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Kioxia XG8 SSD Evaluation: Quick PCIe 4 Storage For OEM PCs

Kioxia XG8: Beginning at $59, $189 For 2TB

A brand new NVMe controller and the most recent 3D NAND mix to make a really strong product for OEM markets. It will not formally come to retail channels, although. 

  • Wonderful sequential throughput
  • Excellent latency and IOPs at excessive queue depths
  • Strong efficiency in system drive workloads

  • Mediocre latency with QD1, which is typical for shopper use
  • Slower load occasions in real-world recreation loading situations
  • OEM solely, not out there at retail

Kioxia will not be a family identify simply but, however there is a respectable likelihood that your laptop computer has a Kioxia solid-state drive inside. The truth is, the Toshiba subsidiary’s SSDs will be present in desktops, workstations, and even servers racked up in a datacenter as boot drives. That is precisely the goal marketplace for the corporate’s newest high-performance SSD, the XG8, which Kioxia unveiled earlier this yr. 

The XG8 is targeted on OEM channels, versus being offered on to shoppers at retail, however that does not imply that it is hiding some hideous efficiency deficiency behind its integrator-only standing. As you may see under, the XG8 is a slightly aggressive drive that may sustain with different present midrange-focused PCIe 4.0 drives, however let’s not get too far forward of ourselves. First let’s meet the Kioxia XG8…

Kioxia XG8 Specs And Options

We’re testing a 2 TB model of the XG8, which comes within the standard M.2 2280 kind issue. It is provided in sizes from 512 GB all the best way as much as 4 TB, the latter requiring that flash reminiscence occupies each side of the drive. This NVMe SSD has all of its Fifth-generation BiCS 3D NAND on one facet, so no warmth ought to be sandwiched between the motherboard and SSD. The controller helps PCI Categorical 4.0 with 4 lanes of connectivity, which has been the usual for fanatic SSDs for fairly some time now. 

Kioxia compares the XG8 to the a lot older PCIe 3.1 XG6, which we reviewed as a retail drive from mum or dad firm Toshiba, however this is not the corporate’s first foray into PCIe 4.0 drives. For instance, the XG7 will be present in Lenovo’s ThinkPad P15, and it was a speedy drive as properly. So far as the XG8 goes, Kioxia charges it for a blistering 7 GB per second in throughput for reads and 5.8 GB/sec in writes and would simply eclipse what the XG7 did as a part of the ThinkPad. No matter comparability factors, the XG8 guarantees to be a giant improve.

Kioxia says the XG8 ought to be good for upwards of 900k I/O operations per second for random reads and 600k IOPS for writes. Benchmarks that depend on the file system hardly ever ever see these stratospheric scores, however the {hardware} for low-latency reads and writes appears to be current, at the least. 

The XG8 is outfitted with Toshiba’s newest Fifth-generation BiCS flash reminiscence, which has 112 layers of 3-bit-per-cell (TLC) reminiscence. This could enable for greater capacities and decrease latencies than the earlier era

The again of the XG8, like a number of different drives together with Samsung’s SSD 990 Professional, has nothing however a thermal coating and a few traces. Because the 4 TB model of the XG8 has NAND on each side, warmth that would in any other case have nowhere to go ought to be considerably extra manageable underneath strain. Mixed with NVMe’s host-controlled thermal administration, we anticipate that the drive will carry out in addition to doable for so long as physics enable underneath sustained workloads.

Together with new {hardware}, the XG8 additionally helps some new options, together with NVMe model 1.4 which helps direct host reminiscence buffer entry, new energy states, and host-controlled thermal administration. There’s additionally energy loss notification to guard information in opposition to pressured shutdowns, and optionally available safety features within the type of the Trusted Computing Group’s Pyrite and Opal v2.01 specs for self-encryption. 

Now that we have had a tour of the Kioxia XG8, let’s check out the way it performs in an array of exams. 

Kioxia XG8 PCIe Gen 4 SSD Benchmarks

Below every take a look at situation, the SSDs showcased right here have been put in as secondary volumes in our testbed, with a separate drive used for the OS and benchmark installations. Our testbed’s motherboard was up to date with the most recent BIOS out there on the time of publication and Home windows 11 was totally up to date. Home windows firewall, computerized updates, and display savers have been all disabled earlier than testing and Focus Help was enabled to stop any interruptions.

In all take a look at runs, we rebooted the system, ensured all temp and prefetch information was purged, and waited a number of minutes for drive exercise to settle and for the system to achieve an idle state earlier than invoking a take a look at. The entire drives right here have additionally been up to date to their newest firmware as of press time. The place relevant, we’d additionally usually use any proprietary NVMe drivers out there from a given producer, however the entire drives featured right here used the Microsoft driver included with Home windows 11.

HotHardware’s Check System:


AMD Ryzen 9 7950X


Asus ROG CrossHair X670E Hero

Video Card:

GeForce RTX 3080


32GB G.SKILL DDR5-5200




Samsung SSD 980 Professional (2TB)

Solidigm P41 Plus (1TB + 2TB)

WD SN770 (1TB)

Kioxia XG8 (2TB)


Home windows 11 Professional x64

Chipset Drivers:

AMD v3.10.22.706


IOMeter 1.1

HD Tune v5.75

ATTO v4.01.01f


SiSoftware SANDRA

CrystalDiskMark v8.0.4 x64

Last Fantasy XIV: Endwalker

PCMark 10 Fast Storage Bench

3DMark Storage Exams

IOMeter Benchmarks

IOMeter is a well-respected business normal benchmark. Nonetheless, regardless of our outcomes with IOMeter scaling as anticipated, it’s debatable as as to if or not sure entry patterns really present a sound instance of real-world efficiency. The entry patterns we examined could not mirror your explicit workloads, for instance. That mentioned, we do suppose IOMeter is a dependable gauge for relative throughput, latency, and bandwidth with a given storage resolution. As well as, there are specific highly-strenuous workloads you possibly can place on a drive with IOMeter, that you could’t with most different storage benchmark instruments. 

Within the following tables, we’re exhibiting two units of entry patterns; a customized Workstation sample, with an 8K switch dimension, consisting of 80% reads (20% writes) and 80% random (20% sequential) entry and a 4K entry sample with a 4K switch dimension, comprised of 67% reads (33% writes) and 100% random entry. Queue depths from 1 to 16 have been examined…

The Kioxia drive’s random I/O efficiency is excellent, operating almost neck and neck with the Samsung SSD 980 Professional and much forward of each different drive as soon as we get into extra concurrent operations. Scaling is nearly completely 1:1 when shifting from one to 4 operations at a time, with extra to achieve at eight and 16. These workloads are vastly totally different, and the second take a look at which reduces randomness from 100% to 80% (which means, extra sequential operations) and will increase the ratio of reads from 3:1 to 4:1, the XG8 may take a lead.

These numbers symbolize the typical bandwidth for the drives we examined with each entry patterns, throughout each queue depth. And as soon as once more, Kioxia’s XG8 is off to a very good begin, staying in lockstep with Samsung. When a full third of the operations are writes, we see it is about 5% slower than Samsung, closing that hole to lower than 2% with extra reads and extra sequential operations. Once we’re speaking about single-digit variations, it is in all probability not one thing a person would ever discover. In the meantime, the Kioxia enjoys a large lead over the third-place ADATA XPG Gammix S50 Lite. 

Our latency outcomes mirror our I/O charts, which solely is sensible. If the drive reveals decrease latency, it’s finishing operations sooner. Identical to the throughput exams, the Samsung and Kioxia drives run neck-and-neck for the whole lot of each runs. 

SiSoft SANDRA 2021

Subsequent we used SiSoft SANDRA, the the System ANalyzer, Diagnostic and Reporting Assistant for some fast exams. Right here, we used the File System Check and supply the outcomes from our comparability SSDs. Learn and write efficiency metrics, together with the general drive rating, are detailed under.

In SANDRA’s file system benchmark, we take among the abstraction away for the reason that software does not have direct entry to the {hardware}, and as an alternative does its work by means of Home windows to an NTFS quantity, similar to mainly each shopper software. The underside half of our chart has shuffled round fairly a bit, however as soon as once more the XG8 is available in second to the Samsung SSD 980 Professional. A learn common of 5.3 GB per second continues to be fairly respectable, as is the higher than 4.7 GB per second in writes. This time, the WD Black SN770 will get the bronze medal, and it is fairly a bit nearer than the IOMeter outcomes. In actuality, none of those drives would really feel gradual, however Kioxia has a 50% benefit over the underside of the pack whereas trailing the chief by only a smidge.

ATTO Disk Benchmark

ATTO is one other “fast and soiled” sort of disk benchmark that measures switch speeds throughout a particular quantity size. It measures uncooked switch charges for each reads and writes and graphs them out in an simply interpreted chart. We selected .5KB by means of 64MB switch sizes and a queue depth of 6 over a complete max quantity size of 256MB. ATTO’s workloads are sequential in nature and measure uncooked bandwidth, slightly than I/O response time, entry latency, and so on.

The XG8 had some actually attention-grabbing habits in ATTO’s learn and write throughput exams. It does not fairly max out the velocity as rapidly as Samsung’s SSD 980 Professional but it surely additionally drops off significantly as soon as it hits the 12 MB mark. This in all probability signifies that the drive has exhausted its SLC write cache and we’re seeing the true write efficiency of Kioxia’s Gen 5 BiCS flash reminiscence. Even when that is the case, it lasts lots longer at greater write speeds than the 980 Professional, which peaks early and drops off rapidly, and places all different challengers within the rear view mirror rapidly. 

That doesn’t, nevertheless, clarify the odd habits within the learn take a look at. We’re not clear as to why it produced the saw-tooth sample with the bigger switch sizes, but it surely’s good to do not forget that we run these exams a number of occasions, so this is not a fluke. Regardless, the valleys on show listed below are nonetheless sooner than the sustained efficiency of the WD Black SN770, whereas the Solidigm P41 Plus drives and the ADATA XPG Gammix S50 Lite are all about 20% slower nonetheless. The XG8 acquits itself properly, all issues thought of.

IO efficiency for writes begins off slowly, however jumps as much as the remainder of the pack rapidly, and by the point we hit the file system’s 4 KB block dimension, it is proper in step with each different drive. The WD Black SN770 and Samsung 980 Professional each path off extra slowly, than the Kioxia, however the XG8 nonetheless beats out the remainder of the pack all the best way as much as 64 MB block sizes. Writes are persistently good from the beginning early on however drop off at 8 and 16 KB, which is sooner than many of the different drives. Total it is on no account gradual, however positively not exhibiting the constant top-end I/O throughput we noticed earlier. 

AS SSD Compression Benchmark

Subsequent up we ran the Compression Benchmark built-into AS SSD, an SSD particular benchmark being developed by Alex Clever Software program. This take a look at is attention-grabbing as a result of it makes use of a mixture of compressible and non-compressible information and outputs each Learn and Write throughput of the drive. We solely graphed a small fraction of the info (1% compressible, 50% compressible, and 100% compressible), however the development is consultant of the benchmark’s full outcomes.

The compressibility of the info being transferred throughout the drives has virtually no impact on efficiency for many of those drives, excepting the Samsung which drops off barely. The Kioxia XG8 could be very constant in its write speeds no matter compressibility. It additionally pulls out a large victory over your complete take a look at group and stays proper at or barely above 6,000 MB/sec for your complete run. 

On the following web page we’ll proceed our onslaught of exams shifting from the artificial to the true world, after which sum up our ideas on this (to date) spectacular OEM-focused drive. 

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