Print 44 comment(s) - last by Jansen.. on Feb 12 at 9:18 PM

OCZ Vertex Still Delayed

Intel has announced a series of price cuts on its lineup of SLC (Single Level Cell) and MLC (Multi Level Cell) Solid State Drives. Their NAND flash is produced by IM Flash Technologies, an Intel joint venture with Micron Technologies.

Lower sales due to the global economic slump are a key reason for the price cuts. However, declining NAND flash prices are lowering production costs for Intel's competitors, many of which are entering the market with a new generation of products. Intel launched their 160GB X-25M for $945 just under two months ago.

OCZ's Apex series of SSDs use an integrated RAID 0 controller to boost performance for a modest price premium over regular MLC SSDs. G.Skill's Titan series uses a similar design, as both use JMicron RAID and SSD controllers. However, OCZ has heavily optimized their firmware to provide extra performance. They are both available at retail.

The Vertex series, also from OCZ, has up to 64MB of DRAM cache to boost performance. This is especially critical for random write performance, an issue that has plagued previous generations of SSDs due to the use of a first generation JMicron SSD controller.
OCZ is still tweaking the firmware of their Vertex line in order to maximize reliability and performance. While many customers are anxious to purchase these SSD, it is commendable that OCZ is trying to avoid Seagate's firmware mistakes.

Intel's mainstream M series uses MLC NAND, while the E series uses the faster SLC NAND. Pricing is for OEMs in lots of 1,000 and above.


 Old Price

 New Price

 X-25M 80GB



 X-25M 160GB



 X-25E 32GB



 X-25E 64GB



Intel has plans for a 128GB SLC drive and a 320GB SSD using 34nm MLC NAND chips. They are expected to be released later in 2009.


Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

Keep sliding . . .
By Bateluer on 2/6/2009 8:55:37 AM , Rating: 5
Still too pricey for me. And too small for anything more than an OS partition. Several different models of TB drives are available for less than 100, and most are available for 150 or less. SSDs aren't worth that exuberant cost, based on the performance numbers I've seen and their MSRPs.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By hameed on 2/6/2009 9:22:24 AM , Rating: 2
Same for me...
Still waiting for them to reach $1 per 1 GB :)

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By headbox on 2/7/2009 1:39:11 PM , Rating: 5
Not me. Your tax dollars bailed out my overly risky Wall Street investments so I can blow endless amounts of money on overpriced tech products.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By Moishe on 2/8/2009 9:14:34 PM , Rating: 2
You're welcome! :)

haha. I hope the prices come down before I build my next computer. Even if they come down a lot, there is no way I would build a next system without a regular drive. Mass quantity of space is so cheap and so necessary.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By Schrag4 on 2/6/2009 9:23:50 AM , Rating: 4
Agreed. I can wait the extra few seconds (at most) to load my apps if it means I spend about 1/45 as much per GB. That extra 300 to 700+ is much better spent on components other than storage...unless you just have to have the best AND money is no object. If you're one of those, I would like to extend my appreciation. You're paying for R&D that I (and many like me) simply can't afford.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By Sunrise089 on 2/6/2009 10:54:49 AM , Rating: 4
This line of reasoning has been conventional wisdom with all non-GPU/non-CPU purchases for some time. I don't believe it holds true for these drives though. Other than a video card, which (while gaming) still has performance that basically scales linearly with price, what other component would provide the same performance increase for $300? A couple of Raptors? No. CPU upgrade? Only if the jump is from a Core2Duo to the cheapest i7, otherwise no. Memory? Motherboard? Not even close.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By someguy123 on 2/6/2009 12:01:51 PM , Rating: 2
indeed. you always pay a premium for performance. in this case, although it greatly lacks in storage, the speed is quite a substantial gain. sure for the average consumer it's "just a few seconds" and i sort of agree that it is useless for people barely on their computer, or only using it for the internet, but if that's the case why have high end parts anyways?

a few seconds saved here and there can add up to minutes or hours saved per day. quite substantial, especially when it comes to increasing work productivity. reading off the HD doesn't just stop at the initial program load; programs always call off the HD for something.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By hameed on 2/8/2009 10:12:13 AM , Rating: 2
It is never about "perfect scaling" but rather value for money...

This line of thinking would mean that you only buy the cheapest Celeron CPU ever. You should consider the benefits of any option in comparison to the others and whether the added "utility" is worth the extra costs.

P.S. I just started studying Value Engineering and just trying to justify it somehow :)

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By omnicronx on 2/6/2009 11:20:46 AM , Rating: 1
Now why on earth would you use an SSD for anything other than an OS partition? SSD's have a LONNNG way to go before they can be used as storage devices, even with lower prices and higher capacities.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By Reclaimer77 on 2/6/2009 5:29:33 PM , Rating: 2
Now why on earth would you use an SSD for anything other than an OS partition?

Because people are idiots and don't understand that SSD's aren't meant to directly compete with hard drives.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By mindless1 on 2/7/2009 11:48:56 AM , Rating: 3
How easily we forget a couple of basic facts.

1) Most people don't need 1TB of storage, don't even have 500GB yet. What most want is less wait doing common tasks, and no drive failures, no data loss especially since most people have poor if any backup strategy. Blame them for this but regardless an SSD comes closer to their needs even at 1/10th the capacity, and yet we do know the capacity will keep climbing and/or cost for what most people need will keep droppping - quickly, not taking a decade to do anything less than store huge movie collections.

2) We are not most people, considering it's a tech enthusiast 'site. We always want more, because otherwise it'd all get a bit boring wouldn't it?

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By HollyDOL on 2/7/2009 4:43:24 PM , Rating: 2
I have to agree... I run with 2x160GB WD drives and over all partitions there's still about 100GB free. Unless you turn your HDD in a movie storage, that 320GB X25-M that is supposed to come out this year is pretty much healthy for use of waste majority.

For really huge data volume, get 2TB Green drives; usualy you don't need THAT fast drives for your several-lifes porn movies collection.

True server disks (SAS, SCSI) are pretty small as well compared to those we use at desktops. And it is like that for years.

Even though SSDs are pretty expensive still, I would like a couple of those. My disks are slowly about time to be changed for new ones (age) and having the last loud component in computer gone...

Crosses fingers there is more competiton so I can afford X25-M.

Now where's that 4TB SSD with 1GBps read/write!?

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By noxipoo on 2/6/2009 11:22:29 AM , Rating: 2
while it is still expensive, my Intel X25-E SSD sample is blazing fast. I wouldn't have paid the $800 they wanted for it but it's damn fast. Application response are much much faster and games load times are way down. I'll probably buy one if they were $200 or less.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By icanhascpu on 2/6/2009 1:12:54 PM , Rating: 2
Never actually used one have you.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By Bateluer on 2/6/2009 2:09:10 PM , Rating: 2
Nope, I can't afford one so I just look at the benchmarks and numbers. And those don't appear to justify the price.

I can live with the microseconds of delay and paying 1/45th per gigabyte. Even at 1$ per GB, its still too much money. I can get a very fast Caviar Black 1TB drive for 130, and its not even the fastest TB drive available. That's roughly 13 cents per gigabyte.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By icanhascpu on 2/6/2009 2:19:06 PM , Rating: 2
Benchmarks and numbers don't tell you how it is. You would need to use one to see the difference. 120write 190read and crap like that is not the same as the drives you're used to.

If you can't afford it, thats fine, but until you use y=one, your opinion about them is uneducated.

People can also "live" without computers.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By mindless1 on 2/7/2009 11:53:05 AM , Rating: 1
Actually, with the price of today's memory anyone with a properly set up system won't benefit nearly as much as you imply. 120-190MB/s IO pales in comparison to the performance of a filecache, or even a ramdrive considering gigs of memory can now be had for $5/per after a rebate.

It'll improve boot and hibernation times, I'll grant that. Otherwise the user is the typical bottleneck, not a properly set up system.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By homebredcorgi on 2/6/2009 3:17:49 PM , Rating: 2
Take it from someone who regularly uses one of these (X-25M) in a laptop. They are fast. Worth the price? That would depend on your concept of expensive.

Previous laptop had ~20MB/s read and a 19ms lag (!). That is now 180MB/s read and 0.1ms lag.
You notice it at startup: the time to start a program after logging in is ~3 seconds (I have a bunch of crap that loads at startup). The 16 core desktop with 32GB of RAM (loading the same crap) takes ~25 seconds from startup before you can get a program to launch. Things like this do help productivity and usability in the long run. Not to mention it is completely silent - which takes a little getting used to.

Loading several GB of data takes several seconds instead of minutes. Resume from sleep takes a few seconds instead of 20. Things like this don't sound like much, but they do make a difference in the long run.

Will it save the world? No. Is it a cost effective desktop replacement? Probably not. But if you do a lot of reading/writing of data on a laptop and can live with a small amount of storage, there's no other option. give this another few years and you WILL be using them.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By Hare on 2/6/2009 4:10:40 PM , Rating: 2
Random seek/write is nice in SSD drives but the actual throughoutput is not out of this world. RAM is dirt cheap so 32GB (for app caching) and a fast drive with dense platters is also a pretty good choice (for considerably less $). Of course that doesn't help with OS boot times but that's a minor issue.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By icanhascpu on 2/6/2009 7:59:41 PM , Rating: 2
That would depend on your concept of expensive.

That was the obvious logic from what was being discussed. The point you seemed to have ignored is that perception of worth cannot be measured unless one properly evaluate the product, and looking at numbers on a webpage doesn't cut it.

The difference between experience and knowledge is sometimes vast.

RE: Keep sliding . . .
By MrPoletski on 2/9/2009 4:54:37 AM , Rating: 2
well from the look of it that situation is changing... rapidly

By KingofL337 on 2/6/2009 8:53:13 AM , Rating: 5
NewEgg Pricing

80GB X25-M $369.00
160GB X25-M 729.00

32GB X25-E 410.00
64GB X25-E Not Listed

RE: Prices
By Jansen on 2/6/2009 8:56:49 AM , Rating: 4
When Newegg buys them, it's in lots of 10,000. :)

RE: Prices
By therealnickdanger on 2/6/2009 8:59:48 AM , Rating: 3
Yeah, Intel is so predictable... in an awesome way. They know they are still #1, but they aren't afraid to slash prices to compete. However, they still make you pay that premium! :D

I would still rather pay $299 for the 128GB Titan than $369 for the 80GB X25-M. More capacity, faster writes, and a lower price trump the X25-M's faster reads, IMO.

RE: Prices
By protomech on 2/6/2009 10:01:00 AM , Rating: 2
It may have faster theoretical writes, but for most users the x25-m offers better performance. With 128GB vs 80GB at (basically) the same price, it's hard to make a general recommendation..

RE: Prices
By therealnickdanger on 2/6/2009 10:22:33 AM , Rating: 2
$70 != "basically"

The slight overall performance advantage of the Intel drive isn't justified in that price differential, IMO, when the other factors are applied. To each his own. Given the choice, I'd rather have a 128GB Intel drive... ;-)

RE: Prices
By ekv on 2/6/2009 11:25:23 AM , Rating: 2
I would agree Intel is predictable ... but not in the same way 8)

They know they are still #1, and so they wait till another manufacturer can make something that competes with their product. When they get close, that is when Intel cuts prices. Compare to what just happened with AMD's Phenom II [lousy named, finally acceptable perf] cpu and Intel's quad 9550. Intel is aware early adopters will pay extra for higher performance, and it is how they recoup R 'n D costs.

I do like the Titan 128GB though. Wanted to wait for a comparison of it to the OCZ Vertex before I committed that much dough however.

RE: Prices
By VaultDweller on 2/6/2009 9:36:30 AM , Rating: 2
NewEgg dropped the Intel SSD prices just after the G.SKILL Titan came out, and well before this announcement was made.

RE: Prices
By therealnickdanger on 2/6/2009 9:56:29 AM , Rating: 2
I noticed that too. I wonder how many staffers at Intel scour message boards, reviews, and such just looking for all this stuff? I mean, within days of the first Titan review, Intel slashed pricing.

RE: Prices
By someguy123 on 2/6/2009 11:57:48 AM , Rating: 2
I'm sure intel has a team that closely monitors the competitor's future releases, and plans accordingly.

List prices
By Reclaimer77 on 2/7/2009 12:25:15 PM , Rating: 2
The prices listed are LIST. Last month on Newegg the 80GiG was 400, not 600. I expect the new price on Newegg to be in the 200's.

No other SSD's even come close to the Intel for the money. For 200+ bucks, you would be hard pressed to find a better investment to increase PC performance.

RE: List prices
By Jansen on 2/8/2009 4:21:48 AM , Rating: 2
The price drop was actually at the end of January. The channel has known about this for a while and started adjusting their pricing early, it just took a little longer for it to get to us.

Newegg is selling the X-25E for $400, right now they have a promotion at $370 with free shipping. Don't expect to see prices drop too much until Vertex and Apex sales start to hit Intel's sales.

Newegg is not going to magically sell SSDs for half price. It may drop to $300 as Intel adjusts pricing though...

RE: List prices
By fteoath64 on 2/9/2009 7:55:01 AM , Rating: 2
Titan and Apex walks all over the Intels with their SLOW write speed. It is a matter of months before these goes at fire-sale prices. The next generation of really fast SSDs are just around the corner, so these products now are almost like perishable goods.

Just wait till Toshiba releases their stuff in a couple of months...

RE: List prices
By Jansen on 2/12/2009 9:18:24 PM , Rating: 2
Maximum SUSTAINED write speed is one thing, but you'll hardly see that. RANDOM write speeds, on the other hand, has been the Achilles heel of MLC SSDs.

By hajj on 2/6/2009 8:43:43 AM , Rating: 2
surely the 64gb version isnt supposed to be cheaper than the 32gb? is that a typo?

By Gideon on 2/6/2009 8:45:10 AM , Rating: 2
1 more price-drop and SDDs might actually become viable in the "bang for buck" sense.

on a sidenote:

X-25E 32GB $575 $415

X-25E 64GB $795 $390

Now this must be a copy-paste error, or one really should go out shopping :D

Sorry folks...
By Jansen on 2/6/2009 8:51:20 AM , Rating: 2
Having a bit of trouble with the table formatting.

For enterprise use
By LyCannon on 2/6/2009 4:44:50 PM , Rating: 2
Don't forget, these drives are really geared toward large enterprise use, and the wealthy consumer use. While expensive to us, the energy savings over the life of the product are tremendous, so if you have 500 of these in a large server farm over your enterprise, imagine the lower electrical cost!

Just wait till vertex2
By shabby on 2/6/2009 9:24:36 PM , Rating: 2
Ocz said they'll be releasing vertex2 in the next quarter, internal quad raid... 550/450mb read/write speeds. I cant wait for that.

Costs more than a laptop
By flipsu5 on 2/7/2009 3:57:03 AM , Rating: 2
Blows my mind...

By vladio on 2/8/2009 1:59:51 PM , Rating: 2
What we need:
200GB (or more),
200MB/sec write(or more),
$200.00 (or less)...

When 160 = 80 price...
By 7Enigma on 2/9/2009 9:18:21 AM , Rating: 2
I just into the SSD market. I can't stomach the current costs for such a small size, but when I can get 160gig of Intel speed (or higher) for ~$300-$350 I'll bite.

64 GB < 32 GB?
By OCedHrt on 2/6/2009 8:44:13 AM , Rating: 1
I hope nothing is wrong w/ the table.

Intel SSD pricing
By IntelUser2000 on 2/6/09, Rating: -1
"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher
Related Articles
OCZ Apex SSDs Officially Announced
January 14, 2009, 4:29 PM
OCZ Vertex SSDs Delayed
January 13, 2009, 9:43 AM
Intel Ships Pricey 160GB SSD
December 23, 2008, 11:14 AM

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki