If you've been following SSD news lately you'll have noticed that since the performance of the latest generation SATA 600 SSDs is so similar, price is becoming the most important factor in the market. Kingston has come to the same conclusion, and has thrown the HyperX 3K into the price war. Hardware.Info put it to the test to see how it compares to the rest of the SSDs out there.
The trend of prices far below £1 per GB started a while ago, and a number of SSDs have appeared on the market with those low prices. A Crucial m4 256GB you can now find for £176, and an OCZ Agility 3 240GB costs an average of £162. Those two aren't the fastest SSDs around, but the trend has been set.
Manufacturers don't have the luxury of opting out of the reduced-price trend. While one may choose to lower the price of existing products (Crucial for example), another might prefer to introduce a new, more affordable series instead. We saw this recently with the Intel 330 product line, which is based on the same controller and flash hardware as the 520 series, but is more affordable.
Kingston is following Intel's example and recently launched the HyperX 3K series. This series is based on the same technology as the HyperX SSDs, but is clearly cheaper. The HyperX 3K SSDs are available in 90GB, 120GB, 240GB and 480GB editions. We tested the 120GB and 240GB versions of the HyperX 3K to find out what the differences are in terms of hardware and performance.
The new HyperX 3K SSDs have the same SandForce SF-2281 as Kington's standard HyperX SSDs. The main difference can be found in the flash chips that are used. The chips in the HyperX series are validated for 5,000 program/erase cycles, while the HyperX 3K series is guaranteed up to 3,000 cycles. The reasoning behind the name suddenly becomes apparent. You can read the rest of Kingston HyperX 3K 120/240 GB SSDs previewed on Hardware.info.