The story goes like this: Intel let Kingston build a value version of its X25-M G2 drives. This became the 40GB Kingston V Series Boot Drive. When Intel added TRIM support to the G2 drives, Kingston was told to wait. Kingston would get TRIM support when Intel launched its own 40GB version of the G2. Here’s where things get hairy. Intel and Kingston couldn’t work out terms for the TRIM enabled firmware on the V Series Boot Drives. Intel wanted too much money and Kingston wanted to keep the drive price below $100. The outcome? Kingston V Series Boot Drive owners never got official TRIM support and the product was dropped altogether.

This all took place a few months ago. Two things have happened since then. Intel has, as expected, launched its value SSD: the X25-V. This is basically the Kingston drive we reviewed last year, but with official TRIM support. In other words, it’s a X25-M G2 but with only half the channels populated with IMFT NAND. The X25-V is available only in a 40GB capacity (we’ll see an 80GB version based on 25nm NAND in Q4 2010). The drive is priced at $125 and available today. On a side note, Intel’s pricing shows that there wasn’t any room for Kingston to deliver a sub-$100 version of the X25-V.

The second thing to happen was that Kingston built another V Series Boot Drive, this time based on a Toshiba controller with 32GB of MLC NAND on board. The price? $124.99 for an upgrade kit. Kingston appears to be going head to head with Intel in the value SSD space. Ballsy. Update: Kingston has pointed out that despite the $124.99 MSRP, Newegg is currently selling the drive for $114.99 with an additional $30 mail in rebate that will drop the total price to $84.99 after rebate.

Meanwhile, OCZ recently announced its Onyx SSD based on a newer low cost Indilinx controller. The target price? Sub-$100. Unfortunately we’ll have to wait a little longer on it as the final firmware is still being ironed out. Instead, today’s comparison takes place exclusively at $125 and is between Intel and Kingston. Former bedmates, the two now have equally compelling entry-level SSD offerings.

V for Vende...Value


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  • davepermen - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    technically, still more expensive than the intel 40gb at 125$ (per gb), but yeah, others than just kingston and intel should be listed.

    still i'm glad for the 33% more storage :)
  • buzznut - Monday, March 22, 2010 - link

    Yeah, this is the decision I made when buying my 40gig. With a win7 install those 10gb make a huge difference. For an entry level SSD, I would recommend the Intel over the OCZ despite some performance differences. Especially when it comes to gaming.

    Choosing between the Kingston drive and Intel at the time was a no-brainer.

    However I would/will look at OCZ vertex series when going to 60GB or higher capacity.
  • mmntech - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    It's progress in the right direction though. Wasn't long ago when these small drives were $200-$300. Still, I'm going to wait until 80gb SSDs drop to around that price. More breathing room. Still way too small for laptop use too. Reply
  • vol7ron - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    I'd like to see the 80GB/160GBs fall in price too. Once they do, I'll consume =] Reply
  • MadMan007 - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    When you talk about capacities in the chart on page 4 I take it the formatted capacity is in gigabytes (GB) and not gibibytes (GiB). So on top of reserved flash there is also the GB-GiB conversion to account for? Reply
  • gaspard - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    Harddrives are measured in Gigabytes (1 billion bytes), Operating systems (Windows for example) usually measure in Gibibytes... aka 1024 times 1024 times 1024 = 1,073,741,824 bytes
  • MadMan007 - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    Thanks bro but that didn't add or clarify anything about my question. The fact that HDs use GB and OSes use GiB was implicit background knowledge for my post. I see Jarrod made a guess but I'd still be interested to know whether the chart on page 4 for formatted capacities especially and others just for funsies is in GB or GiB. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    And flash chips are generally measured in GiB as well (or at least, the chips come in powers of 2). I think part of this is SSD makers figure they'll use the GiB vs. GB difference to make up for their spare area. So you can have 7.3% spare area and your 40GiB SSD ends up formatting to the same size as a 40GB HDD. Just a thought. Reply
  • GullLars - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    This was a good test, and one i've been waiting for a while. I'm a bit disappointed a 32GB Indilinx Barefoot drive wasn't included. I have a 30GB Vertex in my laptop that performs better sequentailly than these numbers, and has better random performance than the Kingston V 30GB. The price is slightly higher though.
    Ref screenshot:"> CDM 3.0 + WEI for my laptop.

    Now the next thing I hope Anandtech will do regarding SSDs is a comparison of RAID of low-capasity cheap SSDs VS single high capasity SSDs. This is something no other reckognized tech site has done yet, but enthusiasts have done for years now. Example:">

    I'll also mention Nizzen, an enthusiast on a forum i frequent, who set a WR i PCmark vantage last spring with his 24/7 setup, and is still on top5 with the same setup (updated in august with 4GB RAM on the Areca). The key was an Areca 1680ix-12 with a RAID-0 of several (7 i think) OCZ Vertex.
    ORB result page:">
    24740 PCmarks, WAY ahead of the highest score in your benchmark lists. The same level of disk performance is possible to get with an LSI 9211-8i with 8 30-40GB SSDs in RAID-0 for about $1000 (less than 2 256GB SSDs).

    Suggested lineup for such an article: RAID-0 of 4 Kingston V 30GB, Intel x25-V, and Indilinx Barefoot 32GB (Vertex?). 2 RAID-0 SF-1200/1500 50GB, Kingston SSDNow V+ 64GB, Indilinx Barefoot 64GB, Intel x25-M 80GB. And single 100/128/160 GB SSDs of various controllers.

    Regarding performance degrading in RAID whitout TRIM, increased reserved area can help negate the performance degrading (Ref IDF whitepaper on spare area). Increasing the spare area to ~20-25% from the default 7% (on most SSDs) will make sure degrading will not be noticable by users in normale usage models.
  • strikeback03 - Friday, March 19, 2010 - link

    So how much faster were program loads and other useful things with that super RAID array? Reply

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