Final thoughts and the conclusion
- Silky smooth operation as a system drive (during the test period).
- Phenomenal reading and writing performance.
- Incredible 4K random I/O performance.
- SATA 6Gbps support.
- Outstanding multitasking potential.
- TRIM support under Windows 7.
- Lightning fast access times.
- Completely silent operation.
- Fast operating system start-up and shutdown times.
- 3 years warranty.
- I couldn’t find a single negative with this SSD.
A modern operating system such as Windows 7 rarely does one thing at time; it processes hundreds of threads at once. Just take a look at the processes and services that are running in task manager for an idea of how much is going on, even with the PC idling at the desktop. When you start running applications on top of this, the workload increases in line with the number and type of applications you are running. It’s also fair to say that many of these processes are already loaded into system RAM, but many are also loaded into and unloaded from RAM from the system drive as and when they are required.
The fact of the matter is this. If you are running a mainstream or high end modern PC with a powerful CPU and graphics card, and are still running a traditional HDD as a system drive, regardless of how fast that HDD is, it is still bogging the system down substantially. It has long since passed the stage where one can meaningfully debate if an SSD is really faster than a traditional HDD. The fact is they are, and not just by a little bit: they are much faster.
If we look at the 3 basic requirements for a fast SSD, they are as follows.
- Small file threaded performance needs to be high
- Small random file performance needs to be high
- Sequential read and write speeds needs to be high
The OCZ Vertex 3 240GB has all of the above in abundance.
With only 3 days of testing, it is impossible to say if the drive is stable or not. We also have to consider the drive is perhaps not the absolute final hardware, and the firmware is most certainly beta.
All I can say is, during the 3 day period, the Vertex 3 showed no hint of instability, and remained perfectly stable during the test period.
The preliminary price of the OCZ Vertex 3 240GB is suggested at $499. While this is by no means cheap, it is nonetheless very competitive when you take into account the capacity and performance of the Vertex 3 240GB SSD.
Below I have some data supplied by OCZ Technology, which compares the relative performance and pricing of previous and future generations of OCZ and competitor SSDs.
Let us summarise the most important positive and negative points below:
The main positive points:
The OCZ Vertex 3 240GB SSD has the fastest reading and writing speeds from a single SATA drive that we have ever tested here on MyCE.com.
4K random IOP performance is incredible and small file threaded performance is phenomenal.
Non-compressible data is handled with ease on the Vertex 3; with the new SandForce SF-2281 SSD processor showing far better performance in this area than compared to the older SF-1200 based Vertex 2.
With TRIM support in Windows 7, the OCZ Vertex 3 should remain at near peak performance during the expected life cycle of the drive.
Noise levels from the drive are nil; there are no moving parts so the drive is completely silent.
The main negative points:
I really can’t find anything negative to say about this SSD, even the suggested selling price of $499 looks very competitive considering the capacity and performance of the Vertex 3.
To sum up, this is what I would say:
As I write this article given that the OCZ Vertex 3 has not been released yet, the OCZ Vertex 3 has no serious rivals, as it is simply head and shoulders above anything else that is available at this moment in time in regards to a single drive SATA solution, with the exception of the Vertex 3 Pro.
Intel and Crucial will soon launch their new range of SATA 6Gbps SSDs, but in the performance stakes, the SandForce SF-2281 SSD processor based SSDs are going to be very difficult to get anywhere even close to.
The only rivals that OCZ are likely to come across in the short term are drives based on the same SandForce SF-2281 SSD processor which will no doubt launch at around the same time as the Vertex 3. OCZ Technology, possibly more than their rivals have invested heavily in better manufacturing processes. Should this investment give the expected return, then OCZ Technology have themselves in a very nice position as the new Vertex 3 SSD nears availability.
Our parting sentence is
“The OCZ Vertex 3 is an incredible SSD, and by far the fastest SATA SSD we have ever tested here on MyCE.com”.
As the OCZ Vertex 3 was not a retail unit and I haven’t had time to test the durability of the SSD, I am not going to give an award to this drive at this stage. You will have to wait until the Vertex 3 is available in the shops before a full review is carried out on the final retail firmware and specification. Only then will I be able to judge if the Vertex 3 qualifies for an award. Hopefully you will not have long to wait, and the Vertex 3 should become available sometime in March or April 2011.
What I can do is, give the drive a rating based on its performance and stability during the 3 day testing period.
You may comment on this review below.
EFD Software for providing the fully licensed versions of HD Tune Pro
Alex Schepeljanski for AS SSD Benchmark