Patriot WildFire SSD review: Patriot WildFire SSD

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Patriot Wildfire SSD (120GB)

(Part #: CNETPW120GS25SSDR)
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3.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good The 2.5-inch laptop Patriot WildFire solid-state drive (SSD) comes with a drive-bay converter so it can also fit in a 3.5-inch (desktop) drive bay. It supports SATA 3 (6Gbps) and offers a huge improvement over traditional hard drives.

The Bad The Patriot WildFire is expensive and takes a long time to be formatted. Its data transfer speed is comparatively slow.

The Bottom Line The Patriot WildFire offers significant performance gain on any computer at a premium cost.

7.0 Overall
  • Design 8.0
  • Features 6.0
  • Performance 7.0
  • Service and support 8.0

The standard 2.5-inch laptop Patriot WildFire is the second SSD we've seen that's also desktop-friendly, thanks to the included drive-bay converter. Supporting the latest SATA 3 (6Gbps) standard, the drive offers fast performance compared to regular hard drives. Compared with other SSDs, however, its copy speeds were relatively slow in our tests.

The Patriot WildFire's cost is on par with most other SSDs, meaning that it's very expensive in terms of cost per gigabyte, at around $550 for 240GB (or $315 for the 120GB version). If you can afford that, you won't be disappointed and will definitely benefit from the performance gain. Make sure, however, to also check out other SATA 3-based SSDs we have reviewed . Chances are you'll be able to find one among them that is more affordable or offers better performance, or both.

Design and features

Drive type 2.5-inch solid-state
Connector options SATA 3Gbps, SATA 6Gbps
Available capacities 120GB, 240GB
Product dimensions 9.5 mm, 2.5-inch standard
Capacity of test unit 240GB
OSes supported Windows, Mac, Linux

The Patriot WildFire comes in the standard 2.5-inch, 9mm-thick design. This means it will work with most, if not all, situations where a regular hard drive of the same design would be used, such as inside a laptop computer. On top of that, the WildFire also includes a converter to make it fit into a drive bay made for the 3.5-inch standard hard drive, such as one found in desktop computers. This is similar to the case of the OCZ Vertex 3. Other than the fact that this is an SSD, the Patriot WildFire works just like any traditional hard drives of the same standard.

The drive supports the latest SATA 3 (6Gbps) standard but also works with the popular SATA 2 (3Gbps) standard. To get the most out of it, obviously, you're recommended to use it with the former.

When used with a computer with a SATA 2 controller, however, the drive also showed a significant performance improvement in our trials. Like some other 240GB SSDs, the Patriot WildFire took a long time--about 5 minutes--to be quick-formatted. While 5 minutes isn't very long, it's much longer than just a few seconds it takes hard drives and other SSDs.

Cost per gigabyte
The Patriot WildFire costs about the same most as other SATA 3 SSDs on the market. At $550 for $240GB, or around $2.29 per gigabyte, it's about the same price as the Vertex 3. There are some that are more affordable, such as the Crucial M4, which is around $1.72 per gigabyte, or the OCZ Agility 3, which is around $1.96 per gigabyte. Compared with traditional hard drives, however, the Patriot WildFire is still very expensive; most hard drives cost just a few cents per gigabyte.

Performance
We test SSDs in real-world usage both when the reviewed drive is used as the main drive that hosts the operating system of the test computer, and when it's used as the secondary drive, which is used only to store data. Some of our tests gauge the performance of the system as a whole to see how the drive affects its performance. Our data copy tests show the drive's raw data transfer speed when used in real-world scenarios after all overhead. Our test system uses the latest chipset, RAM, and processors and is equipped with built-in SATA 3 controllers to show the drive's top performance.

As with other SSDs, we reviewed the 240GB version of the Patriot WildFire, which may or may not offer the same performance as other capacities. Most likely, however, different capacities of the same series should provide the same performance. And the Patriot WildFire offered mixed performance in our testing.

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