OCZ Vertex 120GB SATA2 SSD
The Western Digital Velociraptor, Caviar Black and Samsung F1 drives may be among the fastest mechanical SATA disks on the market, but as we've seen today they are absolutely no match for the OCZ Vertex. In benchmarks such as HDTune and ATTO the Vertex produced read and write results almost double that of the ageing platter spinners and as if that wasn't enough humiliation, the Vertex totally dominated PCMark Vantage with some results coming out over 10x higher than than the rest of the drives. Simply awesome.
Unlike our original testing of the "OCZ SSD" the Vertex also produced tangible benefits in Windows start-up and game loading times. Unreal Tournament III went from menu to map in 1/2 the time of the popular Samsung F1 1TB hard disk, while Vista SP1 booted in screamingly fast 24 seconds - 7 seconds faster than the Velociraptor. Similarly the time taken to copy a massive 100GB file to the disk was also completed a whopping 4 minutes faster than its nearest competitor.
I'm sure many of you will be reading this review wondering if the 'stuttering' issues apparent on so many SSD's is also an issue on the Vertex. It's not. After using the Vertex as a primary OS drive in our test system for the past two weeks and also transferring the Vertex to my personal Macbook, no slowdown, stuttering or freezing issues were experienced what-so-ever.
As a final note, it'd be negligent of us to end this review without mentioning that capacity and price are still a little way off that of the mechanical drives. However, bearing in mind that 2009 has been filled with releases of new GPU's and Chipsets that offer little to no visual improvements in performance, replacing your OS hard disk with an SSD such as the Vertex instead of spending £300 on that 'new' graphics card just makes so much more sense.
- Read/Write speeds up to 100MB/s faster than some of the best SSD Hard Disks on the market.
- Extremely low latency.
- Visual benefits in Windows start-up, game loading and file copying.
- SSD's have inherently lower power consumption - useful for Laptops.
- Totally silent. More than can be said for the Western Digital (Verloci)Raptor drives.
- 2yr Warranty. Most mechanical hard drives have ~5yrs.
- Price still quite high, but you get much more for your money than last year.
- Package really basic. Throw in some drive bay mounts goddamit!
- No time to make a cuppa while waiting for file transfers :)