The last few months have not been easy at OCZ. After long-lasting financial issues, the company filed for bankruptcy on November 27th and a week later Toshiba announced that it will be acquiring the assets for $35 million.

Yesterday OCZ announced that the acquistion has been completed and were finally able to shed some lights to the details of the deal. To my surprise, OCZ will continue to operate as an independent subsidiary and won't be integrated into Toshiba's own SSD team. I'm guessing Toshiba sees financial potential in OCZ and is hence keeping things as they are. The only change aside from the change of ownership is a new brand logo and name: OCZ is now called OCZ Storage Solutions to further emphasize the focus of the company. Last time I heard OCZ was looking for a buyer for its PSU business but it seems they've not found one yet.

Update 1/31: We finally have an official statement regarding warranties.

Update 2/1: OCZ has a buyer for its PSU division and we'll have more details in a couple of weeks. The RAM and cooling divisions have been discontinued a long while ago, though.

Comparison of OCZ's Barefoot 3 Based SSDs
  Vector 150 Vertex 460 Vector Vertex 450
Controller Indilinx Barefoot 3
NAND 19nm Toshiba 19nm Toshiba 25nm IMFT 20nm IMFT
Over-Provisioning 12% 12% 7% 7%
Encryption AES-256 AES-256 N/A AES-256
Endurance 50GB/day for 5 years 20GB/day for 3 years 20GB/day for 5 years 20GB/day for 3 years
Warranty 5 years 3 years 5 years 3 years

The Vertex 460 resembles OCZ's flagship Vector 150 a lot. In terms of hardware the only difference between the two is that the Barefoot 3 controller in the Vertex 460 is slightly lower clocked than the one in Vector 150. The Barefoot 3 in the Vector 150 runs at 397MHz while in the Vertex 460 it's clocked at 352MHz. The speed of the controller isn't proportional to the overall performance but there are scenarios (like intensive read/write workloads) where a faster controller will help.

Both drives actually use exactly the same NAND (identical part numbers) but each Vector 150 goes through more testing and validation cycles to make sure the higher endurance criteria is met. Even though the NAND should be the same in both drives, bear in mind that endurance specifications are always minimums -- one part can be more durable than the other as long as both meet spec. By doing additional validation, OCZ is able to pick the highest endurance parts and use them in the Vector 150, whereas lower quality chips (but good enough to meet the mainstream endurance requirements) end up in the Vertex 460. 

The choice of identical NAND in both models is indeed odd but I'm guessing that Toshiba had a hand in this. The Vertex 450 used Micron's NAND but obviously Toshiba doesn't want to use a competitor's NAND in their products, hence the Vertex 450 is replaced with the 460 and Toshiba NAND.

OCZ Vertex 460 Specifications
Capacity 120GB 240GB 480GB
Sequential Read 530MB/s 540MB/s 545MB/s
Sequential Write 420MB/s 525MB/s 525MB/s
4KB Random Read 80K IOPS 85K IOPS 95K IOPS
4KB Random Write 90K IOPS 90K IOPS 90K IOPS
Steady-State 4KB Random Write 12K IOPS 21K IOPS 23K IOPS

Similar to the Vector 150, the Vertex 460 switches to 12% over-provisioning. This seems to be an industry wide trend and to be honest I'm happy with that. The few percents extra makes a huge difference in terms of IO consistency, which in the end accounts for a better user experience. 

Test System

CPU Intel Core i5-2500K running at 3.3GHz (Turbo and EIST enabled)
Motherboard AsRock Z68 Pro3
Chipset Intel Z68
Chipset Drivers Intel 9.1.1.1015 + Intel RST 10.2
Memory G.Skill RipjawsX DDR3-1600 4 x 8GB (9-9-9-24)
Video Card Palit GeForce GTX 770 JetStream 2GB GDDR5 (1150MHz core clock; 3505MHz GDDR5 effective)
Video Drivers NVIDIA GeForce 332.21 WHQL
Desktop Resolution 1920 x 1080
OS Windows 7 x64

Thanks to G.Skill for the RipjawsX 32GB DDR3 DRAM kit

Performance Consistency & TRIM Validation
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  • Hrel - Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - link

    Seems to me Mushkin is the SSD to get right now. Only one rated at 2Million MTBF that I've seen as well as having very high sequential and random IOPS. Reply
  • dcollins - Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - link

    Sorry, I don't take chances with storage. Samsung SSDs can't be beaten right now, and have proven rock solid over the last year. My family has 5 in total and most of my teammates at work have 500GB drives. Zero problems, great performance. Going with OCZ just seems needlessly risky. Reply
  • blanarahul - Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - link

    And that sums up the review. Samsung is like the Goku of SSDs. Try hard as you might. You can't beat them in long term. Reply
  • LB-ID - Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - link

    They have new corporate overlords, but it's still the same OCZ. That's really all I needed to know. I simply cannot trust the people at OCZ for any of the things I care about in a product: reliability, accountability, and service. Reply
  • ezridah - Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - link

    The Newegg prices are different for the 2 lower capacity drives today. They are now $120 for the 120GB and $140 for the 240GB. Not a bad price for the 240GB drive. An extra $20 for double the storage is a no-brainer. Reply
  • Bob Todd - Wednesday, January 22, 2014 - link

    They've also got the 240GB Crucial M500 for $130 right now... Reply
  • BlakKW - Thursday, January 23, 2014 - link

    "By doing additional validation, OCZ is able to pick the highest endurance parts and use them..."
    I don't understand this and it makes me curious: how can NAND be tested for endurance, and then used in an SSD? It seems to me that any extensive testing would use up a significant portion of the NAND's finite lifespan?
    And if testing the identical parts, how does a test differentiate good vs bad when it comes to endurance?
    TY
    Reply
  • lmcd - Friday, January 24, 2014 - link

    I'm sure the endurance testing doesn't come from simply wearing it out and testing. There may be some extrapolation methods or some different tools altogether. Reply
  • LordConrad - Thursday, January 23, 2014 - link

    I have never had any issues with OCZ SSDs. I think this Vertex 460 looks like a decent drive, although I would go for the Vector due to the longer warranty. Reply
  • chris81 - Thursday, January 23, 2014 - link

    Typo: 4KB Random Read is written twice in the first table. The second one should be Random Write Reply

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