Patriot WildFire SSD review: Patriot WildFire SSD

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.

In copy tests, which are the tests that show the performance mostly of the drive, the WildFire was comparatively slow. When used as the secondary drive in the system, it scored 202MBps, compared with the 260.71MBps of the Vertex 3 or the 261MBps of the Plextor PX-256M2S . When used as the main drive that hosted the operating system of the test system, the drive's data transfer speed, now representing both the reading and write speed of the drive, reduced to 99.72MBps. Again, this number was slowest among all SATA 3-based SSDs we've reviewed. Compared to hard drives, however, these numbers still showed a huge performance gain.

On the other hand, in tests that involved applications' performance, the WildFire showed the most performance gain amongst all SSDs we've seen. In Office Performance test, where we time how long the computer take to finish a comprehensive set of different concurrent tasks including Word, Excel, file transferring and compression, the WildFire helped the system reduced to time needed to just 365 seconds, compared to 393 seconds in the case of the Crucial M4. Similarly, in our Multimedia MultiTasking test, which gauges the computer's performance when it converts a hi-def movie from one format to another while iTunes is doing a heavy job of music conversion in the background, WildFire scored 278 seconds, by far the shortest on the charts.

The Patriot WildFire, like all SSDs, helped the system take a very short time to boot up and shut down, just 30 and 7.5 seconds, respectively, in our tests. Note that the boot time includes the time the test machines go through the hardware initialization, which already takes about 15 seconds. Compared to when the system uses a hard drive as the main storage drive, the amount of time required for booting up and shutting down is cut down by about one third.

System performance (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
MMT  
Office  
Patriot WildFire
278 
365 
OCZ Vertex 3
322 
338 
Crucial M4
322 
393 
Plextor PX-256M2S
323 
383 
OCZ Agility 3
331 
390 

Boot and shutdown time (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
Shutdown  
Boot Time  
Plextor PX-256M2S
6 
28.2 
Crucial M4
6.8 
28.7 
OCZ Vertex 3
5.8 
29.1 
OCZ Agility 3
6.7 
29.7 
Patriot WildFire
7.5 
30 
WD VelociRaptor 600GB
7.9 
45.4 
WD VelociRaptor 300GB
12.2 
56.2 

Data transfer (in MB/s)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
As secondary drive  
As OS drive  
Plextor PX-256M2S
261 
162.03 
OCZ Vertex 3
260.71 
150.01 
Crucial M4
235.51 
117.99 
OCZ Agility 3
207.75 
101.67 
Patriot WildFire
202 
99.72 
WD VelociRaptor 600GB
126.33 
58.05 
Seagate Barracuda XT
115.71 
51.1 
WD VelociRaptor 300GB
112.59 
47.12 

Service and support
Patriot backs the WildFire with a three-year warranty, which is decent and standard for most SSDs, though not as generous as the five-year warranty of the OWC Mercury Extreme Pro 6G . At the company's Web site, there's scant content, generally support information for all Patriot's products. At the time of the review, there's no page dedicated to the WildFire.

Conclusion
We were let down by the Patriot WildFire file transfer speed but were happy with its application performance. If you can afford the hefty price, it'll make a very good replacement drive for any computer, be it a laptop or a desktop, and will offer significant performance gain.

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Where to Buy See All

Patriot Wildfire SSD (240GB)

Part Number: CNETPW240GS25SSDR
MSRP: $549.00 Low Price: $653.82 See all prices

Quick Specifications See All

  • Form Factor 2.5"
  • Hard Drive Type internal hard drive
  • Interface Type Serial ATA-600
  • Capacity 240 GB
About The Author

CNET editor Dong Ngo has been involved with technology since 2000, starting with testing gadgets and writing code for CNET Labs' benchmarks. He now manages CNET San Francisco Labs, reviews networking and storage products, and also writes about other topics from online security to new gadgets and how technology impacts the life of people around the world.