OCZ entered controversial territory with the Vertex 4 and subsequently the OCZ Agility 4 SSD. For those drives, OCZ paired Marvell SSD controllers with in-house Indilinx firmware. Although OCZ has been fairly quiet regarding exactly how the drives work, we do know a few things. First, when you write to these drives, performance drops off considerably once you consecutively write past half of the empty capacity. Second, if you give the drives a few minutes, they will restore performance and let you write up to half of the empty capacity before limiting performance again. One thought with this is that the drive is essentially writing in a SLC like mode for the first half of the drive, [...]
Lately I have done a few SSD benchmark sessions on some of today’s popular SATA III solid state drives. One thing that I did not have is results of Anvil’s Storage Utilities bechmarks for all of those reviews. I actually think Anvil’s utilities represent one of the better, if not the most complete picture of solid state disk performane these days so I decided to put raw output from four recently reviewed drives on one page. As such below are the Anvil results for the Crucial M4 256GB, SanDisk Extreme 240GB, Samsung 830 SSD 256GB and OCZ Vertex 4 256GB. I do think that the sweet spot in terms of price and performance is at 240-256GB at the moment which is why I have [...]
I had not thought about this in awhile, but Solid State Drives (SSDs) are now less expensive than their hard drive counterparts. Sure, someone probably just did a bit of research and saw a SanDisk Extreme 240GB is $180 ($0.75/GB) while a 3TB Western Digital Red edition drive is $180 ($0.06/GB) and declared me insane. I would instead argue that a SSD is not competing with a slow as can be massive 3TB drive. Instead, we should be comparing the current crop of solid state drives to their spindle counterparts, 10K and 15K rpm SAS drives. Of course, one could add a 300GB Velociraptor in there to showcase fast spinning SATA drives and the result would be similar.
The SanDisk Extreme 240GB utilizes a LSI SandForce SF-2281 controller alongside Toggle NAND to achieve some fairly impressive performance. Inside the SanDisk Extreme is NAND from the Toshiba and SanDisk joint venture which puts SanDisk at a bit of an advantage since they have a secured supply of NAND which all vendors do not enjoy. SanDisk also enjoys a very well known brand name and extensive channel operations. go to an online or retail shop and SanDisk products will be featured, even at large retailers such as Costco, WalMart and Target where companies like OCZ will have little chance of penetrating. With prices falling dramatically in recent months, I did want to take a look at [...]