If you are looking into getting a new medium to high-end motherboard, chances are that you’ll see a mSATA slot on it. This little slot allows you to mount a tiny sized storage directly on your motherboard. The Plextor PX-256M5M is one such SSD based drive that landed in our labs last week and plugs straight into the mSATA connector of your motherboard.The advantage of having such a form factor is that you do not need any additional cables to connect the drive to the SATA port or your PSU giving your system a much cleaner look.
The Plextor PX-256M5M has dimensions of 50.8 x 29.8 x 3.6 mm and weighs 9 grams. It comes in a small plastic see-though packaging that mentioned the firmware version as well as the manufacturing date. Based on the SATA revision 3.0 with a 6.0Gbps interface, the Plextor PX-256M5M uses the Marvell 88SS9187 controller with Toshiba 19nm Toggle NAND flash. It comes in storage capacities of 64GB, 128GB and 256GB.
I received the 256GB capacity drive for testing which, according to Plextor, has read speeds of 540 MB/s and write speeds of 430 MB/s. For testing, I used the Intel Z87 chipset based MSI Z87 XPOWER motherboard. The following is the result posted by CrystalMark.
The results are exactly what Plextor claims and mighty impressive. It is, in fact, faster than the Plextor M5S drive that we tested some time back. Plextor provides a three year warranty with the SSD which is reasonable. Priced at AED $230 for the 256GB, the Plextor PX-256M5M is surely a bit on the higher side but you would expect that from the latest, greatest that is also one of the tiniest. If I was building a PC for myself, I would definitely choose a motherboard with an mSATA slot and equip it with the Plextor PX-256M5M as my boot drive.