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- OCZ announces the Indilinx Everest
- Crucial M4 vs C300 at 64, 128 and 256 GB
- SSD 2011 roundup: M4, Vertex 3, i510/320
- A miracle firmware for Indilinx?
- SSDs at $1/GB end 2012?
- SSD roundup : Sixteen 120 and 128 GB SATA 6G SSDs
- OCZ Octane 512 GB and Indilinx Everest
- 1st tests of the OCZ Octane
- OCZ Octane, 1 TB and Indilinx Everest
- SATA Express : 8 et 16 Gb /s

 SSD roundup : Sixteen 120 and 128 GB SATA 6G SSDs
  Posted on 27/06/2012 at 13:32 by Damien
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An SSD, okay, but which one? It was about time we put the latest models up against the older ones and this is what we’ve done with this review of sixteen 120 and 128 GB SATA 6G SSDs!

> SSD 2012 roundup: Sixteen 120 and 128 GB SATA 6G SSDs

 OCZ Octane 512 GB and Indilinx Everest
  Posted on 23/02/2012 at 21:40 by Damien
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Bought by OCZ in 2011, Indilinx is taking centre stage once again with a new controller, Everest, to follow up its success with Barefoot. The first SSD to run on the Everest is the OCZ Octane. How does it perform?

> OCZ Octane 512 GB and Indilinx Everest vs Crucial M4 512 GB

 1st tests of the OCZ Octane
  Posted on 23/11/2011 at 11:44 by Marc
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OCZ has sent us an Octane 512 GB SSD. As we're in the midst of moving premises, we won’t be able to publish a full test before the end of next week at best but we couldn’t stop ourselves from publishing a preview for you. First of all, here are the official performance figures for the Octane range:

As you can see, all three capacities have the same read speed but writes increase a good deal as you go up the range. OCZ sent us the highest performance model, which also happens to be the most costly. In contrast, on the Vertex 3 range, the 240 GB is the highest performance model, in front of the 480 GB, while the Crucial M4 256 and 512 GB versions are given as having the same speeds.

A new Indilinx IDX300 controller with 16 (8 on each side of the PCB) MLC flash chips made by the Intel/Micron joint venture, IMFT, as well as 2 Micron DRAM chips for the 512 MB SSD cache.

What about performance? You’ll have to wait for the full test for our definitive opinion, but in the meantime here are the figures we obtained on CrystalDiskMark 3.0.1 (4 GB test, repeated 9 times, non compressible random data) with a P67 Express chipset:

[ OCZ Octane 512 GB ] [ Crucial M4 256 GB ]

Although still very good, the sequential reads are a little slower than expected. The same goes for the sequential writes though they are again still high, close to the best SSDs in this category (Samsung 830 265 and 512 GB SSD, Corsair Performance Pro 256). Random 4 KB speeds with 4K accesses are at a decent level, up on the M4 256 GB but down with a higher number of simultaneous accesses (4K QD32). Random writes are down on those obtained on the M4 at 4K and performance doesn't increase much with a higher number of simultaneous accesses. Nothing too serious in itself as the Octane is already a good deal over requirements for desktop PC or workstation use.

From the point of view of synthetic performance alone, according to this first test which must still be confirmed with other tools, the Octane 512 GB seems to be at a very good level without bringing anything revolutionary to the table. It remains to be seen what it will give in practice in terms of performance in an environment without TRIM or improvement in OS boot times!

 OCZ Octane, 1 TB and Indilinx Everest
  Posted on 21/10/2011 at 09:07 by Marc
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Following the announcement of its takeover of Indilinx in March and a new Indilinx Everest controller in July, OCZ is now launching the Octane and Octane-S2 SSDs which are based on the new Everest controller.

Using the SATA 6G interface, the Octane is associated with 2xnm synchronous memory and has a capacity of up to one terabyte for read speeds of 560 MB/s and writes of 400 MB/s and 45K IOPS random reads. The Octane-S2 only has an SATA 3G interface and uses 2xnm asynchronous memory. The maximum capacity is the same but performance is naturally lower with reads of 275 MB/s, writes of 265 MB/s and 30K IOPS for random 4KB reads and 25K IOPS for random writes. We don’t yet know the specific specs of the different 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB and 1 TB models.

To reach such levels of performance, which hold for whatever type of data (unlike SSDs based on SandForce controllers), the Indilinx Everest calls on a dual core ARM CPU with a cache of up to 512 MB and piloting up to 8 channels and 16 memory chips in parallel.

OCZ is highlighting performances which are said to be significantly up on existing SSDs which only support 1 to 3 simultaneous accesses, something that hasn’t been improved for a long time, with, instead, 16 to 32 simultaneous accesses (not much used on a standard PC). The read latency is just 0.06ms, or 16.6K IOPS, which is twice what you got with the best SSDs up to now (C300s). The Everest is also reported to have algorithms that have been specifically designed to halve the start-up times of current SSDs. OCZ is also highlighting the fact that performance with 8KB accesses is similar to that with 4 KB accesses, a simple consequence of moving from 4 KB pages to 8 KB pages on recent Flash chips.

In terms of reliability, Everest includes the proprietary Ndurance technology which is supposed to double the number of write cycles possible on current chips. No further details are given however. All we know is that Everest includes error correction based on the BCH algorithm that can reach over 70 bits per defined sector, where the SandForce SF-2000 is limited to 55 bits. Lastly OCZ is talking up performance over time.

The OCZ Octanes should be available as of November 1st for between $1.1 and $1.3 per GB. It now remains to be seen if these mouthwatering specs on paper will be confirmed in practice, both in terms of performance and reliability!

 SATA Express : 8 et 16 Gb /s
  Posted on 11/08/2011 at 00:48 by Marc
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The organisation in charge of the Serial ATA standard, the SATA-IO, has just announced that it is currently working on a new standard, SATA Express. As part of the future Serial ATA 3.2 standard, which should be finalised between now and the end of the year, this standard aims to combine the PCI-Express 3.0 interface with the Serial ATA software infrastructure.

In terms of speeds, cables using 1 or 2 PCI Express 3.0 links will give 8 and 16 Gb/s compared to 6 Gb/s at best for Serial ATA. Better still, as PCI-Express 3.0 uses 128/130b encoding in place of 8/10b encoding, in practice we’ll be going from 600 MB/s to 1 GB/s or even 2 GB/s.

As presented, the SATA Express motherboard connector would be able to link up to one SATA Express (x1 or x2) peripheral or two Serial ATA peripherals, with versions that are only compatible with SATA Express peripherals also being studied.

With the fastest SSDs already having reached the limits of SATA 6 Gb/s, the announcement of the development of a new interface was expected. The use of the PCI-Express interface, which is reminiscent of OCZ’s HSDL initiative, is a surprise but using what is an already existing technology should simplify the development of SATA Express. It remains to be seen when it will arrive in our machines!

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