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Print 25 comment(s) - last by Fnoob.. on Feb 19 at 9:34 AM

Retailers may go above MSRP due to expected demand

OCZ has stated before that it delayed its Vertex drives due to firmware upgrades. DailyTech has now learned more details on why OCZ held back shipments of its flagship SSD drives.

The latest firmware for OCZ's Vertex series boosts sequential read and write performance, so much so that it can compete with Intel's X-25E Extreme series on performance. However, the Vertex boasts a much greater capacity and a much lower price.

The Vertex series, which uses an Indilinx Barefoot SSD controller, was originally specified at 200MB/s sequential read and 160MB/s sequential write. However, OCZ's internal tests show up to 250MB/s sequential read and 240MB/s sequential write speeds.

These tests were conducted on an empty drive, and will not officially be presented to consumers. However, it gives an indication of how fast the final drives will be and allows some results to be inferred.

While the firmware is responsible for a large part of the improved performance over the introductory specifications, it is only because of the hardware that it is able to work with. The 120GB and 250GB drives have 64MB of DRAM cache and more channels to access its MLC NAND flash, whereas the 30GB and 60GB drives only have 32MB of cache.

It should be noted that OCZ rounds down its capacities for several reasons. Most storage vendors show capacity in decimal format, whereas Windows show capacity in binary format. This means that the reported capacity is lower than what is on the label.

Most SSDs also reserve some capacity for redundancy in case of bad sectors, and also for wear leveling. These reserved areas may occupy up to five percent of an SSD's storage capacity.

Prices are also coming down, as more production of 16Gb and 32Gb NAND flash comes online at smaller process geometries.

OCZ will post official specifications and revised MSRPs when it ships the Vertex series later this month.
   

Model

Read

Write

List Price

Street Price

Intel X-25M 80GB

250

70

 $390

$369

Intel X-25M 160GB

250

70

 $765 

$779

Intel X-25E 32GB

250

170

 $415

$410

Intel X-25E 64GB

250

170

 $795

???

OCZ Apex 60GB

230

160

$199

$199

OCZ Apex 120GB

230

160

$370

$319

OCZ Apex 250GB

230

160

$830

$679

OCZ Vertex 30GB

200

160

$129

???

OCZ Vertex 60GB

200

160

$249

???

OCZ Vertex 120GB

200/240*

160/220*

$469

???

OCZ Vertex 250GB

200/240*

160/220*

$869

???

 *Unofficial specifications, subject to change



Comments     Threshold


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

sequential read/write performance
By irev210 on 2/16/2009 8:41:18 AM , Rating: 2
While sequential read/write performance is nifty, I think too many people are getting caught up into those #'s. How a controller performs overall is what matters. Random streaming of 4K blocks, for example, is much more demanding on the controller. I/O throughput + the ability for the controller to handle smaller blocks efficiently poses a much greater challenge to SSD makers.

This is where the Intel controller happens to shine. While it may not have the fastest sequential read/write performance, it is a very well-rounded controller that has best-in-class I/O performance, random block read performance, etc. Which means in real world usage, Intel still bests much of the competition, even SSD's sporting higher theoretical xfer limits.

I can't wait for a full review on the Vertex and how much additional power consumption the 32/64mb of cache will use, along with the rest of the performance aspects of this SSD. We can have a great alternative to the expensive X25-E.




RE: sequential read/write performance
By shabby on 2/16/2009 9:12:48 AM , Rating: 3
You should read this review that just came out, i was shocked how much the intel drive slows down over time.

http://www.pcper.com/article.php?aid=669&type=expe...


RE: sequential read/write performance
By Fnoob on 2/16/2009 9:23:53 AM , Rating: 2
Thats the one I was looking for, thanks.


RE: sequential read/write performance
By Khato on 2/16/2009 2:38:59 PM , Rating: 2
So, am I missing it, or did they not disclose % of disk space utilized anywhere in that 'report'?

It's well known that entirely filling up an SSD is a very bad idea, and I wouldn't be surprised if that's the sort of 'torture test' used in order to get the drives performing as reported in the first place. Now there's no question that ideally this wouldn't happen, it's hard to avoid all of the inherent flaws of MLC flash... By vastly increasing most all the important aspects, the Intel SSD gets itself into trouble when all of its storage capacity is used.

Anyway, it's not all that difficult to keep the drive performing like new, just leave it a decent buffer of free space and turn off the idiotic windows page file.


"Intel is investing heavily (think gazillions of dollars and bazillions of engineering man hours) in resources to create an Intel host controllers spec in order to speed time to market of the USB 3.0 technology." -- Intel blogger Nick Knupffer

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