OCZ Vector SSD Review – Indilinx Barefoot 3 Becomes Reality


The exterior of the OCZ Vector is of a heavy metal with an attractive black and blue face design with buffed rounded edging.  The base plate is secured by four screws that allow access to the printed circuit board (PCB).

One might notice the sticker on the top right screw that would immediately invalidate the warranty if damaged in any way.  We were one of the first to publish pictures of SSD interior components, a practice that met to the dismay of some manufacturers originally, however, we believe a first hand look is key to understanding the operation of a SSD.

The heart and soul of the OCZ Vector is OCZ’s own Indilinx Barefoot 3 IDX500-MOOBC controller and it is surrounded with eight modules of IMFT 25nm MLC synchronous 16GB NAND flash memory. It is not uncommon for companies to use their own branding on IMFT memory and it is also considered to be a cost saving measure in end price.

There are eight memory chips on each side of the PCB for a total of 256GB of RAW memory.  Without getting too technical, the total available capacity to the user is 238GB once the drive has been formatted, hence, the advertised capacity reflects that of total memory on the device.

Last but not least, there is a module of Micron DDR3 256MB SDRAM Cache memory on each side of the PCB.


Something we don’t often see in consumer SSDs is the characteristic of sustained performance which happens to be well described in that of the OCZ Vector. Their statement that, ” Each Vector will undergo an advanced and strenuous factory burn-in procedure before shipping to customers.” is a very refreshing thought to many and eliminates FOB (fresh out of box) results as we see in just about every SSD today.

Although typically, solid state drives might experience a drop in performance at some point, the Vector appears to be similar to only the Intel 520 and maintains steady state performance right from the get go.  OCZ’ proprietary advanced flash management also provides for the delivering of up to 20GB host writes per day for five years.  This is reflected in the warranty where it is listed at five years or 36.5TB writes, whichever comes first.