Final Words

The only data I haven't displayed here is estimated write amplification and estimated drive longevity. I'm still fine tuning the process before I present the data but I can give you, at a high level, what I've seen. As I mentioned in the comments to the V+100 article the three leaders in write amplification (and thus drive longevity) over the long run are: SandForce, Crucial and Intel. Indilinx doesn't do as good of a job of keeping write amplification low over the long haul. The Barefoot+Martini platform addresses the performance issues we've had with the original Barefoot, but it doesn't seem to address worst case write amplification. Thankfully, Barefoot+Martini aren't Indilinx's next-generation SSD platform. The 6Gbps Jet Stream controller is still in development and is designed to go after the high end, Martini simply modernizes Indilinx drives.


Indilinx Barefoot (left) vs. Indilinx Martini (right)

The question ultimately boils down to price. You can already get a 128GB SandForce based drive for $229, and if you're mostly filling your drive with a lot of incompressible data (photos, videos) there's always the C300 for a bit more money. Both options will give you better performance and lower write amplification than what Indilinx offers. What we need is a good value alternative to SandForce. The SF-1200 controller isn't cheap at all, and this is where Indilinx's Barefoot+Martini could come in.

Assuming it's devoid of any typical new SSD teething problems, the Barefoot+Martini based Vertex Plus could be a good way to squeeze an SSD into a budget constrained performance system. I'd still like to see greater than $35 savings compared to SandForce though. We're still a few weeks away from release candidate firmware so I'll reserve final judgment until then. It never hurts to have more competition in the market.

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  • landerf - Tuesday, November 16, 2010 - link

    What SSD does Anand use personally? I see a lot of user remarks saying they've switched from this or that brand and noticed a feeling of improvement in everyday use, something that may be hard to quantify just looking at benchmarks. Reply
  • Zoridon - Wednesday, November 17, 2010 - link

    They need to come out with a 1 TB 3.5 inch version of the Momentus XT with two 500 gb platters and 8 gigs of flash memory. Basically double up on the current 2.5 inch XT for desktops. They could charge 50 percent more for the drive over current 1TB drives and increase desktop performance greatly without sacrificing storage capacity. If they do that I'd raid two in raid 0 and give the finger to SSDs for a few years. They could update to 2TB drives after 6 months for another wave of performace / storage goodness. Am I the only one wanting a destop version of the Momentus XT with these type of stats at an affordable price? Reply
  • Qapa - Wednesday, November 17, 2010 - link

    1 - Probably the most important one: when are we going to see the promises price cuts due to the move to lower nm? It was supposed to be this quarter right...?

    2 - When is the Jet Stream now supposed to come out? (and this also questions the sanity of creating this new Martini, and the effort put into this one which for sure delayed even more Jet Stream...)

    3 - I read somewhere that Intel G3 was put on hold due to the presentation of SandForce 2000 series?

    4 - When is this SandForce 2000 series expected to come out?

    I want a new generation SSD with 64Gb @ around $64!!
    Reply
  • iwodo - Wednesday, November 17, 2010 - link

    Again we are seeing the same thing.

    While i would love to trust the benchmark from IOmeter as the raw power of SSD. PC Mark, Sysmark and Anand Test Bench are MUCH closer to real work test, or real work usage scenario.

    And after the shocking results from Toshiba new Controller which nearly wins all real world test, the new firmware from indilinx seems to be doing the same as well.

    I dont know what is missing, but the preview certainly tells you being the fastest in BOTH Seq Read Write and Random Read Write does not AUTOMATICALLY translate to fastest in real world scenario.

    I know a lot of people are focusing on Iometer test, but i to me i have been paying much more attention to Anand Bench.
    Reply
  • vailr - Wednesday, November 17, 2010 - link

    Version 260.99 WHQL is the most current driver. Reply
  • MHz Tweaker - Wednesday, November 17, 2010 - link

    I purchased a pair of of 60gb Vertex 2's about 6 months ago when there was a email blast sale at "The Egg"

    For the most part I am VERY pleased with my purchase. What I am not pleased with is all the crap I have to go through to make sure I get the best performance.

    Example: Booting various Win7 DVD's in order to clean the SSD's followed by booting a USB flash drive version of Ubuntu in order to do a secure erase. Granted, these could be considered performance tweaks but who doesn't want every ounce of speed for their money.

    My SSD's came with 1.11 firmware which has performed admirably. Just this past weekend I did my 6month re-install of Win7 x64 and of course with most versions of Windows it feels like a new PC again.

    The top of my wish list would be some type of RAID supported TRIM function for these drives, other than that it has been smooth sailing for me. Oh, also I set aside an extra 20gb for spare area in the RAID 0 array to give me 100gb vs. the 120 the pair would normally give. I really don't miss the extra 20gig as I have 9 other hard drive in my box totaling 14TB of storage.

    later

    MHz
    Reply
  • ClagMaster - Wednesday, November 17, 2010 - link

    Since there is no indication the controller chip has been changed, the improvement must be from a careful rebalancing of the driver optimizations. The performance gains obtained from this optimization is impressive to say the least.

    For general usage, PCMARK shows very good performance relative to the Intel and C300 offerings.

    The OCZ Vertex Plus offers very good performance for the cost, but at ~$2/GB is still pricy.
    Reply
  • ehume - Thursday, November 18, 2010 - link

    I get the feeling these tests were all run SATA II/3Gb. Yet the C300 is capable of using SATA III/6Gb. How would the results compare?

    So far it looks like the Corsair Force 100 is at or near the top in most of the tests. Given that the Force 40 is usually not far behind, the Force 80 looks like a good buy at the right size.

    But would the C300 do a lot better on a SATA III motherboard? Or would the SATA contribution not make much difference here?
    Reply
  • Hrel - Tuesday, November 23, 2010 - link

    I really wish you guys would put two 7200rpm drives with 64MB of cache configured in a Stripe RAID in these performance charts for comparison. Or at least mention the score below the chart since it'd probably mess up the bars. While I know the random stuff would still be WAY lower, I'm curious what PCMark would say about system performance and how sequential activity would compare. Reply
  • gaspard - Friday, November 26, 2010 - link

    Samsung 470 Series... would be great to see a review.

    It's the "other" controller that is up with SF, C300, Intel, Martini...
    Reply

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