Solid State Drives Guide
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A Breath of Fresh Air
The OCZ Vertex 4 is an interesting addition to the current bumper crop of high-end consumer SSDs because while many are using the ubiquitous SandForce SF-2281 controller, the Vertex 4 breaks the mold by going with the Indilinx Everest 2. And judging from our results, the new Vertex 4 and its Indilinx Everest 2 fares pretty well overall.
We noted that read performance was generally below that of what the SandForce drives are capable of and performance on the two Futuremark benchmarks, PCMark 7 and PCMark Vantage, was erratic. Since this problem was already documented with the Marvell-driven Crucial M4, we suspect that the poor performance on these two benchmarks can best be attributed to the Indilinx Everest 2 controller disagreeing with the benchmarks. That said, the Vertex 4 did post very impressive write speeds, the highest we’ve ever seen in fact, far exceeding that of the SandForce drives. If your typical usage involves more writing to the drive than reading, then the Vertex 4 is sure to delight.
As we’ve highlighted earlier in our review of the Intel SSD 520 Series, early SandForce drives were plagued by reliability issues and a persistent BSOD bug. Although these have since been rectified with firmware updates from respective manufacturers, there are still reports of drives who are still suffering from random occurrences of BSODs. Hence, for those who are cautious and skeptical of SandForce drives, the OCZ Vertex 4 is a viable alternative.
Retailing for around S$449, the OCZ Vertex 4 is rather pricey as it is priced towards the higher-end of similar drives with 256GB capacities, and while it disappoints with its lackluster read performance, its write performance was very impressive. All in all, the Vertex 4 and its new Indilinx Everest 2 controller is a breath of fresh air in a marketplace crowded with drives using the same SandForce controller. It may not impress in its overall performance, but it surely does in write-based workloads in almost all of our tests. Given these attributes, it's now up to the buyers to be mindful of their usage and choose the best drive to fit their needs.
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