As all Atomos monitor/recorder users know, the Atomos website contains a list of recommended media. Names on the list include SSDs, 2.5in hard disk drives and cFast media from brands such as SanDisk, Angelbird, Western Digital and Atomos itself. But there are also media on the list that cost a lot less than these brands. One of those is Kingston and they’re featured with their HyperX Fury range of SSDs. I’ve always been very happy with Kingston memory for my Macs, so I decided to buy a 120GB HyperX Fury SSD to use in the new Shogun Flame. And that was a big mistake.
I didn’t bother to first test the SSD’s performance by running it through Blackmagic Design’s Speed Test, such was my confidence in Kingston’s quality. In this case, my confidence was soon to be betrayed. I got out to shoot a 3-minute 1080p60 videoclip with the GoPro HERO4 and Ninja Assassin. When I got home, my second blunder was not to first check if the footage was recorded without problems. I just offloaded and then formatted the SSD.
That worked out bad when I tried to ingest the clip in Final Cut Pro X. The editor didn’t recognise the clip. When I went to the macOS Finder to check what was wrong, it became instantly clear: the Kingston HyperX Fury had not been able to keep up with the data stream of a ProRes 420 HQ 1080p60 recording! The file that I offloaded was broken.
When your Ninja or Shogun detects your medium can’t keep up with the data stream or when power is interrupted, it somehow creates a secondary file which allows you to fix the videoclips afterwards if the problem isn’t too bad.
Knowing this, I copied the offloaded data back to the SSD and re-inserted it in the Ninja Assassin. Sure enough, the device recognised the broken file and was able to fix it. I wondered if this was a glitch, so I started testing the HyperX Fury.
Blackmagic Design Speed Test reported this SSD to be capable of a Read speed of 277MB/sec and a Write speed of 122MB/sec. To put this into perspective, a SanDisk Extreme Pro reads at 402MB/sec and writes at 330MB/sec on my system.
To make sure I was right and the disk did under-perform at all frame sizes and frame rates, I ran it through a number of tests on a Ninja Assassin. These tests revealed the Kingston HyperX Fury will only reliably write a video stream when the frame size isn’t bigger than 1280 x 720 at a frame rate of 50p.
In short, the Kingston HyperX Fury 120GB SSD is unreliable for higher frame size/rate combinations and should be removed from Atomos’ Recommended media list.
Unless my drive is flawed or a near-DOA, this SSD can’t even keep up with a hard disk drive based model such as Hitachi’s Travelstar or Western Digital’s Scorpio Black. It also becomes very hot when using it for extended periods of time.