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Kingston 120GB A400 SATA 3 2.5″ Internal SSD SA400S37/120G – HDD Replacement for Increase Performance , Black Electronics
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Fast start up, loading and file transfers More reliable and durable than a hard drive. Dramatically improves the responsiveness of your existing system Multiple capacities with space for applications or a hard drive replacement SSD must be initialized and formatted to enable host computer and applications to access the drive. Use Windows Disk Management tool, or MacOS Disk Utility app, or Linux compatible disk partition utility to initialize and format new SSD. Fresh install operating system from distribution media to SSD, or use data cloning software to migrate data from source drive to SSD.
Blaine K. Evans –
Not much to say about these. They just work. Kingston had become my go-to for inexpensive SSD upgrades on older machines, and I’ve used them for over a decade now without issue. I came into the SSD era with some confidence in SanDisk based on past experience with their hardware, but over the last 15 years or so, I’ve experienced around 50% failure rate with SanDisk, in both SSDs and SD cards.Samsung is the gold standard in solid state for performance and reliability, but their prices reflect that, and justifiably so. For cases where it makes more sense to minimize cost, Kingston is the best choice, followed by Transcend.There are no “gotchas” in the feature set here. Speeds and capacities match what is advertised, and any machine running its OS from a spinning disk would benefit greatly from a migration to a Kingston SSD.If you’re building a gaming rig and you can afford it, get a Samsung 960+ NVMe. If your mom is saying she wants to buy a $2000 Macbook because her 5-year-old Dell has gotten too slow, stick one of these in it (along with some cheap Kingston RAM if possible). Do that, run CCleaner, and maybe try to get her to switch from Internet Explorer to Chromium Edge, and she won’t complain again for a few years, at which point you’ll troubleshoot and find yourself asking “Hey, did you install something called ‘1337h@x⁰r_cryptom1nz.exe’ on here?” and she’ll shout from the kitchen saying “Don’t delete that, it gives me extra lives in Candy Crush!”
Learn More –
It’s great. The enclosure looked better than expected, thanks to glossy, embossed graphics. It helped a low budget desktop PC from 2010 handle Windows 10 Home 64 bit’s need for constant storage device activity. The 55.1 MB / s hard drive often filled the Task Manager’s graph with 100% activity for several minutes at a time. When the machine was idle and background maintenance processes were active, it behaved the same way. Now the 261.1 MB / s solid state drive (on a SATA II Intel G41 motherboard) calmly and quietly handles these matters and keeps the formerly tall, solid green task manager graph way down at the bottom with a few small spikes now and then. The computer is much more responsive now. It isn’t frantically trying to handle Microsoft’s bloated code and getting in my way. Interactive flow with the user interface has been restored. Delaying gratification and waiting for solid state drive prices to fall was a good move, since the performance difference was very noticeable. It’s cool to see Windows 10’s File Explorer generate photo thumbnails quickly. Installing software is much faster too. Updates and malware scans are no longer a burden. I’m glad I went with an established name brand.
Isaac Shelley Yukon –
Bought 2 and have had them up and running for a little under 2 weeks now.My PC is old and outdated; it only has SATA 2.0, BUT this upgrade is a HUGE difference in load time and quality of gaming. If you’re thinking of upgrading from HDD to SSD even older machines will see a noticeable difference in performance.I used MiniTool Partition Wizard (Free) to Migrate OS to SSD. Yes, they have a clearly labeled button just for migrating to SSD that makes things as quick as a click. Also, it’s free for non-business use, but I digress.This drive is fast and I can’t wait to do a new build to see its true, unhindered speed.I would highly recommend these to anyone looking to make the leap or for anyone looking for additional drives for their SSD PC.
I was able to do a fresh install of Windows 10 rather quickly. The slowest part was getting the install files off of the DVD since I didn’t have a spare USB flash drive sitting around. After that the installation was a matter of minutes. The computer boots much more quickly and feels more responsive as well when installing and opening programs.The 120GB version seems to be plenty for me, which was one of my concerns. After formatting, the 120GB is 111GB. Minus 20GB for windows 10 is 91GB. Minus about another 10GB for common software (Office, Chrome, etc.) is 81GB. Minus 44GB for the game I’m currently playing leaves me about 36GB for scratch. I don’t imagine this ever changing much, as all other files and games I have installed will be on a 1TB HD. With the ease of moving installs between Steam libraries now, I plan on keeping only one game on the SSD at a time.If you can have the setup with a “small” SSD and a terabyte or larger HD, the 120GB SSD will be satisfactory. However, if this will be your only drive, 120GB would be quite limiting and I would not recommend for anything other than a workstation PC. In this case, I would opt for a larger drive to accommodate your needs.
Kristin YoungKristin Young –
PRODUCT: Kingston A400 120GB SSDSUMMARY:This drive is a great deal for improved performance if you don’t need a whole lot of space. It’s top-notch for an entry-level SSD, but because of how bare-bones it is, you might need to be prepared for a very slightly more difficult process to set this up than with some other popular SSD choices.MY SITUATION:I’m not precisely an IT professional, but I do deal with all the tech for the small business I work for, and I’d rank my IT skills as medium-high. I’m working on updating the computers in an office with 16 employees, and with most of the computers needing a boost in speed, it’s great to be able to buy several of these for a good price. The vast majority of our work documents are stored in shared locations, so none of our computers need a whole lot of space—our staff are generally only using 50-70GB on their drives for the OS and a pretty standard array of programs, so 120GB is the perfect size for us.Because most of our computers are at least three years old, the hardware only supports SATA II, so we’re not seeing the huge improvement in speed that we might if we were going from HDDs to upper-limit SATA III speeds, but regardless, speeds have more than doubled in the four computers I’ve swapped these into so far, and users are seeing improvements, particularly in startup speeds for the computer (from more than 3 minutes down to 30 seconds) and for individual programs. See images for CrystalDisk comparison before and after on one of the machines. I’ll post an update once I put together the brand new build I’m about to do with one of these.ISSUES IN THE PROCESS:I did run into a couple of issues that threw me off while installing these. The first was that the drive would not show up after hooking it up in the case and rebooting. It didn’t show in This PC or in Computer Management. The solution was to run Windows Memory Diagnostic, which is easily found through the start menu and took maybe 5-10 minutes to run on the two computers that had this issue. After that, I was able to see the disk in Computer Management, and I GPT partitioned each of the drives from there. See pieced together image for visuals on the process for getting this settled.The other slight hiccup I had was the computer refusing to boot from the drive once I removed the old HDD; this was easily resolved by changing the boot mode in the BIOS from Legacy to UEFI, which was necessary because I had partitioned them all as GPT.OTHER NOTES:I planned on mounting all of these with some heavy-duty Velcro we have lying around the office, which I’ve heard several places is fine because SSDs don’t have moving parts, so they don’t need to be held super-steady, and skipping a mounting bracket saved about $6 per drive (which is nice when buying several). The Velcro is doing just fine for three of the drives, and the fourth computer, conveniently, had a hot-swap bay with a 3.5 slot on one side (where the old HDD was), and a 2.5 spot on the other side that worked perfectly with some spare screws from the last case I bought.
Definitely not the fastest SSD on the market, but for what it is, it’s fantastic. It’s very inexpensive and provides performance SIGNIFICANTLY better than a mechanical hard drive. Kingston knows they’re not top of the line, and they price their products accordingly; I respect them for that. I don’t buy the highest end top of the line components because I don’t buy parts so I can benchmark them and get excited about how fast they are. Real world performance is all I care about, and I’m not going to notice the difference of a few seconds between different SSDs. The difference between HDD and SDD though, phew! HUGE! I just want Windows to boot up fast (about 8 seconds after I hit the power button I’m in Windows), games to load quickly (Battlefield 1 maps load in about 10 seconds) and this drive is perfect for that. Also, my motherboard has SATA 2 and not 3, so there was no reason for me to get the fastest drive available. KEEP IN MIND FOR THE SCREENSHOT THAT I POSTED, THIS IS WITH A SATA 2 CONNECTION, NOT SATA 3. SATA 3 is (theoretically) twice as fast, so there would be a significant increase in performance with a SATA 3 board over this. Still extremely pleased with these results on a sata 2 connection with a $45 drive. Would buy again, and probably will.
Mr. MunkyMeat –
After reading a review by a DGS fellow that said he had 30 years in the tech business, I thought this was a real P.O.S.. Well, a little while ago my Ex called me up because she was having some issues with her computer and wanted me to look at it. Being the sap I am, I said ok. Turns out the HDD was bad. The bells went off and I remembered the review left buy the tech guy in Florida and I thought “Eureka!”. I would get this SSD for her system and within a few days her computer would explode like a dumpster full of TNT.I get the SSD not on time but a full day early in fact. It installs super easy and she comes and picks it up. I have to hide my excitement as I just wait to hear about the evil that is to come. So after about a week I get anxious and call the Ex to see what was up. Her “Boy Toy” answers and gives me the dreaded news. Not only is it still running, but it is super fast and efficient. He then proceeds to thank me and compliment me on “How mature” it was of me to do this for her even after how messy the divorce was. And how good of a person I really was for being the bigger person and all of that.Long story short, if your looking for a piece of hardware to sabotage your Ex’s computer with, this is not it. But, if you are looking for a stable SSD on the cheap to add some performance to your system, well, sadly this is in fact it.
D. Ho –
I’ve been fixing PCs for 35+ yrs. I’ve probably forgotten more about PCs (DIP switches, IRQs, DMA addresses) than most Geek Squad techs learned.I’ve been an avid Linux user for 10 yrs. now (although I fix more Windows problems of course).This Kingston SSD drive is a fantastic value. Yes, I prefer Samsung, WD, Sandisk for higher capacities. However, for smaller capacities, I love this Kingston. The outer plastic encased material is more durable than the competitors. This SSD works just fine.The drive can be formatted for MBR or GPT and it installs Ubuntu or MX Linux just fine either way.From the information S. Carpenter provides, I can surmise a few problems w/ his setup:1. His system boots UEFI. Therefore it MUST boot from a GPT hdd/ssd.2. His Kingston SSD is formatted for MBR. Therefore his system CANNOT boot from it.His EASY EASY fix is to reformat the Kingston SSD to GPT, leave it empty, and then install his fave Linux distro on it.Unfortunately, Mr. Carpenter doesn’t have the common sense to google his problem before mouthing off to the world about “the” problem with Kingston, when it’s actually “his” problem with his limited computer expertise.BTW, I loved this Kingston SSD that I’ve bought 6 of them in order to revive older PCs.Before buying, I would check the prices and calculate the $/GB. The prices seem to fluctuate a lot lately. Like I said, I do prefer the other brands at higher capacities, but at lower capacities (and lower prices), this product can’t be beat.FYI, I did test the WD EasyShare SSDs, available exclusively at BestBuy. WD tries to price it identically to the Kingston, but in my benchmarks, reads are on par but writes as 2-3x slower. Nice try WD, but no medal for you.
Good price and performance at a pretty unbeatable price. Kingston has been in the game of flash memory for as long as any other manufacturer out there and their reliability is as good if not better than Samsung and any other brand on the market. SSD is in the same category of memory storage as a flash drive so I trust Kingston’s reliability will be the same here as well. Other big name brands (Samsung for instance) have only recently started making flash memory devices, so I would rather stick with a company that focuses mainly on flash memory, and has since it was invented. This SSD is being used in a Lenovo T60 laptop, so it will get the most abuse you can put an SSD through (being in a laptop of course) and I will update this review if something changes.
K. Burke –
This is not the fastest SSD out there by any means. But it is cheap, and it is still an order of magnitude faster than a HDD. While you’ll definitely see the difference between this and the top tier SSDs in benchmarks, in day to day usage you’ll honestly be hard pressed to notice the difference. The 240GB version is a perfect size to run your OS (plenty of room for all of the large temporary files Windows creates) and throw a few games on, pair with HDD for file storage.This is probably the single cheapest, most effective and impactful upgrade you can make to your computer. If you’ve got the money for a newer Samsung EVO drive with a larger capacity then go for it, but if not this will do the trick in a pinch. Well worth the money.