OCZ Summit 250GB SATA2 SSD

Conclusion

Conclusion
 
It seems every other week now yet another drive solid state drive is being released which claims to take the speed crown. The OCZ Vertex is a scorching drive attaining amazing speeds throughout and it seems every memory manufacturer out there are trying to better this amazing piece of kit by touting the read speed of the drives in bold font. However, read speed is not the be all and end all of data storage. It's a little like those etailors who promote an exceedingly good price then you notice the +vat and realise it's not such a bargain after all. The OCZ Summit caters for consumers looking for an all round, high performing drive which is fast at both ends of the scale, be it reading huge chunks of data or writing those tiny files that crippled the earliest revisions of SSD's.
 
I did encounter some frustrating problems throughout the testing, especially with regard to HDTune Pro which misreported the write speed of the drive, jumping from 150MB/s to 0 and back up again. The results it gave were sporadic and could not be reproduced time and again hence I did not include the results as they would have been misleading. Sadly, this is what you endure when using new technology - you just have to wait for software to catch up. No such problems were encountered with the remainder of benchmarks on test so I had to put this down to a software/hardware compatibility problem. At the time of writing the review there were no available firmware updates to rectify this fault. This is in stark contrast to other drives which appear to have firmware updates every other week! How you take this will depend on personal preference. Personally, I like to have an update as often as possible to keep ahead of the competition but some may prefer the updates to come slowly but actually make a difference. Hopefully there will be a future update for the Summit which will give slightly better speeds but I wouldn't say I was disappointed with the results the drive did manage to achieve, far from it.
 
The performance throughout the testing was exceptional, particularly in the CrystalDisk benchmark where the Summit dominated the competition. It's a shame I could not compare the drive directly against competitor models as stacking up against the no1 drive out there is perhaps not the best form of comparison in hindsight. That said it performed extremely well, often bettering the Vertex drive, particularly when writing small files which is widely considered to be the chink in any SSD's armour. The Summits read speeds, while slightly slower than the Vertex in most benchmarks but were still way above the mechanical drives and even snapped at the heels of the almighty Vertex on more than one occasion. The Summit then, appears to have compromised a little read speed for write speed which is no bad thing. Especially if you wish to use the Summit as an operating system drive.
 
The biggest challenge manufacturers now face is to get the prices down but while the technology is still being developed, premium prices are to be expected. This is perhaps one of the biggest drawbacks with a drive such as the OCZ Summit. The extortionate price you will have to pay to get your grubby hands on one is going to take your breath away. Are you sitting down? Expect to pay around £550 for the model we reviewed today. Yes, that's a serious amount of money to pay for 250GB, especially when you could now buy a 10TB raid array for less. Most folk however don't have the space, power or storage requirement for such a monstrosity. The OCZ Summit makes for a near perfect operating system drive thanks to the 128MB of cache which makes writing small files a breeze and after a few days use as an OS drive, I can confirm I never encountered any of the stuttering problems encountered by earlier SSD's.
 
In short, if you are on the lookout for a solid state drive that has fast read AND write bandwidth speeds, silly access times then you could do a lot worse than opt for the OCZ Summit. The Samsung controller is certainly a worthy opponent to other controllers out there and I have a hunch that, with a few firmware updates, the Summit drive could well become a clear winner. For now though, with all the above considered, I honestly could not choose between this and the OCZ Vertex. Both are exceptional drives and neither will disappoint, the decision will have to come down to whether you want an F1 car, capable of holding it's own for out and out speed against any opposition (Vertex) or a GT sports car being more versatile than an F1 car yet still has plenty of grunt and enough room to keep the Mrs happy (Summit). 
 
The decision as they say, is yours. 
 
The Good
- Improved Write speeds
- Exceptional all round performance
- Good packaging
- 3 Year Warranty with OCZ
- 128MB cache resolves stuttering
 
The Mediocre
- At this price I expect more than a photocopied instruction leaflet
- Firmware updates seem to be slow
- No drive mounting adaptors included
 
The Bad
- Expensive compared to similar drives on the market
 
 
 
Thanks to OCZ for providing the Summit 250GB for today's review. Discuss in our forums.
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Most Recent Comments

29-06-2009, 11:16:37

w3bbo
The OCZ Vertex set a very high standard two months ago but suffered mediocre write speeds. Can the Summit SSD make up the deficit? Find out in our latest in-depth review...

http://www.overclock3d.net/gfx/artic...121401203l.jpg

Review HERE

29-06-2009, 12:33:52

rapidman17
Great review mate....shame about the price though... is twice as much as the bloody pc i am usin...

29-06-2009, 12:39:55

w3bbo
Yeah I hear ya on the price. Still when people are paying 100 for 30GB I guess it's not so bad lol especially when you consider this is no 'run of the mill' drive.

29-06-2009, 12:40:39

nathan
intel or was it samsung are releasing some cheaper SSDs in the next couple of weeks. Wonder what they'll be like.

29-06-2009, 12:43:52

rapidman17
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='w3bbo'
Yeah I hear ya on the price. Still when people are paying 100 for 30GB I guess it's not so bad lol especially when you consider this is no 'run of the mill' drive.
Fair point i guess.... hopefully if nathan is correct,the introduction of cheaper ssd's will drive down the price of other more expensive ones. These will def be lower performance drives in comparison to the summit and vertex though

29-06-2009, 14:03:35

w3bbo
It greatly depends on the amount of cache the drives carry. Cheap drives usually mean less cache and I would be very hesitant before buying a drive with little/no cache as you will get stutter problems.

29-06-2009, 14:05:32

rapidman17
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='w3bbo'
It greatly depends on the amount of cache the drives carry. Cheap drives usually mean less cache and I would be very hesitant before buying a drive with little/no cache as you will get stutter problems.
Yh thts exactly what i was thinking when i said they would offer lower performance

29-06-2009, 16:57:13

VonBlade
Yipes!!

That's blisteringly fast. Pant-wettingly expensive, but wow such speed.

/green with envy.

29-06-2009, 17:06:44

Ghosthud1
what are ocz thinking! 500 for abit of pcb and chips, i dont think they know the world is in debt

30-06-2009, 14:37:08

Rastalovich
Quote:
Originally Posted by name='w3bbo'
It greatly depends on the amount of cache the drives carry. Cheap drives usually mean less cache and I would be very hesitant before buying a drive with little/no cache as you will get stutter problems.
In the main the SSDs are rated, or quoted, on their ability to empty and fill cache. Being as they're all chips any1, I don't know why they don't just call them cache drives - 250g cache

Pricing is ultimately outrageous, I didn't see anything significant that seperated it from it's vertex partner.

More or less agree with the Mediocre sum-up, u would expect a cheap 3.5 adaptor to be in there as standard.

Packaging wize, I think they're very nervous about making it a good one - criticism then may be that 552, they should charge 499 and keep it very oem.

Good luck to them milking users tbh. They feel the 250g drive is worth more than 2x GTX 285.

30-06-2009, 18:19:47

Toxcity
Once data is in the RAM the harddrive is hardly touched. At that price there is no need for it. Are they stupid?

01-07-2009, 07:26:57

Rastalovich
I have a suspicion also that they're looking at Ultra320 prices, controllers and drives, and thinking "if they can charge that much, so can we".
Reply
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