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Written by Olin Coles   
Friday, 03 April 2009
Table of Contents: Page Index
OCZ Vertex SSD RAID-0 Performance
Features and Specifications
First Look: OCZ Vertex SSD
Vertex SSD Internal Components
SSD Testing Methodology
Random Access Time Benchmark
Basic IOPS Performance
Linear Bandwidth Speed
I/O Response Time
Buffered Transaction Speed
Windows XP Startup Times
The Truth Behind Heat Output
Solid State Drive Final Thoughts
Vertex RAID-0 Conclusion

Vertex RAID-0 Conclusion

EDITORS NOTE 05/10/2009: Benchmark Reviews has re-tested the OCZ Vertex with the latest v1.10 firmware, which includes TRIM support, and the resulting performance was generally identical to the previous firmware. Please remember that TRIM is a Windows 7 supported feature, and does not improve performance on Windows XP or Vista Operating Systesm.

Benchmark Reviews begins each conclusion with a short summary for each of the areas we rate. The first is presentation, which takes product packaging into consideration to the extent that it provides adequate packing material and consumer information for an informed purchase. Since the American economy in the midst of an economic recession, many manufacturers are having to pull out some very creative ideas to help market their products. Add onto this the fact that SSD technology already carries a premium price tag, and you can understand why product presentation becomes important. OCZ takes the Vertex series packaging back to basics with a simple-yet-catchy black and white appearance, while at the same time delivering critical product information and specifications for the untrained consumer.

Solid State Drives are a lot like spark plugs: you see them just long enough to install, and then they're forgotten. OCZ keeps production costs down on the Vertex SSD Series with a uniform black painted enclosure for all of their SSD products, and uses an adhesive label for each product series and underside specifications. There isn't very much to expect from the appearance of Solid State Drives, because like their Hard Disk Drive counterpart they are meant to place function before fashion. To this end, I still wish manufacturers would begin using sealed plastic enclosures to prevent moisture or electrical shock damage.

OCZ Vertex SSD RAID-0 Performance Speed Benchmark Test

Construction is probably the strongest feature credited to the entire SSD product line, and OCZ products have never been an exception. Solid State Drives are by nature immune to most abuses, but add to this a hard metal shell and you have to wonder what it would take to make this drive fail. If an Vertex Series product does happen to fail during the 2-year warranty period, end-users can contact OCZ via the company website or extensive support forums. Fortunately, there's also a toll-free telephone number for support or customer service questions (800-459-1816).

Based on the collection of benchmark performance tests we've conducted, the OCZ Vertex offers linear bandwidth so far ahead of previous competition that it might require calling this a new generation product in order to justify how so many other 'new' products have just been left behind. The MLC Samsung flash DRAM modules paired to a 64MB cache buffer on this 120GB Vertex SSD help yield a 0.10 ms response time. ATTO Disk Benchmark tool reported an impressive 249 MBps maximum read bandwidth but only 138 MBps maximum write in our tests, while RAID-0 Vertex performance soared to 438/358 MBps. Lavalys EVEREST linear full-sector bandwidth performance was a steady 247.6 MBps read-from and impressive 225.2 MBps write-to speed, while RAID-0 Vertex SSDs raised the bandwidth to 504.9/437.2 MBps.

As of December 2009, the OCZ Vertex series of SSDs is available at NewEgg and other popular online retailers. A lower-capacity 30GB Vertex OCZSSD2-1VTX30G is sold for $99.99 after rebate, while the 60GB OCZSSD2-1VTX60G sells for $219 after rebate. The larger 120GB version we tested in this articles is offered for $409. A jumbo-sized 250GB version of the Vertex SSD is available for $829.

In conclusion, the OCZ Vertex MLC Solid State Drive offers tremendous performance in read and write bandwidth speeds and an exceptional 0.10 ms response time at a attainable price. As a single drive, the Vertex SSD is second to none (at least until OCZ launches the Summit SSD), and easily outperforms a RAID-0 set of Western Digital VelociRaptor hard drives. Place two OCZ Vertex SSDs into a RAID-0 striped array, and the results are phenomenal. The only drawback is price, which keeps the premium around $4 per gigabyte or storage space. I can recommend the OCZ Vertex to cutting-edge super-users and performance enthusiasts who want unmatched response and speed from their computer system.

EDITORS NOTE: Because of an extremely low failure rate for this product series, OCZ has to three years of coverage.

Pros:Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award

+ Impressive 505 MBps read and 437 write RAID-0 bandwidth with EVEREST
+ 64MB Cache buffer permanently solves 'stuttering' problem
+ Very low 0.10 ms random access time
+ Lightweight compact storage solution
+ Resistant to extreme shock impact
+ Up to 250GB of SSD capacity
+ 2-Year OCZ product warranty
+ Low power consumption may extend battery life

Cons:

- Metal case is heavier and less durable than plastic
- Lacks integrated USB 2.0 Mini-B data connection
- Expensive premium-level product

Ratings:

  • Presentation: 8.75
  • Appearance: 8.75
  • Construction: 9.75
  • Functionality: 9.75
  • Value: 8.00

Final Score: 9.0 out of 10.

Excellence Achievement: Benchmark Reviews Golden Tachometer Award.

Questions? Comments? Benchmark Reviews really wants your feedback. We invite you to leave your remarks in our Discussion Forum.




 

Comments 

 
# MRAnthony 2010-03-18 04:56
I'm always wary of Mbps(bits) and MB(bytes), too many people use them interchangably. The Ads on the same page for this product say "250MB" not bits, so what is the Atto 249 MBps maximum read bandwidth??? bizarre?
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# El Presidente'Marko 2010-11-27 01:09
Anthony, typically Mbps (Megabits) refers to a transfer speed whereas MBs refer to a capacity. Whether ignorant people use them interchangeably or not, using this guideline you should always be able to figure out which it is. :)
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# RE: El Presidente'Olin Coles 2010-11-27 07:51
I'm not exactly clear which side of the argument you're on here, Marko. Read up on the specifications for any SSD product, and you'll see their bandwidth speed represented as MB/s.
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# DKSGDKSG 2012-04-18 00:41
MB when used in advertised capacity is not Megabytes, it's Million Bytes. Bytes or Bits will be denoted by B or b respectively. When the vendor advertise 250MB, it means 250 Million Bytes which is approx to 244.14 Mega Bytes. This 244.14 is RAW Megabytes and have not included partitioning and other possible overhead used in the system which may yield lower capacity than 244.14 Megabytes.

When used on the bandwidth, make sure you fully understand what the bandwidth measures. In different network or cable setup, the bandwidth could be shared and a single device do not usually get that kind of bandwidth on average. On network, typically vendors means Megabytes when they denote MB unless otherwise denoted using fineprints, but the usual price is using Megabits which looks a lot better on paper.
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# RAID-0 Setuptypoknig 2010-05-10 09:52
How exactly did you have your RAID-0 setup during this test? For instance, were you using the Intel Matrix Storage Manager or some other method?
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# Intel ICH10Olin Coles 2010-05-10 15:11
RAID-0 was built using the motherboard's Intel ICH10 controller.
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# Stripe sizeJ Walsh 2010-05-12 08:46
What stripe size was used in the RAID 0 setup and why?
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# 128KB Stripe SizeOlin Coles 2010-05-12 08:49
This articles used a 128KB stripe size, which is the largest the Intel ICH10 controller allows for RAID-0 sets.
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# Benchmarking A Bigger RAID 0 Arraytypoknig 2010-06-08 22:06
Hi, I have been running the same benchmarks you ran on my RAID 0 array which has 3 120GB OCZ Vertex drives compared to the 2 used in this benchmark. My results have not even been close to what I thought I would be getting after reading this review. I have posted some info about my results here:

##overclock.net/benchmarking-software-discussion/750979-benchmarking-3-120gb-ocz-vertex-ssds.html

Maybe you can take a look at my stuff and tell me why my linear read in Everest does not produce a flat line like yours (I realize I used 512MB block size, but the 1MB block size produced identical results), and why my numbers are so much lower when they should be higher. I have also ran the benchmarks without an OS (or any data) on the array at all, and the results are very similar. Any thoughts?
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# Partition alignmentOlin Coles 2010-06-14 19:43
I'm betting that our results are higher because of drive conditioning: partition alignment, diskpart clean all, secure erase, etc. Since TRIM doesn't always pass through to RAID arrays, used drives will produce lower performance results.
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# sanitary erasetypoknig 2010-11-27 21:23
I have had this problem fixed for quite some time now. If you go to the link I provided in my last comment you will see that using sanitary erase did trick for me... so as you said, "drive conditioning" was my problem. To keep my drives as clean as possible I use the "Wipe Free Space" feature of CCleaner. Does the same thing as wiper.exe but it works when drives are in RAID (unlike wiper.exe).
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# flash, not dramscott 2010-12-02 15:43
Samsung K9HCG08U1M-PCB00 is flash memory, not DRAM... this is why we call it an SSD
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# 4-drive RAID 0Remo 2010-12-23 08:42
Mr Coles, do you have any idea how would a 4 SSD in RAID-0 perform? Would you use it as the boot drive in a windows 7 system?
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# RE: 4-drive RAID 0Olin Coles 2010-12-23 08:44
You should look into the OCZ RevoDrive 2 PCI-Express SSDs, which fit four SSDs into RAID-0 on one board. Our review is here:

benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=635
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# RE: RE: 4-drive RAID 0Remo 2010-12-23 08:57
I definitely will look for it. But, how much gain in performance would you expect when upgrading from a 2-drive raid-0 to a 4-drive raid-0?
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