Oh man again a new week, again a new SSD review :) These puppies just keep entering the premises of the Guru3D test lab, it feels like receiving candy really. SSD development is fast, constantly evolving and improving each and every month that passes. As a review site we constantly have to reposition, adapt and keep ourselves informed.
Lately price per gigabyte is something that matters a lot in the fierce SSD arena among competitors. As such OCZ Technology wanted to bring an SSD to the market that is priced a little more aggressively yet remains a seriously fast SSD -- even with cache memory, and they are doing so in a rather agile way... with the Agility series SSD.
The OCZ Agility series SSD is an accumulation of all the latest breakthroughs in SSD technology, including controller design, spiffy read/write speeds, and 64MB of onboard cache, yet with this series, at a somewhat better price. See, by doing so OCZ shaves another 20 to 25% off the sales price.
Now -- I did this in a recent SSD review as well, but let me ask you; what is the big advantage of an SSD compared to an HDD? What are the vast majority of benefits? Well, it's good to recap that information every now and then as all SSD reviews purely focus on the sheer READ/WRITE performance. The big advantage is of course that SSD drives do not have any mechanical and thus moving parts. Traditional HDD drives have their magnetic head spinning over the platters of your HDD. In terms of access time that's quite a drag when it comes to latency as that head needs to move consistently towards a given position on one of the platters. Also the rotational speed of these platters is limiting performance. 5400, 7200 and 10.000 RPM are the most common speeds for consumer drives. Read/write performance for example with a WD VelociRaptor drive can peak at just over 100 MB/sec. But really that's it. Also everything that moves will degrade over time and surely... it makes noise.
All the factors and limitations mentioned above are something that the latest SSD drives do not have. The access times are close to NIL, no mechanical moving parts that get degraded, no noise. With that in mind, over the past year SSD drives started to really evolve. Reliability improved, the small files issue was solved with the help of caches, and then performance, thanks to multi-channel technology, went up real hard real fast. In fact the performance levels are closing in rapidly to the limitations of the SATA2 specification. We have 260 MB/sec READ performance on some SSDs already, while that (not really even old) SATA2 specification can manage 300 MB/sec at maximum. Yes, SATA3 will be released soon for this reason alone, doubling up that bandwidth, which is much needed with the rate things are going right now.
And with the aforementioned tale in mind we are going to start up a review on OCZ Technology's latest offering. They have launched a new Agility series (Performance) SSD drives. Based on a kickass Indilinx Barefoot controller and Samsung MLC NAND flash memory we'll test a product that is specced with amazing performance for the money.
This is one of these products that I am really excited about as price/performance on this drive is just so much better. See, for a 120GB Vertex drive you pay 350 EUR while for the Agility 120GB version you pay roughly 290 EUR, and that's interesting, as the tests will show this SSD really isn't 'that' much slower in overall usage, in fact it's bloody fast.
Let's find it all out. Hippediehop on over to the next page -- let's start up this review shall we?
OCZ Agility 3 SSD review OCZ is about to inject an SSD into the market that is labeled Agility 3 SSD. What's the difference in-between Agility 2 and now 3 you might ask ? Well, two primary things really, controller and NAND flash memory type. Labeled with advertised speeds of of 525 MB/sec with write speeds of 500 MB/sec this product should be really interesting for many of you.
OCZ Agility EX SSD 60GB review Today we test the OCZ Agility EX SSD. If 100% reliability is your thing then this is the cheapest SLC based SSD with an Indilinx controller that you can think of. The OCZ Agility EX offers top notch performance and reliability, we honestly believe in the theory that the SSD could probably outlive you.
OCZ Agility SSD 120GB review The OCZ Agility series SSD is an accumulation of all the latest breakthroughs in SSD technology, including controller design, spiffy read/write speeds, and 64MB of onboard cache, yet with this series, at a somewhat better price. See, by doing so OCZ shaves another 20 to 25% off the sales price.