OCZ Vector 256GB Solid State Drive Review

Posted by on Sunday, February 17, 2013 - 8:37am

Just recently we bought to you OCZ’s Agility. A good little drive which was aimed at bring good performance to the masses as a pretty price. We saw the drive test ok but wasn’t anything breaking. It wasn’t meant to be. But if you are looking to bring ultimate performance to your desktop, ultrabook or laptop, than the new OCZ Vector maybe what you are after.

OCZ Vector 256GB Solid State Drive Review
 

Introduction

Just recently we bought to you OCZ’s Agility. A good little drive which was aimed at bring good performance to the masses as a pretty price. We saw the drive test ok but wasn’t anything breaking. It wasn’t meant to be. But if you are looking to bring ultimate performance to your desktop, ultrabook or laptop, than the new OCZ Vector maybe what you are after.

OCZ’s take on the Vector Series

Vector delivers the industry's fastest performance. Rated for 100,000 random read and 95,000 random write IOPS to deliver ultimate responsiveness and a better overall computing and workstation experience than any other storage solution.

Vector redefines reliability and offers a premium SSD solution designed from the ground up for enhanced stability, quality, and durability.

Get consistently faster sustained speeds with the complete spectrum of file types and sizes, including both compressible and incompressible data for balanced, long-lasting performance like no other drive out there.
Built to last, Vector maximizes drive life with low write amplification, efficient garbage collection, and an advanced suite of NAND flash management to provide years of hard drive-humiliating performance that is second to none.
 


Specifications

Available Capacities

128GB, 256GB, 512GB

NAND Components

MLC

Interface

SATA III / 6Gbps

Form Factor

2.5 inch; ultra-slim 7mm

Dimensions

99.7 (L) x 69.75 (W) x 7mm (H)

Weight

115g

Controller

Indilinx Barefoot 3

Performance Optimizations

TRIM, Idle Time Garbage Collection

Power Consumption

Idle: 0.9W  Active: 2.25W

OS Compatibility

Windows, Linux, Mac OSX

Included Contents

Acronis cloning software registration key*;
3.5" desktop adapter

Warranty

5-years


Closer look

Visually, I am loving the new Vector SSD from OCZ. Even though it is “just a solid state drive”, it has a new look that it different from the others I have seen and tested.  I guess you can say it has that “it” factor. The drive is not of the typical 9mm height all most other drives, this one is a little shorter at 7mm.

The drive is available in capacities of 128GB, 256GB and 512GB. All of the drive has the same advertised read time of 550MB/s was the two largest drives have a write of 530MB/s and the smallest is a little slower at 400MB/s.

There is TRIM support with this drive.

The drive is engaged in an aluminum casing with a large blue and black stick with the product and company logos. And we see that this drive is ‘Indilinx Infused’ like the Agility 4 we just tested.

The backside contains the product label for the drive. It states warnings, some product information and a scan code linking back to OCZ’s site.

The drive has the typical SATA III connection along with the usual 15-pin power connector.

The heart of the drive is the Indilinx Barefoot 3 controller, IDX500-MOOBC.

Circling the controller is eight NAND with OCZ’s logo embedded on them and M2502128TO48SX22.

The cache memory is a Micron 256MB DDR3 chip, one on each side.


Test Hardware:

1. ASUS X79 Deluxe Motherboard
2. Intel Core i7 3930K Processor
3.Kingston HyperX 1866 DDR3 16GB
4.Kingston V+ 200 120GB Solid State Drive
5.ASUS BC12B1LT BD-Rom Drive
6. Thermaltake Frio Extreme CPU Cooler
7. MicrocoolBanchetto 101 Open Air Test Bench
8.Silverstone Strider Gold Evolution 850W Power Supply
9. ASUS Nvidia GTX 560Ti 448 Graphic Card

Results

HD Tune Pro 3.50
HD Tune Pro is an extended version of HD Tune which includes many new features such as: write benchmark, secure erasing, AAM setting, folder usage view, disk monitor, command line parameters and file benchmark.

ATTO Disk Benchmark
The ATTO Disk Benchmark performance measurement tool is compatible with Microsoft Windows. Measure your storage systems performance with various transfer sizes and test lengths for reads and writes. Several options are available to customize your performance measurement including queue depth, overlapped I/O and even a comparison mode with the option to run continuously. Use ATTO Disk Benchmark to test any manufacturers RAID controllers, storage controllers, host adapters, hard drives and SSD drives and notice that ATTO products will consistently provide the highest level of performance to your storage.


CrystalDiskMark 3.0
CrystalDiskMark is designed to quickly test the performance of your hard drives. Currently, the program allows to measure sequential and random read/write speeds.

Anvil's Storage Utilities
The Standard Storage Benchmark performs a series of tests, you can run the full test or just the read or the write test or you can run a single test like i.e. 4K QD16.

AS SSD
The synthetic tests to determine the sequential and random read and write performance of the SSD. These tests are carried out without using the operating system caches. In Seq-test measures the program how long it takes to read a full 1 GB of file to write respectively. In the 4K test the read and write performance for random 4K blocks is determined. The 4K-64-THRD-test corresponds to the 4K procedure except that here distributes the read and write operations on 64 threads. This test should be SSDs with Native Command Queuing (NCQ) differences between the IDE operation mode where NCQ is not supported, and represent the AHCI mode. The additional compression test can measure the performance of the SSD as a function of compressibility of the data. This is especially the controllers that are used to increase the performance and life of the cell compression is important.


SiSoftware Sandra
We are pleased to announce the launch of SiSoftware Sandra 2011, the latest version of our award-winning utility, which includes remote analysis, benchmarking and diagnostic features for PCs, servers, mobile devices and networks. A year ago, SiSoftware released Sandra 2010 with full support for Windows 7; in the 18 months since the launch of Windows 7, more than ever before we have seen the line blur between PC and entertainment hubs. Two months ago we released a Blu-Ray benchmark, now we have added a brand-new Media Transcoding benchmark using the new Media Foundation of Windows 7. We have also added yet another benchmark (GP Cryptography) which allows direct comparison of CPU performance (using crypto instruction sets) and GPGPU/GPCPU/GPAPU performance.

Simpli Software HD Tach
Sequential write test is available on removable media and non-partitioned fixed disks. Additionally, when an RW user chooses to save a set of benchmark results a .csv (comma separated values) file is saved for use in spreadsheet programs or internal databases. Finally, HD Tach RW is capable of performing the sequential read and write tests on the entire disk instead of the small number of zones in the quick and long test.


Conclusion

We have tested many drives in the past year. Performance seems to trend upwards after each new drive came and went. So, it should not have been a surprise to see the OCZ Vector continue the trend. But when the drive crushed all others with an overwhelming difference in percentages we had to go and test it again. It is clear that OCZ wanted to put the world on notice their Indilinx controller could surpass that of the industry favorite, SandForce SF-2881.

Synthetic test are one thing but after playing around with the drive on the bench, we threw it in a machine that is used constantly for gaming as well as general office duties. The machine was noticeable faster in every aspect. It amazed us how quickly maps loaded but we were more dumbfounded seeing the machine compress large amounts of data using programs like Winrar. One of the things I hate having to do when setting up a new machine is installing suites like Office from Microsoft and various one from Adobe. After installing the Vector I didn’t mind it so much afterwards.

OCZ has shown they still have it when it comes to the new features and added technology in the Vector. Before we were lovers of the Vertex 4, but a new lover affair as started with the introduction of this drive. Whatever ill feelings that you may have had with OCZ, you will definitely have to set them aside and try this drive a look see.

At $240 at more popular and highly respected retailer, the Vector 256GB is nicely priced. And you are not restricted to using the drive in desktops and laptops at 7mm you can threw it in post ultrabooks as well. Another attractive aspect of the drive is it has a five year warranty showing OCZ is standing behind their products for a long period of time.

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