|OCZ Agility-2 SandForce Solid State Drive|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Storage|
|Written by Olin Coles|
|Friday, 30 July 2010|
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Closer Look: OCZ Agility 2 Extended
SSDs are catching on quickly because they work equally well in PC, Linux, or Apple Mac computers. For this article Benchmark Reviews is testing the OCZ Agility 2 'Extended' capacity SSD, which is expected to reach speeds of 280 MB/s for sequential reads and 270 MB/s sequential writes. The OCZSSD2-2AGTE120G kit is built using the SandForce SF-1222 controller with 7% over-provisioning, which means that 120GB out of 128GB NAND flash contained in this SSD are allocated for data use. The standard OCZ Agility 2 is available with the exact same performance specifications, but utilizes 28% over-provisioning and comes in 50/100/200/400GB capacities. On the outside OCZ displays a green and silver Agility 2 label atop a black metal casing, which is identical to the 'standard capacity' 28% over-provisioned Agility 2 product line.
The OCZ Agility 2 SSD is best suited for performance-orientated notebook, and works extremely well for enthusiast-level desktop computer systems. Additionally, the OCZ Agility 2 Extended could also be utilized for mission-critical backups or high-abuse data server systems. SandForce SF-1200 series SSDs have been designed with a focus on high-performance operational and data transfer speeds, and includes encrypted data protection and improved NAND wear-leveling through their proprietary DuraWrite technology. Although OCZ Agility 2 SSDs do not offer an integrated USB Mini-B port, which appeared on some early-generation SSDs, the retail market offers several 2.5" SATA enclosures that utilize the SuperSpeed USB-3.0 standard for high-performance portable file transfers.
Standard 2.5" drive bay mounting points are pre-drilled and threaded into the OCZ Agility 2 SSD chassis, which allows for quick upgrade or addition into any existing notebook and other compact computer system. Packaged with a 3.5" into 2.5" tray adapter, the Agility 2 SSD easily installs into desktop computers as well. The mounting positions matched up to the drive bracket on my notebook computer, and after only a few minutes I was booting from a restored Windows 7 System Image without a hitch.
Unlike most Hard Disk Drive (HDD) storage products, SSDs are nearly impervious to impact damage and do not require (or benefit from) any kind of special vibration dampening or shock-proof enclosures OCZ utilizes a standard two-piece metal enclosure for their Agility 2 SSD series, which reveals the internal components after removing four small counter-sunk Phillips-head screws located at the bottom of this SSD. One of these scews are covered with a 'Warranty Void' label, which OCZ attaches to the chassis on all of their SSDs, and by removing the enclosure cover it will also remove your consumer protection with it. Benchmark Reviews will reveal all of the internal components on our next section anyway, so just be patient and save your product warranty.
Thanks to hand-picked NAND flash memory modules paired to the SandForce SF-1222 SSD controller, the OCZ Agility 2 Solid State Drive suggests transfer speeds of 280/270 MBps read/write for high-performance enthusiasts. Now that you're acquainted with the basic exterior features of this SSD, it's time to peek inside the metal enclosure and inspect the internal components...