Fabled SSD Arrives

Recently Intel was running a deal on Newegg for their 730 SSDs. I decided to finally pick one up and put it in my HTPC/Server, ThePylon. I have wanted one of the Intel 730 series drives since they were announced as they are Intel’s first consumer SATA III SSD that they completely designed from the ground up.

Intel 730 480 GB - in Anti-Static

The Intel 730 is still one of the best SATA III drives on the market eventhough when it launched it wasn’t necessarily the quickest. Intel choose to market it on class leading consistency and reliability. This made sense since it was based on their enterprise offerings. The fact that it still manages to edge out the current overall champ, the Samsung 850 Pro, in those areas definitely shows.

The launch price was quite high but on par with other enthusiast drives at the time. The real kicker was however that only the 480GB had the full performance. Unlike nearly all of its competitors the smaller 240GB option only had half of the performance of the larger 480GB. When compared to competition like the 850 Pro it fell short. The 850 Pro had just managed to get a very minimal loss of performance when going to the smaller 128GB size. This was when the 730 couldn’t even maintain it at 240GB.

Intel 730 480 GB - Back

This was a problem for me as I was planning on using two drives in RAID 0 in my desktop (Anthrax). I wanted the full performance but by no means needed 960GB nor really wanted to pay for it at $400 a drive. I begrudgingly settled on 256GB 850 Pro’s for my desktop. Recently however I was looking for a larger drive for my HTPC/Server (ThePylon) and remembered the 730. This is a place where I only needed one drive and where additional consistency and reliability would be welcomed. I was also rather sick of the random issues I had with Samsung RAPID with the 840 EVO currently in the system.

After a quick search on newegg, my main part website since 2004, the 730 showed to be selling at $220, nearly half of its original price. I picked one up right away as that was a great price and there really wasn’t anything better for the job. Last I checked the drive is still there and even dropped down a bit more on a recent ShellShocker. If you have $200 to spend and need a 480GB SSD I highly recommend it.

Intel 730 480 GB - Front

Shortly after receiving the drive I took some quick pics as I was unboxing everything. This is something I generally do as much of my stuff gets featured in one of my build logs or possibly another thread on LTT. All of the pictures I took happen to be the ones featured in this post.

Besides that I try to stay active on places like twitter where a simple nice photo can spark some interesting conversation. For stuff like this I generally use my personal twitter as it’s just something quick as I have time. Newegg caught the tweet I made seemed to like the photo (above) as they featured on on both their Instagram and Twitter while crediting me for the photo.

What do you all think of the photo? I tried to take a clean simple photo with some decent lighting to show of the simple yet refined design of the drive.

I know many of you like to see the raw number, so don’t think I forgot. I did a quick benchmark using CrystalDiskMark and got some decent numbers. Remember that this is a fresh drive and even though it has high consistency performance will decrease somewhat.

Intel 730 480 GB - Crystal Disk Mark

This drive is a featured part in my HTPC/Server build ThePylon. The build log for that will be coming soon. Please create an account and comment below with what you would like me to cover during the build. If you want to see more in the future please follow our Twitter to get the latest updates.

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