Saturday, 14 November 2020

Western Digital WD Blue SN550 1TB M.2 NVEME SSD

 Well, this one is actually a just typing review, since sometimes SSD reviews and hard drive reviews have not been as well-received in the past, but this was an overdue one due to the use of the Xiaomai 6 Pro E5100. But as much as it was a decent laptop, it was still not being used much due to the issue of me having to get files transferred and a 1TB HDD is not the best, way so after searching and realising, I went for the SN550. Around the £100.73 mark in cost. So here we go and see if it is worth the upgrade. 



The Packaging

Like any of the WD, the packaging is simple and easy to understand, with the colour scheme matching either the speed or the energy saving of what you wish to go for. This case the blue and white is WD's True design here and has been for most of the years, the simplicity of the front and the nice amount of small detail on the back are enough to really get them to advertise if this is worth the hassle or not But the S/N is shown from the back of the box (directly to the drive) which does make it easier in some ways for this t know its not a knockoff. 

The Front of the box 



The right sie of the box



The left side of the box 



The back of the box 

as I opened it up with the iseasmo tool, the packaging is secure and easy to protect the drive from damage like water and even kicking about, well even though its light than it already is. The chip is blue and the controller is a SanDisk one of all things, but not surprising since WD own Sandisk. 

The back of the inside



The front has the manual on it above 



A look underneath the chip



The front of the chip 



A closer look at the SanDisk controller

Then it was time to fit it in and see if it will work. 

The fitting: 


Now for this, it was actually near the imperative mark to make sure it was in the correct way, plus I had to clone over the files from my 1TB Firecuda I bought 3 years ago due to the requirements of the laptop used for editing back then, the Dell Latitude E6230. And well it was low and behold, easy to fit inside the 6 Pro since the M.2 Slot is hidden but also secure as well. 

The WD drive and the Firecuda 


The laptop before fitting 



The SN550 in the heatsink




The Old WD Green and the SN550 in the heatsink 





Both the new drives fitted. 


Time to test: 

Test #1: Does it boot up: 

Yes is the answer since after turning the laptop on, the bios saw it straight away, and t was on AHCI as well, which means that is one major relief and Maibenben do mention that the 6 pro does support NVME. 

The bios show the drive 

Which then it was time to boot up a portable version of windows for the cloning and drive tests. Thus was, of course, Hirens Boot CD PE  and that actually did see both drives as well, in this case, it meant that I could clone and also do some benchmarks. 

Test #2: CrystalDiskMark. 

 
This is always the one that people use, and well no exception here, so below are the results. 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 7.0.0 x64 (C) 2007-2019 hiyohiyo
                                  Crystal Dew World: https://crystalmark.info/
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
* MB/s = 1,000,000 bytes/s [SATA/600 = 600,000,000 bytes/s]
* KB = 1000 bytes, KiB = 1024 bytes

[Read]
Sequential 1MiB (Q=  8, T= 1):  1764.129 MB/s [   1682.4 IOPS] <  4750.27 us>
Sequential 1MiB (Q=  1, T= 1):   895.404 MB/s [    853.9 IOPS] <  1166.17 us>
    Random 4KiB (Q= 32, T=16):  1044.895 MB/s [ 255101.3 IOPS] <  1703.41 us>
    Random 4KiB (Q=  1, T= 1):    36.321 MB/s [   8867.4 IOPS] <   112.17 us>

[Write]
Sequential 1MiB (Q=  8, T= 1):  1592.534 MB/s [   1518.8 IOPS] <  5243.20 us>
Sequential 1MiB (Q=  1, T= 1):   937.481 MB/s [    894.1 IOPS] <  1113.14 us>
    Random 4KiB (Q= 32, T=16):   878.871 MB/s [ 214568.1 IOPS] <  2370.48 us>
    Random 4KiB (Q=  1, T= 1):   153.703 MB/s [  37525.1 IOPS] <    26.42 us>

Profile: Default
   Test: 2 GiB (x4) [Interval: 5 sec] <DefaultAffinity=DISABLED>
   Date: 2020/11/11 21:54:21
     OS: Windows 10 Enterprise [10.0 Build 14393] (x64)



So that shows it can handle speeds quite nicely and well means it can improve the day to day times of things by a fair bit and that it also shows its a massive improvement compared to  what a SATA SSD can be, Now wit that out of the way it was time to clone and then see how long it takes for the 800GB or less of Data from one SSHD to go on this SSD. 



Test #3: Cloning Drives


This is where the main thing to plan out was, so it is tem to do a clone from the HDD to the SSD. Well it went really well and worked fine, Okay, it did take about 4 hours to copy over about 750GB of files (the total used on the drive, and the 2 partitions on there). Now lazesoft did it and the drive (not the SSD the SSHD) that got very warm. With the boot partitions and no errors unlike another clone which is to get the issue of if it feels slow or not., But when it booted up, no issues and the speed was impressive. Not like instant but still faster than the 240GB SATA 3 SSD of WD Green. 



The SSD  being cloned 

This then was leading to some interesting observations on the usage. 

Test #3: Daily Usage

Now this is where the good things happen, the bootup times felt snappier and also apps did load up quicker and also even using blogger was much less  delayed than other devices i used for typing up, which i would not expect an ssd to affect that much performance when typing. But that and files from a usb drive did copy around 80mb/s which was the installation files for Fornite actually.. 




Test #4: Userbenchmark

Now lets be intrigued on how the benchmark for the laptop is not complete for some reason, but it actually performed worse than other laptops using this drive. Since of the 839mbs read and lower write speeds, so userbenchmark was reporting it to be inaccurate. 



Conclusion: 

All in all this drive has some serious potential, maybe it is a bit of a waste on the Xiaomai 6 Pro but i've now got the fasted PC i've ever owned in my life so far, Sure its not a PCIE Gen 4 but that laptop does not support it anyway so it would be null and wasted to get that drive.


omracer's Rating: 8/10


The Good Points: 

  • 1TB or storage
  • Actually a improvement on speeds 
  • Fits the maibenben and is compatible
  • Pretty good value 
  • Easy to install and use aka no drivers
  • Same model to the one used in the Xbox Series S 

The Bad Points: 

  • Not all laptops support NVME 
  • Benchmark results are very low for the drive compared to other laptops and PCs using it 


And there more reviews are, we will see each other soon enough with maybe one more review this year. 

omracer






















Monday, 9 November 2020

Mixx Audio Cardio Air 5

 So, this was well not really supposed to review this but well, times change and washing Zimai earphones in the washing machine by accident causing the mic to stop working, and well with the #lockdown2 approaching and also the knowledge cycling on days will have to happen again, it was time for new earphones. This gives me the chance to be able to work for travelling, For £15 it pretty much has a lot more going for it than I expected. 


The video is below: 












The Packaging: 


Now for this, it does have clear labeling so you know what it does, with the dark grey box and the labeling with features such as Bluetooth and 10 hours of battery life, plus it shows you the ear hook which is a major bonus for this product already, and actually, t makes things easier to ready with clear text but there is a sign it is made for different countries. The branding is pretty clear as well.

The front of the box 

The side of the box showing the buttons 



The barcode and logos 



The other side of the box with more features 


The Back of the box 


The top of the box with the hook



As we open the box, the is a clear showing of things such as the manual which was clear and very easier to understand, plus the packaging is also plastic-free which is good for the environment, then its the micro USB cable being a really short one.  But the earphones themselves are nice but very short, which unlike the Zimai, there is no easy way to have it safely attached to the neck when you are not wearing them. 

The front of the manual 



The inner pages of the manual 



More inner pages



The buttons for the ear piece



More guides on the buttons 



The earpiece which has the mould in there as well, 



The very short micro USb Cable

Now as we look at the earpieces a bit more, I notice the buttons are easier to press and sadly the micro USB charging port cover is very fiddly to open but that could be my fingernails being the issue here. But it does work out to make it easier for the battery location. T/he Earpieces are interesting with a little bit of gap on them but they make it much easier to twist to get them in the right ear, but the bits below the hook. Well they are only suited for the ear they are designed for. 

The buttons 



The battery with the mix name 



The sign of both parts 



One earpiece 



The other ear Piece 



The showing of the length of the cable 


But then it was time to setup the earphones to the phone. Which well that was easier than I expected. 

Time to setup. 


So, I held the middle button down on the earphones and well boom, shortly after I saw a red and blue light flashing which meant it was them time to go to settings on the phone and well, it came up in a few seconds under the Bluetooth list. I tapped on it and it paired straight away. 

The searching for the device 




It finally paired 



Then it was time for the tests. 


The Tests:


Test #1: Wearing it

Now actually one benefit of this is actually the fact the hooks are much bigger which means it can fit around the ears without any issues, well actually there was a minor issue but the shaped of each side is designed for each side.  So you can't swap it over, the ears.  But when they were in, it felt really comfy. 

The ear on the side 


The ear on the other side 



How it shows when I'm wearing a mask

Then it was time to see how it felt with the sound quality. 

Test #2: Sound Quality 


Test 2.1: Listening

Well actually i did listen to some music, and it was clear and also quite loud, but not loud enough to end up muting the outside word, aka note noise cancelling, But there was no tinny quality for the music i listened to and also there was a small bit of base so the speakers can handle it. 


Test 2.2: Voice/Microphone

Now this was actually a bigger improvement, i didn't now notice the sound used in recording apps like Voice recorder or Google Keep, but when i was using the mic for phone calls, I almost had no issues with signal minus a phone call with one customer who was partially deaf and i did have 5 bars of signal (4G since near a BT exchange with an o2 Mast) So that means it can actually make things easier, As of this blog post publishing, I've not tried a call when cycling (was testing on Sunday due to work) but when walking, Calls worked fin,e well to works EA rep and Mobile phone rep and one customer. So this is a real improvement compared to the issue i was facing with the ZiMai earphones. 





Test 2.3: Durability: 


Actually this was much more improved than I thought, since it managed to not have any falling out when i was cycling around (nearly for 3 hours in total) on Sunday and that had no issues with falling out and since no sounds were playing and i could hear traffic , this was looking very promising, since i did notice and feel dropouts with the Zimai earphones. The only grip i did feel was something along the lines of the cable is a lot shorter than the Zimai , which means when not wearing them, they do not fit securely to the neck so there is a chance of them dropping. Which actually an be solved via a lanyard. 


Conclusion:  

This pair of earphones can actually do a lot more than i was hoping, Well in the basic ways but it feels a lot more easier to use than the Zimai and a lot cheaper due to the no customs duty for import. The cable is short but it makes up for that is a simple fix such as a lanyard. But the charging port lid can be hard to get out.

omracer's Rating: 8/10


The Good Points: 

  • Very Good value
  • Bluetooth
  • Earhooks
  • Microphone which works. 
  • Very comfortable during long use 
  • Battery life is good 

The Bad Points

  • The usb charging port can be hard to open with cut fingernails
  • The cable /strap is slightly shorted to wrap on body or attached when not using it 

And that is another review for the start of #lockdown2, There might be one more review for the end of the year but we will see. 


omracer