Faster than the Vertex 3 Pro?

SandForce’s specs put the SF-2281 at up to 500MB/s reads and writes, just like the SF-2582/2682. OCZ’s specs for the Vertex 3 however put it slightly above the performance of the Vertex 3 Pro:

I asked SandForce to explain the discrepancy. It turns out that SandForce doesn’t really enforce its specs on its partners. It’s up to the partner to test and advertise whatever it would like as long as it can back those claims up. In this case, the Micron 25nm NAND appears to perform a bit better than the 32nm Toshiba NAND that was used on the Vertex 3 Pro. As a result, sequential write speeds are slightly higher.

OCZ also rates the Vertex 3 as having slightly lower random write performance than the Vertex 3 Pro, but the difference is not that great in practice.

For desktop performance this does mean that the Vertex 3 will likely be a bit faster than the Vertex 3 Pro we previewed a week ago. You trade off enterprise level features for price, but you don't sacrifice performance.

The Test

I'll point out once more that this is beta hardware running beta firmware. I've only had the Vertex 3 for a matter of days before publishing this and that's honestly not enough time to put it through anything more than a handful of performance tests. Real reliability and bug testing will take weeks if not months. Keep that in mind if you decide to be an early adopter on one of these drives.

CPU

Intel Core i7 965 running at 3.2GHz (Turbo & EIST Disabled)

Intel Core i7 2600K running at 3.4GHz (Turbo & EIST Disabled) - for AT SB 2011

Motherboard:

Intel DX58SO (Intel X58)

Intel H67 Motherboard

Chipset:

Intel X58 + Marvell SATA 6Gbps PCIe

Intel H67
Chipset Drivers:

Intel 9.1.1.1015 + Intel IMSM 8.9

Intel 9.1.1.1015 + Intel RST 10.2

Memory: Qimonda DDR3-1333 4 x 1GB (7-7-7-20)
Video Card: eVGA GeForce GTX 285
Video Drivers: NVIDIA ForceWare 190.38 64-bit
Desktop Resolution: 1920 x 1200
OS: Windows 7 x64
Introduction Random Read/Write Speed
POST A COMMENT

85 Comments

View All Comments

  • swaaye - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    It'll depend on how fast your CPU is because it will become the bottleneck if it's not already. Reply
  • Mumrik - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    "Order enough controllers and you get a special firmware, otherwise you’re stuck with the stock SF-2200 firmware.
    (...)I do wish SandForce would just stick to a single spec and not play these sorts of games but that’s just how business works unfortunately."

    Is it really? I've never heard of anything similar elsewhere in the storage space. This really sounds to me like the kind of thing you should keep pushing them on Anand....
    Reply
  • taltamir - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    so... 7 "models" which are the exact same chip with different firmware / different configuration (supercap, amount of NAND, etc)
    And even within those so called "models" there is different levels of performance capping in firmware due to various exclusivity contracts which are not actually being reported or represented in the chip's name?

    I am liking sandforce less and less.
    Reply
  • TGressus - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    +1

    It's even more egregious when vendors are sending the reviewers pre-release samples that may or may not represent the final retail product.
    Reply
  • taltamir - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    you are correct, that does make it even worse. Reply
  • jaydee - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    Interesting read from a theoretical perspective, but it would be far more useful for your readership to have a roundup involving 60-120GB SSD's. I can find benchmarks on budget video cards, cpu's, and read reviews on budget motherboards. I do realize there are no 60-120GB Vertex 3's available, but 6-9 months after launch I still have no idea how (for instance) the Sandforce, JMicron, Samsung, Indillinx, Marvell, Intel, Toshiba 60-90GB SSD's benchmark against each other considering they all scale down differently from the 240GB models which are often reviewed.

    240GB SSD's are neat, but not affordable for many.
    Reply
  • 86waterpumper - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    I agree, the 128gb size seems to be the sweet spot, that is what I've decided to go with, just not sure
    whether it will be the newest sandforce or the c400. I wish we could get some testing on the amd
    motherboard controllers too. I know intel is more popular right now but amd is still a viable option
    for many. I would think this is especially important since amd finally released a ahci driver not too
    long ago, but I haven't heard much about how good it is.
    Reply
  • ol1bit - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    I can't believe the jump, Intel better be on their game or they might find themselves without a market anymore.

    My Intel 80gb is old after 1.5 years! LOL
    Reply
  • seapeople - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    Sell an x25m g2 for $1.5/GB and they are right back on top of the value/money game. Especially when you consider issues like reliability reputation versus these new drives. I wonder what the profit margin on these drives are... There might be a lot of leeway to drop price to capture market on these, considering their "real" competitors are HD's. Reply
  • boxleitnerb - Thursday, February 24, 2011 - link

    Hey Anand,

    I was wondering if you're considering writing about the CPU-SSD dynamic in a future article. As I understand it, the SSDs can serve requests so fast that in some scenarios the CPU again becomes the limiting factor.

    I would be especially interested in common tasks like virus scanning, gaming/application load times/installation and windows startup. I know this could be alot of work, so maybe you can pick only one or two of these tasks and analyze them with CPUs with a different number of cores and clock speeds.

    What do you think about it?
    Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now