It's not a secret that with the SF1200 series SSDs, OCZ brings a great new SSD series to the market. On certain applications we see baffling numbers reaching advertised speeds. The most shocking results we see however are to be found in PCMark Vantage, which we feel is the best real-world stress test you can think of as it emulates productivity on your PC, just like in a real-world scenario but then it's ran as fast as possible. That's where SandForce really shines -- high load productivity.
Absolutely dominating is the random IO performance of small sized files write performance. Nothing, and really .. nothing can come close here to date. The performance is as advertised with read speeds up-to roughly 280 MB/sec and write performance at roughly 260+ MB/sec, depending on how you measure. Real world performance will be different and I doubt you'd even notice the difference to say an Indilinx controller based product with normal the enthusiast usage. It's good to see that the Firmware supports TRIM, so if you use Windows 7 that increases performance over a long time-span.
Some comments then, what the SSD industry really needs is a downfall in prices and the biggest problem with SandForce products is that they make SSDs more expensive over the Indilinx products and for whatever reason they shaved off nearly 20 to 28 GB in storage volume size, and that's a lot. See typically you buy the SSD sized at 120GB or 128GB in storage volume, the SandForce products come solely in 50,100 and 200 GB sizes at the following prices.
I also just checked on-line prices here in the Netherlands:
OCZ Vertex 2 OCZSSD2-2VTX100G 100GB costs 350
OCZ Vertex 120GB SSD 120GB costs 310
So while you gain more random IO write performance, you loose a fifth to a sixth of your volume size and the product is more expensive. In the end that's a call you have to make, as whether or not in real-life situation you'd even notice the faster random write IO is something I doubt very much. So while the SandForce products might be faster ... I'd still recommend you to look into Indilinx products as well and value for money wise make a solid decision on what solution is the better alternative for you.
Well, as expensive as an SSD still really is, it will get rid of one of the greatest bottlenecks in your system, your mechanical HDD. In return you'll receive extremely fast seek times, no more high latencies, fast file loading and writing and sure, after using several SSDs for the past year now can say that they are very reliable as well. Personally I love to have my Windows boot up in 30 seconds opposed to 55. The same with Photoshop which takes what 3 seconds to load up? The list goes on and on, linear to SSD development. The Vertex 2 is once again one step closer to the limitations of the SATA2 bus and kicks massive ass when it comes to helping out with better real-world performance on your PC. It won't be long before SATA 6G will be a recommended requirement.
We hand out our hard to earn best hardware award to the OCZ Vertex 2, it really is an incredible piece of hardware and pushes SSD performance to an even higher level, but comes at a steep price per GB.
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