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OCZ RevoDrive X2 240GB – PCIe SSD Review

Author

Wendy Robertson
Senior Administrator and Reviewer
Article posted 30 Nov 10 20:31

Final thoughts and the conclusion

Final thoughts and the conclusion


Positive:

  • Silky smooth operation as a system drive and completely stable.
  • Astonishing reading and writing performance.
  • Extreme 4K random I/O performance.
  • Excellent video, audio, and graphic editing potential.
  • Phenomenal multitasking potential.
  • Lightning fast access times.
  • Completely silent operation.
  • Fast operating system start-up and shutdown times.
  • Considering the performance and neatness, the RevoDrive X2 is good value.
  • Super fast application loading.
  • Can be used a bootable system drive or as a storage drive.
  • 3 years warranty.
  • MTBF: 2,000,000 hours.

Negative:

  • No TRIM support.

User experience

A modern operating system such as Windows 7 rarely does one thing at time; as 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 amount 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 and unloaded into 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, and the OCZ RevoDrive X2 takes this several stages further.

When I first started testing SSDs more than 2 years ago, it was less clear then how much an SSD improved performance.  A lot of things have changed with SSDs over the last 2 years. The SSD controllers are much more powerful and the NAND itself is getting smaller and faster. The RevoDrive X2 has moved SSDs away from the slow SATA interface, to the very much faster PCIe bus, and the gains in performance are there for everyone to see.

Video and audio editing with the RevoDrive X2 has brought about an extraordinary boost in performance even over the very best single SATA SSD. It’s amazing how much extra work you can get done with this drive used as an editing drive.

Conclusion:


Let us summarise the most important positive and negative points below:

The main positive points:

The OCZ RevoDrive X2 series drives are very good; in fact, extremely good. Reading and writing access times are lightning fast and applications load in an instant, making the OCZ RevoDrive X2 series of drives ideal as the operating system drive with all the user’s installed applications.

4K random IOPS performance is phenomenal, as is threaded and sequential performance.

With DuraClass technology from the SandForce SF-1200 SSD controllers, the OCZ RevoDrive X2 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 RevoDrive X2 can be used as either a bootable system drive, or as a storage drive. To select it as a system drive, it is simply a matter of changing the boot order in the BIOS, and selecting the RevoDrive X2 as your boot drive.

The main negative points:

Price is still a stumbling block to purchasing an SSD drive, and the cost of NAND memory isn’t helping matters. At the moment, the OCZ RevoDrive X2 is quite expensive, but then again, this type of extreme performance was never going to come cheap.

There is no TRIM support at the moment, as the RAID 0 configuration used in the RevoDrive X2 will not allow the TRIM command to pass to the drive. This is normal for RAID arrays, as at the moment no RAID array will allow the TRIM command to pass to the SSD controller and be executed. That really should not be a problem, and at worst you can image your install, Secure Erase the RevoDrive X2 by using the link to the guide earlier in this article, and then restore your image to the RevoDrive X2 again. This shouldn’t take no more than about 10 minutes of your time.

While the RevoDrive X2 could be used on any PC with a spare PCIe x4 slot, you will get the best from the RevoDrive X2 if your PC is powerful enough to utilise all that performance. While I’m reluctant to recommend a spec for a PC that is suitable to get the best out of the RevoDrive X2, I would recommend at least a fast dual core CPU if you want to push the RevoDrive X2 to anywhere near its limits of performance.


To sum up, this is what we would say:

It is inevitable that the OCZ RevoDrive X2 will be directly compared to purchasing 4 separate OCZ Vertex 2 SSDs, and then creating your own RAID array. The price of 4 separate Vertex 2 SSDs will be cheaper than the RevoDrive X2, but if you connect these 4 separate Vertex 2 to let’s say, Intel ICH10R for example, then don’t expect to get anywhere near the performance of the RevoDrive X2. ICH10R and all other RAID solutions that are integrated into the motherboard will give you about 660MB/s max, whereas the RevoDrive X2 has already shown it’s capable of over 800MB/s reading speeds.

You could purchase a high quality hardware RAID card and obtain even higher performance than the RevoDrive X2 can deliver, such as the LSI MRSAS9260-4I, but that will mean you have to add another £300 to the price of your purchase. You must also consider that 4 separate SSDs will have to be accommodated in your PC case, and let’s not forget that each of these 4 separate SSDs will also require a precious SATA port, and SATA power and data cables.

Now, all of a sudden, the OCZ RevoDrive X2 not only looks like very good bang for the buck, it is also a very neat solution, only requiring a single x4/x8/x16 PCIe slot, with no untidy cables needed, or motherboard SATA ports required.  

Pricing, taken from Scan computers (25/11/2010) Price in Euro, is from the current exchange rate.

Model

User capacity

Price

Cost per GB

OCZ RevoDrive X2 240GB

223.3GB

£494.43
€586.23

£2.21
€2.51

The OCZ RevoDrive X2 is an extreme SSD solution, and there really isn’t anything else around in this price range that can compete with the RevoDrive X2. I really like the fact that OCZ are looking at other SSD solutions other than SATA. This beast is already too fast for SATA 6Gbps, and if OCZ wants to scale up performance, they can add more SandForce controllers, use a more powerful RAID controller, then fit them all on a PCIe x8 card, or even a PCIe x16 card. The sky is more or less the limit for the foreseeable future, as far as PCIe SSDs are concerned.

“The OCZ RevoDrive X2 is a phenomenal SSD solution, and its performance is astonishing”.

The performance and usability of the OCZ RevoDrive X2 240GB SSD drive was so good, that we decided to award the drive our MyCE.com “Editor’s choice” award.

You may comment on this review below.

Thanks to:


EFD Software for providing the fully licensed versions of HD Tune Pro

Alex Schepeljanski for AS SSD Benchmark

 

There are 33 comments

Wombler
Administrator & Reviewer
Posted on: 01 Dec 10 09:31
    Great review Dee and that's an awesome drive!

    Absolutely amazing performance!


    Wombler
    rj_wilson
    New Member
    Posted on: 03 Dec 10 01:42
      Thank you Dee,
      Love your reviews.
      Kenshin
      MyCE Resident
      Posted on: 05 Dec 10 21:51
        Thank you for this excellent review for an excellent product.
        ChrisKruger
        New Member
        Posted on: 13 Dec 10 12:28
          Thank you Dee
          Good review.
          Got myself a Corsair 160GB Force series SSD Sata 2
          Any comment on this drive??
          I think it is slow compared to the OCZ Drive on your review.
          Nemesys
          MyCE Resident
          Posted on: 13 Dec 10 13:41
            Dee.....

            As usual, you are on point.
            Your efforts are always beyond the the call of duty.
            Nuff appreciation.

            Thank you.
            Dee
            Senior Administrator and Reviewer
            Posted on: 15 Dec 10 23:31
              Thanks for the comments.
              Currently, there is nothing in this price range that comes anywhere close to the performance of the RevoDrive X2, IMO.

              @ChrisKruger
              The Corsair Force series about equal to the OCZ Vertex 2 regarding performance.
              ChrisKruger
              New Member
              Posted on: 16 Dec 10 01:45
                Thanks Dee
                At least I know my drive is equal to the OCZ Vertex 2
                Any suggestions what drive to use for backup and other data storage. Maybe the F3 in your review. Or two of these in a raid 0 configuration.

                <CENTER></CENTER>
                ChrisKruger
                New Member
                Posted on: 16 Dec 10 19:19
                  I need some info regarding the Corsair 160GB Force series SSD Sata 2 Can I format this drive with the program format in windows vista. I want to install windows7 home 64bit edition??
                  Dee
                  Senior Administrator and Reviewer
                  Posted on: 16 Dec 10 20:22
                    Quote:
                    Originally Posted by ChrisKruger
                    I need some info regarding the Corsair 160GB Force series SSD Sata 2 Can I format this drive with the program format in windows vista. I want to install windows7 home 64bit edition??
                    Yes, but only use quick format, never do a full format on an SSD.

                    If you are going to install Win7, just leave it be. When you boot to install Win7, when you get to the main install screen, then select advanced options. Then do the following, making sure you have already backed up any data you want to keep from your existing Vista partition.

                    1, Delete the SSD partition
                    2, Select install to the unpartitioned space. Win7 will create and format the partition for you, making sure the partition is aligned correctly.
                    ChrisKruger
                    New Member
                    Posted on: 16 Dec 10 20:39
                      Thanks Dee.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-comfficeffice" /><o></o>
                      Now I can install window7 without damaging my SSD. For more info is there any reason why can’t I do a full format on a SSD? <o></o>
                      <o></o>
                      ChrisKruger
                      New Member
                      Posted on: 23 Dec 10 06:56
                        I would like to see the following data to be added to reviews on SSD drives.
                        1 This drive can only be formatted with a quick format.
                        2 Don't do a full format on this drive reason ???
                        3 This drive should not be defragged reason ???
                        4 Drivers for this drive are located at www. ???
                        This will help people like me who have a very limited knowledge of SSD drives to under stand more of these drives.
                        vroom
                        Administrator and Reviewer
                        Posted on: 23 Dec 10 09:35
                          I an only answer the 3rd question.

                          No need to defrag an SSD drive, mainly because you put unnecessary read/write on the drive, and also you wont improve anything, access times or read/write speeds.
                          BussyB
                          Former MyCE Support
                          Posted on: 23 Dec 10 10:27
                            Quote:
                            Originally Posted by ChrisKruger
                            This will help people like me who have a very limited knowledge of SSD drives to under stand more of these drives.
                            Hi Chris - if this is the case, you really should read this great SSD FAQ (written by Dee)
                            ChrisKruger
                            New Member
                            Posted on: 23 Dec 10 12:43
                              Thank you vroom, and BussyB, and thank you Dee for writing this great SSD- FAQ.
                              This info is of great importance for all people to understand the tecnical side off SSD Drives.
                              Dee
                              Senior Administrator and Reviewer
                              Posted on: 23 Dec 10 14:19
                                A quick answer to the questions not already answered, and i'll add this info to the FAQ later.

                                A quick format only rewrites LBA table on the drive, whereas a full format will write to every single block on the drive. This is bad for an SSD, as you'll lose a write cycle, but worse than this, in a single stroke with a full format, the drive will be in a fully used state, and require a full TRIM event and possibly a secure erase to return performance.

                                Drivers are not required for SATA SSDs, the motherboards on-board SATA controller requires drivers which are installed when you install the OS.
                                PCIe SSDs like the RevoDrive X2 requires a driver, but a link is provided in the drives documentation.
                                ChrisKruger
                                New Member
                                Posted on: 23 Dec 10 19:55
                                  Thank you Dee you have been of great help in the past and you answered my questions carry on with the great work en very good reviews. I installed windows 7 on my SSD the way you told me to and every thing is in great shape.
                                  ChrisKruger
                                  New Member
                                  Posted on: 24 Dec 10 21:07
                                    Merry Christmas To You All from sunny South Africa. May love roam this earth.
                                    Jonnyboy0022
                                    New Member
                                    Posted on: 20 Apr 11 00:39
                                      How did you get such a fast boot-up time. Did you have to tweak anything through bios or any software downloads to get a fast boot-up. I've currently got this drive and I'm booting up from the start where it shows you all the drives installed insdie your computer to when you have a usable p.c and it takes me 33-35 seconds. People are getting low 20's to mid 20 seconds. How are they getting it, can someone tell me and inform me as to what they are doing please!
                                      jamescooley1
                                      MyCE Resident
                                      Posted on: 20 Apr 11 01:28
                                        Quote:
                                        Originally Posted by Jonnyboy0022
                                        How did you get such a fast boot-up time. Did you have to tweak anything through bios or any software downloads to get a fast boot-up. I've currently got this drive and I'm booting up from the start where it shows you all the drives installed insdie your computer to when you have a usable p.c and it takes me 33-35 seconds. People are getting low 20's to mid 20 seconds. How are they getting it, can someone tell me and inform me as to what they are doing please!
                                        You should post your computer specs and are you sure it's a Revo 2? Revo's are very fast too but not as fast as the Revo2.
                                        Jonnyboy0022
                                        New Member
                                        Posted on: 20 Apr 11 08:30
                                          Thanks for replying. My computer specs are:

                                          G1 Assassin motherboard
                                          990x cpu (watercooled)
                                          Dual HD 6990 graphic cards
                                          12gb Corsair Dominator GT Ram 2000mhz
                                          1500w power supply
                                          OCZ Revodrive X2 240gb (positive)

                                          That is my specification of my computer.
                                          Jonnyboy0022
                                          New Member
                                          Posted on: 22 Apr 11 01:25
                                            Quote:
                                            Originally Posted by jamescooley1
                                            You should post your computer specs and are you sure it's a Revo 2? Revo's are very fast too but not as fast as the Revo2.
                                            Thanks for replying. My computer specs are:

                                            G1 Assassin motherboard
                                            990x cpu (watercooled)
                                            Dual HD 6990 graphic cards
                                            12gb Corsair Dominator GT Ram 2000mhz
                                            1500w power supply
                                            OCZ Revodrive X2 240gb (positive)

                                            That is my specification of my computer.
                                            AIRBUD7
                                            MyCE Member
                                            Posted on: 12 Jul 11 01:10
                                              Nice Review...
                                              @Jonnyboy...Do you really have Dual HD 6990 graphic cards...If so...WHY???
                                              cerberus
                                              MyCE Resident
                                              Posted on: 06 Oct 11 23:23
                                                Great Review
                                                bigmike7
                                                MyCE Resident Old Fart
                                                Posted on: 08 Oct 11 03:57
                                                  Yo-

                                                  The OCZ Revo X2 240 is currently down to only $578 at Amazon-eh!!
                                                  alan1476
                                                  Senior Moderator, Software Editor and Head of Promotions
                                                  Posted on: 08 Oct 11 14:36
                                                    Quote:
                                                    Originally Posted by bigmike7
                                                    Yo-

                                                    The OCZ Revo X2 240 is currently down to only $578 at Amazon-eh!!
                                                    That may be a nice price bigmike7, but I don't believe anyone needs a drive that fast. I put just as much into my builds as the next guy, but I would never spend $578.00 for a 240gbs SSD in my life. Call me cheap, I just don't belive the price justifies the end result. JMHO.
                                                    bigmike7
                                                    MyCE Resident Old Fart
                                                    Posted on: 09 Oct 11 03:41
                                                      Quote:
                                                      Originally Posted by alan1476
                                                      That may be a nice price bigmike7, but I don't believe anyone needs a drive that fast. I put just as much into my builds as the next guy, but I would never spend $578.00 for a 240gbs SSD in my life. Call me cheap, I just don't belive the price justifies the end result. JMHO.
                                                      Yo Alan-

                                                      My comment was ment to be read as satire-eh!
                                                      davemgood
                                                      New Member
                                                      Posted on: 07 Feb 13 01:13
                                                        I bought a RevoDrive X2 (256GB) when they first were released for sale. Within two months I was having issues and, at that time, there was little info on them - even on the OCZ site, so I did a Full Format and re-installed Win 7 on it.

                                                        Win 7 would run fine for a few boot cycle (very fast) but then it would run a disc check and would not install the Windows Updates.

                                                        I got tired of this continuing to happen and removed it from my computer and reverted back to a SATA SSD.

                                                        Now I'm starting to see advice that warns of a Full Install on the RevoDrive X2.

                                                        QUESTION: Is there a way to reset it back to factory condition without having to send it back to the factory? Or, will I have to do that - or, is it hosed for good?

                                                        Thanks much!!

                                                        dave
                                                        San Diego, CA
                                                        Dee
                                                        Senior Administrator and Reviewer
                                                        Posted on: 07 Feb 13 01:34
                                                          Welcome to the forum.
                                                          You can reset the RevoDrive by secure erasing the four SSDs that make up the RevoDrive X2.
                                                          It's not difficult to do this, but rather than a very long explanation here. I'd suggest you read the following thread on OCZ own support forums.
                                                          http://www.ocztechnologyforum.com/fo...box-PC-Edition
                                                          davemgood
                                                          New Member
                                                          Posted on: 07 Feb 13 01:37
                                                            Quote:
                                                            Originally Posted by Dee
                                                            Welcome to the forum.
                                                            You can reset the RevoDrive by secure erasing the four SSDs that make up the RevoDrive X2.
                                                            It's not difficult to do this, but rather than a very long explanation here. I'd suggest you read the following thread on OCZ own support forums.
                                                            http://www.ocztechnologyforum.com/forum/http://club.myce.comshowthread.php?105168-NEW!!-OCZ-Bootable-Toolbox-PC-Edition

                                                            Thanks, Dee! Will do.
                                                            davemgood
                                                            New Member
                                                            Posted on: 07 Feb 13 08:17
                                                              OK, Dee. I have completed the SE of each of the 4 OCZ drives. I attempted to install Win 7 and only see 55 GB. That would be only one of the 4 SSD drives.

                                                              How do I return the 4 drives to become as one (x4)?

                                                              Thanks aain.

                                                              dave
                                                              Dee
                                                              Senior Administrator and Reviewer
                                                              Posted on: 07 Feb 13 09:24
                                                                You will need to enter the RevoDrive BIOS screen at boot time.
                                                                Press F4 (if I remember correctly) when you see the "Silicon Image" message appear during BIOS boot.
                                                                Then create your RAID array (RAID 0 with drives 0,1,2,3). After you have done that you boot again then you should see the full 240GB and can install Win7.
                                                                davemgood
                                                                New Member
                                                                Posted on: 07 Feb 13 09:28
                                                                  Very good. I'll give it a shot and let you know what happens.

                                                                  Thanks, Dee.
                                                                  davemgood
                                                                  New Member
                                                                  Posted on: 07 Feb 13 09:35
                                                                    Works fine, Dee. Installing Win 7 now.

                                                                    Thanks much!

                                                                    dave

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