Intel Optane SSD 900P 280GB Review
Published: 12th July 2018 | Source: Intel | Price: |
As we said at the start, the Intel Optane SSD 900P is very much a proof of concept drive for very specific solution requirements, rather than a genuine contender as something you should put in your system.
Indeed our review is more about introducing you to the theory of Optane and its target capabilities than it is about reviewing this particular product, especially as we have other Optane drives which should be more suitable to our particular needs.
The primary change between the NAND we're used to seeing installed in Solid State Drives and the 3D XPoint utilised in the Intel 900P is its capability to handle huge request volumes at a low queue depth. You only need to glance at the Anvil IOPS graphs to realise how successful Intel have been in solving this challenge, particularly in the read department. If you run any form of home or small business server you are guaranteed to have a more productive time utilising this technology. Indeed very specific rendering tasks will also see a massive improvement in performance, allowing your workflow to be completed much faster than has previously been possible.
As we say though, you do have to have incredibly specific needs for the 900P to make financial sense. Whenever a new technology emerges there is always an early adopter cost involved due to the biblical research and development costs incurred by the refinement of the idea. The Optane 900P is no exception with a hefty price tag compared to other similarly sized drives. However, if you do find yourself a member of the necessary niche audience for the particular charms this drive has to offer then very little else will sate you, thus you have to accept the entry cost much like those who require enormous physical core counts accept that a premium Core i9 isn't the cheapest platform.
If, however, you just want a quick storage drive on a single user system then you don't really fit into the target market for this and other, more affordable and faster, options exist. That isn't to say that the Intel Optane 900P is a bad product, or slow, or anything negative at all. Merely that it is fitted to a particular set of requirements. Think of it like buying a tractor as a daily driver. It would be slower and more expensive than a regular vehicle, but if your daily drive included ploughing a field then it would be perfect in a manner that a regular Ford Mondeo wouldn't be. Only you know which side of the fence you sit and whether the Intel 900P fits your needs.
We will have another review of a model that promises to combine the blazing bandwidth we love with the high IOPS of the Optane technology in the near future, so keep a close eye on OC3D.