We where pretty much dumbfounded when we tested the Vertex 3 PRO last week, given the specs of the 'regular' consumer edition Vertex 3 we wondered if this product would be noticeably slower and no, that's just not at all the case. In fact it even wins here and there with its RAW brute performance over that more expensive Vertex 3 PRO. But remember both products are in Beta phase and numbers could differ here and there a little with the final products.
Admittedly I'd have no reservation whatsoever getting myself the regular Vertex 3. The one thing that keeps popping back into my mind is the use of 25nm NAND flash memory though. The write/program cycles before a cell dies has been reduced seriously. Still, even if I throw a heavy duty scenario at the drive, the SSD could even outlive me. But it remains an unknown factor and yeah 25nm NAND FLASH was designed to be cheaper to produce.
Next to that important difference in NAND Flash selection there's of the use of the series 2200 SandForce controller, and sure it's impressive. The series 2500 controller on the PRO model however offers a little more redundancy as it has business class features like power loss data protection & recovery but other then that it's all the same.
This we stated in the previous review as well -- don't get the impression that this SSD will read/write 500 MB/sec all the time though, it's the marketing behind these products that is dominating for a while now. These are the peak values, tests under very specific conditions with specific test applications. If the conditions meet specific requirements then that's where the drive can and without doubt will perform at that level.
But 200/300 MB/sec on average with it's peaks to 500 MB/sec, sure that's a fair real-world performance reality. Now I can rant on and on about performance, but you have seen our tests, and well, I'll just let them speak for themselves.
The regular Vertex 3 will be priced competitive at roughly 2,08 USD per GB and that's a price we all can live with for the performance you'll get. Remember, this SSD deserves the right SATA III controller. Currently the best suited and performing controller is the Native SATA 6G controller to be found on all H67 and P67 motherboards.
So there you have it, the OCZ Vertex 3 offers incredible performance at a more competitive price. Even this engineering sample of the product shocked us positively in terms of performance as that's really raw and unadulterated coming straight at ya. The 25nm NAND Flash memory versus SSD lifespan, well the verdict isn't in just yet, but if you do the math based on very heavy consumer usage, it should not even be a slight worry. That thesis flips around if you'd be planning to use it in a high traffic server or something. But even then it would probably last years.
Anyway, as beta as the product tested today is, it's impressive and will be a well worth addition to the OCZ Vertex line-up. Oh and good gosh, imagine two of these in RAID. Crazy stuff.
Full speed ahead -- ay Sir. More info on this product can be found here.
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