SSD Types and Form Factors – An SSD Primer


PCIe SSDs are the workhorse of the bunch as a result of the absolutely amazing speeds they can achieve.  We have already shown that the OCZ Z-R4 PCIe SSD can reach 2.8GB/s transfer speeds and this is an unfair example as it is meant for enterprise use.  Looking a bit closer to home, however, the OCZ RevoDrive 3×2 PCIe SSD can be had for less than $700 and reaches performance speeds as high as 1.5GB/s.

To date, consumer PCIe cards have been the exclusive release of OCZ and the reason that they can reach such high speeds is actually pretty interesting and demonstrates just how fast technology is moving forward.  Here we are just moving into SATA 3 which technically doubles the speed of SATA 2 systems and along comes PCIe SSDs which sail by SATA speeds with ease.

This is because PCIe SSDs clip into your motherboards PCIe 2.0 slot and are not subject to the bottlenecks seen in SATA SSDs.  The downfall, of course, is that these are limited only to computer systems with an available PCIe slot, however, the absolute speeds reached are incredible.  Lets take a look at the ATTO result we received in testing the Revo 3×2.

A discussion of PCIe cards wouldn’t be complete without looking at the OCZ Z-R4 PCIe SSD in its comparison to the Fusion IO ioDrive Duo which we reviewed previously.

Speeds reached in enterprise drives are almost too high to believe and, even the purpose of such performance, escapes the grasp of most of us.  Still, as a reviewer, I couldn’t go without showing off this kind of performance! Yes, that is 2.8GB/s!