Capacity||128 GB |
(64GB, 256GB also available)
| Sequential Read|
|up to 260 MB/s|
up to 180 MB/s
|RAID Support||0, 1, 0+1|
|Power Consumption||2.75 W|
|OS Support||Windows XP, Vista, Linux, Mac OS X|
|Dimensions||99.88 x 69.63 x 9.3 mm|
Current solid state drives come in the same 2.5" form factor consumers are accustomed to finding in laptop drives. As such, they are considerably smaller and lighter than 3.5" desktop hard drives. The Torqx sports a black casing with a silver bottom. Along with the SATA data and power connectors, we find the two pin jumper at the edge of the drive. The jumper is necessary to upgrade the drive's firmware.
Included with the SSD is a black 2.5" to 3.5" adapter. This accessory is required for those who wish to install the SSD into a desktop system. It may seem like a small gesture to some, but the decision to include the adapter is a smart one and something we hope other companies follow.
Testbed and Benchmarks
|Motherboard||EVGA Classified X58|
|CPU||Intel Core i7 975 Extreme @ 3.71 GHz|
|RAM||OCZ Blade 6GB DDR3-2000 C7|
|Storage|| Patriot Torqx 128GB Firmware 1.3 (1571)|
Western Digital Velociraptor 300GB
|Videocard||EVGA GTX 295|
|Power Supply||Antec TruPower Quattro 1000W|
|Operating System||Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit SP1|
We installed the Torqx into our latest test bench featuring the fastest, high end components on the market. The CPU was overclocked to 3.71GHz (143 blck/ x26 multi) while the memory set to its rated 2000MHz frequency and 7-8-7-20 1T timings. There is a new firmware (1571) available which can be downloaded from Patriot's website here. In this review, we updated the drive and ran the benchmark suite using the latest firmware.
Patriot Torqx 128GB
WD Velociraptor 300GB
| AS SSD Benchmark|
Seq Read (MB/s)
| CrystalDiskMark - Test 5 100MB|
Seq Read (MB/s)
| SiSoft Sandra - Physical Disk|
| Everest Ultimate - Disk Benchmark|
Linear Read Begin (MB/s)
Linear Read Middle
Linear Read End
Average Read Access (ms)
| HD Tach - Long Bench 32MB|
Average Read (MB/s)
Random Access (ms)
| HDTune |
Read Minimum (MB/s)
| PCMark Vantage |
Is it fair to compare one of the latest SSDs on the market with a rotating hard disk drive? In this case, we believe it is since we're comparing the Torqx to the fastest consumer grade HDD on the market. And to sum up the results, the Torqx destroys the Velociraptor. Read performance is doubled in every test and PCMark Vantage scores skyrocket by thousands of points. The noteworthy exceptions are in write speeds during Sandra and HD Tune benchmarks.
|Warranty and Support||25/25|
|Price / Value||20/25|
When considering performance, hard drives have long been the bottleneck in most computers. Upgrading from a traditional HDD to a current SSD is the most noticeable improvement you can make to your system. We installed the Patriot Torqx SSD and watched as it wiped the floor with the 10K RPM Velociraptor. Along with the stunning performance increase, the Torqx comes with an amazing 10 year warranty and 3.5" adapter for desktop installation.
Anytime new technology arrives, the low price of the previous generation products makes it difficult for consumers to take the plunge right off the bat. When compared to 1TB hard drives featuring solid performance around the $100 mark, a $365 SSD with only 128GB capacity is relatively expensive. But right now, budget minded consumers aren't looking at SSDs. Enthusiasts looking for better performance are buying into the new tech and to be fair, prices have come down considerably within the past few months.
With that said, those who have made up their minds about pulling the trigger on an SSD upgrade want the best performance they can get for their money. Currently, Indilix controller equipped drives such as the OCZ Vertex, GSkill Falcon, and Patriot Torqx are leading the pack in read and write speeds. But with the extended 10 year warranty, Patriot raises the bar and dares its competitors to match their support. For these reasons, we grant the Torqx our Editor's Choice award and highly recommend it to anyone on the market for an SSD upgrade.
Other Reviews of Note
It's always nice to have more than one opinion on a component before you spend your hard earned money. For one, we may see something others missed, or vice versa. As with all reviews published at HardwareLogic, we'll not only give you our recommendation, but also point out reviews from some other great sites from around the web.