OCZ Vector 150 SSD Review (240GB) – OCZ Refines Their Enthusiast SSD With An Enterprise Flavor

TSSDR TEST BENCH AND PROTOCOL

 SSD Testing at TSSDR differs slightly depending on whether we are looking at consumer or enterprise SSDs.  For consumer SSDs, our goal is to test in a system that has been optimized with our SSD Optimization Guide, although CPU C States have not been changed at all.  Benchmarks for consumer testing are also benchmarks with a fresh drive so, not only can we verify that manufacturer specifications are in line but also, so the consumer can replicate our tests to confirm that they have an SSD that is top-notch.  We even provide links to most of the benchmarks used in the report.

New System Shot

Enterprise testing is significantly different as we explore performance in steady state, explore drive latency, and do our best to follow SNIA test protocol.  AS OCZ has marketed the Vector 150 with enterprise attributes, we are going to be first testing in our usual consumer benchmarks, followed by steady state testing in IOMeter.

SYSTEM COMPONENTS

This new PCIe Test Bench build was the result of some great relationships and purchase; our appreciation goes to be quiet, Corsair, Crucial, Intel, EVGA and InWin for their support in our project.  Our choice of components is very narrow, in that, we choose only what we believe to be among the best available and links are provided to each that will assist in hardware pricing and availability, should the reader be interested in purchase.

PC CHASSIS: InWin D-Frame Open Air Chassis
MOTHERBOARD: ASUS Maximus VI Z87 MotherBoard
CPU:
Intel Core i7-4770K CPU
CPU COOLER: Corsair H100i CPU Cooler
POWER SUPPLY: be quiet Dark Power Pro 10 1000W PSU
SYSTEM COOLING: be quiet Silent Wings 2 PC Fans
GRAPHICS CARD:
EVGA GTX 770 Superclocked with ACX Cooler
MEMORY: Crucial Ballistix Tactical Tracer 1600Mhz Memory
KEYBOARD: Corsair Vengeance K95 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
MOUSE: Corsair Vengeance M95 MMO/RTS Laser Mouse
ROUTER: NetGear R6300 AC1750 Dual Band Gigabit WiFi Router
HBA HighPoint RocketU 1144C 4 x USB 3.0 20Gb/s HBA

.

BENCHMARK SOFTWARE

The software we will be using for today’s analysis is typical of many of our reviews and consists of ATTO Disk Benchmark, Crystal Disk Info, Crystal DiskMark, AS SSD, Anvil Storage Utilities,and PCMark Vantage.  In consumer reports, we prefer to test with easily accessible software that the consumer can obtain, and in many cases, we even provide links. Our selection of software allows each to build on the last and, also, to provide validation to results already obtained.

CRYSTAL DISK INFO VER 5.6.2

Crystal Disk Info provides some excellent information about the SSD itself to include its health, product information, ‘power on’ information as well as the characteristics of the SSD. We can see that the SSD is capable of TRIM as it is not grayed out as with AAM and APM

CDI After Pre Conditioning

We thought that it might be interesting to post the Crystal DiskInfo information after our testing was complete.  One can easily identify the result of our 12 hour test pattern by the 7.73TB  Total NAND Writes in 13 hours of use.

ATTO DISK BENCHMARK VER. 2.46

ATTO Disk Benchmark is perhaps one of the oldest benchmarks going and is definitely the main staple for manufacturer performance specifications. ATTO uses RAW or compressible data and, for our benchmarks, we use a set length of 256mb and test both the read and write performance of various transfer sizes ranging from 0.5 to 8192kb. Manufacturers prefer this method of testing as it deals with raw (compressible) data rather than random (includes incompressible data) which, although more realistic, results in lower performance results.

OCZ Vector 150 SSD ATTO

It is no surprise that the Vector 150 matched ATTO results with specs, almost dead on, but what is a surprise is seeing transfer speeds of 420MB/s write and 370MB/s read at only the 8K file size.  This is practically unheard of.

CRYSTAL DISK BENCHMARK VER. 3.0 X64

Crystal Disk Benchmark is used to measure read and write performance through sampling of highly compressible data (oFill/1Fill), or random data which is, for the most part, incompressible. Performance is virtually identical, regardless of data sample so we have included only that using random data samples.  Just for a bit of interest, the result of the right is one where testing was completed with CPU optimizations completed:

OCZ Vector 150 SSD Crystal DiskMark Combined

We get a clear picture of the results of altering the systems CPU states, but what some might overlook is how strong this SSD really is when we look at both the 512K and 4K-QD32 transfer speeds.  It is also good to see the all important low 4K random write score at 129 MB/s, but it would be nice to start seeing that without altering power states.

14 comments

  1. Nice, I LOVE OCZ! (since I have 2 x Vertex3MI 120GB, and they rock! 🙂 )…

  2. Hi,

    It was interesting to read ” One can easily identify the result of our 12 hour test pattern by the 7.73TB Total NAND Writes in 13 hours of use.” In fact perhaps it isn’t that easy because the Vector series come with up to 5 TB written to them in testing. As OCZ fail to mention this in the user manual it has led to a good deal of angst among users who have read the SMART data and have then assumed that they have been sold a used drive whilst paying for a new one. It also causes a lot of confusion regarding the warranty. When I questioned OCZ about the write limit I was informed that an allowance of an extra 5TB is made on top of the 20GB per day for five years. Again no mention of this in the user manual or the warranty conditions. OCZ may make top class drives (I have two) but their communications stink.

    • Hi Alan…. If I could be honest, it sounds like another typical thread coming from one who does not think much of OCZ and, IMHO, that has gotten very old. It is VERY common these days to find exactly the same burn-in and validation of new products and nobody mentions it whatsoever. With OCZ though it seems its a lose lose, they lose if they don’t burn in and something goes wrong, then again, they lose for burning in and not telling you it required up to 5TB written. Quite frankly, I believe the Barefoot 3 is the hottest controller available right now and OCZ firmware expertise is taking it in all new directions. We are long past the days of learning the hard way and my views are still the same.

      Would I rather an innovator who has learned the hard way and, as a result, pushed SSD technology forward leaps and bounds, or would I rather the safe bet who came to the show late relying on the bumps that others have suffered along the way?

  3. Hi Les,
    Your assessment of me and my post couldn’t be more wrong. I own two SSD’s, a 128 GB Vector and a 256 GB Vector . I chose the drives after considering as many options as I could and over and above the Samsung Pro, which a lot of the smart money was on.I am very happy with both of the drives, with the smaller one in particular impressing me with it’s speed.
    When I fitted the 256 it had the best part of 5TB written to it and I honestly thought I had been conned because I could not find any reference to it in the manual.This led to an ugly scene with the retailer. Others have had similar issues. That is not good, don’t you agree?
    Also I was aware of the 20GB per day for 5 years limit but only via website reviews and I was not aware of the extra 5TB allowed for the test writes and so would have assumed that my warranty ran out 5TB sooner than it actually would.
    No Les , I happen to be a big fan of OCZ and I love my Vectors but I do honestly feel that some info re the test writes and the extra 5TB allowed in the warranty would be useful to us mere mortal consumers , who do not always understand all that there is to know about SSD’s. That’s why I read your reviews.
    Please Les, reassess where it is you think I am coming from because I ma not the Anti OCZ ranter that you think.

  4. Hi Les,
    Thanks for your revision, it is very much appreciated.

  5. Hmm, another alan here LOL, I for one, have a lot of respect for OCZ, without them bringing us many SSDs back in day when no one had SSDs, we would have struggled to get a fair price on anything SSD related, yes they had some problems in the beginning, but that was all cleared up many years ago, now they have the best Consumer Grade controller in the business, and yes they are asking a premium for it, and I am willing to pay that premium for a product I believe is worth every dime. JMHO.

  6. Toshiba Q Series Pro with unknown contoller … Vector 150 with Toshiba Memory …

    Seems that something is going on there no ?? 🙂

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