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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


Maximum Read Speed/ Write Speed



450 / 300 MB/sec



510 / 480 MB/sec



500 / 470 MB/sec


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RE: Is This Nothing More than SSD-RAID???
By leexgx on 4/27/2009 8:32:07 PM , Rating: 1
your thinking of raid card Probeing the hard drives,

this SSD has no config, you plug it in and it work (maybe drivers) it may add at more then 30-50 secs off the boot time due to the Speed of it unless your replaceing it from SSD in the first place then it may add 10 secs to boot time but i realy think it boot faster, one of these vertex drives are fast on there own and 4 of them are just insane (vertex Z-Drive)

if you get an real RAID card (not compareing to the above) them things do take there time to get going as thay norm have stagered start up on for the hard disk so not to over load the PSU (peak load all disks starting up same time uses alot of power)

RE: Is This Nothing More than SSD-RAID???
By seamonkey79 on 4/28/2009 3:11:00 PM , Rating: 3

?His? thinking of raid card probing the hard drives...

the rest made even less sense.

English is NOT that hard people, figure it out.

By leexgx on 4/28/2009 11:38:49 PM , Rating: 1

there are more things that more Pricey RAID cards do then what on board do, some do take up to an min to do what ever thay do norm its sending hard disk spin up command to each SATA port waits then sees if something is pluged in (probe part norm waits 5-15 secs per port) this is more prone on Hardware SAS/SCSI RAID cards then cheap raid cards/onboard, as thay norm just ask all drives at once norm only adding 5 secs to the boot up time, but can make alot of load on the PSU, if power on spin up hold jumper is not used on the hard disks (only seen them on WD consumer drives)

some one used 2 raid cards and on board with 24 SSDs , somthing likey that may take time to start but as ssds have no spin up time not likey as thay respond to commands soon as power is applyed funny vid 24 SSDs 2GB/s speeds (total)

did not want to take it to far with the tech side guess i should of before

By ipay on 5/2/2009 3:45:09 AM , Rating: 2
What was that??

What language are you speaking in cause this technobabble didn't make any sense!!!

"If you mod me down, I will become more insightful than you can possibly imagine." -- Slashdot

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