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philo-sofa

Review: The OCZ Vertex 2 Solid State Drive – Now with Sand!

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This is part (the technical part) of a review I've done for an NZ gaming site - a lot of you will have Read Vertex 2 reviews already, however now it's time to read one... done by an... amateur. Yeah.

 

In either case, if of interest take a look - feel free to post comments over there but please do post your comments, abuse, trolling and iPod price lists here as well!!

 

 

Test System & Methodology

 

 

Intel Core i7 860 @ 4.0 GHz

2 x 2GB DDR3 1600 CL8-8-8-24 1T

MSI P55-GD65 (v 1.8 BIOS)

Sapphire Radeon HD 5870 @ 900/5200

Corsair HX-620

 

 

All drives were connected via an the onboard Intel ICH10R controller, in AHCI mode for the Vertex 2 and IDE mode for the WD Black. A fresh build of Windows 7 Professional was made onto the Vertex 2, drivers and programs were installed and TRIM confirmed as being enabled using Intels SSD Toolbox. This installation was then ‘imaged’ onto the WD Black using Seagate Seatools, and a defrag performed on the WD Black. All timed tests were run ten times each, with the average (mean) value being reported. HD TACH, IOMeter and YouTube demonstrations were each run five times, with the most representative test shown. As a side note, a look through other reviews shows that HDTACH ‘Sequential Read Speeds’ for the Vertex 2are divided into two categories: ~190 MB/s and ~220 MB/s, of which this review fits into the former. Testing on another ICH10R as well as an ICH9 controller showed no change in speeds – however the consistency in IOMeter and other tests between reviews suggests that this may is an issue with HDTach, not the drive.

 

 

 

HDTach 3.0.4.0 - 32mb (long zones) Sequential Test:

 

 

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IOMeter (2006-07-27 Build) Test:

 

 

 

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These are synthetic benchmarks, but unlike graphics card synthetics they’re pretty much on the mark. Both IOMeter and HDTach drive down into something called ‘Kernel Mode’, essentially an attempt to bypass the operating system and connect directly with the drive itself to determine its true performance. The results show the Vertex 2 to not only be much faster than the WD Black, but the fastest consumer SSD there is today bar none. One of these will grow your epenis exponentially – this is a scientifically verified fact. In keeping however with our new age desire to also talk about feelings over a cup of fair-trade ‘chai’ and an ethnic quiche, it’s just as important to boil this down to what happens when you use the drive in real life:

 

 

 

General System Performance Test:

 

 

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Again, these numbers are as good as they come, at an average of 20% faster than the Intel X25M G2 – this is indeed the new performance king - as such the Vertex 2 represents a watershed for the market. The blazing speed is primarily a result of the Vertex 2’s low latency (how long it takes to find data) – that being less than a hundredth that of the WD Black, this combined with moving data at two or more times the speed truly results in a gulf in capabilities between the two. To put all this into relief, if you were to compare a RAID 0 array of six Western Digital Velociraptors using the “Real Life Program Load Times” table above, not one of the benchmarks would come out in favour of the Velociraptors – in fact most would show times pretty close to the WD Black. This reiterates that latency, the ‘time taken to find the data in the first place’ is what SSD’s are all about.

 

 

Read the Full Review

Edited by philo-sofa

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Nice.

 

I am tempted to sell one or two of my current ones for a large 2nd gen Vertex.

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Thanks, glad you liked it :) The drive is definitely faster than the original Vertex - I couldn't really put these numbers in my review but Anandtechs 'Bench' is a pretty impressive comparison tool for SSDs - should be of use in comparing a first gen Vertex to the Vertex 2 and its other contemporaries:

 

Posted Image

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Excellent review. On website price lists, there appears to be two types of Vertex 2 drives available. What's the difference between the OCZ Vertex 2 and the OCZ Vertex 2 (E) ?

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^^ They're the different firmwares I referred to in the review. I had a Vertex 2 50GB, the 'E' version with the exact same hardware and different firmware would be a 60 GB drive - basically the 'E' versions have ~10% overprovisioning (spare space), whereas the normal versions have ~30%. The extra space was expected to improve performance, but in the end it had almost no effect, so I'm guessing they'll standardise on the 'E' capacity versions over time.

 

Isn't worth paying a premium (some shops do charge it it seems) for the Vertex 2 (E), as you can easily flash the Firmware to v1.10 and unlock that extra space :)

Edited by philo-sofa

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