OCZ Vertex TURBO 120GB Solid State Drive

Introduction

Introduction
 
With every new release of Solid State Drive it seem performance is also increased. To meet the demands of the consumer, OCZ have recently unleashed the Vertex Turbo range of Solid State Drives which build on the phenomenally fast Vertex series (reviewed here). The original drive was reviewed like the majority of our reviews 'out-of-the-box' but newer firmware has since been released which increases performance even further and as such we are awaiting the latest firmware update for the Vertex Turbo which is receiving excellent reports thanks to the update incorporating much needed features such as garbage collection and TRIM support. We will keep you posted on further developments with a retest of the original and Turbo Vertex drives to see what exactly the benefits are along with a guide to flashing your solid state drive.
 
Until we receive the new firmware, we will show you today what you can expect from the Vertex Turbo at present. The speed of the Vertex Turbo has been increased over its brethren to 270MB/s read and 210MB/s write which is nearing the limit of current SATA technology. Fear not though because with 3rd generation SATA just around the corner boasting up to 6GBps the phenomenal bandwidth of upcoming drives will be accomodated.
 
Using the same Indilinx Barefoot controller of both the Vertex line and our current fastest SSD, the GSkill Falcon, OCZ are sticking to what is perhaps the best controller on the market. 64mb of SDR DRAM cache running at 128MHz (as opposed to 166MHz on the original Vertex) is also implemented which has proven to be more than adequate for preventing the previous problems when writing small files. Apart from this slight tweak the major difference between the Vertex Turbo and other drives of similar decent is the use of improved NAND flash chips that promise to push the performance envelope further than ever before.
 
One of the biggest drawbacks of SSD technology is that over a period of time NAND flash memory is effected by data fragmentation which can cause the drives to slow down considerably. While some sompetitors drives still suffer from this degradation, OCZ's exclusive firmware will maintain the drives peak performance throughout it's lifetime without any maintenance from the consumer thanks to the built in 'optimizer'. This little piece of code runs while the drive is idle so it will be unoticable to the end user. Also, OCZ  have stated that these drives will fully support TRIM with the impending arrival of Windows 7 operating system, making OCZ's drives a future proof investment.
 
For notebook users, the performance requirement is such that they are the ideal replacement for slower, heavier, mechanical hard drives which also consume a fair bit more power. Desktop users though are simply looking for power and storage.
 
Heres what OCZ had to say:
 
OCZ Vertex Turbo Series provides a cutting-edge design for enthusiasts looking to transform their desktops or laptops. Enabled by a proprietary firmware and 64MB of 180MHz DRAM cache, the Vertex Turbo Edition ramps up performance levels to new heights, while providing the snappy computing, longer battery life, and shorter boot-ups users have enjoyed from the original. The Vertex Turbo delivers best-in-class read and write speeds clocking in at up to 270MB/s read and 210MB/s write along with the lower power consumption and superior durability compared to conventional hard drives.

The OCZ Vertex Turbo drives feature a durable yet lightweight alloy housing, and because OCZ SSDs have no moving parts, the drives are more rugged than traditional hard drives. Designed for ultimate reliability, Vertex Turbo Series SSDs have an excellent 1.5 million hour mean time before failure (MTBF) ensuring reliability over the long term.
 
Specification
 
The specification below shows the current line up of OCZ Solid State drives with the technical information taken the the OCZ product pages:
 
Name Read (MB/s)* Write (MB/s)* Cache Memory Type
Vertex Turbo 270 200 64MB (180MHz) MLC NAND
Vertex EX 260 210 64MB SLC NAND
Vertex 250 180 64MB MLC NAND
Summit 220 200 128MB MLC NAND
Agility 230 135 64MB MLC NAND
Solid 2 125 100 64MB MLC NAND
Solid
155 90 - MLC NAND
 
As you can see, the OCZ drives are progressively becomming faster and faster with every release reaching the pinnacle in read speed with the Vertex Turbo I have for review today. It's not only the read speeds that are steadily increasing either, perhaps more importantly, especially if you intend to use one of these drives for a boot drive, the write speed has also increased massively to more than twice what the entry level drive offers.
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Most Recent Comments

16-09-2009, 06:26:56

w3bbo
Have OCZ improved the phenomenally fast Vertex SSD to reclaim the performance crown? Take a look at our latest review...

http://www.overclock3d.net/gfx/artic...195023349s.jpg

Full review HERE

16-09-2009, 07:34:45

Rastalovich
It's fast. It's also a little over 2.50 a gig, a little under when the online stores massage it a bit.

I'm interested in this optimizer, in terms of how prone it could be to screw up the disk.

1. Does the OS recognize it as being in-use. Especially in regards to closing down.

2. If there's a power-off, or maybe a power failure, would it condemn the drive.

I'm guessing it judges itself when "idle" actually is. If u happen to want to do something whilst it's in the middle of "optimizing", do u have to w8 for it to finish, or does it just break off what it's doing - indeed, is it like a sleeping drive waking up.

16-09-2009, 07:42:02

w3bbo
It works just like a defrag tool m8 in that respect. It will only optimise the drive when idle. Closing the PC down will obviously read/write files to/from the drive so it will no longer be idle. Dunno what would happen if the pc shut down 'unexpectedly' while the drive was being optimised.

16-09-2009, 07:44:42

Rastalovich
U reckon it'd be like closing down a pc that's in the middle of a defrag.

More importantly to that maybe, would a chkdsk have a chance to solve the issue afterwards.

16-09-2009, 07:50:13

w3bbo
I don't think the drive would be mashed if thats what you're getting at. It would just be fragmented and performance would suffer as a result until the drive was optimised fully.

16-09-2009, 08:33:47

VonBlade
I think your best bet would be to send it to me and I'll test it for a few years and let you know :P

In other news, great review as always W3bbo, shame about the mental price. Even for 120 SSD it's steep, especially as it doesn't hit the speeds it says

16-09-2009, 11:02:34

Pyr0
turbos are a limited edition (they're only oc'd by 14MHz) and prolly won't be sold for much longer; although support will still continue.

OCZ are hoping to eventually bring all standard Vertex drives up to the same speed

the built in "optimizer" is called garbage collection or GC for short. this does rearrange some of the data while idle (best way is to log off and let the PC sit for a while) to fill contiguous blocks and reduce write amplification

once the next firmware is finalised for the std. vertex drives, it will also be released for turbos
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