Western Digital SiliconEdge Blue SSD (256GB)
The Western Digital SiliconEdge Blue is a fast solid-state drive, but will put a serious dent in your wallet
- Good file transfer performance
- Expensive, slightly more power hungry than alternatives
Western Digital's first consumer-friendly SSD is fast and reasonably priced when compared to the competition, but it is still too expensive as a hard drive replacement in most PCs.
Price$ 1,299.00 (AUD)
The two major internal hard drive manufacturers — Western Digital and Seagate — have traditionally been coy when it comes to solid-state drives, particularly in the consumer space. Western Digital has finally fired its first salvo with the SiliconEdge Blue SSD, which is available in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB capacities. While quick, it’s incredibly expensive and is unlikely to be affordable for the average consumer anytime soon.
The WD SiliconEdge Blue is only 9.5mm tall, which means it will easily replace your laptop’s current hard drive. Western Digital uses multi-level cell (MLC) technology in the SiliconEdge Blue, which is common for consumer SSDs. While cheaper than the alternative — single-level cell (SLC) memory — MLC drives aren’t as fast when it comes to the sustained throughput required of enterprise-level servers, and don’t have the same lifespan. Consumers won’t notice the performance disadvantage, though the drive is designed to have a five-year lifespan and is only covered by a three-year warranty.
The Western Digital SiliconEdge Blue consumes only 0.54 Watts when idle, and peaks at 2.6W when writing data. That means this SSD is slightly more power hungry than the Kingston SSDNow V+ but more power efficient than a conventional hard drive.
We conducted two file transfer tests with the SSD while connected to a testbed running a 300GB Western Digital Velociraptor system drive. The first test consisted of 3GB worth of 1MB files, which simulates installing applications and backing up system files. In the second test we use a 20GB folder of 3-4GB files; this is more akin to dealing with high-definition movies.
|Small File (3GB) Transfer Test Results|
|Western Digital SiliconEdge Blue||$1299||256GB||MLC||50||78.9||55.6|
|Solidata K6-32 SSD||$199||32GB||MLC||46.9||38.9||25.4|
|Apacer A7 Turbo SSD||$309||64GB||MLC||50||36.1||37.5|
|Solidata K5-32 SSD||$359||32GB||SLC||50.6||34.1||26.8|
|Kingston SSDNow V+ SSD||$445||64GB||MLC||49.2||50||56.6|
|Kingston SSDNow M Series||$855||80GB||MLC||49.2||50||56.6|
|Intel X25-M SSD||N/A||80GB||MLC||49.2||49.2||66.7|
|Large File (20GB) Transfer Test Results|
|Western Digital SiliconEdge Blue||$1299||256GB||MLC||90.7||70||67.6|
|Solidata K6-32 SSD||$199||32GB||MLC||35.9||71.1||24.8|
|Seagate Momentus 7200.4 HDD||$217||500GB||Hard drive||85.99||77.2||25.63|
|Apacer A7 Turbo SSD||$309||64GB||MLC||77.9||64.7||68.3|
|Solidata K5-32 SSD||$359||32GB||SLC||76.9||42.4||37.1|
|Kingston SSDNow V+ SSD||$445||64GB||MLC||76.6||77.29||75.2|
|Kingston SSDNow M Series||$855||80GB||MLC||73.09||71.04||52.49|
|Intel X25-M SSD||N/A||80GB||MLC||76.1||74||87.8|
Our tests show that the SiliconEdge Blue solid-state drive is definitely fast. It had the fastest read and write speeds in our small file test, and the fastest read speeds by far when dealing with large files. As an overall performer, however, it still doesn’t meet the benchmark set by Intel’s consumer-targeted X25-M SSD, as it fell behind when performing simultaneous large file tasks.
Up against the lowly conventional hard drive, Western Digital’s SSD performed well but our tests show that magnetic storage has some competitive edge, particularly when writing data. While this solid-state drive isn’t a leader of the pack, it will boost start-up times and work well as a system drive in general.
Of course, that’s if you can afford it. The 256GB drive provides 238GB of usable space which, at current prices, means a cost per formatted gigabyte of $5.46. To put that in perspective, the 250GB version of the Momentus 7200.4 can be found for as cheap as $75, or 31.5c per formatted gigabyte. Given that solid-state drives can easily exceed $12 per GB, it's a reasonable cost. However even at this price it's hard to justify.
Stay up to date with the latest news, reviews and features. Sign up to PC World’s newsletters
Follow PC World Australia on Twitter: @PCWorldAu
Join the newsletter!
Roam freely in the digital world. Critically acclaimed performance and security at your fingertips.
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Oppo A73 review: The budget smartphone that sets the bar for 2018
- 2 Oppo R11s review: The iClone you know and love, but not quite the one you deserve
- 3 Blackberry KEYone Black Edition review: What the original KEYone should have been
- 4 Samsung Gear IconX 2018 review: The path of least resistance makes for an easy upgrade
- 5 LG V30+ Review: The videographer's smartphone arrives
Latest News Articles
- Polycom Renew Their Most Iconic Teleconferencing Solution
- Google's Espresso networking tech takes SD-WAN to internet scale
- IEEE sets new Ethernet standard that brings 5X the speed without disruptive cable changes
- New Skype Preview lets Windows 10 Insiders manage phone texts on PCs
- 5 ways Cisco could become an iPhone's best friend
PCW Evaluation Team
The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
- Sony a7R Mk III review: The strongest case yet for ditching your DSLR
- Oppo A73 review: The budget smartphone that sets the bar for 2018
- Oppo R11s: Full, in-depth review
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- FTSenior Project Manager, Business Operations ImprovementsOther
- CCTechnical BA - BI/DatawarehouseNSW
- CCSenior Functional ConsultantNSW
- FTTalent Acquisition Specialist - Large Blue Chip clientOther
- CCSystems AnalystACT
- FTBusiness AnalystOther
- FTBusiness AnalystOther
- FTJava DeveloperVIC
- TPSystem AnalystACT
- TPManager, IT and Digital SupportVIC
- TPMicrosoft Dynamics DeveloperQLD
- FTProject Manager - SAP Asset ManagementOther
- FTSenior .Net DeveloperOther
- CCDigital Project ManagerNSW
- TPSenior Project Manager | Process & SystemsQLD
- CCHadoop DeveloperQLD
- FTSoftware Engineer (C ++, Java)Other
- FTBig Data ArchitectOther
- FTSenior Project AnalystOther
- CCBusiness Process AnalystNSW
- TPAgile CoachNSW
- CCWintel Server & SOE EngineerNSW
- FTMotion Graphics Designer / VideographerNSW
- FTSenior Technical Business AnalystOther
- FTDesktop Support Engineer - OnsiteOther