There are cases out there that allows owners to display their SATA SSDs much like a case accessories but for the most part, SATA SSDs are making way in favor of the less discrete M.2 SSDs which offer far greater performance but one thing M.2 will never have is the same display real estate that SATA SSDs have. That, and coupled with the fact the SATA 2.5″ SSDs are now fairly affordable. But going back to that previous statement about display real estate, if you do get a case that lets you display your 2.5″ SSD, what do people?
That’s right: a small little rectangle with perhaps a logo on it. Quite boring ain’t it?
Well back in COMPUTEX 2019, TEAMGROUP debuted their T-FORCE DELTA MAX RGB SSD. In a market where everyone is ready to move to M.2, TEAMGROUP is the only company to have as vibrant and magnificent of an SSD as the DELTA MAX SSD.
Nowhere in the marketing of this product does TEAMGROUP make bold claims about its performance and that’s understandable. It cannot compete with PCIe and NVMe SSDs. But if and when you do decide to get one of these drives, we probably agree on the reason. If you have cases from Fractal Design, NZXT, Corsair or many others that allow you to display 2.5″ SSDs, and you really want to take advantage of that space then say no more. In this review, we’ll touch on performance a little bit but we’ll also discuss why there’s still a place for such an SSD like the TEAMGROUP T-Force Delta Max SSD. Read on!
Features & Specifications
- Simple design mirror can present a mirror like reflection effect
- Exclusive in luminous mode and motherboard synchronization function
- Independent dual control interface
- Using addressable RGB LED module
- 3-year limited warranty with free technical support service
Closer Look – DELTA MAX SSD
As part of T-FORCE gaming, the Delta Max RGB SSD eschews the white TEAMGROUP design for a more stylish full-colored package. The Delta Max RGB packaging is done similar to the other T-Force RGB products: a hero shot in front with details including the capacity of our drive. The back of the box shows multiple details and inside we have the SSD protected in a snug foam insert.
Inside the package we have a couple of extras with the DELTA MAX SSD: a pair of cables for internal USB and ARGB connectors as well as a microfiber cloth. Then we have the basics of a user guide and brand sticker.
Similar to the TEAMGROUP T-Force Xtreem ARGB DDR4 memory that we reviewed before, the Delta Max RGB SSD features a heavily glossy surface. The material they use is also similar with a dark amethyst-colored material for the diffuser. In both cases, there is no translucent light bar which is white when turned off. As you can see in the images above, the drive retains full uniform look when turned off so its a beauty to look at even when not in use.
Here’s a direct comparison. Now the photography isn’t the best here but the materially, they are using similar materials but the Delta Max RGB does have a slight tinge of purple and really has that deep graphite shine. On the other hand, the Xtreem has a more bluish tone to its heatspreader. Subtle notes especially for those that may notice these things first out of the box. You’ll never really notice it in application.
SATA SSDs have mostly dropped to 7mm thickness but to give way for the light show on the DELTA MAX RGB SSD, TEAMGROUP has dialed the thickness back to >9mm. This makes sense as most side-mounted SSD displays allow usage of 9mm drives. Looking at it from the side though, we do see that the 8mm drive is still there but the extra 2mm is used for the actual lighting for the DELTA MAX RGB SSD. If you haven’t seen a SATA device or have started building a PC lately, a SATA SSD looks like this but regularly more plain. Extremely plain.
I planned to take this thing apart to show you the actual SSD PCB but looks like TeamGroup is not taking any chances and has sealed this thing. The screw holes on the bottom are for mounting the drive but the drive itself needs to be pried open but forcing my way in could damage the top plate with the lights so I didn’t proceed.
To power the lighting on top, the DELTA MAX RGB SSD uses a micro USB port. This can be connected to a internal USB header on your motherboard if you don’t have an ARGB connector. The ARGB connector is still the better option if you want better RGB control on this drive.
You actually don’t need to power on the SSD to see the lights. The lights are powered off the ARGB/USB connector and the drive is independent from its lights. But alone, the T-Force Delta Max RGB doesn’t look too special, you need to put in a case.
Here it is mounted on the PSU tray SSD mount on my Deepcool case. Now this case is already blazing with RGB thaks to the fans but with the GPU and board not providing much lighting, the GPU support brace and Delta Max RGB SSD compliment each other nicely to help set that area off. With full ARGB support, it jives with the rest of the rig’s lighting.
Now in my CPU case, the SSD mount is up on the PSU shroud cover’s top. Some cases like NZXT will have provisions for SSDs on top and on the side facing the side window. That is the perfect mounting position for something like the DELTA MAX RGB SSD. You also have cases like Corsair and Fractal Design which have their hard drive areas on the side of the front of the case so drives are facing the user. Plenty of modders use this area to create sponsor areas for SSDs and nothing does it better than T-Force Delta Max RGB SSD.
User Experience & Conclusion – TEAMGROUP T-Force Delta Max RGB SSD
We normally would have a dedicated performance testing segment for this but we’ve not received a SATA drive for review in the past 2 years. That said, its important to walk readers through the numbers but we’ll include some charts as well. In the chart above we have a the Delta Max SSD in a chart full of M.2 SSDs including Gen4 drives. In terms of pure performance, you’re certainly not going to compete in this segment with a SATA drive. And that actually speaks a lot about how you should perceive the TEAMGROUP T-Force Delta Max RGB SSD: it is not out there to get performance crowns but in its own league against SATA SSDs, the Delta Max RGB SSD is a big hitter.
Against some of the enduring popular drives from Samsung and Crucial, TEAMGROUP’s Delta Max RGB SSD holds well. It features DRAM cache to help improves thing along and for larger file writes, the TeamGroup Delta Max RGB SSD it doesn’t drop to basement bottom like some M.2 drive does once they’re out cache space.
So ultimately, we arrive at value. TEAMGROUP offers the Delta Max RGB SSD in two options: a 500GB and 1TB drive. Priced at $79 and $131 respectively, against most SATA SSDs it is priced with a slight premium. BUT as a combined RGB accessory and storage device, there is no device quite like it.
At first look, TEAMGROUP looks like they installed an LCD on this thing and that’s advantage versus competing RGB SSDs. The HyperX Fury RGB SSD and Teamgroup’s own T-Force Delta RGB (another RGB SSD) along with the rarely seen ZADAK RGB SSDs, do not have the same presence and aura as the T-Force Delta Max RGB SSD. So is it worth the money? Depends on a few things but I’ll go out and say it and that most of these drives are treated as RGB accessories nowadays rather than storage and if you’re coming from that perspective, this is a unique piece of accessory and it commands its asking price. As a storage device, you have a lot of other performance options but for a little more, you get a decently performing SATA SSD.
In terms of negatives, its hard to say. We can complain that why SATA? Well because you can’t mount an M.2 SSD off to the side of your PSU shroud. Then we complain about performance but then realize this is actually a very capable SSD. So ultimately… its a deadend and for everything you can complain about, it is the peak at what it is: a SATA SSD that happens to have the most brilliant RGB lighting ever made on a storage device or perhaps any component.
We do have a suggestions for TEAMGROUP: given that it serves more as a placeholder for RGB more than a drive, there should be a market for just the RGB lights alone and selling the lights options alone as an RGB accessory purely could reduce cost and allow people with RGB dead spots to fill in those area with more of these dummy drives so-to speak. With dummy memory already a thing, there should be an option for that for display drives.
In conclusion, this is purely a showpiece that happens to have a functional aspect to it. With RGB extension cables having the asking price that they do, the TEAMGROUP DELTA MAX RGB SSD is just another RGB accessory that goes a little bit extra. You can look at it in two ways: its an expensive RGB light or an SSD that just pretty lights, either way, it is the only one of its kind and there’s is no questioning that.
TEAMGROUP backs the DELTA MAX RGB SSD with a 3-year warranty. I give it my B2G Editor’s Choice Seal!
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