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128 KB Sequential Performance: RAW, Windows, And Mac

OCZ Vertex 4 Review: A Flagship SSD Powered By...Indilinx?
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Sequential Read Performance

Examples include file copying, transcoding, game level loading, some gameplay, watching video, and editing video

In sequential read testing, the 256 GB and 512 GB Vertex 4s deliver identical performance, though it's hard to tell the lines are overlapping in the chart above. Regardless, it's clear that testing physical blocks doesn't favor OCZ's newest SSD. With speeds just above 200 MB/s, the Vertex 4 doesn't appear to live up to the Vertex namesake. Even Intel's SSD 320 enables faster transfers.

The results clearly change when we switch to testing within a file system. In NTFS specifically, both Vertex 4s start out at ~210 MB/s and climb as high as 480 MB/s after hitting a queue depth of 16. Although Samsung's 830 and OCZ's Vertex 3 deliver better performance, the Vertex 4 is not far behind.

Almost all of the SSDs are affected by host caching in a Mac environment, which is why you see most drives start around 500 MB/s. Interestingly, the 512 GB Vertex 4 exceeds the Vertex 3's performance, following a similar performance path as the 256 GB Crucial m4. The 256 GB Vertex 4 falls a bit behind, though. It's still able to beat Intel's SSD 320, but falls shy of OCZ's 240 GB Vertex 3.

Sequential Write Performance

Examples include Application Installation, Document Backup

SandForce-based SSDs reign supreme when it comes to writing compressible data, which explains why the 240 GB Vertex 3 maintains such a huge lead. At a queue depth of two, the Vertex 3 is the only SSD able to break through 500 MB/s. However, the 512 GB Vertex 4 doesn't fall far behind, which is encouraging considering that OCZ actually cites lower write speeds on the 480 GB Vertex 3, meaning the bigger drive would be slower than what we see here.

Zeroing-in on drive performance faced with incompressible information, the Vertex 3 delivers close to 300 MB/s. Meanwhile, the Vertex 4 continues to excel since it doesn't rely on compression to achieve better results.

On our Mac, we again see a lead favoring the Vertex 4. Even at a queue depth of one, both Vertex 4s maintain a 15 MB/s edge over the older Vertex 3. This lead mostly continues as queue depth increases up to around eight.

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Top Comments
  • 10 Hide
    CaedenV , April 4, 2012 6:22 PM
    JackNaylorPEWhen I built Son No.2 's box...

    You lucky dog! I wanted a similar naming system of "son 1, 2, 3" and "daughter 1, 2, 3" or even "Thing 1, 2, 3" but my wife would not let me :p 
    burnley14It's interesting because so many people have talked about how unreliable they are, but in my personal experience (a small sample size, granted) I've been very pleased with both the Vertex 2's performance and reliability and the Agility 3's. Maybe I'm just lucky.

    I completely agree, got a 60GB Solid 3 for my wife's PC about a year ago, and just picked up a much larger 240GB Agility 3 for myself. I have also put them in a few PCs for friends and have yet to have a single issue. I think a lot of the bad rap they got was due to bad firmwares that caused any number of issues, but after the last major update last summer I have not been hearing the same complaints.

    Also, are those boot times including POST? because my system boots in 9-10 sec after post, which is half the time of these scores and I don't even have a 'performance' SSD
Other Comments
  • 5 Hide
    compton , April 4, 2012 1:42 PM
    Octane was not a special and unique snowflake; Indeed, someone else's fingerprints were all over it. Vertex4 is certainly unique, but I fully expect the next round of drive launches using Marvell products to look like the V4, but possibly with some more balance.
  • 7 Hide
    billybobser , April 4, 2012 1:45 PM
    Seems to good to be true.

    We'll see how they are once they've been out in the open for 6 months when problems will/will not flare up.
  • 0 Hide
    maxinexus , April 4, 2012 2:00 PM
    As Billy said only time will tell. These preliminary tests are great and pricing is better but still SSD are expensive...we need to get to cents not dollars per GB. Anyway good start OCZ...now the only thing you need is your own NANDs...perhaps in few years
  • 3 Hide
    jgutz2006 , April 4, 2012 2:19 PM
    This is a great step and makes financial sense for OCZ to come to market with a competitive product and possibly undercut all the others. Its a no brainer im my world. Force Samsung to sell units with less profit margins
  • 8 Hide
    Branden , April 4, 2012 2:31 PM
    it'll be interesting to see how reliable these drives are and what their failure rate is going to be. OCZ's vertex 2 and 3 drives were horribly unreliable - in my experience 50% failure/DOA rate, my local shop said they see about 10% of them returned due to failure (and that's just within their 2 week return window alone).

    sorry OCZ, you've lost my business this time around. i've since replaced all my remaining OCZ SSD's with crucial m4's, they may not quite perform as well as your latest offerings but in my experience reliability > performance.
  • 3 Hide
    JackNaylorPE , April 4, 2012 2:40 PM
    When I built Son No.2 's box, we installed the Seagate Barracuda XT on Friday and measured boot times at 21.2 seconds to the Password entry screen. The Vertex 3 arrived on Monday and after installing that, we measured boot times at 15.6 seconds. Not commenting on the actual times as differences in hardware as well as testing parameters could push it in any direction, but what I will comment on is the HD choice for this test.

    My testing showed it took 36% extra time to boot off the HD instead of the HD. This test has it taking 226 % longer. If we're gonna test the best SSD's, I'd sure like to see a best in class HD added to the comparisons.
  • 3 Hide
    burnley14 , April 4, 2012 2:56 PM
    Brandenit'll be interesting to see how reliable these drives are and what their failure rate is going to be. OCZ's vertex 2 and 3 drives were horribly unreliable - in my experience 50% failure/DOA rate, my local shop said they see about 10% of them returned due to failure (and that's just within their 2 week return window alone).sorry OCZ, you've lost my business this time around. i've since replaced all my remaining OCZ SSD's with crucial m4's, they may not quite perform as well as your latest offerings but in my experience reliability > performance.

    It's interesting because so many people have talked about how unreliable they are, but in my personal experience (a small sample size, granted) I've been very pleased with both the Vertex 2's performance and reliability and the Agility 3's. Maybe I'm just lucky.
  • 5 Hide
    drwho1 , April 4, 2012 3:00 PM
    all I read was: support for 2TB... *drooling*
    Price for 2TB SSD?
    *not drooling anymore*
  • -4 Hide
    mitunchidamparam , April 4, 2012 3:42 PM
    ocz FTW
  • -4 Hide
    OntarioHero , April 4, 2012 4:33 PM
    Hmmm. Basically OCZ decided "Indilinx too slow! sod it, stick 1GB buffer in there!"
  • 1 Hide
    crewton , April 4, 2012 5:26 PM
    I love my vertex 2. I'm looking forward to seeing what ocz comes out with next!
  • 1 Hide
    iamtheking123 , April 4, 2012 5:27 PM
    I'd have like to see the 520 included in the benchmarks rather than the 320. Yeah it's higher priced but it's also the most reliable ssd on the market.
  • 10 Hide
    CaedenV , April 4, 2012 6:22 PM
    JackNaylorPEWhen I built Son No.2 's box...

    You lucky dog! I wanted a similar naming system of "son 1, 2, 3" and "daughter 1, 2, 3" or even "Thing 1, 2, 3" but my wife would not let me :p 
    burnley14It's interesting because so many people have talked about how unreliable they are, but in my personal experience (a small sample size, granted) I've been very pleased with both the Vertex 2's performance and reliability and the Agility 3's. Maybe I'm just lucky.

    I completely agree, got a 60GB Solid 3 for my wife's PC about a year ago, and just picked up a much larger 240GB Agility 3 for myself. I have also put them in a few PCs for friends and have yet to have a single issue. I think a lot of the bad rap they got was due to bad firmwares that caused any number of issues, but after the last major update last summer I have not been hearing the same complaints.

    Also, are those boot times including POST? because my system boots in 9-10 sec after post, which is half the time of these scores and I don't even have a 'performance' SSD
  • -1 Hide
    nagol567 , April 4, 2012 7:09 PM
    Looks nice but ill stick with a 120 second gen
  • 0 Hide
    jaquith , April 4, 2012 8:56 PM
    Outstanding IOPS!

    We really need SATA Express yesterday...SATA3 is saturated.
  • 2 Hide
    A Bad Day , April 4, 2012 8:57 PM
    How many 7200 RPM hard drives would it take to match OCZ's SSD? Seek time is out for sure, unless if a HDD manufacturer drops a 60k RPM HDD on the market.
  • 3 Hide
    acku , April 4, 2012 9:02 PM
    Quote:
    You lucky dog! I wanted a similar naming system of "son 1, 2, 3" and "daughter 1, 2, 3" or even "Thing 1, 2, 3" but my wife would not let me :p 

    I completely agree, got a 60GB Solid 3 for my wife's PC about a year ago, and just picked up a much larger 240GB Agility 3 for myself. I have also put them in a few PCs for friends and have yet to have a single issue. I think a lot of the bad rap they got was due to bad firmwares that caused any number of issues, but after the last major update last summer I have not been hearing the same complaints.

    Also, are those boot times including POST? because my system boots in 9-10 sec after post, which is half the time of these scores and I don't even have a 'performance' SSD

    From the time you hit the power button to desktop.

    Cheers,
    Andrew Ku
    TomsHardware.com
  • 2 Hide
    acku , April 4, 2012 9:04 PM
    Quote:
    I'd have like to see the 520 included in the benchmarks rather than the 320. Yeah it's higher priced but it's also the most reliable ssd on the market.


    See our SSD 520 review. Basically same scores as Vertex 3 because they are both SandForce.
  • 3 Hide
    acku , April 4, 2012 9:05 PM
    Quote:
    Seems to good to be true.

    We'll see how they are once they've been out in the open for 6 months when problems will/will not flare up.


    Agreed!

    Cheers,
    Andrew Ku
  • 0 Hide
    freggo , April 4, 2012 9:24 PM
    HDs are here to stay for affordable mass storage for a few more years but SSDs are definitely getting to the point where you don't have a reason to NOT using one as a boot/system drive.

    How long until boxed PCs like Dell or HP will be offered with an affordable SSD/HD combo ?
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