OCZ Vertex TURBO 120GB Solid State Drive

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.

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
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.