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OCZ enters yet another market, jostling with Fusion-IO and Super Talent for enterprise and enthusiast dollars

The promise of fast access speeds has lured many enthusiasts over to SSDs already. Maximum capacity is doubling every year, and costs are dropping due to new process technologies being introduced.

One of the most important target markets for SSD manufacturers is enterprise customers. They are demanding the fastest access speeds possible, whatever the cost. SSDs are often used in a tiered storage scenario, replacing short-stroked 15k RPM mechanical hard disk drives. Even though SSDs are expensive in terms of cost per gigabyte, they offer the greatest performance return for servers due to their fast access times and read/write rates. Power and cooling requirements are also greatly reduced.

OCZ recently launched their Vertex EX series of SSDs in order to compete in this lucrative market, but SSDs are already starting to be limited by the SATA interface. Companies like Fusion-IO, which counts Steve Wozniak on its Board of Directors, have faced the problem by using the PCI-Express interface, which is available using 1, 4, 8, and 16 lane slots on most motherboards.

Super Talent recently announced its RAIDDrive SSD with up to 2TB of storage, but won't be available until June. It uses an x8 PCI-E slot to achieve read speeds of up to 1.2 GB/s, far exceeding the 300 MB/s design limit of the SATA 2.0 specification.

OCZ will compete against the RAIDDrive with its own Z-Drive SSD using a PCI-E 2.0 x4 slot. It will feature a combined 256MB cache managed with an onboard RAID controller. Capacities of 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB will be offered. Maximum read and write speeds vary for each model in the series, although the maximum sustained write speed will be limited to 200 MB/s for all Z-Drives. Random read and write speeds were not made available.

While weighing only 500 grams, the Z-Drive will also save space for power users already looking to RAID Vertex drives. It has a MTBF (Mean Time Before Failure) of 900,000 hours along with a 2 year warranty.

 “It is our goal to deliver tailored SSD solutions for the complete spectrum of high performance applications,” said Eugene Chang, Vice President of Product Management for the OCZ Technology Group.
 
“Designed for ultra high performance consumers, the Z-Drive takes the SATA bottleneck out of the equation by employing the ultra fast PCI-Express architecture with a RAID controller and four Vertex controllers configured in four-way RAID 0 within an all-in-one product, making this solution ideal for applications that put a premium on both storage performance and maximum capacity.”

Pricing and shipping dates have not yet been announced. However, based on the current cost of Vertex drives, pricing around the $800, $1400, and $3000 marks for the 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB models respectively can be inferred.

Part Number

Size

Maximum Read Speed/ Write Speed

OCZSSDPCIE-1ZDRV250G

250GB

450 / 300 MB/sec

OCZSSDPCIE-1ZDRV500G

500GB

510 / 480 MB/sec

OCZSSDPCIE-1ZDRV1T

1000GB

500 / 470 MB/sec

 



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By Inspector2211 on 4/27/2009 1:26:02 PM , Rating: 2
...$1200 and $1900 for the two smaller drives, respectively, and no price for the Terabyte drive is available yet.

Oh well.

Back to my fallback plan of two Vertex drives in a RAID0 configuration...




RE: Prices (taken from Froogle.com) are actually...
By leexgx on 4/27/2009 8:46:35 PM , Rating: 2
OS on first vertex {60gb}
Games on second vertex {250gb}
1TB disk for storage

best option for SSD really, RAID can Add latency to them and make them slower better to just put 2 drives in c: SSD 64gb , d: SSD and e: HHD

so then OS can do things with out bothering you

but realy 1 OCZ vertex 250gb are Very fast should be fine for OS and games other stuff 7 seconds to load most big games and thats most SSDs as well as crapy dual JMicron hack SSDs

allso less likey to lose data when raid fails


RE: Prices (taken from Froogle.com) are actually...
By Targon on 4/28/2009 8:00:19 AM , Rating: 2
RAID can add some latency if the drives are garbage and the controller isn't designed well. You go with four drives and a fast RAID controller and your latency goes out the window. 2ms seek times should be fast enough for most people to handle.


By leexgx on 4/28/2009 11:45:59 PM , Rating: 2
i agree access time (no seek time on SSD) is just insane on SSDs (baring JMicron SSDs but thats more for randome write problems)

id use RAID with two g.skill Titan 250gb SSDs (maybe smaller) as thay are quite cheap now, as the raid part of the system should hide the Write delays that are prone on JMicron type of disks and the perfoamce should be very good

realy any SSD should be far better then hard disk if your lucky and your motherboard hides the Wirte latency


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