ECS LIVA Z Plus Kaby Lake vPro UCFF PC Reviewby Ganesh T S on April 12, 2017 8:00 AM EST
Networking and Storage Performance
Networking and storage are two major aspects which influence our experience with any computing system. This section presents results from our evaluation of these aspects in the ECS LIVA Z Plus. On the storage side, one option would be repetition of our strenuous SSD review tests on the drive(s) in the PC. Fortunately, to avoid that overkill, PCMark 8 has a storage bench where certain common workloads such as loading games and document processing are replayed on the target drive. Results are presented in two forms, one being a benchmark number and the other, a bandwidth figure. We ran the PCMark 8 storage bench on selected PCs and the results are presented below.
The Transcend MTS400 SSD uses the Silicon Motion SM2246EN SSD controller together with Micron's 20nm MLC flash. While the performance will not set any benchmark records, reliability ought to be good given the use of MLC. That said, the use of a SATA SSD of relatively low capacity (128GB) means that the system ends up at the bottom of our storage benchmark charts. The close numbers in the storage bench (not bandwidth) suggests that the appearance at the graph's bottom is not as bad as it sounds when it comes to rseponsiveness.
On the networking side, we restricted ourselves to the evaluation of the WLAN component. Our standard test router is the Netgear R7000 Nighthawk configured with both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz networks. The router is placed approximately 20 ft. away, separated by a drywall (as in a typical US building). A wired client is connected to the R7000 and serves as one endpoint for iperf evaluation. The PC under test is made to connect to either the 5 GHz (preferred) or 2.4 GHz SSID and iperf tests are conducted for both TCP and UDP transfers. It is ensured that the PC under test is the only wireless client for the Netgear R7000. We evaluate total throughput for up to 32 simultaneous TCP connections using iperf and present the highest number in the graph below.
In the UDP case, we try to transfer data at the highest rate possible for which we get less than 1% packet loss.
The use of a 2x2 802.11ac WLAN card (the Intel AC8260) helps the LIVA Z Plus come out on top in the WLAN benchmarks. Many UCFF PCs still continue to use 1x1 cards. The choice made by ECS for the LIVA Z Plus is a welcome one.